Why Investors Hate MedMen

December 5, 2019

MedMen, one of the most high-profile cannabis retailers in the U.S., announced more layoffs.

 

“This week, the company provided layoff notices to an additional 20% of its corporate-level employees,” MedMen said in a news release.

 

“In total, over the past 30 days, the company has strategically reduced its corporate headcount by over 40%, representing approximately $20 million in annual salary-related savings.”

 

MedMen’s downsizing Wednesday follows November news that the California-based company was slashing 190 jobs to shore up its bottom line and adds to the list of cannabis companies that have recently let workers go amid falling stock prices and a lack of outside funding.

 

 

It wasn’t immediately clear how many MedMen employees lost their jobs in the company’s latest downsizing, but the November layoff announcement included 80 workers at the corporate level. As of the end of October, MedMen had roughly 1,300 employees.

 

The news was part of a release that highlighted pivots MedMen has made to its financial situation, along with updated corporate governance strictures.

 

In another move, MedMen co-founder Andrew Modlin is handing his Class A Super Voting shares to board chair Ben Rose for a year. That gives Rose 50% control of the company, noted Marijuana Business Daily analyst Craig Behnke.

 

MedMen CEO Adam Bierman said in the release the moves “position MedMen for improved, long-term growth.” However, it's unclear if investors will buy this latest statement from Bierman, who has reportedly enriched himself at the expense of the company. 

 

James Parker, who was chief financial officer for less than a year in 2018, alleged in a lawsuit filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court that his departure from the company “was far from voluntary” and that he was pushed out by the firm, which is led by MedMen co-founders Adam Bierman and Andrew Modlin, the firm’s chief executive and president, respectively.

 

MedMen forced Parker “to choose between complying with his fiduciary duty” to the company and its shareholders or “turning a blind eye and a deaf ear to improper and unlawful behavior” at the firm, Parker alleged.

 

That alleged behavior included “profligate spending of company funds for [the co-founders’] own personal benefit,” questionable company efforts to prop up MedMen’s stock, falsifying Parker’s signature on a securities form and a work environment “replete with racial, homophobic and misogynistic epithets and slurs,” the suit claims.

 

 

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