DETROIT, Sept. 28, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Chris Webber, entrepreneur, NBA Hall-of-Famer and Co-Founder of Webber Wild Impact Fund, today launched Players Only Holdings, a new $50 million-dollar cannabis operations and training facility in Detroit’s Corktown neighborhood. Players Only is a black-owned business co-founded with entrepreneur Lavetta Willis focused on four strategic business areas: real estate development, cannabis cultivation, brand partnerships, and creative content development and management.
The state of the art 180,000 square foot Players Only Facility will feature a 60,000 square foot cultivation, an 8,000 square foot dispensary, and a private cannabis consumption lounge. The business is expected to create hundreds of new jobs in the Detroit metro area over the next three years. During the groundbreaking, Webber also announced the expansion of Cookies U into Detroit and an exclusive distribution partnership with leading Michigan operator, Gage Growth Corp., for Players Only branded cannabis products.
«This will be the shining jewel of Michigan. Everything great in Michigan starts in Detroit, and I am excited to collaborate with Gage to bring our premium line of Players Only products to this community,» said Chris Webber. «Gage is the HOF of cannabis operations. With Fabian Monaco as a teammate, this relationship is a winner on every level.»
«Chris shares our vision of creating an inclusive and world class cannabis business community in Michigan,» said Fabian Monaco, CEO of Gage Growth Corp. «We are proud to work hand in hand with the Players Only team to not only facilitate attractive consumer experiences but also provide future entrepreneurs of color with the tools to create generational wealth.»
«This Detroit training and operations facility is only the first step in bringing tangible opportunities to the people of this city – one that means so much to me – while eliminating barriers to an industry with unlimited economic potential,» added Webber. «We will create, foster and provide a cannabis ecosystem that celebrates diversity, creates jobs, and benefits this community – focusing intensely on those who are being left behind. As social equity programs struggle in many states, we are here to support legacy operators who created the foundation for this industry so that they are included in future iterations of it while we wait on the politics to catch up.»
The Cookies U training program is a high-impact, hands-on educational experience that will recruit students from minority and underrepresented communities. The comprehensive «no fee» educational curriculum is aimed at job training and job placement in the cannabis industry. A recent partnership will also bring access to a virtual GED program with a financial literacy component. The Cookies U concept was announced in May as a partnership between Cookies and The WebberWildWillis Foundation.
«Not only is Michigan one of the most important markets in the cannabis industry, Detroit is the first city we opened a flagship store in, outside of California. I have to salute Chris Webber, Jason Wild, and Lavetta Willis for supporting our vision to build out Cookies U in Humboldt California and extending the program to Detroit, which happens to be Chris’s hometown,» said Berner, Co-Founder and CEO of Cookies. «Michigan has always been an advanced and educated market and we couldn’t be more excited to offer underrepresented people an opportunity to learn the industry from seed to sale.»
The Webber Wellness Compound will be located at 2599 22nd Street, near Michigan Avenue and the Fisher Service Drive in Detroit’s Corktown and Southwest Detroit neighborhoods. It will encompass 9 acres including properties along Michigan Avenue. Webber has been personally interviewing black-owned architectural firms and general contractors to be named. Construction is slated to begin this Fall with first phase completion expected in March 2022.
About Players Only Holdings
Players Only Holdings (POH) is a minority-owned (Chris Webber and Lavetta Willis) business focused on three strategic business areas: cannabis assets (cultivation and retail), brand partnerships and creative content development and management (Agency).
About WebberWildWillis Foundation
The WebberWildWillis Foundation is a non-profit organization focused on uplifting and enriching black and brown communities negatively affected by the war on drugs by supporting local organizations efforts including but not limited to expungement clinics, commissary programs, training and education.
About Gage Growth Corp.
Gage Growth is innovating and curating the highest-quality cannabis experiences possible for cannabis consumers in the state of Michigan and bringing internationally renowned brands to market. Through years of progressive industry experience, the firm’s founding partners have successfully built and grown operations with federal and state licenses, including cultivation, processing and retail locations. Gage’s portfolio includes city and state approvals for 19 Class C cultivation licenses, three processing licenses and 15 provisioning centres (dispensaries).
Cookies is more than a premiere cannabis company; it is an authentic brand with passionate fans all over the world. Founded in 2008 by Berner, the prolific Bay Area rapper and entrepreneur, and his partner Jai, a Bay Area cultivator and breeder. The company went mainstream in 2011 and has grown its business through the combination of globally recognized premium genetics, social media influence, and popular culture resonance. Cookies is constantly launching new breeding projects and differentiated brands and has quickly built a grassroots cult following while remaining loyal to its brand promise: authenticity and innovative genetics. Today, Cookies is one of the most well-respected and top-selling cannabis brands in California and throughout the world. The company and its product are recognized globally and offer a collection of over 150 proprietary cannabis varieties and product lines including indoor and sun grown flower, pre-rolls, gel capsules, vape cartridges, CBD Flower and medicinal mushrooms. Cookies’ seed-to-sale business allows for complete quality control at every step—from cultivation and production to customers’ end retail experience. With a deep commitment to restorative justice and progressive drug policy, Cookies actively works to enrich communities disproportionately impacted by the War on Drugs through advocacy work and social equity initiatives.
CONTACT: Rosie Mattio
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