Marijuana Business Incubator Launches in Oakland

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It may seem strange that California’s first cannabis business incubator just launched, but better late than never.

Based in Oakland and founded by two technology veterans, Gateway Inc. seeks to nurture both ancillary firms and companies that handle the plant, such as growers, dispensaries, and extractors.

Gateway will provide companies with $30,000 in return for six% equity, with once percent going to the mentors responsible for coaching the incubator companies, as well as office space, according to Oakland North. The paper reported that another incubator, CanopyBoulder in Colorado, gives businesses $20,000 in exchange for 9.5% equity.

To get into the four-month Gateway program, applicants must at least have a prototype of the product or service they want to offer. The founders, Ben Larson and Carter Laren, are most interested in companies that have the best chances of increased scalability, while entrepreneurs who are still in the idea stage are discouraged from applying.

The incubator is backed by the Newport Beach-based marijuana investment incorporation MJIC, Inc.

There are also marijuana incubators or incubators that accept marijuana-related companies in Chicago, Texas, and Florida.