New Cannabis Retail Store Opens in Ironwood by C3 Industries

Published 3 weeks ago Business & Industry Ryan Spegal
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C3 Industries, an Ann Arbor-based cannabis company, has recently inaugurated its latest dispensary, High Profile Ironwood, marking the 22nd retail outlet in its nationwide portfolio and the 11th within Michigan. The grand opening of this new location is scheduled from Friday, February 9th, continuing through the Super Bowl weekend, aiming to provide a festive launch to its operations.

Situated at 100 West Cloverland Drive in Ironwood, this newly opened dispensary is strategically located in an area celebrated for its scenic natural landscapes, encompassing forests, lakes, and a plethora of outdoor activities. C3 Industries expresses enthusiasm for its new venture in Ironwood, highlighting the locale's environmental allure as a significant draw for customers. The company is keen on offering daily discounts to a wide array of customers including seniors, veterans, medical cardholders, as well as college students and staff, ensuring a broad community benefit from its services.

Ankur Rungta, CEO and co-founder of C3 Industries, articulated the company's excitement about expanding their footprint in Michigan and across the nation. “This store addition reflects our commitment to serving communities all over the great state of Michigan," Rungta stated. He further emphasized the goal of broadening access to premium cannabis products and enhancing customer experience, alongside contributing to the cannabis industry's growth and positive evolution in the future.

The High Profile Ironwood dispensary operates daily from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., offering an extensive range of cannabis products. These include flower, pre-rolls, edibles, concentrates, vape cartridges, tinctures, topicals, and accessories, featuring C3’s proprietary cannabis brand, Cloud Cover, and their everyday product lines like Galactic, which encompasses flower, concentrates, vape cartridges, and gummies.

In addition to product offerings, High Profile Ironwood introduces an engaging loyalty program, the High Roller Loyalty membership, which rewards customers for their purchases with points that can be redeemed on future visits. New members receive an immediate bonus of 50 free points upon signing up and enjoy various benefits such as early access to special events, referral bonuses, double points on Tuesdays, and exclusive members-only discounts.

Further enhancing customer convenience, High Profile Ironwood supports online ordering with options for inside drive-thru and curbside pickup. New customers are welcomed with a 20% discount on their first purchase and a complimentary product on their subsequent visit, encouraging community engagement and recurrent patronage.


Madison Heights City Council Approves Additional Cannabis Establishments

Published 3 weeks ago Business & Industry Ryan Spegal
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Madison Heights City Council, in a closely contested decision, has opted to expand its cannabis licensing framework, accommodating two additional companies, Arctic Fox LLC and 305 N Euclid LLC, which had previously faced rejection. This move comes as a strategic measure to avert the financial and resource strains of ongoing legal confrontations.

In an unexpected turn during the council session on January 22nd, Councilman David Soltis shifted his stance from opposition to approval, tipping the scales to a 4-3 majority in favor of resolving the lawsuits initiated by the two companies. This pivotal decision also led to a revision in the city's ordinance, raising the cap on marijuana establishment licenses from three to five. It's noteworthy that this adjustment comes with a provision that should any of the licensed establishments cease operations, the city is not obligated to reissue the vacated licenses.

The council's vote mirrored its previous deliberations on November 16th, 2023, with Mayor Roslyn Grafstein, Mayor Pro Tem Mark Bliss, and Councilman Sean Fleming maintaining their supportive votes, while Councilwoman Emily Rohrbach, Councilman Quinn Wright, and Councilman Bill Mier stood by their opposition. The legal challenges brought forth by Arctic Fox and 305 N Euclid were rooted in allegations of unfairness in the city’s licensing process.

Soltis, reflecting on his decision, acknowledged the complexity of balancing principle with the practical implications of legal expenses on the city and its residents. The settlement with Arctic Fox and 305 N Euclid not only resolves the litigation but also introduces them as community stakeholders, with both companies agreeing to substantial financial contributions to the city and ongoing community support.

The specifics of when these establishments will commence operations remain uncertain. However, their proposed locations and developmental plans suggest significant investments in property renovation and community integration. Arctic Fox aims to establish its footprint at the former Mac’s Party Store location, with plans for extensive renovations, while 305 N Euclid is set to develop Dispo Cannabis at a site on Dequindre Road.

The settlement terms outline a financial framework where each company will make a one-time payment of $175,000 to the city, exceeding the initially discussed $150,000, alongside annual contributions to a community fund and a share of net profits. This arrangement also entails commitments to public safety and operational transparency, including the installation of camera systems accessible to local police.

This resolution has sparked a mix of reactions among council members, with some expressing concerns over community values and the impact of increasing cannabis establishments on the city's fabric. Yet, proponents like Mayor Grafstein and Mayor Pro Tem Bliss highlight the financial rationale and the broader benefits of integrating these businesses into the community's economic and safety strategies.

The decision reflects a nuanced approach to cannabis regulation, balancing legal, economic, and community considerations. It underscores the evolving dynamics of cannabis policy at the local level, mirroring broader trends in Michigan's legal cannabis sector, which has witnessed significant growth and regulatory challenges.



Agrify Corporation Takes Steps to Maintain Nasdaq Listing Amid Financial Reorganization

Published 4 weeks ago Business & Industry Ryan Spegal
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Agrify Corporation (NASDAQ: AGFY), a key player in the cannabis technology sector, has been working diligently to retain its listing on the Nasdaq stock exchange. The company, based in Troy, Michigan, is navigating through financial restructuring to meet the Nasdaq's stringent requirements regarding minimum stockholders’ equity.

Recently, Agrify has undertaken several strategic moves to strengthen its financial position:

  1. Increased Authorized Shares: The company has raised its maximum number of authorized shares from 10 million to 35 million. This expansion paves the way for future equity transactions that could bolster Agrify's financial stability.

  2. Debt Consolidation and Conversion: Agrify has consolidated its debts under CP Acquisitions, a lender affiliated with Agrify CEO Raymond Chang and board member I-Tseng Jenny Chan. Notably, $3.9 million of this debt has been converted into equity at a premium rate. This move is aimed at reducing the company’s liabilities and improving its equity stance.

  3. Warrant Exercise by Lenders: A previous secured lender has chosen to exercise warrants in exchange for shares, which has significantly reduced the number of outstanding warrants. This action is part of Agrify's broader strategy to streamline its financial structure.

These strategic efforts are in direct response to the requirements of the Nasdaq Capital Market’s equity-standard rule, which necessitates a listed company’s primary equity security to have at least $2.5 million in stockholders’ equity.

In a recent development, Agrify announced that following a January 11th hearing with a Nasdaq panel, it has been granted an extension until April 15th to align with the rule. The company is actively working on settling various legal and trade payables to decrease liabilities and improve its equity status.

Agrify has had previous challenges with Nasdaq’s listing requirements, including delays in filing financial reports and consolidating shares in 2023 to meet the stock exchange’s minimum bid-price requirement. The stockholders’ equity warning, issued on December 1st, remains the only outstanding noncompliance issue for Agrify on Nasdaq.

CEO Raymond Chang has expressed a strong commitment to turning the business profitable as quickly as possible. Despite these efforts, the company's shares (traded under AGFY on the Nasdaq) have recently dipped below $1 per share.

Agrify's recent notification from the Nasdaq Hearings Panel granting an extension for compliance reflects the company's proactive approach in addressing the challenges. The consolidation of debts and the conversion of a significant portion of this debt into equity at a favorable rate demonstrate the company's strategic financial management. The issuance of additional shares in response to warrant exercises by a previous lender further indicates Agrify's active engagement in restructuring its financials to meet Nasdaq’s standards.

In summary, Agrify Corporation is in the midst of a crucial phase of financial reorganization, aiming to satisfy Nasdaq’s requirements and maintain its listing. The company's recent actions reflect a concerted effort to improve its financial health and secure a stable future in the cannabis technology sector.


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Big Rapids Bids Farewell to Lake Life Farms Dispensary

Published 4 weeks ago Business & Industry Ryan Spegal
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In a recent development in the Michigan cannabis market, Lake Life Farms, a well-known cannabis dispensary located at 208 S. Michigan Ave., Big Rapids, has announced its impending closure. The dispensary, which opened its doors to the public in December 2020, has been serving the community for over two years and will cease operations after its final day of sales on Sunday, February 4th, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Store manager Heather Strong confirmed the closure of the Big Rapids location, marking an end to a significant chapter for Lake Life Farms in the region. In a statement, Strong mentioned, "We are closing in early February." She also highlighted that in the lead-up to the closure, customers can expect a 35% discount on all products, with an additional offer on pre-rolls, which will be available at 10 for $20.

Known for its unique retail approach, Lake Life Farms in Big Rapids adopted a deli-style service model, which has been well-received by customers. This distinctive method allows patients to closely inspect and select their cannabis products, which are then weighed and prepared in their presence, ensuring transparency and a personalized shopping experience.

Despite the closure of the Big Rapids outlet, Lake Life Farms continues to operate in other Michigan locations, including Cedar Springs, Stanton, and Lansing. These branches remain open and continue to serve their respective communities.

The closure of the Big Rapids store signifies a change in the local cannabis retail landscape and reflects the dynamic nature of the cannabis industry in Michigan.


New Baltimore City Council Approves Marijuana License Transfer

Published 4 weeks ago Business & Industry Ryan Spegal
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In New Baltimore, the landscape of the marijuana business is witnessing a significant change with the transition of ownership of Cloud Cannabis Co. The New Baltimore City Council, in a narrow vote of 3-2 on January 22nd, sanctioned a medical and recreational marijuana application from Stash Ventures LLC, which is set to become the new proprietor of Cloud Cannabis. This company is recognized for its substantial presence in Michigan, operating close to a dozen dispensaries, including one on Cricklewood Boulevard in New Baltimore.

Doug Manson, representing Stash Ventures LLC, emphasized that the visible aspects of the business, such as the branding, structural design, and overall appearance, would remain unchanged post-acquisition. "The Cloud name and the physical attributes of the facility will stay the same, ensuring a seamless transition for customers," Manson stated. He further explained that the primary alteration would be in the ownership, largely invisible to the public.

The process of ownership transfer is contingent on local and state approval, as elucidated by Manson. He noted that the state of Michigan does not directly transfer licenses but instead issues new licenses concurrently with the rescission of existing ones. The completion of the state application depends on the city council's endorsement.

Manson also mentioned that a state inspection is anticipated following the finalization of the application. The city officials will be notified of any discrepancies found during this inspection. However, he anticipates minimal issues given the business's history of passing previous inspections.

The council meeting saw an extended debate on the application process. Council member Ryan Covert remarked on the novelty of such a transfer for the council, emphasizing their aim for consistency in handling these applications. Some council members, including Jacob Dittrich and Jason Harvey, expressed a desire for a more rigorous review process for transfer applications, akin to the procedure for new applications. They highlighted the need for greater familiarity with the new owners and their operations.

Comparisons were drawn between this application and a liquor license transfer. City Attorney Tim Tomlinson pointed out similarities in the operational processes, underscoring the necessity for compliance with legal requirements. He also commented on the ongoing consolidation trend within the industry, noting the larger scale of operations of companies like Stash Ventures LLC and their adherence to legal standards.

Nonetheless, Dittrich called for increased oversight, citing the relative novelty of marijuana licenses compared to liquor licenses. Mayor Tom Semaan and Tomlinson addressed the procedural aspects, suggesting possible amendments to the current ordinance for future transfers.

The approval of the application was motioned by council member David Duffy and supported by Mel Eason, while Harvey and Dittrich opposed. Mayor Pro-Tem Flo Hayman was not present for the vote.



Financial Reshuffling in Michigan Cannabis: Comco Wellness Awaits New Ownership

Published 4 weeks ago Business & Industry Ryan Spegal
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Comco LLC, a cannabis company operating under the name Comco Wellness in Jackson, Michigan, is set to be auctioned following a court-mandated receivership process that has lasted nine months in the Jackson County Circuit Court.

The company's substantial assets are poised to be acquired by Bag Boys LLC, the designated stalking horse bidder. This entity is connected to Farm Marcellus, a marijuana cultivation company located approximately 30 miles southwest of Kalamazoo, which holds four Class C grow licenses.

Since August of the previous year, Farm Marcellus has been financially supporting Comco during its receivership. The company has proposed a bid of at least $1.9 million, aimed at settling creditor debts and securing ownership of Comco.

The specifics of the stalking horse bid include a cash payment of $1.031 million and an additional $862,000 allocated for creditor repayment over a 12-month period, as detailed in court documents.

David Dragich, the attorney representing the court-appointed receiver, Gene Kohut, noted that further details regarding the final purchase price are yet to be disclosed.

Additionally, Farm Marcellus plans to absolve the debt incurred by Comco during the receivership, estimated to be between $800,000 and $900,000, as per court records.

Under the proposed agreement, Bag Boys would acquire Comco’s cultivation facility located at 12584 Wooden Road in Jonesville. This facility is equipped with four Class C licenses and a processor license. However, Comco's other property at 8891 Pulaski Road in Concord is not included in this bid and is expected to be sold separately, according to Dragich.

Interested parties have until February 16th to submit competing bids for Comco.

The company's entry into receivership in April of the previous year was precipitated by legal action from Anewsha Holding Group LLC, based in Puerto Rico, and New York's cannabis payment software firm, Fusion LLC, operating as LeafLink.

Anewsha claims that Comco and its real estate division, Byrson Enterprises—both under the ownership of attorney Peter Behncke—failed to repay loans and invoices exceeding $1.3 million.

Initially, in 2019, Comco and Bryson borrowed $1.35 million from Anewsha, with an 11.89% interest rate, due by October 31, 2022. However, by the fall of 2022, Comco defaulted on the loan and also accumulated overdue rent of at least $25,000 on its Jonesville property.

LeafLink's lawsuit alleges that Comco has approximately $5.6 million in unsettled invoices since February 2022.

The expected payments from Bag Boys or Farm Marcellus are anticipated to be directed primarily to Anewsha, a secured creditor, as opposed to the service provider, LeafLink, as stated by Dragich.