Cannabis in America
Delivery App Becomes Highest Funded Marijuana Startup in the World
Scooping up a recent bundle of investments worth $13 million, marijuana delivery app Eaze is officially the highest-funded pot startup in the world. The new infusion of cash–courtesy of Fresh VC, DMC Ventures, Tusk Ventures, Winklevoss Capital and more–brings the young firm’s capital to nearly $25 million. Eaze, based in San Francisco, and active in 100 cities in California, connects medical marijuana patients to local dispensaries. Some call it the “Uber for Weed.”
“Eaze remains committed to providing the best patient experience and will use the latest financing to accelerate product innovation, grow its world-class team, and expand its technology to additional markets,” the company said in a press release announcing its new investments.
The funding comes at a potentially lucrative time for the cannabis industry in California. On November 8, California residents will vote on Proposition 64, a ballot measure that, if passed, would legalize recreational marijuana in the state. If the drug is legalized, some predict that the legal marijuana market in California will grow from $2.8 billion today, which only includes medical marijuana, to $6.5 billion in total by 2020. Early polls indicate the legalization measure will likely pass.
Eaze CEO Keith McCarty is looking forward to the marijuana market’s future growth: “We’re thrilled with the growth we’ve achieved and are poised to accelerate as the market hits an inflection point,” he said.
The federal designation of pot as an illicit substance and a Schedule I drug renders any pot delivery service illegal. And even according to local laws, only some of the areas where Eaze delivers is technically legal. (At the local level, at least. Federally, delivering pot is illegal and will remain so until the government legalizes it). Delivery services like Eaze, which launched in July 2014, had a bigger gap to fill in California’s medical market after voters passed a measure that banned dispensaries in Los Angeles from delivering their products.
Despite the legal contradictions of marijuana laws at the federal and state level, McCarty is excited about the opportunities moving forward. “This is a critical time for the marijuana industry. Adult use is on the precipice of becoming legal in California, the largest marijuana market in the United States,” he said, adding that his firm is “best positioned to educate and service the future market.”