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Vinzan International CEO: Cannabis 'Won't Be Recognizable In 5 Years'

Vinzan International CEO: Cannabis 'Won't Be Recognizable In 5 Years'

With an ever-growing interest amongst investors in marijuana stocks, Vinzan International is looking to go public and take advantage of the expanded opportunities in the cannabis space.

Vinzan is a Toronto-based physical trader of cannabis and other THC/CBD products, with processing facilities in Colombia and Laos. Aiming to ‘realign the cannabis supply chain' the company trades, processes and exports its products around the world. Its team includes Former Morgan Stanley Executive Director Donald Stewart, who serves as Vinzan's CFO, and Vice President of Operations Kelsey Barnes, who previously served as a Senior Project Manager at IBM's cybersecurity division.

Benzinga recently sat down with CEO Brian Armstrong to discuss the company's upcoming IPO and growth strategy within the ever-expanding cannabis industry.

Vinzan International will be one of the many companies at the 4th Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference this October in Chicago. Click here to get your tickets to this exclusive event with the biggest players in cannabis.

Cannabis Will Be Unrecognizable

As the cannabis industry continues to gain ground, Armstrong believes the industry will be completely unrecognizable in the next five years. He said Vinzan aims to be a part of this through its commodity trading model.

"The cannabis industry is really in its infancy and I believe it won't be recognizable in five years," Armstrong said. "We believe cannabis is an agriculture commodity. This is why we are using the 150-year old commodity trading model used by the world's largest and most successful agriculture commodity traders. Every other commodity in the world, gold, coffee, corn, wheat, zinc, and copper are all traded using this model. Cannabis is the only outlier."

Asia Will Be The Powerhouse For Cannabis

Cannabis, which originates from Asia, has been gaining legal cultivation status for medical purposes around the world. Southeast Asian countries in particular, such as Cambodia and Thailand, have been moving in this direction. Asia provides the best climate for plants to grow, according to Armstrong, and Vinzan hopes to make major impact in this area of the world.

"What Cuba is to cigars is what Asia is to cannabis," Armstrong said. "This is why we are so focused on building strong relationships throughout the region. We believe Asia will be the global cannabis powerhouse within the next decade."
Armstrong said Vinzan performs well in Asian markets because it aims to understand its nations cultures' and build relationships on this mutual understanding.

"Going into a country like Lao PDR requires a certain understanding of their culture, customs and regulatory processes," Armstrong said. "They want to do business with companies that will work with them as partners, rather than companies that want to do everything their way."

Armstrong also thinks that as legalization gains ground across the continent, the market for medicinal cannabis will explode.

"Beyond the uses in Western medicine, people need to remember that Asia is 60 percent of the world's population and cannabis has been used in traditional Chinese and Eastern medicine for hundreds of years," Armstrong said. "This is a market that will explode as they move from prohibition to legalization."

Looking Ahead To The Next Year

Armstrong said Vinzan is having discussions with pharmaceutical, cosmeceutical and medical cannabis providers to expand its network. He also mentioned the company's desire to go public.

"We've really strengthened our team and we believe our IPO story will be unlike anything we've seen in the cannabis industry to date," Armstrong said. "Highly profitable."


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Posted-In: Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference Brian Armstrong Vinzan InternationalCannabis News Global Markets Interview

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