And lo, as the cannabis promoters try to ramp up interest in their sector again after a long dormancy, we are presented with yet another “secret” pot stock to sleuthify.
The ad I’m looking at today is a teaser pitch from Don Yocham, Executive Director of the National Institute for Cannabis Investors (NICI), hosting an “interview” with Danny Brody, who calls himself a cannabis venture capitalist and has been affiliated with NICI for a couple years and played roles in several different major marijuana companies, most recently as VP of Investor Relations for The Green Organic Dutchman (TGOD.TO, TGODF). (Not sure what has happened with that company of late, by the way, but I do see that the stock is down about 95% from its high two years ago).
And the service they’re pitching now is yet another “upgrade” for cannabis investing enthusiasts to buy into ever-more-secret information, they call it Danny Brody’s Cannabis Inner Circle, a “new private wing of the institute” — it will run you $1,950 per year, and it’s not technically a “no refunds” offer but it’s certainly not an “easy” refund… the refund pledge is full of conditions, and also requires you to try the service for a full year first.
To my mind, NICI is mostly just a gussied-up name for a high-end marijuana stock promotion outfit, and I’ve mostly been unimpressed with their wild overpromising in the past — calling something a “club” makes you feel like you belong, à la Oxford Club… calling something an “Institute” makes it seem legit and independent, like maybe it’s even a think tank or a nonprofit, but from all indicators it’s really just a publishing arm of Money Map Press. That might be a bit unfair, maybe it’s just the bad taste of their last “Cannabis Venture” pitch that’s making me look at this with an extra furrow in my brow — most publishers use wildly overhyped promises in their ads, but the NICI stuff stands out for me as being even more over-the-top.
But anyway, this pitch is that there’s a super-rare substance that one company can make, and it’s going to shake up the cannabis industry and make us all rich. Here’s a little extract of the pitch:
“This Rare Extract Costs $2.1 Million PER OUNCE…
“Leading Scientific Institutions Are Clamoring for It…
“And Now, in a Stunning Breakthrough, One Tiny $4 Company Could Now Produce It ON DEMAND…”
And they pile on with the hyperbole…
“The way I see it, not since the advent of penicillin has there been a quantum leap of this magnitude.
“Quite frankly, this can change everything.”
That’s a frequently-used promise, as you might imagine — I did a quick search through my archive of old teaser pitches, and came up with at least 25 different teases in the past five years that include some variant of “not since penicillin” or “greatest breakthrough since penicillin.”
When people are daydreaming about turning $500 into generational wealth, well, you’ve got to go big to get their attention.
More about the race to develop this “rare extract”
“At this moment, the scientific race is on, and leading institutions are clamoring for this rare compound.
“Harvard Medical School has unleashed a cadre of top neuroscientists…
“MIT is doing the same…
“UCLA has launched an unprecedented initiative staffed with 37 experts in the treatment of cancer, diabetes, neurology, and brain science…
“And NIH has thrown $140 million into 330 projects spanning all of medicine…”
And about the miraculous things that it (might) be able to do…
“Scientific testing shows this rare compound to be capable of killing cancer cells – without dangerous chemotherapy.
“It has shown the potential to treat Alzheimer’s…Are you getting our free Daily Update
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“And Parkinson’s disease.
“It can kill pain without narcotics, potentially ending America’s opioid crisis.
“Plus, because it’s such a powerful sleep inducer, it could help the 60 million Americans with insomnia throw their dangerous sleeping pills in the trash.”
And, duh, we know that this is a pitch for cannabis investors… so it’s clearly one of many spiels about the many miraculous capabilities, both proven and suspected, that lie within not just CBD and THC, which are well-known and in major production from the plants, but also the magic weed’s hundreds of different obscure cannabinoids.
But it’s really about a bioengineered way to produce these cannabinoids — without using acres of marijuana plants… more from the ad:
“… in a stunning breakthrough in metabolic engineering, a UC Berkeley chemist has invented a way to make this compound on demand.
“And now, the tiny $4 company he founded holds 871 patents, is producing this compound for $15 an ounce… that’s a staggering 99.99% cost reduction…
“And is setting up the investment play of the millennium.”
Some more clues from the interview for you…
“DANNY: Don, that’s the most important point. YES. This is starting to happen right now, as we speak. Already, a tiny $4 company behind this opportunity has the power to disrupt one of the fastest-growing industries in the world.
“DON: A $344 billion industry.
“DANNY: That’s right. They’ve got 871 patents. They’ve signed a major deal with a partner and have already made their first shipment.
“DON: In other words, time is of the essence.
“DANNY: Time is of the essence because industry insiders are swarming. Folks who move fast will be able to grab a ground-floor position.”
Some other bits from the ad, to whet your appetite…
“THC and CBD have become the face of cannabis NOT because they are the most powerful cannabinoids. They are popular because they are the MOST ACCESSIBLE….
“It would co