By Victor Agreda
Canada isn’t the only one banking on the future of cannabis. Dozens of blockchain plays are emerging in a field that’s growing as fast as hydroponically grown weed. While each company has a slightly different spin on implementing blockchain, there are some commonalities as they each try to build a platform. The common themes are facilitating payment and offering an end-to-end solution for the entire cannabis ecosystem.
All 17 entities in the table below are actively operating ventures or have ICOs that occur in 2018.
This analysis does not focus on marijuana-related crytpocurrencies. At the time of writing the top four on CoinMarketCap – HempCoin (THC), PotCoin (POT), DopeCoin (DOPE), and CannabisCoin (CANNA) – were worth 4,013 BTC ($23.5 million USD). Strategic Coin continues to seek proof that these coins are actually used in the cannabis trade.
Most ICOs are used to raise money for actual cultivation and supply operations or to develop the next “killer app” with varying degrees of business intelligence and transparency. Of course, blockchain is ideal for tracking the supply chain, verifying strains and seeing where they wind up and software vendors are building those tools as platforms. The ecosystems being developed can include a stake in actual operations (Canabio, Majato) or a simple mobile app for buying cannabis locally — with delivery — and tracking from “seed to sale.” Usually these providers have smart contracts and an interface that consolidates information depending on who they’re serving (researcher, grower, dispensary, customer).
Given the varying legalities in cannabis production around the world, payment is the practical application of most cannabis token concerns. Providing frictionless payments from growers to consumers and everyone in the ecosystem is prevalent.
We previously wrote about how projects like Budbo and Nuvus provide examples of how the produce industry can use blockchain for supply chain management. Although many companies give lip service to logistics solutions, Strategic Coin believes no one blockchain has come close to gaining significant adoption among the largest cannabis producers.
There are a number of variations on these themes, so we’ll look at a few of the players on the scene right now.
17 Cannabis + Blockchain Plays
|Bitcanna||BitCanna differentiates itself with a strong presence in the European cannabis community. The BitCanna Coin will use a Proof-of-Stake blockchain to provide a decentralized payment network for online and brick and mortar dispensaries. Its private and public sales are planned for Fall 2018.|
|Budbo||Stressing compliance with regulations and laws, Budbo is an end-to-end platform provider, aiming at the medical cannabis industry, which includes dispensaries as well as researchers and growers.|
|Canabio||Offers its own token to enable production of its own special blend of Cannabidiol (CBD) oil, and a branded therapy based on blood testing.|
|Cannabium||The hope seems to be to lock in Cannabium as the index for CBD oil. According to its marketing video, it is backed by "twice the amount of oil you could get retail". Being able to cash out sounds interesting, and this token's private pre-sale begain in June, with a public sale due in October.|
|CannaSOS||A social media and news site where you can earn money by "being active" on the site. Geared towards new shops who need exposure, CannaSOS has ads for other coins as well. It's sort of like a cannabis-themed Facebook with a strain database.|
|Ceres||Ceres says it's making the first SEC-regulated ICO. The token holders are backed by real estate, but otherwise the blockchain offerings are similar to "seed to sale" plays offering payment options as well.|
|düber||Another platform for retailers, suppliers, and customers. The DBR token "rewards value creation" and the network encourages all sorts of data-sharing, from reviews to strain data. Aimed at the competitive small-to-medium dispensaries.|
|Growers International||This platform and currency is built by growers, so it's more tuned to their needs, offering supplies and software for growing and tracking strains. It's an ERC20 utility token and decentralized membership platform as well.|
|Majato||A platform for "seed to sale" tracking and transparency. It combines offline cannabis production with tokenization, with the MJT token being used to settle cannabis transactions.|
|MJCoin||Another payment solution, with a focus on speed of transactions. This one is still in an early phase of development.|
|Nezly||Another payment solution with a slick mobile app boasting 5-10 second transaction times. It's built on the Stellar (XLM) blockchain.|
|Nuvus||Another software solution for everyone along the supply chain, but offering particular transparency tools for medical usage. Internet of Things sensors help verify strain information, and future plans include medical service applications delivered to patients.|
|Paragon||PRG's coin is optimally a payment solution. The platform caters to B2B, B2C and even C2C -- assuming it's legal where you live. An interesting spin here is a physical co-working space in Los Angeles. This is also a supply chain play, catering to pretty much anyone involved in making, testing, selling, or consuming cannabis.|
|PotCoin||PotCoin, as you may have guessed, is largely a payment play. It has it's own wallet, aptly called PotWallet. The coin offers an annual interest rate of 5%, and by staking your coin your computer becomes a node on the network.|
|Smoke.network||Primarily billed as a "social network" the thrust here is you help the network with curation and it'll reward you. Later there are plans to review strains the dispensaries. The token uses a delegated proof of stake model, and of course the ICO's ticker symbo is SMOKE.|
|Tokes Platform||The TKS token enables payments. It has been exchange-traded since March 2017, but recently Tokes has focused on several software solutions for both payment processing and supply chain management.|
|Weedo||Weedo is still in the midst of a public sale, but the twist here is the company is creating a growing facility that uses solar panels to power the crypto-mining computers, and the heat from those is used to warm the indoor growing operation. WEEDO tokens use the Waves platform. The token value is based on one gram of cannabis.|
To learn more about the cannabis industry, we recommend the following resources:
- Ganjapreneur’s list of 14 publicly listed cannabis stocks
- New Cannabis Ventures’ list of 14 investment entities investing in cannabis companies
Editor’s Note: BitCanna was added to the table of projects after the article’s original publication.
Strategic Coin is a premier provider of market and sector research, token launch services and strategic consulting to the blockchain industry. Strategic Coin is known for: 1) comprehensive Viability and Strategic Assessment (VISTA) Reports that are the most thoroughly vetted view of a project’s utility, platform value and long-term prospects; 2) customized advisory services for global token generation events; and 3) the Strategic Coin Media Network, which distributes news coverage, videos, in-depth analysis, and thought leadership articles that stand out for their quality and depth.