THE ROADMAP TO MARIJUANA MILLIONS

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1 THE ROADMAP TO MARIJUANA MILLIONS Plot Your Course to a 7-Figure Weed Windfall! BY MICHAEL ROBINSON

2 Nova-X Report: The Roadmap to Marijuana Millions: Plot Your Course to a 7-Figure Weed Windfall! Dear Nova-X Report Member, Hi, I m Michael Robinson. Nothing on Earth today and I mean nothing is growing as much or as fast as the market for legal marijuana. Not smartphones or software, not automotives or aerospace, not biotechnology, real estate, gold, oil, software nothing. Consider this: By 2020, the market for legal marijuana will top $22.8 billion. When that happens, the legal market for cannabis could be bigger than the National Football League, which saw roughly $12 billion of revenue last year, according to Fortune. In the United States alone the sanctioned market for cannabis will reach $7.1 billion this year, up from $1.5 billion in % growth in barely three years. Investment bank Ackrell Capital predicted in March that between 2016 and 2029 the market for marijuana will reach $100 billion 1,308% growth. Amazingly, those huge numbers hide the fact that this market is a market still in its infancy. After all, marijuana is still illegal in most of the U.S.! For that reason, there s no accurate way of really knowing just how big this market could ultimately be. Some estimates place the number of some-time marijuana users in the neighborhood of 50 million people. As many as 7.6 million indulge on a daily basis. Clearly, those are huge numbers. Yet as more and more places legalize cannabis, this market could boom into the stratosphere. This means you have a rare opportunity to get in on the ground floor of this nascent industry and to acquire a stake in dozens of potential blockbuster companies that could rise quickly as the market expands. Already as an investor there are literally hundreds of ways you could dip your toes into the cannabis market. Indeed, at times it seems like every business man and his mother is trying to ride this wave; new companies come out of the woodwork every day. (Which when you think about it, is not all that unusual when a veritable gold rush appears on the horizon.) 1

3 No doubt sorting through all the potential cannabis opportunities can be a daunting task for any investor. But here s the good news for you I ve spent six months exhaustively researching every aspect of this market, literally examining hundreds of potential companies. I have very strict criteria about which ones we were willing to recommend. And ultimately, I ve whittled it down to what I believe are the 30 best ways bar none to invest in the exploding cannabis market before the real growth takes place. Based on our research we believe many of these companies especially the smaller ones have the potential to soar in the near future. Triple- and quadruple-digit gains are highly possible. And even if they don t take off on their own, there s another way you can profit. You see, once legalization takes hold everywhere, dozens of already established firms in the tobacco industry in agriculture and irrigation in pharmaceuticals are going to want to jump in without hesitation. Their most logical move will be to go on a buying spree, and gobble up smaller firms that already have expertise in a particular segment of the market for example, in marijuana edibles. So it s entirely possible that within a few short years we re going to see a frenzied period of market consolidation. And if that happens, investors who buy into the best small cannabis players now are going to be richly rewarded indeed. Which big companies do we see getting into the marijuana mix? Further on in this report we re going to examine several of them company s we believe are most likely to invade the marijuana space once it begins to take off. But first, let s look at why this market is exploding in the first place. Weed and the Will of the People According to researchers from ArcView, a highly respected Silicon Valley cannabis market research group, there s a 92.8% chance that 26 or more U.S. states a clear majority will allow legal cannabis in one form or another before the year is out. And a growing chorus of voices demands that cannabis be legalized once and for all at the federal level. What s more, the drive to legalize cannabis is gathering strength outside the United States as well. In May, a website called Extract Sun Times reported that demonstrators in 829 cities in 72 countries took part in the Global Marijuana March to legalize cannabis. 2

4 Events such as that underscore the fact that even the most optimistic growth forecasts almost certainly understate the sheer size and scope of the coming above ground cannabis market. For a snapshot view of how this unstoppable trend is developing, we can look to the state of Maryland, which allows medical marijuana and began decriminalizing adult-use recreational cannabis in The Washington Post reported in June that Cannabis sales in Maryland would total $9.7 million the first year, likely starting in mid-2017, and reach $60 million by Those projections will increase as Maryland loosens restrictions. There s a very interesting wrinkle to this story. You see, when Maryland began accepting application for marijuana licenses, in order to make the process fair, they concealed from the reviewers any personal information that could reveal who was applying. The Post s story revealed that The people lining up to profit from Maryland s legal medical-marijuana market include former sheriffs and state lawmakers, wealthy business executives and well-connected political donors. The list of folks applying for the right to produce and market cannabis included one man who still runs a minimum-security jail in the state, and another who headed up Maryland s Fraternal Order of Police. In other words, it isn t your stereotypical stoner who s lining up to get a piece of the cannabis pie. The industry is attracting men and women who we d consider upstanding members of the community. This mainstreaming of marijuana is also happening in Massachusetts. During the Nov. 8 election, Massachusetts approved legal use of recreational marijuana, making the Bay State one of the first states to approve weed for medical and recreational use. The Boston Globe reported in March that legal weed in that state could bring in as much as $1.17 billion in revenue. And just like in Maryland, marijuana s proponents are drawn from the very heart of the mainstream. More than 100 entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, advocates, and others gathered for a cannabis industry meet-up held at Microsoft s NERD Center in Cambridge. Venture capitalists in suits grilled a parade of local startups on their business models. We re starting to see a shift from marijuana people getting into business to business people getting into marijuana. Dan Riffle, The Marijuana Policy Project MILLIONS OF MILLENNIALS CLAMOR FOR CANNABIS The 83.1 million millennials are some of the most vocal and adamant supporters of legal marijuana. Fully 68% of them want cannabis to be legal and available. In fact, a July, 2015 study out of Denmark revealed that millennials in that country now prefer marijuana over alcohol as their recreational substance of choice. The millennial cohort is between 19 to 35 years of age. They re going to be around for a long time, propelling the drive toward full legal acceptance of cannabis. 3

5 Surging Support for Adult Use Legislation % 60% / % 20% 0% U.S. Adults And if you need more proof that marijuana is going mainstream, consider this Nothing is more mainstream than the TV sitcom. On July 13 Variety revealed that Netflix is planning to air a sitcom set inside a legal pot dispensary. Called Disjointed, the show is the brainchild of TV genius Chuck Lorre, creator of such mainstream blockbusters as The Big Bang Theory and Two and a Half Men. Finally, two unprecedented catalysts are about to push the market for legal marijuana further into the mainstream and up into the jet stream. Your Pharmacy May Soon Carry Cannabis You see, since 1972, marijuana has been classified as a Schedule I controlled substance. Schedule I drugs are those considered to lack medical use and present a high potential for abuse. As a Schedule I drug, marijuana gets grouped alongside heroin, LSD, and ecstasy. But in the face of mounting pressure from the doctors, medical researchers, state governments and Congress, the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) have come under pressure to downgrade marijuana to a Schedule II drug, or maybe even a Schedule III. A BABY BOOM IN LEGAL WEED According to the U.S. Census Bureau, by 2030 one fifth of the population 72 million Americans will be 65 or older. Those Baby Boomers will all confront a slew of age-related ailments, such as glaucoma, cancer, arthritis and back pain. As it happens, cannabis-based remedies are uniquely suited to treating those diseases. So as the elderly population grows, so will the size of the medical marijuana market. Social acceptance of cannabis will grow as well, as millions of people discover the benefits of medical marijuana for themselves. 4

6 In fact, the DEA recently held a landmark vote that, had it passed, would have done just that. It s impossible to exaggerate the impact a shift like this would have on the market for cannabis and for the fortunes of investor who buy in early. Right now medical researchers are only allowed to legally purchase the marijuana they need for their studies by going through the National Center for Natural Products Research at the University of Mississippi. This restriction makes it extremely difficult for researchers to study marijuana and to develop drugs and treatments from it. A reclassification of weed would make it exponentially easier for scientists to obtain cannabis and would remove the legal hazards of obtaining it. A natural outcome of this more permissive environment would be for pharmaceutical companies to ramp up their research efforts around cannabis. This added demand for marijuana could initially put an extra $1.5 billion into the pockets of cannabis growers nationwide who will suddenly have new markets for their product. And even though the DEA did not reclassify marijuana, it could do so the next time around. After all, mainstream voices are calling for this recalssification. For example, the American Medical Association (AMA) told ABC News in April that it supports the DEA s review in order to help facilitate scientific research and the development of cannabinoid-based medicines. And according to online reporter Andy Szal of Manufacturing.net, Despite the recent DEA decision, signs of the federal government loosening its restrictions on marijuana remain prevalent. One day before the DEA announcement, the Obama administration indicated that it would allow many more U.S. universities to conduct marijuana research. But even though the DEA has failed so far to reschedule cannabis, an even bigger catalyst hit on Nov. 8 of this year. The Vote Heard Round the World WEED AND THE CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES ACT Probably nothing will have as big an effect on the legalmarijuana industry as the reclassification of cannabis. Here are five things the government looks at before rescheduling a substance. 1. The drug s chemistry must be known and reproducible. 2. Adequate studies must be performed proving the drug is safe. 3. Adequate studies must be performed proving the drug does what it s supposed to do. 4. The drug must be accepted by qualified experts. 5. All evidence for these claims must be widely available. On Nov. 8, tens of millions of Americans in nine states headed to the polls and voted on the future of marijuana. 5

7 Marijuana Legalization in the United States Close to 90% of Americans live in a state that allows some degree of legal marijuana use Adult Use & Medical Medical CBD Only No Laws California, Massachusetts, Maine, and Nevada voted to legalize the recreational use of marijuana. And voters in Arkansas, Florida, North Dakota, and Montana passed ballot initiatives legalizing medical marijuana. Only Arizona, where recreational cannabis was up for a vote, decided against legalization. Together, these states (excluding Arizona) represent a total population of 75 million people. That means one in five Americans 20% of us woke up Aug. 9 finding themselves in a state where medical and/or recreational cannabis is legal for adults 21 and older. Following this election, 2016 is likely to go down as a watershed year for the marijuana industry, because the outcome could pave the way for more than $200 billion being unleashed into a market that you could already be invested in. That s not just one man s opinion. History says it s so. Over the years, whenever even a handful of states enacted new marijuana laws, weed stocks soared. As many as 44 of them increased more than 1,000%. Eleven of those rose past 10,000%. Five soared past 25,000%. And three past 50,000%. And one even surged more than 130,000%. On Jan. 1, the first day marijuana could be sold to recreational users over the age of 21, a line of nearly 500 customers snaked out the front door of [Hank Borunda s] Greener Side dispensary. He raked in $47,000 in 24 hours; within three months, he says, he grossed $1.5 million. People Magazine 6

8 An increasing number of experts and observers say that federal legalization is not a question of if but when. A recent poll by Quinnipiac University found that 89 percent of voters in the United States believe that adults should be allowed legal access to medical marijuana when a physician prescribes it could very well be the year that marijuana prohibition begins crumbling to the ground. The Sun Times And Business Insider reported in June that 56% of [California] respondents in a national CBS poll in April indicated that they supported legalization. LEGAL WEED IS AN UNSTOPPABLE GLOBAL TREND America is far from the only country poised to loosen the reins on marijuana. Here are nine countries that are leading the way. Israel Has already approved a wide array of cannabis-based treatments for cancer, epilepsy and MS. Canada A full legalization program is currently being developed, with the explicit approval and support of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. Spain Citizens can grow and consume cannabis; they are forbidden from transporting or selling it. Mexico Cannabis is decriminalized, but President Enrique Peña Nieto opposes a fully-legal cannabis market. Australia According to ArcView, On October 17, 2015 the Federal Government announced that it would legalize the growing of cannabis for medicinal and scientific purposes. Uruguay Became the first country ever to legalize the sale of marijuana, but so far the legal market lags behind the homegrown market. Jamaica Has decriminalized possession of up to two ounces of cannabis, and now regulates cultivation for medical and religious purposes. Germany Possession is illegal, but consumption is legal. Also, scientific institutions can cultivate and possess cannabis, and pharmacies can sell cannabis-based treatments with government permission. Colombia Since 1994, possession of up to 22 grams for personal use has been legal. On December 22, 2015, President Juan Manuel Santos signed a decree legalizing the cultivation, consumption, export, and import of cannabis strictly for medical and scientific purposes, according to ArcView. 7

9 Doctors are even more fervent in their views about pot. In fact, 82% of surveyed oncologists approve of medical marijuana. Investors in cannabis should have every reason to be hopeful following the November election. Finally, I m not the only one who s excited about this swelling marijuana investment opportunity. Investors in cannabis should have every reason to be hopeful come November. If Britain s recent Brexit adventure is any indication, citizens are in no mood for more government oversight and control. They are in the mood to throw off chains. So when Wall Street opens for business the next day on November 9, you could be looking at the day your portfolio began to double or triple in value. Finally, I m not the only one who s excited about this swelling marijuana investment opportunity. The Smart Money Is Moving Into Cannabis Last year, $215 million in venture capital flooded into the marijuana industry. This cash went towards farms and dispensaries, weed technology, and real estate every nook and cranny of the pot business. One innovative firm called ArcView Group, out of Oakland, California, even matches up smaller 8

10 angel investors to early stage marijuana companies. I ve been speaking at length with Troy Dayton, ArcView s CEO. He s told me he has raised $73 million for 116 startups. And time and time again his firm has gotten people into pre-ipo marijuana startups well before billionaire venture capitalists staked their claim. Then there s Privateer Holdings, which invests in privately held cannabis startups and today has a valuation of $425 million. We re investing because we think it s a great business, Privateer Holdings CEO Brendan Kennedy recently told CBS News. Privateer s portfolio includes Leafly, a cannabis information platform; Tilray, a Canadian grower; and Marley Naturals, a marijuana products developer created by the family of Bob Marley. In April of 2015, Privateer Holdings caught the attention of venture capital legend and billionaire Peter Thiel, the co-founder of PayPal (and an early investor in Facebook, LinkedIn, SpaceX, Airbnb, and Yelp). Thiel became the main player in a $75 million Series B funding round for Privateer Holdings. Even more conventional and institutional players are taking a close look at this opportunity. In 2015 Bank of America Merrill Lynch release a blockbuster report called Medical Cannabis Has High POTential, which was the first report by a major investment bank to make a clear-eyed analysis of such a major segment of the marijuana market. New Frontier, a leading cannabis research guide, captured the true significance of this report: It established beyond doubt that leading financial market players are paying attention to the industry and exploring potential points of entry for their clients. Even Hollywood celebrities are getting into the act. Many folks already know about the weed-related business activities of rapper Snoop Dogg, country music legend Willie Nelson, and actor and comedian Tommy Chong. Fewer know that Grammy Award-winning singer Melissa Etheridge is developing her own line of cannabis-infused wine. And USA Today reported in March that comedian and TV talk show host Whoopi Goldberg is launching a line of medical marijuana products aimed at women. Growing Like Weeds The New Generation of Cannabis Stocks Aside from early investors, the most obvious beneficiaries of a new weed regime will be the entrepreneurs who actually grow marijuana. But they are far from the only ones who will profit. A whole ecosystem is springing up around cannabis. These are exciting times, and new millionaires and possibly billionaires are about to be made. Troy Dayton, ArcView 9

11 I ve identified no fewer than eight distinct sub-segments of this ecosystem. They are Marijuana Growers Marijuana Technology Land and Real Estate Dispensaries Marijuana Edibles Weed-Based Wonder Drugs Banking and Venture Capital And Social Media. And I ve smoked out what I believe to be the best stocks in each of those groupings. Now, the marijuana ecosystem is only just emerging fully into the mainstream. As a result, many of the companies I m going to introduce you to here are microcap stocks. Many are new and have yet to develop any kind of market track record. Bear in mind that stocks traded over the counter by their very nature are not as liquid as those on major exchanges. I always tell investors that when putting money into these kinds of stocks, they should only invest funds they can afford to tie up for an extended period or that they can afford to lose altogether. That s true of most of these stocks, but not all of them. Some of the most promising stocks in the marijuana space might be familiar to you. A few of them are household names. Given that these stocks cover more than one level of valuation and capitalization, I ve broken them down further, into three tiers. TIER 1: In Tier 1 you ll find diversified companies that give you a backdoor way to play the unstoppable marijuana trend. Given their market cap, these stocks are less likely to turn into moonshots. But don t be fooled. With legal marijuana the fastest-growing industry in the United States, these stocks could rise by triple-digits. What s more, because these firms are more mature and highly capitalized, you ll be spared much of the volatility that bedevils all small- and micro-cap stocks. All Tier 1 stocks trade on major exchanges. 10

12 And as a rule, all Tier 1 stocks have an average three-month trading volume exceeding 50,000 shares per day. Some even pay dividends, which means you can get paid to hold quality stocks in the world s fastest-growing industry. TIER 2: Tier 2 stocks are not a highly capitalized as Tier 1 stocks. They re more speculative, but are still early enough in their life-cycle that a smart investment here could hand you triple- or quadruple-digit profits. These are the ones you ll find trading Over the Counter (OTC). Like Tier 1, these stocks have a threemonth average trading volume greater than 50,000 shares daily. And while these stocks are technically penny stocks, none makes it onto Tier 2 without having a share price greater than $0.25. TIER 3: Finally, there s Tier 3. These microcap stocks are more risky and volatile than what you ll find in the other two tiers. Stocks in Tier 3 can be traded OTC. And they ll be included on the list provided they have a threemonth average trading volume greater than 15,000 shares daily and a share price greater than $0.25. They are also the stocks with the greatest potential for growth. These are the ones that get you onto the lowest of the ground floors. Tier 3 is where you ll find your next Vape Holdings. This California-based maker of ceramic vaporizers people can use to ingest cannabis concentrates shot up from $0.40 a share to $35.90 over the course of about four months. That s an 8,875% gain. Or your next Mountain High Acquisitions Corp., out of Colorado. Founded by a former accountant, this holding company focuses on nutraceutical products. Mountain High, which was once trading for just $0.10 a share, rose as high as $14.00 a share 13,900%. Or your next United Cannabis Corp., a grower of genetically refined strains of medical-grade cannabis plants that shot up 16,700% over the course of two months, from $0.06 a share to $ If even a handful of the Tier 3 stocks featured below come through the way Vape, Mountain High, and United Cannabis have, then you are guaranteed a fortune. That s what s available to you today from legal marijuana. That said, it bears repeating that because of things like low trading volume, competition, and the uncertain landscape, Tier 3 stocks are more than normally volatile. Please keep that in mind. If you are particularly averse to risk, then you should think very carefully before investing in a Tier 3 stock. We re going to dive into all of these stocks now, segment by segment. Our journey starts where the entire market for marijuana does with the marijuana growers themselves. 11

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14 MARIJUANA ECOSYSTEM #1 MARIJUANA GROWERS It all starts with the growers. They plant the seeds, harvest the crop, and send their produce through the value chain of the marijuana market. Gone are the days when small groups of stoners planted their seeds in vacant lots and in tiny pots and window boxes on the upper floors of tenement brownstones. Today s marijuana producer is a sophisticated, educated player in the agribusiness community. In Colorado in 2014, more than 320,000 plants were cultivated each month, according to the Colorado Department of Revenue. More than 148,000 pounds of marijuana flower was legally sold. As more and more growers scramble to get their crop to market and supply what looks to be a bottomless demand, consumers of cannabis benefit from falling prices. A recent report on the online news site Globalnews.ca said that in Washington State, Prices are down because there is plenty of pot to go around. In fact, the state is allowing licensed producers to grow up to 12.3 million square feet of marijuana, or the equivalent of about 300 football fields, to supply the medical and recreational marijuana markets. And the party s just getting started. It is entirely likely (some would say inevitable) that within a few short years the number of states where cannabis is completely legal will more than triple. And the day may come when all 50 states will at least allow medical marijuana. When that happens, the scale of cultivation will rise exponentially. First Mover companies like CannaGrow in Colorado and Canopy Growth Corp. in Canada that operate multi-acre fields will reap huge rewards as the cannabis market explodes more than 3,400% to as high as $150 to $200 billion. Because so many savvy players see such an enormous upside for cannabis, the plant has attracted the attention of some innovative researchers. One company, 22nd Century Group is transplanting cannabis DNA into tobacco plants. The goal? To create a hybrid with the properties of cannabis and the robustness and ease of cultivation of tobacco. And there s a segment of the cannabis market that is easy to overlook the hemp market. Hemp is a cannabis plant that has none of the THC that gets people high. Hemp clothing is durable and lightweight. Hemp plants are healthy food for livestock. The oil from hemp makes very useful waxes and resins. It can even serve as a key ingredient in plastics and biofuels. Some estimates peg the global hemp market at more than $800 million. And again, that s in the face of cannabis s quasi-legal status. Another exciting facet of cannabis cultivation is the explosion of high-tech greenhouses (or grow houses ) designed specifically to accommodate marijuana.

15 These enterprises are a boom to the makers and suppliers of all manner of high-tech electrical and mechanical apparatuses. We ll discuss that in more detail a little later. First, let s take a look at some of the key marijuana cultivators operating today. Any one of them could potentially soar 1,000% or more in the coming years. CannaGrow Holdings Inc. (OTC: CGRW) In many states, the debate around marijuana comes down to one question: If pot is legalized, should it be just for medicinal purposes or also for recreational purposes? Regardless of the choice, it s pretty clear that marijuana growers will need to establish top-flight cultivation methods, use highly secure facilities to please regulators, and operate store fronts that serve only their stated legal purpose. To glean the needed expertise, growers can turn to CannaGrow Holdings Inc. (OTC: CGRW). The Colorado-based firm has already learned a lot about marijuana cultivation. It operates a massive five acre facility near Boulder that uses state-of-the-art irrigation, heating, ventilation, and horticulture techniques. In effect, firms looking to enter the legal pot industry don t even have to worry about cultivation plans. They can simply contract to buy some of CannaGrow Holdings output. A study conducted by BOTEC Analysis found that a growing facility can produce roughly 40 grams of pot per square foot of space. That s just one harvest, though Colorado s abundant sunshine means that you can have multiple harvests per year, which would increase the yield per square foot. At roughly 16,000 square feet, CannaGrow s facility would yield 640,000 grams. That s about 22,500 ounces, or more than 1,400 pounds of marijuana. At an average wholesale price of $2,000/lb., there s a lot of value in the firm s potential output. And that s just one facility. Once CannaGrow lines up demand for all of its output, look for the firm to break ground on more facilities, likely in the states having large and growing legal pot markets. You would think that pot growing is as simple as planting a bunch of seeds in the ground, adding water, and waiting to harvest the buds of the plant. That s how it worked for decades among the illegal growers in Northern California. But as the pot industry becomes much more legitimate, consumers are demanding more potent grades while regulators want to make sure that authorized strains remain inaccessible to the general public. So we re now seeing a big shift towards greenhouse growers, and CannaGrow aims to be one of the nation s largest greenhouse operators. CannaGrow s efforts are overseen by John Wells, a horticulture specialist committed to growing pot without pesticides while using advanced soil management techniques and integrated pest management protocols. 14

16 Wells has a unique background. For more than a decade he managed a nursery that produced millions of ornamental plants for wholesale distribution across North America. He also ran a large native plant nursery in the Amazon that was sourced by tens of thousands of seeds and cuttings from rainforest plants. CannaGrow faces some great growth prospects. In just the State of Colorado alone, more than $500 million worth of pot has been grown in regulated greenhouses. And sales set new records each month. According to ArcView Market Research, sales of legal cannabis should grow 25% this year, to around $6.7 billion. And when you consider that more states will either initiate or expand legal pot laws, the market appears to have a long runway to growth ahead of it. The analysts at ArcView project a 30% yearly growth rate and expect a $22.8 billion national market for legal pot by CannaGrow is also learning how to navigate the wide range of restrictions and mandates that Colorado requires of pot growers. That knowledge will be very helpful as more states look to legalize pot for the first time or broaden its usage from medicinal to recreational. As with many young firms, CannaGrow will need to strengthen its balance sheet in order to realize its vision. Look for the firm to raise more cash in coming months, which will dilute the interest of current shareholders. 22nd Century Group Inc. (NYSE MKT: XXII) As you dig into the emerging legalized pot industry, you start to discover an unusual trend. Many of the industry s most promising researchers have a strong background in either tobacco or opiates. It s no coincidence. All three of these substances have been used throughout history by healers to help alleviate pain, and in some case, provide clear therapeutic benefits. 22nd Century Group Inc. (NYSE MKT: XXII) has chosen to focus its genetic engineering research on tobacco and cannabis. This firm has amassed more than 200 patents over the past 15 years and has another 50 pending. The goal is to produce new strains of tobacco and cannabis that contain all of the beneficial compounds with few of the harmful ingredients. Of course, when you re talking about tobacco, you re talking about the possibility of nicotine addiction. 22nd Century Group has focused much of its R&D on reducing the amount of nicotine in its proprietary strains of genetically engineered tobacco. Their efforts are paying off. In fact, this firm s tobacco contains 97% less nicotine than regular tobacco. This new tobacco could prove a godsend for people looking to quit smoking but who need to be weaned off of nicotine. The elimination of cannabinoids in hemp is expected to revitalize the hemp industry worldwide. 22nd Century intends to lead this important effort. 15

17 At the same time, there are people who want to keep their nicotine fix, but would just as soon avoid the tar and other additives that lead to cancer. For them, 22nd Century has created a tobacco with the lowest tar-to-nicotine ratio in the world. But for our purposes, what s most interesting is 22nd Century Group s other division, Botanical Genetics LLC. That subsidiary owns a range of patents regarding cannabis, and aims to provide the legal hemp and medical marijuana markets with unique plant varieties containing little if any THC. Hemp is basically a cannabis plant that has none of the THC that gets people high. Decades ago, famers loved to grow hemp because it had a remarkable number of uses. Hemp clothing is durable and lightweight. Hemp plants are healthy food for livestock. The oil from hemp makes very useful waxes and resins. It can even serve as a key ingredient in plastics and biofuels. 22nd Century Group appears to be one of the few publicly traded firms looking at the hemp market, and this may shape up to be the next cannabis-inspired niche. Thanks to the growing acceptance of medical and recreational marijuana, the time for hemp s revival may soon be at hand. But let s get back to the firm s broader cannabis research. 22nd Century Group is taking a very different approach to this effort than almost any other firm on the planet. It is researching ways to derive the best traits of cannabinoid plants without actually using cannabis. As every pot grower knows, a lot of care and technique goes into the cultivation of a pot plant. Tobacco plants are much more robust. Just plant the seeds, water them, and watch the plant grow. By planting the right DNA from cannabis plants into other plants, such as tobacco, the 22nd Century looks to take advantage of the great ease with which tobacco can be grown. This isn t a bid to supply the recreational pot market. Instead, 22nd Century is focusing on strains that have little or no THC. They only want to deliver the CBDs that are showing so much promise of treating neurological and other disorders. If a broad range of medicines are to be developed with CBDs as a key ingredient, then the need for high-volume, low-cost plants will be crucial to supply the market. This unique cannabinoid-to-tobacco approach could end up helping 22nd Century to play a major role in the industry. Thanks to a recent capital raise, the firm has roughly $6 million in the bank, and is currently consuming roughly $3 million per quarter. Quarterly sales of $3 million have been on the rise, which should help to slow that cash burn. Still, look for 22nd Century Group to raise more cash in the next few quarters to fully fund its research efforts. Canopy Growth Corp. (OTC: TWMJF) It s called the first-mover advantage. The first firm to establish a strong base of business in a young and fast-growing market can reap major benefits. Strong market share, economies of scale and strong profit margins are the usual end result. And right now, a new industry is starting from scratch in Canada, as that country becomes possibly the first developed economy to see fully legalized pot. (Uruguay was the first to legalize recreational use, back in 2012.) 16

18 At a recent session of the United Nations, Canada s Health Minister announced that his country would legalize recreational cannabis in the spring of That would greatly expand the total pot market in Canada. The current medical marijuana market is expected to grow to $1.2 billion by 2020, according to Health Canada. The recreational market could be up to four times larger, say industry analysts. That s great news for Canopy Growth Corp. (OTC: TWMJF), which will clearly have a first-mover advantage. The firm already has the largest market share of the country s medical legal cannabis market (at 25%) and plans to dominate the recreational market as well. It s not as simple as opening a retail storefront or a mail-order operation. The firm already grows its own pot, and has developed deep ties with the medical community. By the company s count, it has met with more than 10,000 doctors to discuss the merits of medical pot. And it s a leader in the production of a range of cannabis oil extract, a key byproduct that is used to make pot edibles. As we said earlier, this fast-growing niche is almost as large as the smoking category in Colorado and will likely be that large in Canada as well. To be sure, a growing market will invite ample competition. In response, Canopy Growth is sharply boosting its production capacity to ensure that it can enjoy economies of scale and make profits at price points that would put smaller producers out of business. The firm is also gobbling up rivals such as Bedrocan and Tweet, both of which have a strong reputation among medical marijuana users. Those deals have helped push the firm s yearly sales base above $10 million. The focus is on quality as much as on quantity. Canopy Growth has partnered with DNA Genetics, a Netherlands-based firm that is consistently ranked as producing the industry s most coveted strains of pot. The two firms intend to combine their production and research know-how. Canopy Growth is also looking to spread its bets around. For example, it bought a 33% stake in CannScience Innovations Inc. (CSI), which plans to build a base of patents around THC extraction processes, ways to produce standardized products, and new formulations that can be used in medical and clinical setting. To bolster its presence in the medical marijuana market, Canopy Growth recently bought Bedrocan, which sells pharmaceutical-grade strains of pot that boast a strong reputation for potency and consistency or have been used in medical trials for more than a decade. Bedrocan also has a base of more than 20,000 medical marijuana users. And the firm is venturing into global markets such as Australia, which is getting set to legalize medical marijuana in the next few quarters. An Australian startup named AusCann will use Canopy Growth s expertise as it launches a major new growing facility. Canopy Grow got a 15% stake in AusCann as part of the deal. Tweed, one of Canopy s brands, is housed in a former Hershey s Chocolate factory. 17

19 The firm is well-capitalized, with roughly $15 million in cash on the books. Quarterly sales now exceed $10 million, and the firm is now burning less than $3 million per quarter. Look for that figure to shrink as sales rise higher. Terra Tech Corp. (OTC: TRTC) Many new firms in the cannabis field aim to focus on just one part of the industry food chain. Some are adept at growing pot. Others are adept at selling weed in dispensaries. Still others are focused on producing finished edible foods based on cannabis. While some focus on one state or local market. Terra Tech Corp. (OTC: TRTC) is casting a much wider net it s pursuing all of them. This firm is already one of the largest growers in the country, with roughly $10 million in sales over the past 12 months. Expansion plans should ensure that Terra Tech remains at the top of the leaderboard in coming years as well. To be sure, this is an industry where scale matters. Just look at what has happened to farming in general. Small-scale growers can succeed, but large-scale growers are the ones that are really thriving. While the harvesting of marijuana will never be mechanized and will always remain somewhat laborintensive, there are clear benefits to growing a large volume of supply at a time when more and more dispensaries are creating insatiable demand. Terra Tech will likely remain as one the few growers that can handle large supply contracts. Terra Tech plans to keep some of that output for itself. The firm s MediFarm subsidiary owns pot dispensaries in Nevada. And to gain a foothold in the California market, it recently acquired the Black Oak Gallery dispensary, which has 42,000 registered patients. That deal pushes Terra s yearly revenue base north of $20 million. This firm is keeping close tabs on legal changes happening across the nation. But it won t enter potentially lucrative markets until pot is fully approved for either medical and/or recreational use. In the state of New York for example, restrictions on medical marijuana make it too small a market for Terra Tech to consider. 18

20 The firm is currently looking toward California, the nation s largest legal pot market, and Nevada, which is seeing a surge in pot-related tourism, as a source of near-term growth. When pot is harvested, it leaves behind stems and other remnants that can be pressed to make cannabis oil. Terra Tech s large output now creates enough source material to support a thriving cannabis oil extract business. What s more, the firm has devised special cartridges that can be used in vaporizer machines. These machines have become quite popular with smokers that don t want to inhale smoke, but only the THC. At its growing facilities, Terra Tech leaves aside some room for its hydroponically-grown herbs and greens, which are sold under the Edible Garden brand to supermarkets. Some of the produce that it sells has been nutritionally enhanced and is available at 1,800 supermarkets in the northeastern United States. Its SUPERLEAF lettuce, for example, is high in vitamins A and C, magnesium, iron, and potassium. The lettuce was developed by scientists at Rutgers University and also contains high levels of fiber and antioxidants. To help increase supply of herbs and greens, and to eventually cultivate a lot more marijuana, the firm is holding early-stage talks with hydroponic growers in New Jersey, Indiana, and Florida. Those deals would focus on legal products for now but could become key sources of cannabis supply if those states choose to legalize pot. The firm has identified one location in Florida that could ultimately grow 70,000 pounds of pot each year. Terra Tech also aims to help other growers, whether at home or in an industrial facility or greenhouse, to be more productive. Its GrowOp Technology division sells a broad range of equipment geared to pot cultivation and harvesting. These include environmental controllers and timers as well as ballasts, bulbs, reflectors, nutrients, and portable hydroponic trailers. The execs at Terra Tech are nothing if not ambitious. In just a few short years, they have built a multipronged cannabis business from scratch. Look for interest in this stock to build once the firm completes a 1-for-10 reverse stock split that will move shares out of penny stock territory. As of today, the company has not set a date for this event. But I believe a move of this nature could very well lead to an uplisting to the Nasdaq. And once that occurs, look for a big pop, because listing on a major exchange helps the stock get closer to becoming investment grade. The firm will likely raise more cash before announcing the 1-for-10 split date. As of the end of March, it had $1.1 million in cash but has been losing nearly $2 million per quarter. Yearly sales should surpass $6 million this year, which should ease the firm s efforts in lining up fresh capital. 19

21

22 MARIJUANA ECOSYSTEM #2 MARIJUANA TECHNOLOGY As every pot grower knows, a lot of care and technique goes into the cultivation of a pot plant. For one, marijuana plants need to flower to before they produce tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC (the chemical that gets users high). The plants have to be exposed to light for 12 hours a day and kept in darkness for just as long. Kayvan Khalatbari and Nick Hice, co-owners of Denver Relief, a medicinal-marijuana dispensary told The Denver Post that The best place to grow marijuana is in a room in the basement with a locked door so light doesn t inadvertently get in when the plants are sleeping. That s fine if you re a grow your own private toker. If you spoil a harvest or two, you won t go broke or out of business. Not so for the professional, large-scale cultivator. He has little room for error. As they say in the trade, His plants have to flower. To protect their investment, growers turn to state-of-the-art greenhouses containing high-tech devices and monitors such as hygrometers, which see to it that humidity levels never get above 50%, and CO2 tanks, which add carbon dioxide to the indoor air. Another way that the major growers control cultivation is through hydroponics, which is a method of growing plants in mineral- and nutrient-laced water, without soil. According to Manifest Minds LLC, the hydroponically grown plants will make up a $24 billion market by All this barely scratches the surface of marijuana technology. Growers also need high-powered horticultural light bulbs, custom regulated fans, valves and pumps, nutrient and mineral supplements, plus specialized grow tents. With growers so dependent upon technology to operate this soon-to-be $200 billion industry, it s no surprise that Silicon Valley is pouring money into it: According to Cleantech Group, venture capitalists sank $976 million into agriculture start-ups. A 2015 report by MarketsandMarkets estimates that the market for Smart greenhouses will reach $1.2 billion by This is the landscape firms like The Scotts Miracle-Gro Co., Two Rivers Water & Farming Co., and General Cannabis Corp. find themselves in. It s a landscape filled with opportunities for growth in more ways than one. The Scotts Miracle-Gro Co. (NYSE: SMG) While the legalization of marijuana is creating the need for acres and acres of professionally-grown cannabis, you shouldn t forget the little guy. After all, for decades thousands of consumers have been growing-their-own, even while risking trouble with law enforcement. By one estimate, $60 billion worth of illegal pot is grown each year in the United States. 21

23 But with marijuana legal, the number of people looking to cultivate it for their own consumption is likely to skyrocket. The marijuana-growing market could easily top $100 billion within five years, with much of that supply displacing imported marijuana from dangerous jungles in Latin America. And while this opens up an opportunity for firms that cater to growers and gardeners, it also presents those firms with a strategic dilemma. Should they establish a strong early presence in the pot-growing community? Or wait until the social climate around cannabis normalizes that is, until growing your own pot is no more controversial than brewing your own beer? The Scotts Miracle-Gro Co. (NYSE: SMG) is going with option one: Embrace this fast-growing community of growers, and by so doing, plant the seeds for robust new paths to growth. Scotts is already the world s largest maker of lawn care and gardening products, and is now making a big push into indoor plant cultivation, as evidenced by its April 2015 purchase of General Hydroponics. Hydroponic gardeners use air, light, and water to grow their plants indoors without the need for soil. This method means no mess, and more importantly, no pesticides. That s a key consideration for green consumers. Given the unsettled legal landscape around cannabis, Scotts emphasis on that market might seem like a dangerous choice. But in truth, it s less risky than it seems. If the legal marijuana movement stalls, Scotts will still benefit from the growing demand for hydroponic equipment among young urban consumers eager to grow the herbs and greens that go into their salads. But it s hard to imagine the push for legal marijuana stalling out. In many respects, that genie has left the bottle. Even before legal pot made this new growth potential possible, hydroponics had been very popular with a whole array of growers. MARIJUANA MARGINS HOW PROFITABLE IS CANNABIS? By some estimates, marijuana is poised to become the new cash crop in the United States. Bank of America and Merrill Lynch estimate that within a decade it ll be a $150 billion to $200 billion industry. To put that into perspective, consider that tobacco sales are about $100 billion. And there will be no shortage of growers to supply that market. The reason is that, despite being a tricky crop to cultivate, marijuana is very profitable to grow. Chris Walker, a manager at a San Francisco company called Heliospectra, which makes lamps for cannabis growers, told the International Business Times last July that, A tomato producer in a greenhouse might earn roughly 10 percent profit, while a cannabis grower in a similar setup could rake in as much as 80 percent. Those high margins can spill over into other parts of the marijuana value chain. Between 2015 and 2016, Genius Extraction Technologies, which turns marijuana into smokeable oils, grew its revenue 500%. The company expects to double sales every year going forward. 22

24 According to Manifest Minds LLC, the global crop value of hydroponically grown plants is on pace to rise from $17 billion in 2013 to $24 billion by If other countries follow the lead set by the United States, pot cultivation and hydroponics could well soar much higher than that. There are many reasons why Scotts Miracle Gro should embrace hydroponics. First, populations are increasingly concentrated in cities and even mega-cities. As people trade the countryside for the cityscape, they ll have to grow their favorite herbs and vegetables indoors, using hydroponics. Second, there is the perennial concern over pesticides; a number of pesticide bans have begun to take effect. Hydroponics, as we said, needs no pesticides, because it uses no soil. Third, water shortages are a growing problem around the world and make crop-growing harder. Hydroponics uses controlled, drip irrigation, which drastically reduces the amount of water needed to grow plants. Fourth, Scotts bought into the hydroponics equipment field simply because it s a very attractive business, with much higher profit margins than traditional lawn and garden supplies. And finally, there s the happy fact that demand for hydroponics systems stays strong year-round. Scotts CEO, Jim Hagedorn isn t just dipping his toe in the water here. He sees last year s purchase of General Hydroponics as just the first of several moves, all aimed toward the goal of creating a $1 billion yearly business. That s a nice bolt-on addition for a business that currently generates around $3 billion in sales. Hagedorn is a big believer in market share, and he likely looks at the emerging hydroponics and cannabis markets the same way. Its four leading brands (Scotts, Miracle-Gro, Round-Up, and Ortho) have market shares ranging from 53% to 70%. And the firm is out to make it easy for people to start using hydroponics equipment, to grow either cannabis or food. Scotts Miracle-Gro has 2,500 sales associates that it sends to visit retail stores, after training them on the merits of hydroponics. Make no mistake: This is not your typical cannabis investment. For one thing, Scotts is already quite popular with mutual fund managers, who like the fact that the firm has boosted its dividend for seven straight years. The current yield sits at 2.2%. If you are building a well-rounded cannabis portfolio, Scotts is a clear choice to anchor the low-risk end of the spectrum. And its early move to embrace the cannabis community could help turn it into a robust grower. Shares of Scotts trade for around 17 times projected 2017 profits. General Cannabis Corp. (OTC: CANN) As we saw when we examined Compass Holdings, in a landscape that has only recently begun taking shape, the watchword is: diversification. 23

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