How non-cannabis companies are benefiting from cannabis

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Marijuana legalization isn’t just helping marijuana companies

While marijuana continues to be accepted more and more, it is obviously bringing with it a multi-billion dollar industry. Beyond that, however, there are a number of companies that are being formed to help support the industry, even if they aren’t getting directly involved. With only about ten states offering recreational marijuana use, imagine what will happen when the entire country gets onboard.

One such company is Baker Technologies, a software platform for dispensaries that wants to become “the Salesforce of Cannabis customer relationship management.” A similar company, Headset out of Seattle, is working to become the “Nielsen Ratings” of the industry. Most marijuana enthusiasts may already be familiar with Treez, which is based in California and offers point-of-sale software.

There are also companies like Block and Co., which is of particular interest to the marijuana industry. Block is a cash-handling company that has seen extensive growth as a result of the federal government’s banking limitations on the marijuana industry. The company’s sales and marketing officer, Philip Robins, explains, “A few years ago, we saw articles about people in dispensaries walking around with tens of thousands of dollars in shopping bags and realized this was a business we needed to get into.” That gave the company the idea to target the marijuana industry and it has since seen its business increase 50%.

According to Michael Gruber, the managing director of Salveo Capital, his venture capital firm has invested in a number of companies that are tied to marijuana, but which don’t actually get involved directly with the plant. He says, “What became very evident to me as big as this industry was—and it can be considered a $250 billion, $300 billion global industry—was that a lot of the infrastructure just wasn’t there. We’re still in the second inning.”

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