The End Of The War On Drugs And The Emergence Of The Venture-Backed Cannabis Industry


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When news broke that Founders Fund, the proudly contrarian venture firm helmed by PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel, was going to invest a major $75 million in Privateer Holdings, a company focused on producing, distributing and educating consumers about legal marijuana, it opened the floodgates for other investors to barrel in.

We’ve since seen startups like Eaze, which just raised $10 million, and Y Combinator-backed Meadow.

“When you look at America, our fundamental thesis is that this is a mainstream product consumed by mainstream Americans,” said Brendan Kennedy, Privateer’s CEO, today at TechCrunch Disrupt NY. “Fifty four to 58 percent of Americans believe that this product should be legal. About 85 percent believe that medical cannabis should be legal. You can’t get 85 percent of Americans to agree on anything.”

Both Kennedy and his investor at Founders Fund, Geoff Lewis, refer to legalization as the “end of Prohibition,”…

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