Legal Civil War At Co Dispensary Native Roots

CANNANNEW REPORT

Westword reports The ownership group behind Native Roots, one of Colorado’s largest dispensary chains, is involved in an internal battle over $100 million. Native Roots operates twenty dispensaries in Colorado, as well as numerous marijuana cultivations and infused product facilities. Yet through multiple expansions over the past four years, company co-owners Josh Ginsberg and Rhett Jordan have been in financial and legal clashes with partner Peter Knobel, according to Denver District Court documents, with Knobel currently fighting an arbitration decision that would award $100.5 million to Ginsberg and Jordan. Native Roots was founded by Ginsberg and Jordan in 2009 as a medical marijuana dispensary, but quickly became one of Colorado’s larger retail operations after recreational sales began in 2014. According to Jordan, that’s when Knobel originally entered the operation, investing in Native Roots through his company, Brightstar LLC. “In 2014, capital was very hard to find, and good investors were hard to find. He’s a successful developer with good experience in a lot of fields that apply to our industry,” Jordan says of the original partnership. Brightstar took majority control of Native Roots in 2016, but Jordan says that wasn’t the cause of the infighting. Ginsberg sued Brightstar in 2017, alleging a breach of the operating agreement between him and Jordan and Brightstar. Jordan, who eventually joined the lawsuit, says that Knobel and Brightstar violated a shotgun clause in their operating agreement. A special provision in business agreements, such a clause typically allows one partner to try to force other partners to sell their stake, or buy out a partner who wanted to sell their ownership. According to Jordan, Ginsberg and Brightstar attempted to buy each other out. “Ultimately Josh found the money, and Peter didn’t go along with it,” Jordan says. The operating agreement stipulated that partner disputes would be settled by an arbitrator. In…

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