Recent DOJ comments add to challenge of valuing cannabiz

BVWireIssue #133-2
October 9, 2013

Valuation opportunities exist in the legal marijuana business but so do challenges and obstacles. The Department of Justice will no longer target these businesses if they are in states that legalize and regulate the drug, according to an August 29 DOJ memo (see the September 11 issue of BVWire). However, these businesses are not totally out of reach of the long arm of the law.

No free pass: The DOJ is not giving "immunity" to marijuana providers. Federal prosecutors will “aggressively go after any cannabis distributors who bumped up against one of the eight federal priorities laid out in the Aug. 29 memo,” says Deputy Attorney General James Cole, according to a report.

"When we see someone who is marketing marijuana in a way that is going to be attractive to minors, we're going to go after them. If we see someone who is growing or cultivating marijuana so that they can import it or export it out of state, we're going to go after them. If they're involved in drug cartels or illegal enterprises, we're going to go after them," Cole says.

Valuation angle: Providing a rare chance to learn the dangers of valuing sellers and dispensaries of medicinal and newly legalized cannabis in a hazy regulatory environment, Ronald Seigneur (Seigneur Gustafson LLP) and Jim Marty (Jim Marty and Associates LLC), two Colorado-based financial experts, will conduct a webinar, Valuing Marijuana Dispensaries, on October 24.

And we’re sure this topic will come up when Seigneur and James Hitchner present a session, Hot Topics in Business Valuation, at the October 13-16 ASA Advanced Business Valuation Conference in San Antonio. BVWire will be there—we hope to see you!

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