Medical advantages of hemp are driving the global cannabis market growth

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Hemp was recently pushed into the spotlight after Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell advocated for its legalization. McConnell's support ultimately led hemp to be legalized in the recent passing of the U.S. Farm Bill. It was legalized mainly because it contains less than 0.3% THC and is considered the non-psychoactive cousin of cannabis. Essentially, hemp does not give the consumer euphoric effects but offers therapeutic and relaxing effects similar to marijuana. With the passage of the Farm Bill, it is projected that hemp will be a major growth driver for the overall cannabis industry. According to data compiled by MarketsandMarkets research, the global cannabis market is expected to grow from USD 10.3 Billion in 2018 to USD 39.4 Billion by 2023. Additionally, the market is expected to register a CAGR of 30.7%. The industry is mainly being accelerated by two factors: growing medical use of cannabis and the increasing spread of legalization around the globe. Weekend Unlimited Inc. (OTC: WKULF), Leafbuyer Technologies, Inc. (OTC: LBUY), MPX Bioceutical Corp. (OTC: MPXEF), Isodiol International Inc. (OTC: ISOLF), United Cannabis Corporation (OTC: CNAB)

Prior to the passage of the Farm Bill, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration had legalized cannabidiol or CBD, which is a derivative of hemp. CBD can be derived from both hemp and marijuana, however, hemp has a significantly less THC makeup and more CBD. CBD can be found in many forms, such as oil, tinctures, and supplements. Even before federal law reshaped the CBD market, industries were already using it in other products like beverages, personal care, beauty products, and even pet care. Furthermore, the legalization of hemp is causing a perspective shift among consumers because it is seen being used within everyday products. "Some of those ingredients get re-looked at through a different lens. It becomes a little less taboo," said Perteet Spencer, a Principal in the Brand Growth Solutions division at SPINS. "You're seeing massive legislative shifts that are going make a lot of things that were once completely off-limits a little more acceptable."

Weekend Unlimited Inc. (OTC:  WKULF) also listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange under the ticker (CSE: POT). Just earlier this morning the company announced breaking cannabis news that, "President & CEO, Paul Chuhas issued this important update to shareholders as the Company solidifies its cross border, multi state operations (MSO) and launches its portfolio of lifestyle brands.

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Dear Weekend Unlimited Shareholder: - 2019's momentum continues to accelerate for our company, we have solidified pillars of our brand portfolio including Canna Candys, Verve Beverage Company, the alliance in Washington State with Boggy Boon and Orchard Heights and our interest in Northern Lights Supply in Alberta, which just received its retail license to operate.

On February 1st we announced that Weekend Unlimited had won the iconic POT symbol lottery held by the Canadian stock exchanges. This lottery captured global attention, with coverage that spanned media entities including Forbes, Yahoo Finance, MarketWatch, The Globe and Mail, VICE Media, Financial Post, CTV, CBC, BNN Bloomberg, The Toronto Star along with extensive coverage within cannabis publications and networks. It has also generated exploratory partnership discussions with multiple entities.

The Canadian Securities Exchange, and Canada overall, have been beneficiaries of the attention - in addition to our Company - as it has served to highlight Canada'sleadership position in cannabis legalization. We have been honored to have the opportunity to share our story so widely as a result, and to play a role in the growth of this burgeoning industry.

In the six weeks since becoming President and CEO, we have established a focused vision and are growing a team that is focused on an aggressive operational buildout. Allow me to share some highlights from that work:

  • Weekend is a fast growing, multi-state operator committed to both wellness and recreational cannabis applications, and focused on developing lifestyle brands and experiences to define the future of the cannabis industry
  • Our disciplined growth strategy centers upon defined CBD and THC business lines with a focus on brands that align with lifestyles for expansive retail distribution with CBD, and premium distribution in adult-use-legal markets.
  • Weekend will launch and scale its own consumer packaged brands for CBD in states and international markets
  • The Company is adding to its CPG experienced management team

With international interests in Canada and pending in Jamaica, Weekend will have a primary focus as a cross-border brand aggregator, bringing brands to market with CBD products and deploying the best practices of the consumer-packaged goods industry. We have a vertically integrated base of operations in California, the largest legal recreational cannabis market in the United States (CNBC), which will be leveraged to grow throughout the US. Here are some key points for your consideration:

  • CBD provides the most lucrative opportunity to establish brand leadership for current and future expansion and sales
  • CBD will pave the way for our brands in the THC space for future recreational legal markets
  • Strong existing brand portfolio to accelerate distribution targeted to lifestyle applications
  • In California we have vertical integration – extraction, production, distribution and ownership –  with High Desert Group in Adelanto
  • LIVE experiences to penetrate markets, facilitate adoption with tastemakers, and create demand
  • NHL San Jose Sharks sponsorship – CHAMP athletic demographic to be scaled with an expanding line and spokespeople
  • Overall, we are harnessing entrepreneurial talent and combining it with consumer-packaged goods best practices

Our position has only been strengthened with the recent support for the cannabis industry in the US, noting that new US Attorney General, William Barr has made a written pledge not to go after marijuana companies complying with state laws. As a multi state operator, this, combined with the Farm Bill passage has opened up opportunities in the US, the central focus of our business. In Washington, the Orchard Heights - Boggy Boon alliance is already shipping product to retail stores, Canna Candys shipments will begin in February and Verve Beverage Company will be shipping in March. A new SKU for Canna Gummies has been added to our product line, gummies are the top selling candy format, and we have pending distribution deals close to completion for high volume retail placement.

We have implemented a centralized service capability to reduce costs and streamline effectiveness from production through to sales and service. As we advance on these priorities, we will be able to share details and results with shareholders. In addition, we are in the final stages of moving our head office in New York City. This quarter will mark a tremendous period in the history of our Company as we launch our key brands into the marketplace and seize on the awareness that has resulted from the iconic POT symbol lottery - becoming a part of our story and the story of recreational cannabis legalization, forever. 

To conclude, here is our renewed statement of purpose:

Weekend Unlimited exists to serve people's desires for wellness and happiness by harnessing the properties of the cannabis plant by developing amazing products and experiences that enhance lifestyle choices.

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