Sean “Diddy” Combs to Acquire Assets From Cresco Labs Inc., Creating the Largest Minority-Owned Cannabis Operator

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Whether you know Sean “Diddy” Combs for his music, fashion line or alcohol brands, the mogul may now become the biggest African-American player in the legal cannabis industry. Combs is venturing into the cannabis space and is expected to acquire licensed operations in New York, Massachusetts and Illinois from Cresco Labs Inc. and Columbia Care Inc.

Cresco Labs, Inc. is one of the largest vertically integrated cannabis and medical marijuana companies with current retail operations in nine states. Earlier this year, the company agreed to purchase its rival, Columbia Care, in a $2 billion deal that would make Cresco the top U.S. cannabis producer. However, to complete the deal Cresco has to divest assets in limited-license markets.

Cresco’s needed divestment has become Diddy’s gain. The acquisition is worth up to $185 million and it would be the mogul’s first investment in cannabis. This deal would put Combs at the helm of the country’s first minority-owned, vertically integrated, multi-state cannabis company. In addition to being the first, it would also be the world’s largest Black-owned cannabis company, according to a press release on the proposed acquisition. 

The deal would include four retail stores and a production facility in New York; three retail stores and one production facility in Massachusetts; and two retail stores and one production facility in Illinois. Combs would be able to manufacture cannabis products and distribute them to dispensaries in major metropolitan areas. He also has the option to operate retail stores in New York, Massachusetts and Illinois. 

Combs recognizes the importance of this deal in empowering and inspiring the culture. He noted in a press release that “owning the entire process — from growing and manufacturing to marketing, retail, and wholesale distribution — is a historic win for the culture that will allow us to empower diverse leaders throughout the ecosystem and be bold advocates for inclusion.” The company shares a similar view as Combs and understands the gravity of the acquisition. Cresco Labs’ CEO, Charles Bachtell, added that the “announcement is bigger than the Transaction – and it couldn’t come at a time of greater significance and momentum.” 

Diddy’s deal with Cresco has not yet been completed. However, the company is working through regulatory reviews and approvals to close the Columbia Care Acquisition as soon as possible which is now expected to be around the end of the first quarter of 2023, according to the press release. 

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