Developer may boost stake in Colorado marijuana chain

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A longtime Vail developer with years of experience in the marijuana trade is poised to strengthen his ownership stake in Native Roots, one of Colorado’s largest cannabis retail chains.

Businessman Peter Knobel will boost his stake in Native Roots from 50% to 67%, pending state approval of the deal, according to the Aspen Times. The deal was recently approved by local officials in Aspen.

Native Roots operates 17 medical and recreational storefronts in Colorado, including one in Aspen that does business as RJJ Aspen.

If the deal is approved by the state, a company run by Knobel called Brightstar will take control of Native Roots, with the ownership stakes of partners Josh Ginsberg and Rhett Jordan dropping from 25% apiece to 15.34% and 13.34%, respectively.

Ginsberg confirmed to the Times that the deal applies to all of Native Roots’ shops.

“It’s company-wide,” Ginsberg told the newspaper.

The report did not mention whether terms of the ownership change were disclosed.

Knobel has sunk millions of his own money into the business, according to a Denver Post report in May, including the purchase of a 160,000-square-foot Denver warehouse for $5.1 million in 2013 to house a gigantic cannabis grow operation.

Knobel, Ginsberg and Jordan owned a cumulative 134 cannabis business licenses as of April, the Times reported.