In recent weeks, around a thousand marijuana dispensaries across the states of California, Colorado, and Washington have received a marketing flyer advertising a partnership opportunity with the 3rd richest man in the world, Warren Buffet.
Well, it’s not exactly a partnership, and the flyers didn’t exactly come from Mr. Buffet himself, and really, they weren’t even aimed primarily at the dispensaries they were sent to. But with weed growing faster than warehouse space, Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary Cubic Designs, Inc. has stepped into the industry with a proven solution that promises to double the yield on each harvest.
For over 25 years, Cubic Designs, Inc. out of New Berlin, Wisconsin has provided industrial grade warehouse improvements featuring their integrated steel stairway and mezzanine level installations that can take the otherwise wasted space in a single-floor, high-ceiling warehouse, and convert it into a safe, usable second level of production space.
Buffet gobbled them up just over a year ago, in October of 2013, but only he can know if this latest round of advertising was part of an ultimate plan back then.
|An image of the Cubic Designs, Inc. flyer recently sent to thousands of marijuana dispensaries|
The flyer itself is fairly basic, with the dominant text being: DOUBLE YOUR GROW SPACE. The stereotypical green cross, the photoshopped Charlie Brown pot plants, and the distinct lack of lighting or ventilation probably won’t win them any awards for accuracy, but the premise is simple: double your space, double your harvest, double your income.
Shannon Shalchert is the Marketing Director for Cubic Designs. In an interview with Bloomberg, she was asked about what inspired the otherwise straightedge company to dive into the cannabis industry, and she said, “We sold a few mezzanines into that market and decided internally, ‘Why don’t we do some marketing?'”
That spirit of “filling a need in the market” is the same ideology that lifted Warren Buffet up to the ranks of success and wealth that he enjoys today. On that note, Shalchert says that Cubic Designs plans to target commercial real estate agencies next, with the primary intent of showing them how to fill unused warehouse space with cannabis cultivating tenants, and how lucrative those lease payments can be.
It is really a pretty brilliant way for the money magnate to dip his golden toes into the emerging marijuana market without too much exposure, and still with the cloak of two of his most familiar investments – real estate and manufacturing.
Shalchert, too, admits that the cannabis industry is still a bit of a shadowy operation. “The one thing with this industry that’s kind of tough is that it’s somewhat still secretive,” she told Bloomberg.
Their hope is that by sending the flyers to known dispensaries, the information will follow the network of roots back to the actual growers who can most benefit from the options that Cubic Designs offers.
The delicious irony of a man who made billions of dollars off of munchies like Dairy Queen, See’s Candies, and Coca-Cola now wading into the weed market is so sweet you can almost taste it.
Mr. Buffet, and his company Berkshire Hathaway, take plenty of shit from critics who question the investment tactics of the 84-year old mega-billionaire, but with just one Class A share of his company’s stock being valued at $207,705, you’d have to be pretty baked to say he’s not doing something right.