February 4, 2015
I recently wrote about WeedHire’s Q4 cannabis jobs report for 2014, and it told a tale of a legal cannabis industry that’s slowly, but surely, emerging. And then, recently, I saw that CB Insights had released a ranking of cannabis startups funding in Q4 2014: it matches very closely with the trends purported in the WeedHire Q4 jobs report.
According to CB Insights’ article, cannabis startups have raised a total of $104 million across 59 deals in 2014. Among this group was what a lot of people would call ‘The First Domino’: Peter Theil’s announcement that Founders Fund would participate in the $75 million investment into cannabis venture Privateer Holdings.
That is to say, Thiel was the first big time investor to jump on board the cannabis hype train despite the fact that many top level investors, angels, and VCs were hesitant to do so. It’s going to take more people like Thiel to destroy the ludicrous stigma still associated with cannabis and cannabis related ventures.
However, Thiel’s involvement did spark a revolution of sorts. According to CB Insights, via aggregated funding data, 2014 saw investors light up the space as marijuana related ventures raised capital. To that end they formulated this chart:
In addition, CB Insights highlighted five cannabis startups that have raised funding in the last year (2014). They range all the way from medical marijuana distributors all the way to care technologies for the industry.
So, what does all of this say? It’s quite simple, really: cannabis is booming. I’ve said it once and I’ll most likely say it a thousand more times, but now, not later, is the time to throw yourself in with this lot. If you’re interested in reading about some of the startups not highlighted on the CB Insights post make sure to check out all my coverage of the industry here.
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