December 7th, 2018
In the fast-growing cannabis industry, there is a dire need for both capital, operational support, and products that offer a consistent user experience. Offering these is CordovaCann (CSE:CDVA, OTCQB:LVRLF), a leading provider of services, investments and intellectual property in the cannabis space that has a multi-jurisdictional platform that is already seeing success in Colorado and Oregon with plans to expand to Washington, California, Nevada and Canada. The company sets itself apart through its unique blend of industry-focused and capital markets expertise, offering both operators and investors a chance to thrive.
CFN Media sat down with CordovaCann CEO and Co-Founder Taz Turner at the recent MJBizCon in Las Vegas to learn more about his background and how the company is already making waves in recreational markets across North America.
CFN: Tell us about your background and founding of CordovaCann?
Taz Turner: My background is mostly in the financial markets for the last 20 years, originally in the private equity markets and then in the public space, working for a couple of hedge funds before starting my own about ten years ago now. Most of my background is investing in the technology, internet and consumer industries. I made kind of a left hand turn, as I like to say, and invested in cannabis, first out of Canada because of the regulatory framework there. In doing that, I came across a lot of these companies that are sizable now early on in that process.
Then as I kind of moved away from the Canadian market, I started looking at U.S. assets and essentially pairing up U.S. companies with some Canadian money. That all led to Cordova. As we looked at the public market and how people are approaching U.S. assets within the public market, we decided we wanted to take a different approach in how we wanted to build the company from the top down and also from the assets that we wanted to go after initially.
The company is a Canadian, and was originally a foreign issuer listed on the OTC. We cross listed it on the CSE back in the summer of 2018. Our approach to the market was different in a couple of ways. One, we wanted to set it up with an operational focus so the guys at the top of this team are not all guys that look and smell like me. Certainly, I have the financial background and expertise, which a lot of these companies do, but a lot of guys at the top of our organization have been in the cannabis business for over 20 years, which is an eternity in this space. That has really been a driving factor in terms of how we’ve been able to go after different companies within this space.
Second, we started out on the West Coast markets in the U.S., going after operations that had revenue, had cash flow, and relationships, instead of going in and saying we are first into a market that doesn’t even have a market yet.
CFN: Tell us more about your technology?
TT: NWN Industries is really a platform that consists of two parts: one is tissue culturing, both for genetic banking, which a number of people do, but more importantly we will also use it for propagation. We’re essentially building plants at scale at a cost that is substantially less than building themthrough the standard methods of growing.
The other aspect is in product formulation. So, taking the plant, deconstructing it down to the cannabinoid level and then taking those individual cannabinoids and formulating an end product. We can build formulated products that control the onset and intensity of the user experience , so I’d say that technology is a massive differentiator for us in the marketplace.
The way we are doing it in terms of taking down the plant to the cannabinoid level and formulating it from there truly allows for an experience that’s consistent time and time again, but it also allows us to be able to move that product across state lines because you’re moving a recipe or formula, as opposed to moving plant material across state lines which is illegal.
CFN: What are you looking forward to as a company in 2019?
TT: The first thing is just expansion of the individual assets that we’ve already either closed or announced, and so finishing up the expansion in Oregon, expanding the operation in Washington, expanding two different operations in California, and then we have some other markets on tap that we want to move into. That’s one aspect of it. The other aspect of what’s on tap is really introducing these end product formulations into the market in 2019.
We also have the Canadian platform now that should be fully operational by mid next year. We certainly want to serve the Canadian market and have a lot of relationships there from our management team, but I think just as importantly, we want to serve a number of international markets from there and those relationships also stem from ones we already have within our organization. We are looking to export those end formulated products that we talked about earlier to various countries across the globe.
CFN: Why should potential investors consider CordovaCann?
TT: The valuations we have paid for underlying operators have surprised some people on the positive side and that’s really driven from the fact that we have operational expertise, where these operators want to work with our team of operators that have been in this business for a long time. Our team have operated at scale in a number of different markets, not just in the U.S., but also internationally.
We’re acquiring properties at attractive valuations, but really what we’re looking to acquire is relationships and people. This is what I like to call relationship distribution, not logistical distribution, so acquiring and partnering with people that have demand that exceeds supply and not just the desire to build more warehouses in different parts of the state. We can do that too, but not in terms of a “build and they will come” strategy, but more for “here and now it’s time build to that demand”.
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About Rachelle Gordon
Rachelle Gordon is a Minneapolis-based writer. Find her online at www.rachellegordon.net.
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