Cannabis financing company Bespoke Financial today announced it raised $8 million in a Series A financing round. Through this round, the company brought new, key investors into its corner as it fights to bring financing solutions to companies in the cannabis space.
Bespoke is a direct lender and provides several financing solutions to companies operating in cannabis. These short-term loans allow the companies to build credit with Bespoke, which then offers better terms on subsequent loans and products. The company says its loan origination volume has grown exponentially, outgrowing forecasts by 25% over the proceeding year. The company has deployed $120 million in gross merchandise volume over 2,000 cannabis license holders, with zero defaults to date.
With this new round of capital, Bespoke intends to launch new financing structures and expand its financing options across various distribution channels.
CEO and co-founder George Mancheril calls this round a pivotal moment for his company and stamp of validation on the direction and products offered by Bespoke Financial. As he tells TechCrunch, this round provides several key partners to the growing startup.
The financing round was co-led by Snoop Dogg's Casa Verde Capital and Sweat Equity Ventures, along with Ceres Group Holdings, Greenhouse Capital Partners, DoubleLine Capital's co-founder and former president Philip Barach, and Robert Stavis, an investor based in New York.
This is Sweat Equity Ventures' (SEV) first investment into a cannabis company. SEV, backed and funded by LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman, is led by Dan Portillo and works differently from traditional venture funds. SEV works with founders to provide top engineering and business talent to its portfolio companies. In exchange for these services, SEV takes equity from the companies instead of just writing checks.
"This is our firm's first investment in the cannabis industry, and we are excited to partner with Bespoke as more and more states legalize cannabis use, and the Federal government contemplates nationwide legalization. This partnership combines Bespoke's finance and cannabis acumen with our team's expertise scaling innovative tech companies, and will provide cannabis companies greater access to streamlined financing while benefiting investors with increased transparency and enhanced risk surveillance," says Dan Portillo, managing partner of Sweat Equity Ventures, in a released statement.
Karan Wadhera, managing partner at Casa Verde Capital, says Bespoke Financial addresses real needs in a growing industry. Casa Verde Capital previously invested in Bespoke Capital, including in a $7 million round in 2019.
Bespoke CEO George Mancheril tells TechCrunch his company is focused on being more than just a lender; it wants to be a modern financing company that allows it to act as a true partner with the cannabis industry.
With this $8 million in financing, Bespoke Financial has raised $28 million to date. The company was founded in 2019 and, as of this announcement, has 12 employees.