Releaf Group has announced plans to raise A$4 million to help fund its bid to become ‘the McDonald’s of cannabis’.

The company wants to establish 200 franchises over the next five years, with planned sites purchased outright in most instances then leased back to franchisees.

Releaf Group currently has sites in St Kilda and Bentleigh (both Victoria) and is on schedule to have 12 locations by the end of the 2021 financial year.

International expansion is planned for 2021 with flagship dispensaries in South Africa, Hong Kong, Thailand and the UK.

The group has released an Information Memorandum for a pre-IPO funding round to raise A$4 million to further its expansion and investments into technology, cultivation and manufacturing.

Head-quartered in Melbourne with a wholly-owned subsidiary in Auckland, Releaf’s vertically integrated group of companies range from the cultivation of cannabis strains through to manufacturing and packaging, research and education.

It also has access to distribution channels via its own medical clinics and dispensaries and recreational dispensary brand MULL Cafe, a global online store and export division operating in both medical and recreational sectors in legal jurisdictions.

Releaf Group co-founder and CEO Gary Mackenzie said: “This latest investment round represents an ongoing phase of aggressive growth for Releaf.”

He added it demonstrated the company’s “commitment to expand into technology, cultivation and manufacturing as part of a vertically integrated supply chain for its end distribution clinic and dispensary franchises”.

Prior to launching Cannabiz, Martin was co-founder and CEO of Asia-Pac’s leading B2B media and marketing information brand Mumbrella, overseeing its sale to Diversified Communications in 2017. A journalist...

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