For Just $185M, Diddy Becomes The First Black Owner Of The Largest Operating Minority Cannabis Company
Diddy just changed the future of the cannabis industry — on his birthday.
by Aria Bell
November 04, 2022 at 10:15 pm
Sean “Diddy” Combs is expanding his business portfolio as he snags his first piece of the cannabis pie.
Today, Nov. 4, it was announced that Cresco Labs (CL) and Columbia Care (CC) will be finalizing their agreement with Combs to sell three major markets to the businessman and media mogul. This will make him the first owner and creator of the largest minority-owned and operated vertically integrated multi-state cannabis company. The purchase price for this acquisition will cost him $185,000,000 and will be his first investment in the cannabis industry, which is currently one of the quickest-growing business sectors in the U.S.
Cresco Labs is a vertically integrated multi-state operator and the number one U.S. wholesaler of branded cannabis. When the ink dries and the purchase is complete, Combs will have the ability to grow and manufacture cannabis products, be a wholesale distributor of branded products to licensed dispensaries, and operate retail spaces in various parts of New York, Massachusetts and Illinois.
As a barrier breaker and cultural icon, this new allotment aligns with the 53-year-old’s personal goal to continue diversifying and transforming industries so that underrepresented minorities have opportunities in spaces they normally don’t have access to or may get overlooked.
“My mission has always been to create opportunities for Black entrepreneurs in industries where we’ve traditionally been denied access, and this acquisition provides the immediate scale and impact needed to create a more equitable future in cannabis,” Combs said in a press release from Combs Enterprises. “Owning the entire process — from growing and manufacturing to marketing, retail and wholesale distribution — is a historic win for the culture that will allow us to empower diverse leaders throughout the ecosystem and be bold advocates for inclusion.”
Charles Bachtell, Cresco Labs’ CEO, shared how this deal is monumental in today’s society.
“Today’s announcement is bigger than the transaction — and it couldn’t come at a time of greater significance and momentum. We’ve seen executive power exercised to address matters of cannabis injustice, we’re seeing bi-partisan support for elements of federal reform, and we’re seeing some of the largest and most influential states in the country launch cannabis programs prioritizing social responsibility — this announcement adds to that momentum,” he said. “For an industry in need of greater diversity of leadership and perspective, the substantial presence of a minority-owned operator in some of the most influential markets in the country being led by one of the most prolific and impactful entrepreneurs of our time is momentous … and incredibly exciting. We’re thrilled to welcome Sean and his team to the industry.”
Columbia Care, one of the biggest cannabis operators in the U.S., is being obtained by Cresco Labs and a divestiture of some of the former’s assets must be done for the acquisition to be complete. Below is a breakdown of the assets that Combs will own following the deal, according to Combs Enterprises’ press release.
- New York: Brooklyn (CC), Manhattan (CC), New Hartford (CL), and Rochester (CC) retail assets and Rochester (CC) production assets.
- Massachusetts: Greenfield (CC), Worcester (CL), and Leicester (CL) retail assets and Leicester (CL) production assets.
- Illinois: Chicago – Jefferson Park (CC) and Villa Park (CC) retail assets and Aurora (CC) production assets.
Columbia Care CEO and Co-founder, Nicholas Vita, added, “These assets offer the Combs’ team significant market presence, enabling them to make the most impact on the industry as a whole. It’s been clear to us that Sean has the right team to carry on the strong legacy of these Columbia Care and Cresco Labs facilities, and we can’t wait to see how he helps shape the cannabis industry going forward through his entrepreneurial leadership and innovation.”
Congratulations to yet another successful endeavor for a man that can’t stop making power plays for future generations to come.