Florida-Based Trulieve Becomes Largest Medical Cannabis Company in the Country

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Florida-based medical marijuana company Trulieve has completed the acquisition of Harvest Health & Recreation, becoming the largest medical cannabis provider in the country. Trulieve announced the beginning stages of the acquisition in May.

Trulieve CEO Kim Rivers said the acquisition will provide a solid foundation for her company to grow.

“The closing of this Transaction marks a transformational milestone in our company’s history and positions Trulieve as the leading medical and adult-use cannabis operator in the U.S. I thank all our employees, both Trulievers and Harvesters, for their tireless efforts during this process. The combined footprint provides Trulieve with a solid foundation for continued growth and scale. We look forward to fully integrating Harvest as we continue to execute on our hub strategy in the U.S., creating an unrivaled brand and reputation in the marketplace and value for our shareholders.”

Trulieve is now in possession of 149 dispensaries and three regional hubs across 11 states.

POLITICO quickly pointed out the acquisition for Trulieve is a win for Harvest Health’s shareholders, which includes Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried.

“In story on Trulieve’s $2.2B acquisition of Harvest Health, @ArekSarkissian points out that ‘the deal is a win for Harvest’s shareholders, including Fried, who owns $130,000 in Harvest shares,’” said POLITICO reporter Gary Fineout on Twitter.

Questions have long surrounded Fried’s connections between her position as agriculture commissioner, who oversees the cannabis industry’s legal implementation in Florida, and her personal financial stake in the medical marijuana industry.

Fried’s fiancé, Jake Bergmann, has had financial stake in medical cannabis company, Surterra Wellness. She has also long promoted the medical cannabis industry with her fiancé and father having a financial interest in the industry.

The tie-ins between Fried and the industry continued after Trulieve Chief Executive Officer Kim Rivers’ husband, J.T. Burnette, was found guilty of five public corruption charges. In the tapes uncovered during the trial, it was revealed that former Florida State Rep. Halsey Beshears worked directly with Burnette in crafting legislation that would have set the eligibility requirements for companies seeking to qualify for medical cannabis licenses.

Beshears has also been recently been subpoenaed in connection to Congressman Matt Gaetz’s (R-FL-1) sex trafficking probe. Gaetz and Fried have been friends since Fried worked as a medical marijuana lobbyist when Gaetz was a Florida state lawmaker.

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Grant Holcomb is a reporter at the Florida Capital Star and the Star News Network. Follow Grant on Twitter and direct message tips.
Photo “Trulieve Store” by Trulieve.

 

 

 

 

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