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.

CO Awards $250K Grant to THC Breathalyzer Developer

A Colorado company attempting to develop THC breathalyzers is getting some help from the state [click to continue...]

Missouri to Start Taking Hemp Cultivation Applications

Hemp

Cannabis growers of a different stripe can begin submitting applications to the Missouri government next [click to continue...]

Backlash Sinks Proposed Edibles Ban in Colorado

Colorado edibles manufacturers can let out a sigh of relief. A proposal on Monday to [click to continue...]

3 Chicago Dispensary Hopefuls Get Local Green Light

Several businesses have taken a big step forward in their quest to open medical marijuana [click to continue...]

San Francisco Delays Decision on New Dispensary

SanFrancisco

San Francisco, which was at the forefront of the medical marijuana movement a decade ago, [click to continue...]

Oregon Judge: Towns Can Ban Dispensaries

An Oregon judge has decided that towns and counties have the right to ban or [click to continue...]

Medical Marijuana Inc. Files $100M Lawsuit Over ‘False’ Claims

Medical Marijuana Inc. has filed a lawsuit in California against several businesses – including a [click to continue...]

WA Puts Sales Data for Rec Businesses Online

WashingtonCannabis

Want to track sales of individual marijuana stores, cultivators and processors in Washington State? Easy [click to continue...]

Cole to California: Regulate the MMJ Industry

The author of the 2013 Cole Memo has a clear message for California: “If you [click to continue...]

Former Israel MMJ Exec Tapped by Cannabis Consultancy

A national cannabis consulting firm has brought on a key architect of Israel’s medical marijuana [click to continue...]

14 Marijuana Labs Participate in ‘Proficiency’ Test

Testingmarijuana

Yet another sign that the marijuana industry is maturing: 14 cannabis labs from across the [click to continue...]

San Diego Approves 1st Dispensary

Let the rebirth of San Diego’s medical marijuana industry begin. On Wednesday, the city granted [click to continue...]

CA City Cuts Power, Water to Dispensaries

Can medical marijuana dispensaries continue operating without electricity and water? In Anaheim, California, the answer [click to continue...]

Nearly $14K in Daily Revenues for Seattle Rec Shop

Uncle Ike's

The Emerald City’s second recreational marijuana shop is rolling in the green. Uncle Ike’s, which [click to continue...]