MedMen Reportedly Closes All But Two California Locations

Once a major player in the legal marijuana market, cannabis dispensary chain MedMen is apparently now hanging on for dear life.
Medmen
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According to multiple reports late last week, MedMen has shuttered all but two of its stores in California.

“Only MedMen stores in San Diego and near Los Angeles International Airport remain open,” MJBizDaily reported on Friday

Green Market Report, citing a former staffer at the company, reported that “[although] no one connected with MedMen’s corporate headquarters could be reached for comment, the chain had a small fire sale to unload product this past week prior to closing down.”

The outlet has more on MedMen’s precipitous decline:

“The report of more closures follows a series of troubling developments for the company, including a string of earlier dispensaries closing down – including MedMen’s flagship store in West Hollywood in February, then its shops in San Jose and Emeryville the same month, and just this week, the company closed its San Francisco location. The news also follows a string of C-suite departures, with ex-CEO Ellen Deutsch Harrison resigning in January after less than seven months on the job.”

MJBizDaily, meanwhile, has specific figures on the number of jobs lost:

“The cash-strapped company operated more than a dozen stores in the state before the latest round of closures. The Los Angeles-based MSO on Thursday closed its San Francisco store in the Cow Hollow neighborhood, Medmen’s last remaining outlet in the Bay Area, according to SFist. The store opened only two years ago, the news outlet reported. MedMen, which has closed several other stores and laid off dozens of workers in California, Illinois and Nevada in the past month, shuttered its Long Beach location last week, MJBizDaily confirmed Friday. The Long Beach location had about 10 employees, according to a former staffer. The company has laid off more than 100 employees since Jan. 26, according to MJBizDaily reporting, including a round of corporate layoffs in MedMen’s accounting and marketing departments.”

Both outlets noted that MedMen’s official website has been down since last week. On Monday morning, visitors to the site were met with an image of a man lounging on his back poolside, with the message: “We’ll Be Back Soon Sorry, we’re down for scheduled maintenence. In the meantime, connect with us on social.”

The company has not posted on its Instagram account since January. Its last post on Facebook was in 2022.

In 2019, MedMen scrapped plans for a major acquisition. Alarmed by plunging cannabis stocks, the company “backed out of a blockbuster deal to buy PharmaCann, a Chicago-based marijuana company with operations in eight states,” the Associated Press reported at the time.

A year earlier, MedMen announced its plans to acquire PharmaCann for $682 million in an all-stock transaction. In a press release at the time, MedMen said that the resulting “pro-forma company (including pending acquisitions by MedMen) will have a portfolio of cannabis licenses in 12 states that will permit the combined company to operate 79 cannabis facilities.” 

“The combined company will operate in 12 states, which comprise a total estimated addressable market, as of 2030, of approximately $40 billion according to Cowen Group. Through the transaction, MedMen will add licenses in Illinois, New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Massachusetts, Ohio, Virginia and Michigan,” the press release said.

The deal was supposed to be a watershed moment for the cannabis industry, with the AP noting that it “was seen as a forerunner of a wave of marijuana industry mergers and acquisitions promising big returns for investors.”

Adam Bierman, MedMen’s CEO at the time, called it “a transformative acquisition that will create the largest U.S. cannabis company in the world’s largest cannabis market.” 

“The transaction adds tremendous scale to our vertically integrated business model by expanding our U.S. retail footprint across important growth markets while strengthening our cultivation and production capabilities. With the revenue synergies that the deal is expected to produce, MedMen is well positioned to continue executing on our growth strategy,” said Bierman, who stepped down in his role as chief executive in early 2020.

“This would not have been possible even two years ago and is a testament to how far both the industry and these two companies have evolved. PharmaCann’s leadership has built a world-class organization, and we are excited about the value this transaction is creating for shareholders.”

But by the fall of 2019, MedMen was singing a very different tune. According to the Associated Press, the company “cited the steep pullback in U.S. and Canadian cannabis stocks this year,” and “noted the Horizons Marijuana Life Sciences Index, a Canadian exchange-traded fund that tracks cannabis stocks, is down 47% since March.”

“The underperformance has made it increasingly more critical to allocate capital efficiently, given the current industry headwinds,” MedMen said in a news release, as quoted by the Associated Press.

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  1. Is this a weed biz story of just the classic story of capitalism? When there’s one location it’s great and everyone loves it. When they try to expand and take over the world, it doesn’t scale and loses what made it special. I grew up on the original Five Guys, when there was one location and the burgers and fries were delicious and overly generous portions were given. Today, I can get it at the airport but it’s not the same delicious burger. It’s a small, dry and and overcooked patty. The bag is no longer filled with fries and they’re also overcooked. Now it’s like $15 or something, I think we paid $5 growing up. It won’t be long before you’ll see closures of their over 400 locations. Now Shake Shack and and many competitors are on the scene offering better alternatives. If I had to make a bet, burgers and bud will make it, but the market will continue to evolve.

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