» Canopy Accelerator Invests $1,000,000 in Cannabis Tech Startups in 2017 TechNews


Canopy, a venture fund and business accelerator for companies developing ancillary products and services for the legal cannabis industry, is pleased to announce the launch of its Fall 2017 class in Boulder, Colorado. Eight startups are taking part in the 16-week accelerator program, with businesses including a cloud-based quality management tool for multi-state operators, an integrated agriculture technology hardware service, and an enterprise software platform that helps cannabis businesses manage and mine their online reviews. CanopyBoulder has committed $240,000 to this Fall 2017 cohort alone.

Each startup accepted to Canopy’s program receives $30,000 in seed funding, with a chance to earn an additional $50,000 in funding later in the program. The Canopy model prioritizes connecting companies with experienced mentors and introducing founders to a wide cannabis investor network.

The program is designed to spur business traction and prepare the companies to raise outside capital, while providing access to outside venture firms, key figures within the local entrepreneurial community, and exposure to early adopters and potential customers. After weeks of intensive pitch practice, refinement of business models, and miles logged meeting cannabis businesses around the country, the cohort “graduates” on Demo Day, where each company presents their business to an audience of potential investors, cannabis business professionals, media, and the local community.

The eight companies included in the fall cohort include:

Virtugro is a Colorado-based team developing automated grow tech solutions for medium to large-scale cultivators. Founded by Mark Stratton of Silverthorne, CO and Russ Baker of Black Hawk, CO.
My THC Guide is developing chatbot solutions for the cannabis industry. Founded by Ebony Costain of Appamattox, VA and Jameson Bennett of Louisville, KY.
Cannabis Quality Group is Cloud-based integrated quality management system designed for licensed businesses to have transparency into their supply chains. Founded by Donavan Bennett of Roswell, Georgia and Joe Novalany of Edison, New Jersey.
Serene encourages an outdoor, active lifestyle by leveraging technology. Founded by Ed Mcllory and Adam Bray, of London, England.
Redfield Proctor is a startup in stealth mode focused on efficiency in the cannabis industry. Founded by Stephen Martin of Quechee, Vermont.
Dispenserly manages, monitors, and mines cannabis industry reviews to identify new opportunities and trends. Founded by Matt Cooke of Marion, OH.
DeepGreen is an optical recognition technology that identifies plant characteristics using AI and machine vision technology. Founded by an international team hailing from Germany and France – Maxime Clauss and Maximillian Unfried.
GreenScreens manages a network of digital flat screens in dispensaries across the country that rotate menu information and advertising to inform and target customers in the store. Founded by Ryan Sterling, a native of Turner, ME, and Martin DeFrance of Jackson, MS.
“The cannabis industry in Colorado has shifted from just keeping up with demand to competing and stealing market share from one another,” said Patrick Rea, co-founder and Managing Director of Canopy. “The result is increased interest in, and demand for the cannabis technology companies that Canopy is investing in. We expect this trend to continue nationwide as state markets mature.”

On August 2nd, starting at 5:30pm MT, CanopyBoulder will host a launch party for the kick-off of its Fall 2017 class. The event will be held in the new Canopy headquarters in downtown Boulder, Colorado, and will include networking with investors, mentors, and entrepreneurs from the Canopy ecosystem and other Denver/Boulder cannabis industry professionals. Food and drinks will be provided, with all ticket proceeds going to Marijuana Policy Project. Full details and tickets can be found here.


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