Item 9 to acquire Colorado marijuana retailer for Unity Rd. franchise

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Vertically integrated cannabis company Item 9 Labs signed a deal to buy an unspecified licensed marijuana store in a Denver suburb for an undisclosed sum.

The location will become the first corporate-owned store under Item 9’s dispensary franchise brand Unity Rd. “and is anticipated to open within the next 4-6 months,” Item 9 said in a Thursday news release.

Phoenix-based Item 9 closed its acquisition of Denver-headquartered One Cannabis Group and its Unity Rd. franchise model in March.

Unity Rd. is one of several cannabis retail franchise brands aiming to make inroads in multiple states.

Item 9 said the upcoming corporate-owned Unity Rd. store in Adams County, Colorado, is still awaiting regulatory approvals.

The acquisition is part of a broader acquisition strategy in Colorado, according to the release.

“The company plans to convert acquired dispensaries into Unity Rd. shops, operate them internally and sell them to an existing or future franchise partner.”

“Our eyes are set on Colorado and building up the Unity Rd. brand to become one of the main players in the market,” Item 9 Chief Strategy Officer Jeffrey Rassas said in a statement.

“We’re in multiple ongoing negotiations with other Colorado dispensaries to become Unity Rd. shops.”

The franchisor is also targeting Arizona, Montana and Oklahoma “as part of these development efforts,” according to the release.

Item 9 shares trade on over-the-counter markets as INLB.