Jay-Z has created an investment fund to help minority marijuana entrepreneurs break into the booming cannabis industry.
According to the NY Post, the Brooklyn-born rap legend wants to help diversify the legal pot industry by investing in minority-owned cannabis firms, helping those previously marginalized groups who have been notoriously penalized by the U.S. government and the laws that kept the drug illegal for decades.
“We were the ones most negatively affected by the war on drugs, and America has turned around and created a business from it that’s worth billions,” Jay-Z said in a statement to the Wall Street Journal.
“I wanted to do something in a real, concrete way, where I do my part,” the rap superstar added.
36 states have legalized cannabis for medical or recreational use in recent years, thus creating a massive industry of opportunity for minority business owners.
The Wall Street Journal claims, the marijuana market in the US is worth about $20 billion and could grow to become larger than the $70 billion market for wine by the year 2030.
Yet black and brown people are still struggling to access this lucrative new market as owners successfully. In fact, a 2017 survey from Marijuana Business Daily stated that 81 percent of cannabis business owners and founders were white while only a mere 4.3 percent of business owners and founders were black.
Jay-Z acquired $10 million in funds from a newly established California-based cannabis company aptly entitled “The Parent Company”— after a merger between Left Coast Ventures and CMG Partners.
The rapper’s new initiative is called the Social Equity Ventures Fund, and it plans to allot up to $1 million to selected minority-owned cannabis companies.
SEVF will reportedly be run by Jay-Z and Desiree Perez, the CEO of his Roc Nation entertainment empire.