Longmont Marijuana Takeover requires a dispensary to change hands

Local license rules in Longmont may force one of the city’s pharmacies to close or be sold.

When Longmont City Council chose to sell marijuana for recreational activities in 2017, the newly formed local regulations restricted the city to four pharmacies and banned the same unit from owning more than one store. All four dispenser licenses were then assigned to dispenser chains, two of which – Medicine Man and the Green Solution – were eventually acquired by Columbia Care Inc., a New York-based listed marijuana company.

After sealing the Green Solution agreement in 2020, Columbia Care paid $ 42 million in a share-heavy acquisition for Medicine Man earlier this year, announcing that the agreement added “one cultivation facility and four dispensaries to Columbia Care’s Colorado activities.” At the time, Medicine Man owned four pharmacies in Colorado with stores in Aurora, Denver, Longmont and Thornton.

However, Columbia Care CEO Nicholas Vita did not include Longmont among the cities in his statement, praising the deal, but only Aurora, Denver and Thornton. And despite announcing that the deal added four Medicine Man dispensers to Columbia Care’s portfolio, the company now says in a statement to Westword, “Columbia Care purchased three Medicine Man dispensers, excluding Longmont, and their cultivation facility in the initial transaction, with the option to acquire the fourth dispenser,” adds that Medicine Man Longmont is still “owned by a separate entity,” and Columbia Care was aware of Longmont’s local licensing rules before acquiring Medicine Man.

Vander Veer, who remained CEO of Medicine Man after the acquisition, declined to comment on the Longmont transition and referred questions to Columbia Care. That Colorado Marijuana Enforcement Division already lists the green solution under Columbia Care ownership, while Medicine Man’s founding group of Andy Williams, Pete Vasquez and Sally Vander Veer are still listed as Medicine Man Longmont owners.

If Columbia Care closes Medicine Man in 2022 as publicly intended, City of Longmont official information officer Rigo Leal confirms that the Longmont City Code would force Green Solutions’ license to be sold or abandoned.

According to Leal, Longmont will accept new applications for marijuana dispensary or reconsider applications already registered if one of the four licenses has been vacated or expires. But that process would probably not happen if Columbia Care sells the green solution before it shuts down Medicine Man Longmont.

Although Columbia Care did not say which of the two stores would be open under company ownership in the future, the statement alluded to movements in the works.

“We are in the process of finalizing plans for the market and will publish a notice as soon as the details are ready to be published,” the Colombia Care statement said.

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