November 21, 2013

Cigarette Companies to Become ‘Budweiser’ of Marijuana?

In the coming years, major consumer-facing cannabis brands could arise as more states pass medical and recreational marijuana laws and the industry grows.

And one Wall Street guru thinks he knows which companies will be behind these brands.

“Who’s going to be the Budweiser of marijuana? My guess – they would all deny it – would be cigarette companies,” Gerry Sullivan, head of the Vice Fund, predicted in an article by Reuters.

In fact, Sullivan said the Vice Fund – which invests in risque industries such as gambling, guns and alcohol – will keep strong positions in tobacco companies partially for this reason.

Cigarette companies could indeed be positioned well to enter the marijuana industry, and many cannabis professionals have long feared an invasion by Big Tobacco (and Big Pharma).

But it would likely take a significant change on the federal level before this happens. Mainstream corporate giants, such as those in the tobacco industry, would need a clear sign from the government that they could participate in the marijuana sector, likely through new legislation and a reclassification of the drug.

And cigarette companies have shown little interest in the cannabis industry, at least publicly.

Still, there’s no question they are keeping an eye on the situation, and cigarette heavyweights are likely having internal discussions about how to get involved if and when the government changes its position.


4 Comments:

  1. Highly doubtful considering it’s illegal for a cigarette company to be owned by or associated with medical marijuana dispensaries in Colorado not sure about other state rules but. Big tobacco can keep there their nicotine out of my plant. Also because the war on tobacco is so huge and marijuana is veiled as medicinal I highly doubt the tobacco industry would be interested in getting into that considering we’re trying to heal the very thing they create. Death -

  2. I have heard that tobacco companies had bought up lots of land in N Cali, specifically in Mendocino and Humboldt counties, in anticipation of marijuana becoming legal.

  3. I’ve heard the the major cigareite companies long ago registered trademarks for brands such as ‘Acapulco Gold’ ‘Kaui Wowie’ and many others back in the 60′s and have maintained those trademarks all through the years awaiting legalization. Any truth to it?

  4. The likely outcome of all this sickens me, but tobacco companies know the business of marketing way better that almost anyone out there. What we need to be really vigilant about is denying them the opportunity to compound nicotine with cannabis products. In the UK, marijuana is routinely smoked with tobacco which makes it just as bad if not worse that smoking cigarettes.

Post Your Comment:


Please note:
Comments are moderated by our editors who do their best to approve comments ASAP. As Marijuana Business Daily is focused on business, we approve comments that are specifically relevant to industry professionals. General opinions and questions about cannabis may not be posted.

Seattle Dispensary Plan May Be Scrapped

Seattle marijuana

Seattle medical marijuana businesses may not be able to get local licenses after all, as [click to continue...]

Michigan MMJ Bills Sputter, Leaving Industry in Limbo

Michigan sheriffs reportedly helped kill legislation on Thursday that would have allowed the legal return [click to continue...]

New York MMJ Regs: $200,000 Licensing Fee, Strain Limit

Medical cannabis companies hoping to operate in New York will have to jump through several [click to continue...]

Nebraska, Oklahoma Ask Supreme Court to Nix Colorado Marijuana Law

lawsuit

Nebraska and Oklahoma have filed a lawsuit with the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn Colorado’s [click to continue...]

Joint-Smoking Santa Display Backfires for LA Dispensary

In a lesson on how not to advertise your medical marijuana business, a dispensary in [click to continue...]

Key Michigan MMJ Bills Come Down to the Wire

Michigan medical cannabis issues, pot dispensary updates, news about marijuana by state

The future of dispensaries in Michigan hangs in the balance as police groups and public [click to continue...]

High Prices Could Limit Minnesota Medical Cannabis Market

Minnesota’s medical marijuana market could be smaller than expected, as patients will reportedly have to [click to continue...]

Colorado Earmarks $8 Million for MMJ Research

coloradocannabis

The Colorado Department of Health and Environment will devote serious money to studying the efficacy [click to continue...]

PayPal Co-Founder to Invest in Cannabis

PayPal co-founder and early Facebook investor Peter Thiel plans to pump money into the marijuana [click to continue...]

Anchorage Shoots Down Proposed Ban on Rec Sales

Alaska’s budding marijuana industry scored a significant victory Tuesday night when lawmakers killed a proposal [click to continue...]

MMJ Lounges Popping Up in Maine

maine marijuana

A new trend in Maine offers yet another possible offshoot business opportunity in the cannabis [click to continue...]

Hope for DC Rec Market Still Alive

It looks like hope may still be alive for a recreational marijuana market in Washington [click to continue...]

Cannabis Business Accelerator to Help 20 Startups

Startup companies focusing on the ancillary cannabis market will get a helping hand – and [click to continue...]

Ruling on Home Grows a Setback for Canadian Cultivation Companies

Flag_of_Canada.svg

A Canadian federal appeals court unanimously upheld an injunction that lets patients continue growing medical [click to continue...]