VCs planting seeds in the cannabis industry
April 19, 2017
The startup world has seen a growing number of cannabis-related companies crop up over the past several years, a development that's likely driven by the increasing number of US states to legalize marijuana in some capacity. The industry is ripe for technological innovation—and several companies and venture investors are taking advantage.
In fact, after already setting a new high last year, VCs are on pace to make a record number of new deals in the cannabis industry during 2017. Here's a chart showing recent venture investor activity in US-based cannabis companies:
And which companies are driving the uptick in venture investment? Here's a selection of three of the fastest-growing companies in the cannabis space, according to growth metrics compiled by PitchBook:
Founded last year in Boulder, CO, Sana Packaging is a maker of hemp- and waste-based packaging for the cannabis industry that's working to prevent single-use packaging for marijuana products. CanopyBoulder, a seed-stage accelerator focused on products and services for the legal cannabis industry, is a backer of the business.
New York-based EstroHaze is the provider of a multimedia platform that shares information about the marijuana industry, including business opportunities and scientific breakthroughs. The company, which was founded in 2015 by three black women—Kali Wilder, Safon Floyd and Sirita Wright—offers content that’s tailored to women of color. Like Sana Packaging, it's received previous backing from CanopyBoulder.
Eaze provides an on-demand medical marijuana delivery service that allows customers with a medical marijuana card to browse products available from nearby sellers and have their orders delivered within 20 minutes. With a long list of investors that includes Snoop Dogg’s Casa Verde Capital, which focuses on the cannabis industry, the Bay Area company was valued at $115 million at the end of last year.