With a handful of U.S. states expected to vote green this November, Headset is preparing to bolster its weed analytics platform into new legal markets.
On Monday, the Seattle-based company said it raised US$3.2 million, with the help of cannabis venture capital firm Canopy Rivers (TSX: RIV) to expand into new states and Canadian provinces.
Headset launched in 2015 and has since become a leader in data analytics services used by cannabis industry players to track market trends, consumer behaviour, brands and retailers. The data firm has been focusing primarily on established markets like California, Colorado, Oregon, Washington and Nevada as well as Canadian markets like British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario.
The new bridge round of funding will be used to dig deeper into emerging markets of states that have recently legalized, like Illinois, or in states that could legalize this fall, according to the company’s statement. There are six states — New Jersey, Arizona, Montana, Nebraska, Mississippi, and South Dakota — that have officially added a medical or recreational cannabis reform ballot in this year’s election. Headset says it is also looking into expanding its Canadian market coverage.
“We’re grateful to our investors for their continued confidence in our vision,” Headset CEO Cy Scott said in the statement. “Our real-time market intelligence data helps cannabis operators, CPG companies, financial services and more navigate the competitive landscape, find opportunity and understand the cannabis consumer through our aggregated point-of-sale derived data which includes sales, inventory, pricing, demographics and basket analytics.”
— Canopy Rivers | Cannabis VC (@CanopyRiversInc) August 31, 2020
The company says it has been busy during the pandemic, with its own data showing average recreational cannabis sales up 25 per cent this year despite drops in other retail sectors.
In Canada, Headset teamed up with Deloitte and Nielsen last year to gather market insights to understand federally regulated cannabis consumption and sales. The company is also backed by Cowen, a U.S. multinational independent investment bank.
“Headset has been a true innovator in this space, working diligently to provide customers with a platform that is essential to staying competitive,” Canopy Rivers CEO Narbé Alexandrian said. “We’re happy to provide additional capital as they bring this service to new markets, raising the intelligence of the entire industry through data-driven insights.”
Top image via Superette retail store in Toronto, Canada