Chris Beals landed unexpectedly at Weedmaps in 2015 but since then has taken the famed ancillary business public and grown it into one of the most recognizable brands in cannabis.
Beals spent his pre-cannabis life advising startups and deal-making in highly regulated industries such as health care and technology, but it took some tough on-the-job experience to prepare Beals for cannabis’ realities.
In this episode, Beals talks about:
- The importance of due diligence.
- How Weedmaps handles the problem of unlicensed operators.
- Taking a boots-on-ground approach to learning about the industry.
- Preparing for federal legalization.
Who is Chris Beals?
Chris Beals is the CEO of WM Technology, the parent company of Weedmaps, one of the best-known ancillary brands in the cannabis industry. An attorney by profession, Beals joined Weedmaps in 2015 as president and general counsel and took over as CEO in 2019. Before cannabis, Beals was a senior vice president with Colbeck Capital Management, where he focused on deal origination in the technology and health sectors; Deutsche Telecom, where was senior corporate counsel and data privacy officer who managed and advised deal teams involved in acquisitions and partnerships; and the law firm Covington & Burling, where he advised startup and technology companies on structuring deals.