California city rejects MedMen application for cannabis store license

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Troubled multistate marijuana operator MedMen Enterprises was rejected for a conditional-use permit needed to open a planned retail outlet in Pasadena, California – the result of material changes, including management upheaval.

The latest blow incurred by Los Angeles-based MedMen demonstrates that cannabis store operators with instability in management and ownership can be penalized by regulators.

A document obtained by local news outlet Pasadena Now contained a letter from the city manager to the cannabis company’s leadership citing “a material change in ownership and/or management in MedMen such that the evaluation and scoring of MedMen’s Application is no longer valid.”

According to the letter, nine out of 10 MedMen owners listed on the company’s original application to Pasadena have since changed.

That includes former MedMen CEO Adam Bierman and ex-President Andrew Modlin, who both departed the company’s board in June after resigning their leadership positions in January.

In addition, the letter noted, Pasadena officials concluded that Gotham Green Partners’ investments in MedMen give the New York private equity group “the ability to control management and the direction of MedMen.”

That change of control ran up against Pasadena’s rules as well.

The Pasadena ruling comes on the heels of MedMen losing a medical marijuana dispensary license in Staunton, Virginia, in June.

MedMen trades on the Canadian Securities Exchange as MMEN and on U.S. over-the-counter markets as MMNFF.