A group of cannabis investors has just taken over ownership of High Times. Oreva Capital purchased majority shareholdings in the longstanding cannabis culture publication, buying 60% of the company for roughly $42 million.
Changing Ownership At High Times
Valued at $70 million, High Times has been around for 43 years. It originally built a reputation for being a countercultural magazine. Even today, the publication reports that it has 236,000 monthly subscribers. It also reports getting around 20 million visits to its website every month.
Despite these numbers, the company has floundered in recent years. According to Tech Crunch, while other cannabis media companies have figured out how to make as much as $60 per user per year, High Times only makes an average of around 17 cents per visitor.
In fact, the publishing side of things—whether print or digital—is not where the magazine makes the bulk of its money. These days, it pulls in around 75 percent of its revenue from its Cannabis Cup events. The company currently puts on 58 such events every year.
More recently, High Times tried to rebrand itself as a lifestyle company. Despite all this, many saw room for much better performance. And that’s where Oreva Capital comes in.
The group of investors that make up Oreva Capital includes a variety of other cannabis companies and personalities. Among them are Damian Marley, musician, cannabis business owner, and son of Bob Marley. Joining Marley and Levin are Isaac Dietrich, founder of MassRoots, Nick Kovacevich, CEO of Kush Bottles, and Ean Seeb, the owner of Denver Relief.
Together, the new owners plan to take High Times in some new directions. For starters, the company will now operate as the High Times Holding Company or HTHC for short. In a statement circulated to High Times employees, Levin described the new owners’ vision for HTHC.
“As we restructure the company from a magazine to a multiplatform entertainment company, this is a new chapter in an epic journey for the company.”
He added: “Through the Cannabis Cup, digital properties, the magazine and more—our brand will touch more and more people.”
By and large, this vision is aimed at dramatically changing the identity of High Times. One of the most well-known brands in the world of cannabis culture has so far struggled to keep up with the changes brought on by social media and digital entertainment. Levin and the rest of the HTHC co-owners will now work to change that.