The New Dealers: who’s making a killing off medical marijuana

The New Dealers: who’s making a killing off medical marijuana

New legislation has rocked the medical marijuana world, taking the traditional grow op from suburban basements to mammoth warehouses. The new pot kings own suits, have smart haircuts and list their companies on the TSX, and they’re dead set on getting rich.

THE EGGHEAD
Marc Wayne, CEO of Bedrocan, a grower and importer of vaunted Dutch medical pot.

Biz cred
Wayne is president of Spiderco Investments and an ex–managing partner of OAM Computer Group. He’s also a past alumni director of the Toronto French School.

Weed cred
Wayne was business development director for the Canadian Consortium for the Investigation of Cannabinoids, a marijuana research group.

Do you smoke?
“Of course, when I was a teenager, but not anymore. That’s the first time I’ve been asked that question.”

Backer
Real estate mogul Murray Goldman of the Goldman Group is board chair.

Recent sales
2014 not yet disclosed, but revenue for the nine months up to October 31, 2014 was $1 million.

Customer base
1,500

Most creatively named weed
Bedrobinol, a crossbreed of Haze and Afghani strains.

Price per gram
$7.50

THE EXECUTIVE
Neil Closner, CEO of MedReleaf, a Markham firm allied with Tikun Olam, an Israeli med-pot supplier.

Biz cred
Closner started as an investment banker, then helped found a number of start-ups. He was a vice-president of business development at Mount Sinai Hospital and a founder of VitalHub, a company that makes mobile software for doctors.

Weed cred
MedReleaf’s COO is Tom Flow, an experienced grower who was licensed under the previous regulations.

Do you smoke?
“No. Never tried it. I couldn’t even tell you why.”

Backer
Stephen Arbib of MENA Investment Network.

Recent sales
$1.5 million in 2014.

Most creatively named weed
Articulus, from the strain Tighty Whitey.

Price per gram
$2.50 to $15

THE TECHIE
Michael Haines, CEO of Mettrum, the first Ontario company licensed under the new regulations.

Biz cred
In 2011 Haines sold Blammo Games, which went on to develop the wildly successful mobile game Kim Kardashian: Hollywood.

Weed cred
Master grower and co-founder Lucas Escott grew medical marijuana as a Health Canada licensee under the previous regs, and co-founder Greg Herriott started a hemp producer called Hempola.

Do you smoke?
“Who hasn’t smoked cannabis in the past? Very few people.”

Backers
Don Wright, former chair and CEO of TD Securities, Norman Inkster, former commissioner of the RCMP, and William Assini, former partner and senior vice-president of PwC.

Recent sales
Revenue for the nine months up to December 31, 2014 was $2,211,021.

Customer Base
About 2,200.

Price per gram
$3.60 to $9.60

Most creatively named weed
Yellow No. 2 from the strain Killing Fields.