Online cannabis firm Leafly seeks to raise $30 million in securities offering and releases industry report


Bethan Rose Jenkins, Cannabis News Writer/Editorial

Online cannabis information portal and news website Leafly has announced plans to raise $30 million in a securities offering. According to the well-known pot resource, the offering includes various securities, such as convertible debt, regular debt and options to obtain securities.

Filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Leafly’s $30 million securities offering does not clarify its purpose. However, the regulatory filing shows that the Seattle-based company sold almost $22.9 million worth of the securities to 33 investors as of Wednesday, June 17.

Although it remains uncertain as to precisely what Leafly will do with the money, a spokesperson told MJBizDaily reporters that the funds would “continue to stay focused on building out our consumer marketplace”.

Additionally, the company affirms that numerous initiatives will be fed by the funding, such as “scaling in local markets and ensuring sustained brand dominance on the East Coast as legalization trends accelerate market growth.”

Leafly has been riding a wave of uncertainty recently

Founded in 2010, Leafly has indicated signs of struggle in recent times, with staff being laid off in January and March of last year. Moreover, in March 2020, the online cannabis company’s Germany operations were shuttered. 

On the plus side, during the month of April, Leafly officially launched a cannabis delivery platform to assist consumers amid the pandemic. Furthermore, on June 24, Leafly launched a new report to score legalized cannabis markets on social justice. 

Titled, “Seeds of Change: Strategies to create an equitable cannabis industry,”  the unique report analyzes efforts made in each U.S. state to ensure social equity is an integral part of cannabis legalization.

About Leafly’s Seeds of Change report

The information contained in Leafly’s Seeds of Change report builds off of the company’s 2021 Cannabis Jobs Report. States are each ranked based on social justice, equity, and inclusion (SJEI) criteria and eight key social justice strategies.

All 18 adult-use cannabis states and Washington, DC are highlighted in the report, which features a Leafly Equity Score designed to assess precisely which of the eight key social justice strategies have been implemented.

The team found that 53 percent of legal-use states are succeeding in their efforts to implement social equity licensing initiatives.

“Black and brown communities continue to pay the highest price for cannabis prohibition. To lock these same communities out of an industry that is now legal and profitable would add a new era of injustice to decades of pain. Seeds of Change and the Leafly Equity Score show that it doesn’t have to be this way. As new states legalize cannabis, Seeds of Change lays out what we can learn from the most equitable state markets and how it can be used to create thoughtful and intentional policy,” said the woman behind the Leafly Equity Score and Seeds of Change, Janessa Bailey.

The report showed that one in 20 black Americans maintain business equity in any industry. However, Black Americans only hold business equity in one of every 50 cannabis companies.

Another key takeaway from the report was that 89 percent of legal consumption states could benefit from offering more public health resources focused on reducing the stigma tied to cannabis. Furthermore, 63 percent of legal-use states are failing to reinvest taxes and/or revenue to communities hardest hit by the failed war on drugs.

“Equity in cannabis isn’t an elusive pipe dream: Seeds of Change lays out eight real strategies that any state can include within cannabis legalization to build an industry that is as accessible as it is profitable. We believe that the cannabis industry’s responsibility to reckon with the enduring damage of the War on Drugs is also our greatest opportunity. If we craft legalization that centralizes social and economic justice, we can create thriving and robust cannabis markets that will fuel real change in our country,” said the CEO of Leafly, Yoko Miyashita.