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Snoop Dogg’s “Next Episode” in Cannabis

There is no disputing that Snoop Dog, one of the (God or Dog) fathers of rap, continues to prove himself in the world of music while also making newsworthy waves in the cannabis industry—including overseas.

Snoop performed an energetic show at the 56th Superbowl Halftime Show for those who live on the American side.

European Market: Snoop is a Contributor

His story is not limited to the United States. He recently invested $15million in Cansativa in Frankfurt, Germany. Cansativa has won the BfArM Monopoly Contract to distribute German-grown medical cannabis across the country. Cansativa is now pursuing the emerging recreational market, as German lawmakers are considering it.

This is not Snoop’s first foray into the international cannabis industry. Snoop invested in Canopy Growth when the company began expanding to Europe many years ago.

This is however the biggest check that the rapper has ever written to a VC firm Casa Verde for cannabis investments.

For the German Market, it’s a fight!

Cansativa may be well-positioned on the German market but they’re not the only one. BfArM granted more than 100 cannabis specialty distributor licenses. This B-series investment positions Cansativa against current and potential competitors.

Sanity Group (based out of Berlin), which is one of their biggest competitors, has proven adept at attracting American capital as well as celebrities such Will.I.Am. Beyond this, another Frankfurt distributor, Nimbus Health, was also just acquired for an undisclosed sum by Dr. Reddy’s—one of the largest generics pharmaceutical firms in the world, headquartered in India.

This is just a small part of the story. Over the last several years, there have been other well-publicized buyouts of start-up cannabis specialty distribution firms—and by big players. 

In 2017, Canopy Growth bought out MedCann, the first indie cannabis speciality distributor in the country, followed rapidly by Aurora’s buyout of Pedianos.

Other firms are also aiming for a serious piece of the market share—whether it is solely medical or a blend of both, as Cansativa has now alluded to, and many other firms have already set their sights on.

A New Mixed Market:

Every distributor in Germany faces the challenge of finding customers and keeping them. It involves educating physicians about all the available strains and persuading patients to request them. It can be a long and tedious process to get insurance approvals.

Many believe that the future recreational market will lead to a simpler path to market. It will include licensed retail pharmacies, as well as online sales.

Despite this, all Canadian firms that are currently operating on the Canadian market have been preparing for recreational cannabis reform since 2017. Canopy Growth recently sold C3, the domestic only manufacturer of synthetic THC (the generic THC isolate), for CA $180 million, a significant drop from their CA 342.9million (US $269 millions) purchase in 2019.

All German specialty distributors have acknowledged it, even if they don’t admit it. Not to mention all the cultivators that are sprouting up across Europe (see Countries from Columbia to Southern Africa).

What Snoop’s new investment underscores is that the German market is continuing to establish important fundamentals as it slowly opens up to a fully legal recreational trade.

What could Germany’s market look like?

It’s likely that, despite the obstacles in getting the project off the ground and the difficulty of getting it up and running, the German recreational sector will continue to dominate European conversations as it did on the medical side. Germans have a healthy population of around 80 million and are extremely canna-curious. 

CBD products can still be purchased in grocery stores and other mainstream establishments. However, there have been a few embarrassing raids by police in the last year. And even though the legal status of recreational cannabis isn’t yet clear, they are readily available. People are becoming more open about their cannabis use. The COVID experience has given rise to a desire for change, to reverse and undo policy that is clearly ineffective, as well as new opportunities.

For that reason, Snoop’s foray aus DeutschlandIt is certain that he has a great time, regardless of where he takes his new role.