Some media pundits are already looking ahead to 2016, when a number of states are expected to vote on expanding the legalization of recreational marijuana, as the next major milestone for the cannabis industry.

But a large group of financial analysts beg to differ, and say this year could see a breakthrough event when it comes to mainstream investment in marijuana-related companies.

Earlier this month Founder’s Fund, a San Francisco-based venture capital firm, announced it was making a multimillion-dollar investment in Privateer Holdings, a private equity group that owns several cannabis-related companies.

Soon after that announcement, Privateer Holdings CEO Brendan Kennedy noted the Founder’s Fund investment signaled “that they, like us, believe that the end of (marijuana) prohibition and the social harms it causes is inevitable.”

The momentum towards the national legalization of marijuana also appears to be happening faster than many analysts expected – while bringing with it a new wave of investment.

According to research quoted by the magazine Inc., investors have placed over $104 million in cannabis and cannabis-related companies, while investment in the marijuana industry rose by 941.5 percent in 2014.

And Todd Harrison, former hedge fund manager and founder and CEO of the financial media company Minyanville, told Yahoo Finance that the cannabis industry "will be the single best investment theme for the next ten years, in my view.”

“Once we start to see this adopted across more state lines you’re going to see it picked up on Wall Street research desks,” he said in a 2014 interview, “and that’s where I think you see the move into mainstream investment.”

In Colorado, where the recreational, adult use of marijuana was legalized last year, there is a sense that the cannabis industry is already in a new phase of its history.

“There’s a feeling that we’ve reached the second chapter,” says Ryan Fox, CEO and founder of Kindman, one of Colorado’s oldest and most established producers.

“I got into the industry in 2008, when it just medical marijuana, and started the company in 2009,” he notes. “This company began with a credit card loan to buy $9,000 worth of equipment. And now, investors are realizing how lean and efficient our operations are, as well as understanding how huge the consumer demand for cannabis actually is.”

“2015 is going to be the year that we see mainstream investors enter the cannabis industry, with some of the larger organizations – the ones that have been the innovators in the cannabis industry – being the first to get offers from the institutional investors,” says Andy Rodosevich, co-founder of WeedLife – an social network marketplace that works with Kindman and other cannabis-related companies on online marketing and connectivity.

And Rodosevich points to Kindman, with its years of experience and its pioneering, pre-packaged brands of cannabis products that are already in use across Colorado, as “a great example of an organization that sees the future, and is ready for national distribution.”

About Weedlife

The WeedLife Social Network Marketplace is a series of free-to-use websites specifically designed for the marijuana industry and its consumers – bringing news, sales information and other important cannabis-related data together, all under one online roof. WeedLife’s network of web site apps creates an online social marketplace of ideas, products and connections that work with both cannabis producers, distributors and dispensaries, as well as the tens of thousands of ancillary companies supporting the industry.

WeedLife also allows cannabis consumers and businesses to communicate and learn more about each other in a more rapid timeframe -- helping them to better target their products, services and customer needs -- as the cannabis sector’s consumer demographic changes, evolves and matures.

For more information, visit: http://weedlife.com

Author:  Bruce Kennedy - Life Marketing, Inc.

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