CannaPitch is coming to the Marijuana Investor Summit on September 16, 2015, at the Los Angeles Convention Center, in conjunction with Viridian Capital Advisors and Cannabis World Congress & Business Expo. Moderated by Dooma Wendschuh, co-founder of ebbu, the event will feature fresh faces in the world of cannabis startups competing before a panel of qualified investors. Wendschuh is boiling with optimism:
They will be put to the test, and if they can withstand the test it can change their lives. They could get funded—there’s an incredible amount of exposure.
It can change all of our lives because it’s an opportunity for a new product to make it into the marketplace and perhaps create a healthier alternative to alcohol, a healthier psychoactive, a better type of medicine or a product that may enable this green revolution that we are in the midst of.
On the panel will be:
- Frank Marino, Chairman & CEO of MJIC Inc.;
- Robert Hunt, principal of Tuatara Capital;
- Sam Znaimer, CEO of Locarno Capital;
- Kevin Gillespie, CEO of First Harvest Financial; and
- Matthew Mills, President and COO, Med-X Inc.
Following the pitches and the Q&A, the panelists will be polled to indicate their desire to move forward with discussions to invest. Thumbs up or thumbs down from everyone, including the audience, will help attendees walk away with a better understanding of what investors look for and what creative ideas are bubbling up in the emerging industry.
At the Marijuana Investor Summit in Denver this past April, this educational event drew more than 900 attendees who watched four firms pitch to a team of investors looking for investments.
Frank Marino has been involved with high-growth startups across a broad range of industries, largely focused on technology. He has decades of experience in venture finance and deep roots in sourcing capital for both private and public companies. From 1996-2004 Frank was CEO and CIO of Namaste Ltd., a highly successful private investment fund administered in Geneva, Switzerland, and focused on venture finance and pre-IPO finance.
Frank has been licensed with FINRA since 1987, when he began his career as a Financial Planner for IDS American Express. He headed the investment banking division and served as the Executive Representative and Chief Compliance Officer of Marv Capital Inc. (FKA Marino Capital Partners Inc.), a New York-based investment bank focused on facilitating corporate debt trading in the secondary market.
Robert Hunt brings a unique perspective to the cannabis industry as an attorney, entrepreneur, activist and cultivation expert. He has been involved in nearly every aspect of the cannabis industry for more than 20 years and, as a result, can help new businesses avoid the pitfalls that have thwarted those who have come before. Rob has been deeply involved in the efforts that have brought about the legalization and mainstream acceptance of cannabis.
With 30 years of hands-on early stage technology investing experience, Sam Znaimer is a pioneer of the Canadian venture capital industry. As a general partner of Vancouver-based Ventures West Capital, Sam invested in and helped build two dozen companies that became leaders in the enterprise software, electronics, and telecommunications equipment sectors.
In early 2014 Sam established Locarno Capital, dedicated to investment in the emerging legal cannabis industry in the United States and Canada.
Kevin Gillespie has 24 years of expertise in the financial services industry specializing in venture capital. Having served the lead in several early-round, pre-public investments in companies like Facebook, Groupon, Zynga and Twitter, he has also been an advisor to numerous private equity investment firms.
“It is such an exciting time in venture capital for the legal medical marijuana space and the opportunity businesses and entrepreneurs have is unheard of,” Gillespie said.
Matthew A. Mills has been the Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Operating Officer of Med-X Inc. since its inception in February 2014. According to Mills,
Our long term mission to cultivate multiple strains of organic medical marijuana for patient care is well underway in our new cooperative patient test facility. It has been recognized that medical marijuana being dispensed through a wide range of dispensaries nationally is completely unregulated and has been found, in many instances, that patients are receiving medical marijuana that is riddled with various pesticides and mold. This is the reason why our mission is so important.
CannaPitch is a unique opportunity, Wendshuch said,
I’ve lived it. Our company, ebbu, has made $7 million to date primarily by standing on stages just like the stage at CannaPitch and pitching to investors. I’ve been in the shoes of those companies.