Major cannabis player moves from Seattle to Tampa
Kush.com is crowning itself king of Florida's cannabis scene.
Driving the news: Just ahead of putting on the state's biggest cannabis-centric trade show, the wholesale cannabis and hemp marketplace tells Axios it's moving its company headquarters from Seattle to Tampa's Embarc Collective.
- Kush recently acquired Tampa-based TradeCraft Origin, a cannabis brand strategy firm, and named its founder, John Lynch, Kush's new CEO.
- Tech entrepreneur and investor Steve MacDonald, the company's new board chairman and a general partner in the Florida Funders VC, invested $2 million in Kush for its ongoing funding round, the company tells Axios.
Why it matters: Kush will have a major grip on Florida's market if recreational marijuana becomes legal in the state.
- The company, founded in 2014, already claims to be the country's largest business-to-business network of cannabis products and now it has TradeCraft's network of restaurant chains, beverage companies and retailers.
State of play: Florida has the country's largest medical cannabis market, with industry publication MJBiz projecting $1.3 billion-$1.5 billion in sales this year.
- More than 700,000 medical marijuana patients are registered in the state as of April — more than double the number in early 2020.
What they're saying: "We think Tampa is the ideal choice now and for the future," Lynch told Axios. "Florida's role in the global cannabis industry will only become more significant."
- "Kush.com will be the most efficient, reliable route to market for CBD now, and a turnkey path to future THC market authority," MacDonald added.
What's next: The company's Kush Con takes over the Tampa Convention Center this weekend, with Agriculture Commissioner and gubernatorial candidate Nikki Fried as the keynote speaker.
Editor's note: This story has been updated to clarify that Steve MacDonald invested, not gave, $2 million in Kush.com during its current funding round.
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