General Cannabis buys weed software company MMJMenu

Nathan Pensky · December 28, 2011 · Short URL:

MMJMenu to allow General Cannabis and WeedMaps to track marijuana 'from seed to point of sale'

General Cannabis and its subsidiary WeedMaps, your one-stop online presence for finding marijuana dispensaries, announced Wednesday that it had acquired enterprise software company MMJMenu. The acquired company creates software for marijuana growers and dispensaries, to track their dank nuggets "from seed to sale." Terms were not disclosed.

MMJMenu's software helps regulate everything from in-store stock to point-of-sale accounting, with parameters designed to help vendors stay on top of state marijuana laws, no doubt a concern for any Cannabis dispensary.

General Cannabis is a publically traded company that reportedly makes 82% of its revenue from WeedMaps, a company it acquired in November 2010. General Cannabis also acquired in November 2011 for, get this, $4.20 million. (Not without a sense of humor, these guys...) Plans to expand and consolidate the services rendered on WeedMaps on the domain name have been in process since that time.

And just what are these services, one might ask? WeedMaps is all about "finding you your bud," so its website claims, offering the indispensible service of locating safe, legal marijuana dispensaries, sort of like the Google Maps of weed, or more popularly the "Yelp for Cannabis." Most of the services rendered by WeedMaps only apply to California residents.

One might also rightly ask about the legality of a marijuana-based business. And the short answer is...sort of. Marijuana laws would be a little bit confusing for anyone, but especially for those with pot-addled brains.

For instance, posessing an ounce of marijuana in California will land you a fine, and possessing more than an ounce can land you six months in prison, both infractions being sometimes stringently enforced, depending on what kinds of photo opps California lawmakers need during a given news cycle.

California residents with medical marijuana prescriptions, as well as doctors who prescribe marijuana, are not breaking the laws as they currently stand, so long as they don't sell the stuff to anyone. Marijuana dispensaries, which are like "pot pharmacies," still hover in legal gray areas. Of course, they do business, and have for a long time. But their legality is still subject to debate, as well as raids from law enforcement, because laws surrounding their operation continue to fluxuate.

So this all means that, in spite of the attractiveness of the product itself, the production and distribution of marijuana is not currently an industry force, in the way that other, more legal vices are. General Cannabis reported $10.4 million in revenues for the first nine months of 2011, with about $1.4 million in ready cash.

The illegal drug trade, of course, does slightly better. One report put global illicit drug trade at $321.6 billion in 2003, roughly 1% of the world GDP. Oh, and the totally legal Anheuser-Busch reported $9.98 billion in revenue for Q3 2011 alone.

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