Diddy‘s entrepreneurial streak hit another road bump recently. Not only is he in contentious litigation with Ciro, with whom he’s had an almost two-decade relationship, he’s now on the wrong side of a multimillion-dollar cannabis deal.
Diddy was poised to purchase the merged company that Cresco Labs and Columbia Care were forming. But unfortunately for him, the companies couldn’t come to an agreement and Diddy’s deal is now off.
Had the deal gone through, it would have made Diddy the owner of the largest Black-owned cannabis company in the world. He announced his intent to purchase the brand in November of last year, citing the disparity in punishment for cannabis-related offenses between Blacks and whites.
“It’s diabolical,” Diddy told the Wall Street Journal last year. “How do you lock up communities of people, break down their family structure, their futures, and then legalize it and make sure that those same people don’t get a chance to benefit or resurrect their lives from it?”
Though cannabis is one of the most lucrative new businesses in the U.S. and the world to the tune of a $37 billion global market, Black entrepreneurs own less than 2% of related companies.
“My mission has always been to create opportunities for Black entrepreneurs in industries where we’ve traditionally been denied access, and this acquisition provides the immediate scale and impact needed to create a more equitable future in cannabis,” Diddy said in a statement in 2022.
“Owning the entire process — from growing and manufacturing to marketing, retail, and wholesale distribution — is a historic win for the culture that will allow us to empower diverse leaders throughout the ecosystem and be bold advocates for inclusion.”
Had the merger happened, Diddy would have owned nine retail stores in New York State, Massachusetts and Illinois.
Diddy said that he and Combs Global will continue to try to find entry into the cannabis business, several outlets reported.
In the meantime, he recently launched Empower Global to provide a clearinghouse for Black-owned businesses.
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