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30 Minutes with Trulieve Cannabis Corp (CNSX:TRUL) CEO Kim Rivers

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Trulieve Cannabis Corp (CNSX:TRUL) (OTCMKTS:TCNNF) CEO Kim Rivers joins Midas Letter to discuss the story behind the Florida-based cannabis company. On top of cultivating, producing and distributing all of its products in dispensaries and home delivery throughout the State of Florida, Trulieve also operates in California, Massachusetts and Connecticut. Ms. Rivers is Florida’s first leader of a leading medical cannabis company.  As CEO, Ms. Rivers directed the construction of the company’s cultivation and processing facilities. and created Trulieve’s Florida dispensary network. Over the course of her tenure, Ms. Rivers has negotiated acquisition terms of multiple licenses and licensing arrangements in multiple states with national cannabis brands, including recent acquisitions in California and Massachusetts.

Transcript

Nika Domi : Joining me now is Kim Rivers, CEO of Trulieve Cannabis Corp., trading on the CSE as TRUL. Welcome, Kim.

Kim Rivers: Thanks so much for having me.

Nika Domi: Thanks for coming such a far way! You came from Florida to Toronto on my birthday, which is awesome. So, thank you so much for being here.

Kim Rivers: Happy birthday, and I am so honoured to be your first interview.

Nika Domi: I know. And this is my first interview on the show, so I’m sure everybody is excited to hear about Trulieve and all the exciting things that are coming up, because it’s definitely a company that is worth, you know, getting out there more, because it’s just such an inspiring story, which is why I really pushed to have you here. And it’s just amazing.

So, I’m really curious about how this whole thing started. How did Trulieve come about? What were the first thoughts that kind of led to this?

Kim Rivers: So Trulieve started back in 2014 in Florida, and so when Florida first passed the medical cannabis law, it was CBD only, and initially, the legislature really wanted to have a policy around keeping companies in Florida, and kind of as an alternative agriculture investment. And so the rules were that you had to have a nursery that was in business for a minimum of 30 years, with a license to grow a minimum of 400,000 plants. So it was very specific, and it was going to be a lottery.

So the State was divided into regions, because the legislature didn’t want all of the investment coming from South Florida, where most of the population is, in Florida. And you know, it was going to be a lottery; that was challenged by, actually, now the company that is Curaleaf; it was Costa Farms at the time.

Nika Domi: Oh, interesting.

Kim Rivers: And they said No, no, no, we need this to be competitive. We want this to be, you know, best of breed, and we want this to be a competitive process. And so, at that point, in the region where Trulieve is based, which is northwest Florida, there were five companies that qualified, five farmers that qualified. Three of the five had gotten together and decided that they were going to put their names in the hat.

And so, and then when it got competitive, they said, Oh, wait: now this is going to be really a real business, and we need to think about, you know, how we’re going to pursue this. And so I was approached. My background is entrepreneurial in nature; I’m also a lawyer, so mergers and acquisitions and securities law. And so they came to me and said, you know, Kim, would you have any interest in joining this endeavour? 

I said, I have no idea. [laughter] Maybe? So my father is a police officer; my mom was a school teacher.

Nika Domi: Oh, wow.

Kim Rivers: And so, it took me about six months. We toured anywhere and everywhere that would let us in, across the country, and really realized that this not only is an industry that has so much potential from a growth and financial standpoint, but also it is a product that is really changing lives. 

And so I was so inspired by having the opportunity to enter early in such an industry that has what we call a triple bottom line. And so that’s how Trulieve was born.

Nika Domi: Amazing. And you have such a great background to really, now we’re kind of unveiling what is that story that really led Trulieve to this success, because really, they are known as one of the – and actually, probably, the most – profitable company in the cannabis sector. So you’re definitely known for the profit. And tell me, how did that come about, that you have been kind of differentiated from other MSOs? What led to the success? What did you do differently?

Kim Rivers: Sure. Well, I mean, first of all, I would say that we didn’t know that there would be any other way than to start a company with an eye on becoming profitable. You know, as I mentioned, we have a Board that’s comprised of successful, multi-generational business owners, and are very focused on fundamentals. So, and that’s what we’ve always been, very focused on fundamentals, number one.

Number Two, I would say that we really, in the beginning, started off with this thesis of building the best cannabis brand that is patient and customer focused, in the state. And we wanted to prove that we could actually penetrate a market, and so as opposed to going, you know, very wide and shallow, I would say we decided to go more narrow, but very deep. And to get to scale.

And so, I think through that decision, we have been able to really focus on supply chain, really focus on efficiencies, but most importantly, really focusing on building that brand that is customer-first. And that’s been, I would say, the secret, if you will, to our success.

Nika Domi: Definitely. And the focus is very important, because sometimes we think that multiples and being kind of, covering so many areas, would be a good thing; but then there’s only one CEO for the company, right? And how can you really focus on so many different states and so many different locations when, for example, Trulieve has been known as focused just mostly in the Florida, and look at how amazing that’s become.

Customers know you; they seem to love you. It just – it’s just such an amazing story.

Tell me, what do customers say, and why do they like Trulieve so much?

Kim Rivers: So we say that we don’t have customer, we have Trulievers. And so – 

Nika Domi: There you go. That’s the first thing.

Kim Rivers: We have a very loyal and repetitive customer base, and you know, one of the primary qualities that we bring to the customer is that, you know, personal relationship. And so I say often that I believe that the company that eventually will win, certainly in the United States and I think in the world, are those that can form authentic relationships with their customers. 

Nika Domi: Yes.

Kim Rivers: And so that authenticity is very important. Products, of course, and product quality and consistency, is also extremely important. So we have over 230 skus that we develop in-house at Trulieve, and we distribute those across our product lines. This industry, as you know, is just rapidly evolving from technology to innovation, so being on the front lines and being able to deliver products that have those benefits on a consistent basis, to our customers, is also very important.

And just like, you know, there are plenty of other retail experiences that we can equate, and similar to, you know, a Starbucks. When you go into a Starbucks, whether it’s here in Toronto, which I was just at this morning, or whether it’s down in Florida in Miami, you’re going to have a very similar customer experience. And so we really bring that sense of consistency and sense of, you know, authenticity, to our relationships.

Nika Domi: Exactly. So that way, when you’re focused in this area where you’re in Florida so focused, that allows the clients to really get to know you, and I always say, because I come from a retail background as well, the clients are the ones who will be bringing the revenues to the companies. And I think sometimes, companies get so caught up in this whole stock market and all that other pressure that comes from so many different areas, that they forget that that relationship with the clients and the clients are the ones who will be bringing the purchases and the revenues to the company, which will be later reported to the stock market and all the shareholders. 

And so sometimes, shareholders have to relax for a moment, right, and just let the company do their thing, and really watch how they relate to the clients, right? And I see with Trulieve, I see you on Twitter and I see, you know, the company posting such nice communication all the time. So you’re really staying in touch with the shareholders and with the clients, so I could really see that branding working.

And branding is so important, right?

Kim Rivers: It really is. It really is important, because – 

Nika Domi: Branding is huge.

Kim Rivers: Because as we know, this space is evolving so quickly, and as we penetrate additional markets, right, having that brand recognition in a state with, you know, 21 million people in Florida, and really being the market leader there, we believe, will resonate. And we have, you know, folks from out of state asking all of the time, you know, Well, when are you coming? When is Trulieve going to be, you know, in my neighbourhood or my – ?

Nika Domi: Well, I’d like to see Trulieve in Canada!

Kim Rivers: Sure, right? So, it really has given us a wonderful opportunity to create brand, and again, to create scale, and to learn what it is that having a true, scaled business in this space looks and feels like so that we can then, as we move into other markets, learn from those lessons and more quickly get to scale as we move to other opportunities.

Nika Domi: And where are you moving? Are there any plans? I know that you’re in California as well; you’re in, what is it, Connecticut?

Kim Rivers: That’s right, that’s right.

Nika Domi: So, where also are you, and how is that working out?

Kim Rivers: Sure. So our next state that we’re putting, you know, some major attention and focus on is Massachusetts, and so we’re building out our Massachusetts cultivation facility now, and so that will be coming online in Q1 of next year, and start contributing to revenue for 2020, which we’re very excited about.

Nika Domi: Wow. Very fast.

Kim Rivers: It’s very fast. Massachusetts is a very interesting market, and it’s very different than some other markets. And each one of these markets, as we know, it’s like, 50 different countries that you’re operating with.

Nika Domi: Exactly. There’s the cultures within them.

Kim Rivers: That’s true. And also just, you  know, because again, there is no crossing state lines with respect to products and/or cultivation, and so it really is learning and understanding the regulations and the regulatory framework, and then your customer base, in every market that you approach.

And so in Massachusetts, there’s supply constraints right now, and so really focusing on that quality product, we think, will be important for us to gain trust within that state.

Nika Domi: Very well. So, Massachusetts, Connecticut, California, and definitely Florida, and hopefully, soon, Canada, maybe?

Kim Rivers: You never know, you never know! So we’re looking at opportunities all the time.

Nika Domi: And how many dispensaries total do you have right now?

Kim Rivers: So right now, we have 31; we are looking forward to a very exciting September, and are on track to exit the year with 44 dispensaries just in Florida.

Nika Domi: Amazing, 44. And can you give us some more of the guidance from the last quarter, more details?

Kim Rivers: Sure, absolutely. So, you know, we exited last quarter with 57.9 million in revenue and 31.6 million of EBITDA, which was great; that’s a record quarter for us, with 30 percent quarter-over-quarter revenue growth.

Nika Domi: That is a record, yes. Everybody’s talking about it.

Kim Rivers: So, which is great. And you know what? I think that just the focus on profitability across the sector is a huge shift from, you know, even when we went public a year ago. So I think it’s just incredibly refreshing to see that now the sector as a whole, and investors, are very focused on, you know, this path to profitability, and asking questions about how, you know, how companies are converting revenue to true profits.

And then we did release updated guidance, which we’re very excited about. And so we had guidance previously, and we are a company that we do deep modeling. And so, we model everything from patient growth to number of physicians in a state like Florida. We’re looking at trends, we’re looking at price, you know, customer value. And so, you know, we have a lot of confidence in our numbers, and we feel very comfortable giving guidance.

And so our guidance for 2019 is that we’ll be exiting 2019 between 220 and 240 in revenue, and 95 to 105 in EBITDA, which we feel good about. And then moving into 2020, we’ll be somewhere around 400 million in revenue and then 150 million or so in EBITDA. So it’s just incredible to think about…

Nika Domi: It is.

Kim Rivers: Really, how far we’ve come. And then again, just this industry and how it’s just moving so quickly.

Nika Domi: It’s moving so quickly, but what amazed me, and why I wanted to bring you here is, not only because you are a woman in the sea of men, right? [laughter] So it’s been an inspiration to me as to how did she do it. I really wanted to just have a chat and see how did you do this. And you seem so, to flow with such an ease – 

Kim Rivers: Oh, thank you.

Nika Domi: And I think it’s the background of you having the law background and also, you know, all these things that you have been putting together for such a long time where you were able to have the growth, which is what a lot of companies were focused on at first, is growth, growth, you know, building, building – you have that down, and then now, you are at profitability, which others are still really kind of trying to get there.

So you are way ahead of so many companies, as a lady. And I didn’t bring the Superwoman hat, but we should have definitely – are you from Marvel? It’s just incredible. [laughter] Definitely, Superwoman Kim.

So, tell me more about, maybe, some of your most popular products, because there’s a lot of talk about vaping being more popular; some states might be, you know, more about the smoking, the flower. So, because Florida is still just a medical, right?

Kim Rivers: Yes, that’s right.

Nika Domi: Only medical. So at the moment, you’re only able to kind of be focused on the medical products. So what are the most popular – am I right, or how, what are the most popular products?

Kim Rivers: Well, it’s such an interesting, you know – the dynamic between, you know, medical and recreational, especially when you talk about products, it becomes a very interesting and dynamic conversation, right? Because, you know – and I always just, I find it funny, because we’ve been taught for so long that if something is medical, that it can’t be pleasant; it has to have sort of a bad taste, or it has to make you feel a certain way that’s not, just a good feeling.

Nika Domi: Well, cannabis is very pleasant.

Kim Rivers: Yes, cannabis is a very – so it’s very different, I think, at its core. And so I think that there’s a lot of crossover, and the reason I say that is because, you know, we may have, and we see it all the time, you know, someone who has a specific medical condition that is on a regimented dose of products, maybe capsules or a tincture, what have you – that then, you know, they may come in on a Thursday and they may get, you know, a shatter or a crumble or something different…

Nika Domi: Something else. 

Kim Rivers: Because they want to have a nice time on a Friday.

Nika Domi: Yes.

Kim Rivers: And so I think that it’s, we almost do a disservice in this industry by talking to specifically that a product has to fall into a particular category.

In contrast, you know, we have in Florida a very large veteran population.

Nika Domi: Yes.

Kim Rivers: And so, you know, a lot of men and women who have severe PTSD issues, panic attack issues. They need, really, a very strong rescue-type medication, and so for them, a very strong distillate vape or a strong, you know, crumble or shatter product to get them, you know, off of that verge of a panic attack, is very important. And that is being used medicinally.

So products that we would think of or categorized historically as more rec, actually can be used. So it does, I think, the conversation needs to be broadened a bit.

Nika Domi: Yes. That’s a very good point, yeah.

Kim Rivers: So I would say that in our market, though, it’s typical to most, I would call it, more mature medical-lite markets in that flower has come on very strong. We started selling flower; we were the first company to sell flower in the State of Florida in March.

Nika Domi: Wow.

Kim Rivers: And that’s just now surpassed, last week, over 50 percent of our product mix. So flower has come on very, very strong, and then second is going to be the vape products. So we have a variety; we have four different types of vape product lines, and then different varying skus within those product lines.

Nika Domi: Beautiful.

Kim Rivers: And we’re waiting for edibles to come onboard in Florida.

Nika Domi: Yes, same here in Canada. 

Kim Rivers: Very similar. And so we, and we continue to bring, you know, new products to the market all the time. We just brought out a nano line, which has nano-particles that – 

Nika Domi: I saw that on your website. That’s so exciting.

Kim Rivers: It’s very exciting. I think it’s going to change the game, because one of the challenges, as you know, with oral products, is that it absorbs into – it has to be digested, and so it can hit folks between 45, an hour, sometimes an hour and a half; it varies in terms of the onset. And the bioavailability   is much better in, say, a vape product, but the onset makes it a bit unpredictable for folks. And so, with the nano product, it actually, the uptake is between 15 and 20 minutes, so similar to a vape, yet the bioavailability is similar to an oral product.

Nika Domi: And that’s a great technology.

Kim Rivers: It’s fantastic. And so we’re really looking forward to expanding that product line throughout all of our stores.

Nika Domi: That’s beautiful. Nanoparticles are a very, very tiny percentage of, you know – very, very tiny particles, so they’re better absorbed, right? Is that what it is?

Kim Rivers: That’s right, yeah. And so they’re absorbed directly into the bloodstream, as opposed to having to go through and be digested, for example, through the gut.

Nika Domi: Beautiful. I’m excited to try one of those, maybe, when I’m in Florida. 

Kim Rivers: Sure, come visit anytime!

Nika Domi: And I will, definitely. Now, I wanted to ask, because there’s a lot of talk about the regulations changing in the States. We’re all sitting at the edge of our seats about that one. So, can you tell us more, from the American perspective, how it’s looking right now with all the elections coming out and the regulations changing, and state by state, and hopefully Federally soon? So, how will that affect Trulieve, and what kind of information can you tell us here in Canada about the regulations?

Kim Rivers: Well, you know, of course we watch both state and Federal, you know, regulations very, very closely. On the federal level, I think we’re all very hopeful that the Safe Act, the Safe Banking Act, will continue to gain momentum and will pass. You know, the effects of that, I think there are varying opinions with respect to what the ramifications of that will be. What I can tell you is we’re already starting to see, from Trulieve’s perspective, that mid-tier banks who previously had no, really, interest in the space, reaching out, wanting to have meetings, kind of prepping for that to come down. And there have been some recent guidance that’s been updated for those banks. And so I do think that access to capital will be broadened; to what extent, I think, remains to be seen.

And, you know, of course the one that we’re all, of course, publicly traded companies are very interested in is a regulation that would allow us to list also on the exchanges in the US.

Nika Domi: Exactly.

Kim Rivers: I think that that’s got a bit of time, yet. And with respect to the election, you know, we have a very, you know, a very dynamic President who has lots of opinions about lots of things, and so I do think that we’re starting to see, which is amazing in and of itself, we’re starting to hear cannabis become an election topic.

Nika Domi: It is, yes.

Kim Rivers: Which just that in and of itself is pretty mind-blowing, when you think about it. And so I think that a couple of things – one, if we could get the Safe Act passed, that will be the first standalone piece of legislative policy that passes at the national level. Again, breaking through that inertia and getting that just over the finish line is historic, and I think will pave the way for additional regulations behind it.

On the State level, Florida has a lot going on right now. We have two initiatives for adult use or, you know, recreational marijuana. So, there is a possibility – it’s polling very well – there is a possibility that we could see a recreational initiative on the ballot in 2020 in the State of Florida, which would be incredible, also. Again, thinking about, you know, Florida’s political kind of past and where we’ve come. So, and it’s polling in the upper 60s right now, so, which is exciting.

Nika Domi: It has a lot of people voting for that, yeah.

Kim Rivers: It does. I mean, the challenge in Florida is, it will be a citizen-led ballot initiative, so it really is coming from the people in Florida, and you know, I think that as the stigma changes, right, as more and more folks have a loved one or become familiar with, you know, Trulieve and our products or other products in the state, they’re realizing that this is a positive and that the movement is here. And so, you know, let’s embrace it, and regulate it appropriately, and, you know, move forward.

Nika Domi: And I’ve noticed, I was reading somewhere – you’re a part of a committee. Can you tell us more about that? Because that’s really good that you’re, you have time to be so active, also, and it’s good for Trulieve that your presence is out there where, you know, people are looking for the extra information and the regulators are actually looking for the extra information from the insider. So, can you tell me more about your role in that committee, and what committee that is?

Kim Rivers: Sure. First of all, I would just say globally, I feel like as a CEO in this space, we have a public responsibility to be active in the markets in which we operate, and to certainly be sources of information for regulators and for the government, and because a lot of times, you know, they’re learning.

Nika Domi: Exactly.

Kim Rivers: So to have that industry’s voice present is very important. So yes, I was appointed by our Commissioner of Agriculture in the State of Florida to serve on a committee to advise her and her team on medical marijuana. And so, that committee is active right now, and we’re meeting, and we’re discussing upcoming issues and challenges. Florida also just passed a very robust hemp law, and so we’re talking through how those two worlds interact and intersect, and what the industry, and how that industry will develop in Florida, as well.

Nika Domi: Beautiful, yeah. It’s developing very fast, from what we see, and Trulieve is at the forefront, for sure. Now, I come also from a lot of psychology – psychology is my hobby and is my educational background, and I wanted to ask you, what are some of the motivations that led you to success? What are some of the thoughts, some of the advice, maybe, that you could give to business owners or people who are just starting out their businesses? What is, like, that core ideology that you could share that has helped you, personally – not just the company, but you, personally – get through and get to this level?

Kim Rivers: Yeah. So, you know, one thing that – and this is both personally and with the company – is to surround yourself with positivity.

Nika Domi: Right.

Kim Rivers: I think that’s so important to just, you know, I always have a thing that says, you know, there’s only room for one rookie, and that would be me. So you know, embracing expertise, you know, not being afraid to ask for help, being collaborative and creating a team that’s really focused and driven and passionate. And you know, I think that, as a female in this industry, I would say one of the, maybe one of the competitive edge if you will, is not shying away from, you know, connectivity. Not shying away from really wanting to embrace the fact that this industry is emotional.

This topic is emotional, and that’s okay, because, you know, when we think about where cannabis has come from and really the propaganda and just the stigma that’s been created over the years, and now as a company we’re trying to break through that and educate and really turn that conversation, you know, 180 degrees. And so it’s a lot of personal journeys. When people are coming into our stores for the first time, there’s a lot going on there emotionally, and we just, you know, have a culture within our company that we’re meeting people where they are, and that we’re going to make this a positive and embracing experience.

Nika Domi: And I think that is definitely the key to your success, because when I see the stores, even the pictures of them – I haven’t been there, personally – but there’s just that vibe, that positive vibe that’s just radiating from it. And I think it really comes from the core that is you, because you said positivity was the first thing on your mind, and keeping positive, we attract positive results, and we attract positive people, right? So I think that kind of all works itself together into a whole which is able to elevate you, then, and you’re kind of riding on this wave of positivity and attracting more. 

So it is really important for business owners, I guess, and people out there who are leading any kind of company, to remain positive, because it is so easy to, you know, you’re listening to different shareholders and they could have some, you know, negative things to say here and there. But it’s really easy to take it in and become depressed; but shielding yourself from that and having that positivity is so important, right?

Kim Rivers: Absolutely, and – 

Nika Domi: And you make clients feel that, and then that’s where the revenues come from.

Kim Rivers: I think also, you know, being open to different ideas and being able to pivot to really take feedback and create, again, that forward momentum and energy from it.  

Nika Domi: Transform it into the positive.

Kim Rivers: Absolutely. We talk a lot in our company, both in our C-suite and management level, about creating feedback loops and making sure that we are constantly listening. That we’re not seen as sort of this, you know, big corporation that is, you know, folks can’t penetrate through and really be heard.

And again, I think that as this industry evolves, that is so important to make sure that we’re listening to ideas wherever they may come from, and we’re taking in the best of those and putting them into action.

Nika Domi: And what is, actually, I was going to ask, your patients – you have a lot of patients. So what is the growth rate, currently? Do you know the numbers?

Kim Rivers: Yeah, so, in Florida has one of the fastest-growing patient bases in the country, so we’re at about 2,800 patients per week coming into the program. And so it’s full steam ahead.

Nika Domi: Wow, that’s amazing. So that will definitely help with the new dispensaries to start booming right away.

Kim Rivers: Absolutely, absolutely.

Nika Domi: I’m sure people are eager to see them in their areas.

Kim Rivers: Yeah, you know, it’s incredible. When we have a grand opening, we typically have, you know, huge lines, and it’s very much a celebratory event. Folks ask for us; we have a tool on our website where folks can ask for a dispensary near them, so it’s one of the ways that we look for new locations. And yeah, I mean, our stores, we hit the ground running, which makes onboarding very interesting, because there is no such thing as a soft opening in our business. It’s very much, you know, Day One, you’re going to be very busy, and like I said, we hit the ground running.

Nika Domi: Well, I’d like to see one of those dispensaries, or some of them, one day. I was going to also ask, because I liked on your website, there was a section for medical doctors, and I was very impressed with that, because I know that when a company connects with those who are actually prescribing their products, that is a huge thing, because that’s what makes you the first thing on the doctor’s mind – your company, right? So how does that work? How does that system work?

Kim Rivers: So we have a team of folks that work with us, and we realized very early on. So when we opened the doors of our first dispensary – 

Nika Domi: That was so smart.

Kim Rivers: -In Tallahassee, we had, literally, I want to say 500 calls in a few hours. And so we took that feedback and we actually opened a call centre. So we have a fully staffed call centre within our company that’s manned, and so someone can actually call and talk to someone.

With that, we have a physician hotline as well, so physicians and their assistants can also call in and talk to folks that are experts. But aside from that, we have team members who go out into the field, and as opposed to just following a pharmaceutical model, where you have pharma reps, I thought it was important, and we thought it was important, that those folks are not only engaging with doctors, but they’re also engaging with patients on a regular basis.

And so, they’re both community educators, is what we call them. So they attend events in their territory, and they also call on doctors in their territory. So again, that feedback loop becomes important, because a doctor is able to get feedback: this is what that person’s hearing in the field from patients, or from, you know, customers of the doctor. And then for the doctor, we’re able to say, this is what we’re hearing in terms of, whether it be, you know, somebody can’t get in to get an appointment or, you know, we’re hearing that folks would like X, Y or Z in terms of the service option from you.

And so we’re really, again, on that front line, and look to be the bridge to help that physician, you know, grow their business, but also, of course, to make sure that the patients and the customers are getting the best service from their medical professional.

Nika Domi: Yeah. And that way, you’re addressing any type of issue right away, so you’re able to correct it so fast before that client leaves and not says anything.

Kim Rivers: That’s right, that’s right.

Nika Domi: Because I know from, for example, from cosmetics, sometimes clients, they’ll be very quiet about the things that they don’t like. They don’t always speak up. But when they’re asked, when they’re engaged, and the doctors are engaged, that just gives the clients an ability to stay with you, right? That’s just an amazing thing, also. So, so many things are piecing together. Now we can put together this puzzle of why Trulieve is so successful. So, this is just an amazing story. I’m super inspired by this.

I know that I’m forgetting something…oh yeah, there was actually a lot of talk and a lot of people on Twitter have been asking me to ask you about this whole share unlock situation. If you could explain something about that? I know that there was some shares unlocking recently, and there’s some were postponed, is that how -?

Kim Rivers: Sure, that’s right. And so, you know, as a founder, primarily founder-based company, right, we had, and have, founder shares. And so, as part of our goal, which is to make sure that we’re communicating appropriately to our shareholders, and that we’re also being intentional about how those shares come out and become unlocked. And so, the founder group did enter into a lockup agreement, and there was a portion of those shares that became unlocked, and then there will be another portion of those shares – a small portion, 10 percent – that will be unlocked in January of 2020.

So what’s available on the market now is available on the market, and then the next unlock will be in January of 2020.

Nika Domi: Yes. I’ve seen the stock actually doing really good yesterday, and so it was just ready for our interview today. The market’s listening.

Kim Rivers: That’s right, that’s right, that’s right.

Nika Domi: It’s all our positive energy combined.    

Kim Rivers: Yeah, and I mean, this is, it’s a very volatile sector, which we know.     

Nika Domi: Yeah, especially now, in the summer.

Kim Rivers: It’s the summer, and so you know, I think that it’s funny, you know, I’ll have bankers or folks call and say, Oh my gosh, you know, the stock price, etcetera.  And I say, you know, I’m just sitting here looking at our financials, and so, I feel really great. And so, one of the things that we’ve really been focused on is making sure that we’ve got capital in the bank to perform on our projected numbers. And so, you know, that we’re not having to go back to the capital markets for organic growth, and that we are, you know, able to sustain and meet our updated guidance, as we just talked about, via internal capital.

And so we just had a debt raise. We also just announced a sale leaseback transaction. So again, being mindful of, you know, accessing capital in non-dilutive ways is very important, and that’s something that we’ve been focused on.

Nika Domi: Exactly.

Kim Rivers: So I feel like we’re in a great position, that we are, you know, we’re not dependent on the capital markets from an execution standpoint – 

Nika Domi: That’s very positive.

Kim Rivers: And we’re able to, you know, meet our stated goals. 

Nika Domi: That’s a very positive thing, yes. So definitely it’s been such a pleasure talking to you today. Thank you for coming to Toronto for this event today, and thanks, everyone, for watching our interview with Kim Rivers from Trulieve.

Kim Rivers: Thanks.

Midas Letter is provided as a source of information only, and is in no way to be construed as investment advice. James West, the author and publisher of the Midas Letter, is not authorized to provide investor advice, and provides this information only to readers who are interested in knowing what he is investing in and how he reaches such decisions.

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