Weed is a huge and growing industry and with that comes a lot of politics. Just last week we made headlines after discovering that the Vice President of a marijuana company resigned from his job to join a PR firm. Now, we’ve made a similar discovery about the president of a billion dollar weed company, and more.
After spending years flying high as the President of a billion dollar weed company, a man has left his job to go work for a public relations firm.
Kris Krane, one of the most well-known cannabis entrepreneurs and advocates, will head the new Chicago office of KCSA Strategic Communications, located in New York.
Krane, the former president of 4Front Ventures, a cannabis multi-state operator (MSO) previously valued at more than $1 billion, would concentrate on business development and client advising at KCSA’s Windy City office, according to information obtained exclusively ahead of an official announcement. He’ll also appear on the communication firm’s “The Green Rush” podcast on a regular basis.
Krane’s six-year experience as a customer, according to him, was what drew him to KCSA. “I was able to see firsthand their professionalism and commitment to the cannabis industry.”
During his time at 4Front, Krane credited the KCSA team with having him mentioned and highlighted in the media “with a regularity that matched CEOs of businesses much bigger” than his.
“These results demonstrate not just KCSA’s vast media connections, but also their ability to grasp a client’s narrative and identify the appropriate venues to cover it,” Krane added.
Krane expects to use his “firsthand experience as a cannabis industry executive to help KCSA better understand the needs and goals of cannabis companies in this rapidly evolving industry and provide even more targeted public relations and investor relations solutions and strategies to its clients,” as he embarks on a new chapter in his career.
PR for Cannabis Is Becoming More Mainstream
KCSA works in the cannabis business on more than just public relations, investor relations, and social media. Since 1969, the company has also provided services to the psychedelics, banking, technology, healthcare, and digital media industries. As a result, many of their business methods are extremely mainstream.
This is the situation with Krane’s appointment. Lewis Goldberg, managing partner and principal at KCSA, described how you see this sort of shift across most sectors during a recent conversation: Assume you worked for a public relations company that specialized in the military industry. You’d attempt to get a high-ranking Department of Defense employee enrolled in your ranks right away to assist your business better enter the market by utilizing the new hire’s recognition, expertise, and Rolodex.
“I don’t believe we’ve seen anything like this in the cannabis industry before. This is a first, and it will rock the industry to its foundations,” Goldberg said.
“Kris has been a regular host of ‘Marijuana Today,’ the most downloaded cannabis podcast, as well as a regular speaker at key cannabis conferences such as MJ BizCon, and investor conferences hosted by Cowen & Co. Canaccord, VIII Capital, Benzinga and ArcView,” added Goldberg.
A Long-Time Supporter
Krane formerly worked at CannBe, a cannabis-related business. He’s also been an outspoken activist for years, serving as associate director of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) from 2000 to 2005 and executive director of Students for Sensible Drug Policy (2006-2009). He now serves on the board of directors of the National Cannabis Industry Association and writes for Forbes.
“In the seven years that I’ve worked in the cannabis business, Kris Krane has proved to be the most well-respected CEO. His combination of advocacy and operational excellence, as well as his exceptional communication skills, made him an excellent candidate to join the KCSA team. Kris will assist us in expanding our Chicago office and enhancing our capacity to serve the cannabis sector, according to Goldberg.
“After a 20+ year career in the cannabis business and policy, it is critical for me to work with individuals who are genuinely dedicated to furthering the objectives that I have held throughout my career,” Krane said. This involves not just assisting the nascent cannabis business in becoming more professional, but also a strong commitment to eliminating cannabis prohibition in its entirety and guaranteeing a fair and equitable economy. I wouldn’t want my name associated with a business or initiative that didn’t share these values.”