VIRIDIAN CANNABIS INVESTMENT SERIES – NYC 3.31.17
Viridian Capital Advisors, LLC, a New York City-based financial and strategic advisory firm dedicated to the cannabis industry, is pleased to announce the first 2017 session of the Viridian Cannabis Investment Series.
Entitled “Cultural Diversity in the Cannabis Industry”, this private event will explore opportunities to bring cultural diversity into the cannabis industry by educating and inspiring a more diverse group of professionals to get involved. Cannabis legalization is continuing throughout the U.S. and the world, spearheading the growth of a multi-billion-dollar market. Yet, the industry in general lacks cultural diversity among its entrepreneurs, workforce, and investors.
Viridian’s Cultural Diversity in Cannabis event will present industry leading companies, executives, investors, and thought leaders from a variety of cultural backgrounds who will discuss why and how they entered the cannabis industry. Presentations and panel discussions will be followed by networking sessions so that all participants will have the opportunity to meet and engage.
Attendees will learn from the Viridian team, industry CEOs, investors, scientists, and experts as they discuss:
- Which Industry Sectors are Positioned for Growth?
- Biotech/Pharma – Real Estate – Cultivation & Retail – Infused Products & Extracts – Software/Media
- What is the Political and Legal Future for the Industry?
- State legalization – Federal Government’s evolving position
- Where Industry Sectors are Attracting the Most Investment?
- Tracking the flow of capital
- What are the Primary Concerns for Investors?
- Legislative risk – Industry risk – Reputation risk
- Where are Big Pharma, Big Alcohol, and Big Tobacco?
- M&A transactions in the Industry – Valuations & multiples
This event is the second session of the Viridian Cannabis Investment Series to be held at this venue. In January 2016, Viridian hosted the first-ever cannabis investment conference in New York, just days after the opening of the city’s first medical marijuana dispensaries. More than 200 participants attended, including venture capital, private equity, and family office investors. Click here for the Reuters article and video coverage of our last New York event.
Click headshots below for more information:
Montel Williams, renowned talk show host, motivational speaker, U.S. Navy veteran, and advocate of medical cannabis, particularly for multiple sclerosis.
Cindy Orser, Ph.D., Chief Science Officer, Digipath, Inc.*, an independent laboratory testing firm for the cannabis industry.
Agriculture Technology – LED Lighting
Ali Ahmadian, Chief Executive Officer, Heliospectra AB*, a world leader in intelligent lighting technology for plant research and greenhouse cultivation.
Infused Products & Extracts
Don Robinson, Chief Executive Officer, Golden Leaf Holdings Ltd.*, one of the largest cannabis oil and solution providers in North America built around recognized brands.
Data & Analytics
Giadha Aguirre DeCarcer, Chief Executive Officer and Founder, New Frontier Data*, a provider of comprehensive analysis and reporting for the nascent and under-served cannabis industry.
CBD Sports Products
Marvin Washington, Co-Founder, IsoSport*, a producer of a hemp-based line of high-performance products designed to support the needs of professional and “prosumer” athletes.
Financing & Real Estate
Eric Logan, VP of Business Development, Equity Rock, Inc.*, a private equity capital firm based out of Portland, Oregon, specializing in data and finance for emerging and highly-regulated industries.
Consulting & Advocacy
Ruben Honig, Executive Director, Los Angeles Cannabis Task Force, an industry support group dedicated to creating a fair and vibrant cannabis industry in the City of Los Angeles.
“Sports and Cannabis” Panel
Over the past several years, cannabinoids have received increased interest, including from current and former athletes of the NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL, and other organizations, as a therapeutic means to reduce the consumption of more addictive and potentially dangerous drugs such as prescription opioids. Ongoing research has alluded to the efficacy of cannabinoids, particularly the non-psychoactive cannabidiol (CBD), in remediating pain, aiding in recovery, and protecting the long-term health of athletes.
CBD has also been discovered to exhibit neuroprotective effects against chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a neurodegenerative disease brought about by repeated brain trauma such as that which occurs in high-contact sports like football. CTE has received mainstream coverage through the class action lawsuit by current and former football players against the NFL for damages relates to CTE as well as through the recent feature-length film, Concussion.
We have created this panel in order to drive awareness and education on this matter and to allow these athletes to give their stories on how cannabinoids have helped improve their quality of life.
Marvin Washington, 11-season veteran and Super Bowl XXXIII champion of the National Football League (New York Jets, San Francisco 49ers, Denver Broncos)
Errick “Ricky” Williams, Heisman Trophy winner, 12-season veteran of the National Football League (New Orleans Saints, Miami Dolphins, Baltimore Ravens), and College Football Hall of Famer.
Elliot “Dale” Davis, a 17-season veteran and all-star (2000) of the National Basketball Association (Indiana Pacers, Portland Trail Blazers, Golden State Warriors, Detroit Pistons).
Darren McCarty, 15-season NHL veteran (Detroit Red Wings, Calgary Flames), 4-time Stanley Cup winner (1997, 1998, 2002, 2008), and winner of the NHL Foundation Player Award (2003).
Treyous Jarrells, former running back for Colorado State University.
“Women in Cannabis” Panel
According to a recent article in High Times, “Women fill 36 percent of executive positions in U.S. cannabis companies that grow, test, sell, and market pot products in this booming business, which is among the fastest growing in the country.” Now more than ever, women are making strides to lead this industry. From business leaders to decision makers, advocates, and mothers, women are creating their own lane to be seen and heard.
Many of these women are career changers from corporate to educators to serial entrepreneurs. Successful women who used their skill sets that helped them lead businesses or climb corporate ladders are quickly rising to the top in the cannabis industry. Our Women in Cannabis panel will highlight the successes of some of the women in the cannabis industry as our panelists share their stories of transitioning, fighting stigmas, and leading organizations and businesses.
Gia Morón, Public Relations Director for Women GROW, the largest women’s organization in the cannabis industry committed to cultivating women leaders within the cannabis industry.
Larisa Bolivar, Executive Director of the Cannabis Consumers Coalition, an organization devoted exclusively to advocating for individual rights of medical and recreational cannabis consumers.
Kristin Jordan, Executive Director of the Cannabis Cultural Association, a nonprofit organization which promotes economic opportunities in the cannabis industry and social justice reform for people of color.
Dasheeda Dawson, President of MaryJane Marketing, a digital-focused strategic marketing and brand management firm supporting cannabis and hemp companies.
Bonita “Bo” Money, Founder of Women Abuv Ground, a networking organization dedicated to introducing the cannabis business to women of color, and Creator of That Glass Jar™, a cannabis-infused topical.
April Walker, CEO of Walker Wear, a heritage lifestyle fashion brand and trailblazer of the street-wear category.
*Disclaimer: Presenting companies are clients of Viridian Capital Advisors or have a business relationship with Viridian Capital Advisors. Viridian Capital Advisors and its affiliates, as well as their respective partners, directors, shareholders, and employees may have a position in the securities mentioned herein and may make purchases and/or sales from time to time. Viridian Capital Advisors, may act, or may have acted in the past, as a financial advisor, fiscal agent, or underwriter for certain of the companies mentioned herein and may receive, or may have received, a remuneration for their services from those companies.
*NOTE: No securities will be offered during the conference.
Mr. Ahmadian is the Chief Executive Officer of Heliospectra AB, a role he has held since February 1, 2017. Previously, he was the Chief Commercial Officer of Heliospectra, a position to which he was appointed in November 2016. Ali Ahmadian joined Heliospectra after his previous role as Vice President of Environment and Sustainable Solutions for Asia and Oceania at Tetra Pak as a part of the global executive leadership team. Tetra Pak is a leading multinational food packaging and processing company. With more than 23,000 employees based in over 85 countries, Tetra Pak provides safe, innovative, and environmentally sound products that each day meet the needs of hundreds of millions of people in more than 175 countries around the world. In this role, he was key in establishing profitable new markets and generated double digit net revenue growth in the entire region. Before joining Tetra Pak, Ali founded and ran Abban Co, a company that manufactures water measurement equipment used in households, irrigation, and industry in Iran. The company has approximately 200 employees with annual sales of $10 million.
Heliospectra AB specializes in intelligent lighting technology for plant research and greenhouse cultivation. The Company’s lighting system provides an effective and durable technology for cultivating greenhouse and indoor plants by combining several different groups of versatile light emitting diodes (LEDs) with optics, remote sensing techniques, and a robust heat dissipation solution. This proprietary setup gives growers the ability to control the intensity and wavelengths of the light emitted, creating a spectrum specifically adjusted to different plant species and growth stages to better facilitate photosynthesis. The complete, highly-engineered lamp produces crops that look better, taste better, and have a longer shelf-life than those grown under HID lamps. The technology not only reduces energy consumption by up to 50%, but also helps stimulate growth characteristics and improve plant quality. Other benefits include reduced light pollution, lower mercury use due to the avoidance of traditional HID/HPS bulbs, and less HVAC investment and monthly expense requirements.
Giadha Aguirre De Carcer
Ms. DeCarcer is a serial entrepreneur with 20 years of experience in business execution, management, and strategic business development with an emphasis on emerging markets. She is the Founder and CEO of Frontier Financials Group Inc., a cutting edge firm providing authoritative and actionable intelligence in the cannabis industry. She is also the Founder of GNI International, a strategic business consulting firm focused on high-growth market opportunities, the co-founder of VentureCamp, a fully immersive accelerator and DocuSeries, and most recently the Creator of Love & Business, 90 Days to Launch, a docu-series unveiling the unique life and career challenges faced by female entrepreneurs. Before founding GNI International Ms. DeCarcer worked as senior a consultant in the Defense, Technology, and Telecommunications sectors. She also worked in investment banking for JPMorganChase in Manhattan and London and ran Florida-based First Federal Transportation as its Co-Founder and COO.
Ms. DeCarcer is an avid supporter of entrepreneurship as a conduit to new job creation and innovation. She runs the Women Entrepreneurship Reinforcement (WeR) program in support of women entrepreneurs nationwide, and was the Executive Director of the Grassroots Innovation Network, a non-profit organization focused on validating and funding college students’ business ideas globally. She received an A.A. from Miami Dade Community College, a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania, and an M.A. from Georgetown University.
She was born in Italy, raised in France and Spain, and has traveled to, and worked in, over 25 countries. Ms. DeCarcer speaks five languages fluently and now resides in Washington D.C.
New Frontier Data provides objective, rigorous, and comprehensive analysis and reporting for the nascent and under-served cannabis industry. New Frontier’s data and reports have been cited in over 45 countries around the world to inform industry leaders. New Frontier, a premiere Big Data shop in the cannabis sector, looks beyond the plant cultivation and distribution, to raise the industry bar and improve visibility into what will most likely soon be a mature and more complex industry. Founded in 2014, New Frontier is headquartered in Washington, D.C. and has an additional office in Denver.
Don Robinson has over 30 years of management and leadership experience in the consumer packaged goods and hospitability industries. He spent more than 20 years with Mars Incorporated as a CEO, since 1990 in various global postings, before his role as president and CEO of Cara Operations, the leading food service and restaurant operator in Canada. Mr. Robinson was executive director of The Food & Consumer Products of Canada and the chairman of the board of the Confectionery Manufacturers Association of Canada. Mr. Robinson has been a member of various academic councils, including Ted Rogers School of Management Advisory Council, University of Guelph School of Hospitability & Tourism Management Policy Advisory Board, and the Queen’s University School of Business Advisory Board.
Golden Leaf Holdings Ltd. (GLH) is one of the largest cannabis oil and solution providers in North America. GLH is a leading cannabis products company in Oregon built around recognized brands. Golden Leaf leverages a strong management team with cannabis and food industry experience to complement its expertise in extracting, refining, and selling cannabis oil. As an industry leader committed to transparency and controls, GLH is dedicated to partnering with industries, communities, and regulators.
Scott Greiper is the president and founder of Viridian Capital Advisors (http://www.viridianca.com), a New York-based financing and strategic advisory firm. Viridian is dedicated to backing and building emerging growth technology companies in the legal cannabis marketplace. The firm’s expert advisors and powerful network help clients increase their visibility, revenue, and enterprise value. Along with market intelligence, due diligence, and strategic advisory practices, Viridian also assists its clients with capital raising and M&A services.
Mr. Greiper has had a distinguished 25-year career as a research analyst, investment banker, and strategist in the technology industry and is known as a thought leader. He has helped numerous companies position, grow, and finance their businesses in both the pubic and private markets. Mr. Greiper has been involved in raising more than $400 million in capital for public and private emerging growth technology companies and has completed numerous M&A assignments. He has worked with a range of industry leaders and emerging growth companies and is a frequent guest speaker and moderator at conferences and seminars across the country.
Mr. Greiper is also the president and founder of Secure Strategy Group (http://www.securestrategygroup.com), a New York-based financing and strategic advisory firm. Secure Strategy Group is dedicated to backing and building emerging growth technology companies in the physical security, cyber security, information technology, and communications technology sectors.
Mr. Greiper attended the executive MBA program at Columbia University and holds a B. A. in economics from The University of Chicago. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and two children.
April Walker is a Brooklyn native. This savvy entrepreneur and motivator is one of the givers and game changers who inspired an urban fashion lifestyle category that became a multi-billion dollar industry with her fashion brand “Walker Wear.” Often referred to as the Sacagawea of urban fashion, Walker was the a trailblazer who dominated the urban/streetwear menswear market. With the resurgence of her brand, Walker has been featured with the Huffington Post, the AMEX Open Forum, on CNN’s “Fresh Dressed” documentary, and most recently with Ford’s #Beunstoppable campaign. As a brand evangelist, her company, “A.Walker Group” has worked with many clients domestically and internationally throughout the years.
Daily you can find Walker spreading love with her “Walkergems” via social media. The purpose of these Walkergms is to empower, inspire, and ignite the spirit of entrepreneurship by giving people the tools they need to design the lives they imagine and uplift communities in the process. Walker believes “by nurturing innovative talent, today’s entrepreneurs and visionaries are one step closer to realizing their dreams.”
April expanded her business model into the cannabis industry in 2016. She joined forces with a CBD oil company and has quickly built her team. April has made it a priority to educate her community on the benefits of hemp oil as an wellness alternative.
Straight out of Brooklyn, Walker Wear is a heritage lifestyle fashion brand delivering the 3 F’s: Fashion, Fit, and Function. Also a trailblazer of streetwear fashion category, the brand paved the way for a multi-billion dollar category and continues to lead the way.
Focusing on classics with quality, along with delivering exclusive custom and limited edition styles, April Walker has been called “a visionary” among other accolades and numerous publications such as the New York Times, Newsweek, Sportswear International, Cosmopolitan, Complex, Global Grind and Vibe. This year commemorates the brand’s 25th year anniversary and has been featured in the American Express Open Forum, Brooklyn Museum “Rise of the Sneaker Culture Exhibit”, and most recently the CNN film, Fresh Dressed.
Bonita “Bo” Money
A cannapreneur, Bonita “Bo” Money is one of the few women of color in the emerging, billion dollar cannabis business. She’s the creator of That Glass Jar ™ , a cannabis-infused topical, and founder of Women Abuv Ground (WAG), a networking organization, dedicated to introducing the cannabis business to women of color.
Born in Seoul, Korea, and raised in Monterey, CA, Money began her research of the cannabis industry and became very interested in the healing properties of marijuana. Money created That Glass Jar ™ , an organic, herbal cannabis-infused topical.
Women Abuv Ground (WAG), a networking organization, dedicated to introducing the cannabis business to women of color, was launched on February 9, 2017 — during Black History Month – with a splashy, pre-Grammy Awards party, called the CannaCool Lounge. For the 420-friendly community, the signature, lifestyle CannaCool Lounge offered cannabis connoisseurs a chance to explore new brands as well as cannabis-infused food and drinks. Most importantly, WAG honored Emmy Award-winning TV personality Montel Williams with its first-ever Lifetime Achievement Award for using his celebrity to bring awareness to medical cannabis for the treatment of chronic illnesses.
Larisa E. Bolivar, M.A. has 16 years of cannabis related experience and is a recognized trailblazer and pioneer in the cannabis industry. Noted by the Washington Post as “one of the city’s [Denver] most well-known proponents of decriminalizing marijuana nationally,” Ms. Bolivar has a long history in the cannabis movement.
In 2004, she founded the Colorado Compassion Club, which became the first dispensary in Denver, CO. Prior to that, she volunteered as an Americans for Safe Access (ASA) organizer and founded Caregivers for Safe Access, a coalition of patients and caregivers who taught people how to become registered patients and caregivers within the Colorado medical marijuana program. She also discovered and promoted one of the first doctors to publicly sign recommendations for hundreds of patients in Colorado. Through the years she has done political analysis, public relations, and communications for large events such as the Denver 420 Rally.
Currently, Ms. Bolivar is Executive Director of the Cannabis Consumers Coalition, an organization devoted exclusively to advocating for individual rights of medical and recreational cannabis consumers. In addition to leading the Cannabis Consumers Coalition, she is founder and principal of Bolivar Consulting, a cannabis-related management and business development consulting firm whose clientele include well recognizable and respected brands, a board member of Colorado NORML, and an advisory board member of the Women’s Cannabis Chamber of Commerce.
She holds a B.S. Psychology from the University of Phoenix and a M.A. in Public Policy from Regis University.
The Cannabis Consumers Coalition is a federally recognized 501(c)(3) consumer advocacy organization that acts as a watchdog over the growing cannabis industry. Protecting the consumer is at the heart of what we stand for. As a membership organization, we work collectively to educate consumers and the general public. The Cannabis Consumers Coalition also strives to set industry standards in the areas of public safety, quality control, pricing, pesticide and fertilizer use, labeling, testing, customer service, ethical business practices, consumer rights in the workplace, and any emerging issues impacting cannabis consumers.
Kristin Jordan is the Executive Director of the Cannabis Cultural Association, a nonprofit organization which promotes economic opportunities in the cannabis industry and social justice reform for people of color. Kristin is also the Chair of the Cannabis Practice Group at the New York law firm Newman Ferrara and General Counsel of BioRegen Innovations Inc., an agricultural cooperative management company.
Kristin received her undergraduate degree at the State University of New York at Albany and her law degree from the University of Richmond, TC Williams School of Law where she was a Professor Willie L. Moore Summer Fellow during her studies at Cambridge University at Emmanuel College in the UK.
The Cannabis Cultural Association, or CCA, is a non-profit organization that strives to involve underrepresented communities in the legal cannabis/hemp industry by providing informational workshops, cultural programs, and community events with an emphasis on issues disproportionately affecting communities of color: access to medical cannabis, adult-use legalization, and criminal justice reform.
Terri is a successful entrepreneur with decades of senior executive experience. For close to 20 years, she has been the strategic and financial backbone of the companies she has founded with her husband, Derek. A born number-cruncher and people-person, she honed her skills with an MBA in Finance and Human Resource Management from Dalhousie University and cut her teeth at outstanding organizations like ITT Sheraton, the Canadian Red Cross, and Deloitte. Under Terri’s leadership, the Riedles’ first start-up has grown from a digital signage and web development firm to one of Atlantic Canada’s largest, award-winning communications agencies. As Co-Founder and President of Civilized, Terri is instrumental in the Corporation’s strategic planning, financial management, as well as growing and developing their talented team in Canada and the U.S.
Civilized is a media company and 360° lifestyle brand that elevates cannabis culture. This is an initiative that combines two of the fastest growing industries in North America – digital media and cannabis. Civilized is a reflection of millions of motivated, productive adults who choose to enjoy cannabis responsibly, but are not represented accurately in mainstream media. It entertains, informs, and engages a high-value audience through smart content and consistent branding. Since launch in September 2015, Civilized has attracted this desirable demo by the millions and has begun to establish related ventures, including an advertising network and multi-platform network studio – with additional aggressive growth plans on the horizon.
Dasheeda Dawson is “The WeedHead” – a cannabis executive, digital growth hacker, and brand equity builder. She is a corporate crossover pioneer helping cannabis brands “hack into mainstream america” with real talk, top-ranked training, and digital expertise. Going from Target to THC, Dasheeda successfully launched and managed multi-million dollar brands for companies such as Target Corporation, Victoria’s Secret, and Fullbeauty Brands prior to transitioning to the cannabis industry. She received her MBA from Rutgers Business School and completed her undergraduate degree at Princeton University in 2001. Currently the President of MaryJane Marketing (MJM), a digital-focused cannabis consulting group leading the re-branding of the cannabis industry, she has been featured across multiple cannabis outlets, including Canneconomy, Women Grow, and ICBC San Francisco.
MaryJane Marketing is one of the cannabis industry’s first minority-led strategic consulting firms. Leveraging the professional excellence and personal experience of Founder & President, Dasheeda Dawson, the firm provides strategic marketing and brand management support to help elevate cannabis and hemp companies at every stage of development.
In 2017, Gia became the Public Relations Director for Women Grow (national) and she remains PR Chair for Women Grow New York City Chapter. Women Grow is a national organization and the largest women’s organization in the cannabis industry committed to cultivating women leaders within the cannabis industry. Gia launched her firm, GVM Communications, in 2012 and has worked with various businesses, non-profits, entrepreneurs, speakers, and authors. Prior, she worked at the financial services firm Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. for fifteen years where she oversaw several business lines as media relations officer. Her areas of focus ranged from Urban Investment/Private Equity, Investment Research, and Technology to the firm’s organizational focus on Diversity, Recruiting, Corporate Engagement, Human Resources, and Corporate Services.
Before joining Goldman Sachs, she was the Director of Promotions and Publicity at The Fremantle Corporation, a international distribution and production television company. Fremantle was responsible for bringing such shows as Baywatch to China, 3rd Rock From the Sun and Grace Under Fire to LatAm, and the Tony Awards to Japan, just to name a few. During her six years with the company, these standout 90’s shows along with a catalog of other long running shows were brought to Asia ex-Japan, Philippines, Canada, and throughout Europe and Africa.
From facilitating workshops, participating on panels to organizing events, and supporting women-owned businesses, Gia has been committed to uplifting her clients. With over 20+ years experience in corporate within the entertainment industry and financial services, she has a special knack of bridging gaps and connecting dots between industries. Using her public relations, media training, and personal development skill sets, Gia works closely with diverse industries to provide them with her years of experience and intuitive insight on the changing markets all while bringing her creativity and voice of reason.
Outside of her professional accomplishments, Gia volunteers with various non-profit organizations throughout New York City. She currently resides in Brooklyn, NY with her daughter.
Women Grow connects, educates, and empowers diverse leaders in all segments of the cannabis industry. Founded in 2014, Women Grow is now the largest national network of cannabis professionals with Monthly Events for women & men in 35 cities across the US & Canada.
Cindy Orser, Ph.D.
As Chief Science Officer at Digipath Labs, Cindy Orser, Ph.D., has developed an industry-leading medical cannabis testing facility in Las Vegas, NV. The lab serves as a model the company plans to replicate in other states where cannabis is allowed by state law. Dr. Orser is routinely called upon to deliver expert testimony on cannabis testing, which helps lawmakers and law enforcement understand the importance of cannabis testing and adopting rigorous standards. In mid-2015, she addressed the Conference of Western Attorneys General (CWAG) on the salient points. With eighteen patents and forty-one published papers, Dr. Orser draws from over 25 years of experience innovating in academia and private industry. Her achievements have centered on visionary, strategic planning and executing, fundraising, budgeting, staffing, managing personnel, identifying outside collaborators, and directing subcontractors. She has also served as the liaison between her company, Big Sky Biosystems Inc., and federal regulatory compliance agencies such as the FDA, CDC, and ARC.
Digipath, Inc., is an independent cannabis testing and media firm that supports the cannabis industry’s best practices for reliable testing and delivers cannabis news coverage and education about the cannabis industry. Digipath’s two business units are Digipath Labs and The National Marijuana News (TNMNews) Corp. Digipath Labs™ is working to set the industry standard for testing all forms of cannabis-based products using FDA-compliant laboratory equipment and proprietary SOP’s to ensure product safety and efficacy. TNM News Corp. has pioneered a national marijuana news network, The National Marijuana News; that delivers news, interviews, and education on all things cannabis.
Talk-show host Montel Brian Anthony Williams was born in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1956. The son of Baltimore’s first black fire chief, Williams went on to have a successful military career before leaving the armed services for full-time work as a motivational speaker. In 1991, The Montel Williams Show debuted. In 1996 Williams won the Emmy for “Outstanding Talk Show Host.” Overall, the program ran for 17 seasons, ceasing production in 2008. In 1999 doctors diagnosed Williams with multiple sclerosis (MS). He’s since gone on to raise major awareness about the disease, work that has included the launch of The Montel Williams MS Foundation. Mr. Williams graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1980 with a B.S. in engineering.
Sean Kiernan is a decorated U.S. Army airborne veteran who served in Panama before being honorably discharged in 1993. Thereafter, Mr. Kiernan received a BS in business administration from the University of California Berkeley, on the GI Bill, before going on to work for various financial firms including Ernst & Young, JP Morgan, and Caxton Associates.
In the years following his return to civilian life Sean attempted to deal with the ghosts of his past in the military. Doctors eventually prescribed Sean a variety of medicines in order to deal with the pain and anguish of his PTSD. Eventually, the constant torment of his PTSD pushed him to his limit; in 2011, Sean attempted to commit suicide.
During his years of recovery, Sean attempted to use the resources of the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (VA) but was frustrated at how the VA treated himself and his fellow veterans. Sean vowed to assist his fellow servicemen by campaigning for the safe access to cannabis for veterans in order to combat PTSD and maintain a higher quality of life.
Sean will discuss issues surrounding current PTSD treatments and the opportunity that exists in providing the United States’ many sufferers of PTSD with new, viable remedies.
Reg A+, A Catalyst for Capital: Many of the public companies in the cannabis sector have gone public through reverse mergers, leading to balance sheets loaded with debt that hamper these businesses’ abilities to attract more capital and grow. As an expert on corporate finance, including alternatives to traditional initial public offerings, Mr. Feldman will speak on the new rules adopted through Regulation A+, a new SEC initiative under the JOBS act to support small company funding.
David Feldman’s law practice focuses on corporate and securities matters and general representation of public and private companies, investment banks, private equity firms and high net worth individuals. He also actively advises on mergers and acquisitions and private equity, debt, venture capital and other financings. Mr. Feldman is also considered one of the country’s leading experts on alternatives to traditional initial public offerings, including reverse mergers, in which a private company becomes publicly traded through a merger with a publicly held “shell” company. Mr. Feldman is also a contributor to several books on private investments in public equity (PIPEs) and crowdfunding.
The Future of Cannabis: The transition out of the shadows for the cannabis industry is ushering in a wide range of technologies and best practices that are creating a new era of innovation in cannabis. This paradigm shift in the industry is why Equities.com and Viridian Capital Advisors have joined forces for a special in-depth coverage series, The Future of Cannabis, predicated on the market intelligence and thought leadership that Viridian provides and the broad investor outreach that Equities.com has built. Mr. Villani will discuss the value/breadth of the Equities.com platform to emerging growth companies and investors and why Equities decided to partner with Viridian and launch the Future of Cannabis program.
Enzo Villani is the CEO of Equities.com. He is a serial entrepreneur that has developed three global cross-discipline communications companies since 2004. Mr. Villani began these ventures at NASDAQ, where he co-founded the Global Corporate Solutions division. After NASDAQ, Mr. Villani partnered with The Riverside Company to start DF King Worldwide; the team acquired five companies in the US, Europe, Nordics, and Asia. After King Worldwide ($175M Revenue, 400 FTE), Mr. Villani then completed an emerging market version of the integrated communications strategy through acquisitions and organic growth across the BRIC nations with MZ Group (Attitude Global) and PE firm Jardim Botanico. Enzo is an adjunct professor in venture capital and strategy at Clarkson University, adjunct professor in marketing and entrepreneurship at SUNY Plattsburgh, and a board member of Sigma Nu Tau Entrepreneurship Academic Society. Enzo has an MBA from The Johnson School of Cornell University and a BA in communications from Iona College.
Equities.com is a leading financial news source for emerging growth and innovation companies. Designed as an advanced financial data portal and social content network, Equities.com is aimed at connecting self-directed investors with the world’s most innovative and undiscovered companies. Through its in-depth coverage of the equities markets, comprehensive research, issuer products, and dynamic events, Equities.com provides the content, tools, and insights to drive tomorrow’s investment relationships, opportunities, and visibility for underserved yet fast growing private and publicly traded companies. For more information, please visit http://www.equities.com.
Overview of Investment in the Legal Cannabis Industry: As president and founder of Viridian Capital Advisors, Mr. Greiper brings 30 years of experience in investment banking and research with a focus on emerging growth companies. Mr. Greiper will present an overview of investment in the cannabis marketplace, sectors that are currently attracting the most capital, and the evolving profile of investors and operators in the cannabis sector.
Mr. Greiper is the president and founding partner of Viridian Capital Advisors. He has had a distinguished 30-year career in the technology, security, and IT sectors as both a research analyst and investment banker and is known as a driver of enterprise value for emerging growth companies. Mr. Greiper is also the president and founder of Secure Strategy Group, which provides capital, strategic advisory, and M&A services to growth companies in the homeland/cyber security and IT markets. Previously, Mr. Greiper was a principal and senior analyst at C. E. Unterberg, Towbin, where he covered public companies in the global security industry and was consistently ranked as one of the top analysts in the sector. He has been involved in raising more than $400 million for both public and private companies and completed a range of M&A and corporate finance assignments. Mr. Greiper attended the Executive MBA program at Columbia University and received his B.A. in Economics from the University of Chicago.
The Cannabis Banking Problem: Marc Ross is an expert on the rapidly-evolving legal environment in the cannabis industry. He specializes in advising marijuana-related companies on the interplay between federal and state laws surrounding the cannabis industry. Mr. Ross will dive into the cannabis’ status as a Schedule I drug under the Federal Controlled Substances Act (CSA), specifically with how that status affects the enforcement and application of regulatory regimes governing the operation of marijuana-related businesses, such as banking and securities laws.
In 1998, Marc Ross founded Sichenzia Ross Friedman Ference LLP, a firm that specializes in corporate, securities, litigation, and regulatory matters. Mr. Ross advises companies with their 1934 Act reporting requirements as well as their NASDAQ, AMEX, and NYSE and other exchange listing and compliance matters. In addition, Mr. Ross assists companies going public, whether through a reverse merger, initial public offering, or company offering, and also advises clients on investment and capital raising transactions.
Mr. Ross also specializes in advising marijuana-related companies, in particular with regard to the legal issues associated with marijuana-related businesses, including the interplay between state laws which legalize recreational and/or medical marijuana uses, and federal laws which bar such uses. Mr. Ross is currently teaching the first law school course on marijuana, entitled Business and Law of Marijuana, at Hofstra University School of Law.
Ambassador Ned L. Siegel
Ambassador Siegel was appointed by then President George W. Bush, as the U.S. Ambassador to the Commonwealth of the Bahamas from October 2007 to January 2009. He was also appointed by President Bush to serve under Ambassador John R. Bolton at the United Nations in New York, serving as the Senior Advisor to the U.S. Mission and as the United States representative to the 61st Session of the United Nations General Assembly. Prior to his Ambassadorship, he was appointed to the Board of Directors of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC). Presently, he is Chairman of the Board and CEO of The Siegel Group, a multi-disciplined international business management advisory firm located in Boca Raton, Florida, specializing in infrastructure, real estate, ports, energy, utilities, technology and financial services. Ambassador Siegel has 4 decades of experience as a real estate developer and entrepreneur. In addition, he serves as the Chairman of the Board of Notis Global, Inc., an emerging leader in the production of hemp and hemp derived products.
At the Viridian conference, Ambassador Siegel will address the opportunities in the hemp-derived cannabinoid (CBD) market, the importance of defining and branding the products for a new generation of consumers, and the prospects of guiding politicians and regulators toward a more sophisticated legal approach.
Register for the Viridian Cannabis Investment Series - NYC 3.31.17
These private events will feature investment insights and analysis from the top cannabis companies, executives, and thought leaders. Participants will have the opportunity to engage with industry leaders through keynote and company presentations, breakout sessions, and one-on-one meetings with the CEOs of presenting companies.
March 31, 2017 at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City.
The John Jay College of Criminal Justice
524 West 59th Street
New York, NY 10019