New York Nets $150M Investment for Cannabis Social Equity Investment Fund

The New York Cannabis Social Equity Investment Fund last week received a $150 million investment from Chicago Atlantic Admin, LLC. The investment raised the fund’s total up to its $200 million cap.

Full story after the jump.

New York has secured a $150 million investment from Chicago Atlantic Admin, LLC for the state’s Social Equity Investment Fund as part of the public-private partnership for the development of cannabis dispensaries for social-equity entrepreneurs. 

The investment brings the fund’s total to $200 million which is the cap allowed under the state’s adult-use cannabis legalization law. New York invested the remaining $50 million, which will come from taxes on adult-use cannabis products. 

In a statement, Gov. Kathy Hochul said the investment “reinforces New York’s commitment to building partnerships that benefit New Yorkers and setting right the wrongs of the past.” 

Chicago Atlantic Founding Partner John Mazarakis and Managing Director Peter Sack described social equity as “the cornerstone of New York’s cannabis industry” and said the investment aims “to pair progressive licensing with progressive and innovative capital solutions.” 

“We are proud to support the Governor’s initiative as well as New York’s [Conditional Adult-Use Retail Dispensary] licensees, the Cannabis Social Equity Investment Fund, the Dormitory Authority, the Cannabis Control Board and the Office of Cannabis Management in this transformational initiative. … The success of New York’s social equity initiatives and its CAURD licensees will benefit all industry participants and further support the development of the legal cannabis industry nationwide.” — Mazarakis and Sack in a press release 

The Cannabis Social Equity Investment Fund will help individuals who have a CAURD license meet the costs of establishing adult-use cannabis retail dispensaries, including the identification and leasing of suitable retail locations and design, construction, and fit-out of the spaces. Last year, Hochul proposed, and the Legislature enacted, the public-private partnership to provide support to individuals who were disproportionally impacted by the state’s Rockefeller Drug Laws and who met Office of Cannabis Management licensing requirements. 

The Fund, Impact Ventures, is a joint venture between Webber Willis Ventures LLC, led by National Basketball Association Hall of Famer Chris Webber and entrepreneur Lavetta Willis, and a firm affiliated with Siebert, Williams Shank, one of the nation’s leading minority- and women-owned investment banking firms. 

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