Our Wall St contact tells us this report is a big topic of discussion on the street today. Published by Siegfried Eggert of Geoinvesting the report alleges a list of wrongdoings so egregious that it’s impossible to know where to start. Suffice to say that the precis reads like a crime novel plot, “Trulieve and its insiders are deeply involved in ongoing FBI investigations. CEO Kim Rivers and companies affiliated with her are mentioned in FBI subpoenas. Kim River’s husband, JT Burnette, is currently indicted for serious charges such as racketeering. Kim and her husband seem to be at the very center of a political crime ring in North Florida, that dealt in political favors and allegedly obfuscated government funds.”
Here are the report’s key points.
Our on the ground due diligence including drone footage suggest that the majority of the company’s cultivation space comes from hoop houses that produce low quality output that is prone to infestation and weather damage.
• We found extensive ties between Trulieve and ongoing FBI investigations into corruption in North Florida.
• Trulieve’s initial license approval stinks of corruption and involved multiple undisclosed conflicts of interest.
• CEO Kim Rivers’ husband, JT Burnette is at the very center of the FBI probe, he is the right-hand man of disgraced politician Scott Maddox, and an integral part to the criminal enterprise accused of charges ranging from racketeering to falsifying statements.
More On Kim Rivers – Click on Image
And hubby JT Burnette at Reddit
• Our research indicates that Burnette is Trulieve’s key construction partner. Burnette’s construction firms were also called out in the subpoena and are involved in scandals involving public funds in North Florida.
• There are several undisclosed related party transactions, where Burnette affiliated companies sold real estate to Trulieve at a huge profit. • Trulieve lies about the nature of its lenders, and depicts some of them as third parties that we could trace back to insiders. Also, all but one lender used shell entities that show no other activities.
• Given the opaque set up and lies Trulieve told about its financing sources we are deeply worried what Trulieve is hiding. Inkbridge, a lender of Trulieve that is controlled by Kim Rivers, is known for using government funds to finance ventures. There are also reports of shady foreign individuals trying to get a foothold in Florida’s medical marijuana industry. We ask: Where did the money really come from?
• The company’s portrayed profitability relies on mark-ups on their grown product, which we believe to be highly suspect in-light of our findings. Also, the company takes out tiny loans from insiders when it is supposedly swimming in cash.
• Trulieve is facing several economic headwinds, such as increasing competition. With the low-quality production facilities we uncovered, we believe Trulieve will not be able to compete.Trulieve-Report-
The report is authored by investment analyst
Siegfried (Siggy) Eggert, Special Situations Equity Analyst (Visit Siggy’s Blog)
Siegfried Eggert joined the GeoInvesting Team as an analyst in the summer of 2016 as an Equity Analyst. He is responsible for generating and analyzing long/short special situation investment ideas, including spin-offs, tender offers, M&A, and bankruptcy proceedings. Siegfried has over five years of practical experience investing in small- and micro-cap companies and managing portfolios.
Before coming to the United States, Siggy was born and raised in Germany, and studied International Business in the Netherlands, Hanze University of Groningen, where he received his Bachelor of Arts with Honors, majoring in Finance and Accounting. Siegfried also spent seven months studying in Beijing at Beijing Technology and Business University, after which he received a minor in Asian Business.
Trulieve have already issued a press release response
Trulieve Responds to Short-Seller Report
TALLAHASSEE, Fla., Dec. 17, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Trulieve Cannabis Corp. (“Trulieve” or the “Company”) (CSE: TRUL) (OTCQX: TCNNF), a leading and top-performing cannabis company in the United States, today announced that it is aware of a short-seller report (the “Report”) released earlier today which contains several false, slanderous and misleading statements about Trulieve. Trulieve’s successful and profitable business model is supported by several respected and reputable analyst firms, and as a publicly traded company its financial activity is communicated regularly and accurately to the investment community. The quality of Trulieve’s products and production facilities has never been in question, as evidenced by more than 230,000 satisfied customers in the Florida market. It appears today’s report is a disingenuous attempt to manipulate Trulieve’s stock price, and the Company is planning to pursue legal action against this outlet, which has no history or credibility in assessing cannabis companies.
Kim Rivers, the Chief Executive Officer of Trulieve, remarked, “We ask that our investors be aware that the Report reflects the opinions of an acknowledged short seller, whose sole interest is in profiting from a decline in the price of the Company’s shares. I have full confidence in our management team and their abilities to continue to serve our customers without being distracted by these baseless allegations. Trulieve reserves all of its rights to take appropriate legal action against those responsible for the Report.”
Rivers continued, “Trulieve sells high quality flower, cultivated in our indoor facilities, and was recently recognized by an award from the Cannabis Business Association of having the best flower in Florida. We stand behind the quality of our products and have a long-standing no-questions-asked return policy. Trulieve set a record for flower sales in Florida just last week, capturing over 51% of the market.”
Trulieve is a vertically integrated “seed-to-sale” company and is the first and largest fully licensed medical cannabis company in the State of Florida. Trulieve cultivates and produces all of its products in-house and distributes those products to Trulieve-branded stores (dispensaries) throughout the State of Florida, as well as directly to patients via home delivery. Trulieve also operates in California, Massachusetts and Connecticut. Trulieve is listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange under the symbol TRUL and trades on the OTCQX Best Market under the symbol TCNNF.
This news release includes forward-looking information and statements, which may include, but are not limited to, information and statements regarding or inferring the future business, operations, financial performance, prospects, and other plans, intentions, expectations, estimates, and beliefs of the Company and statements with regard to the Report and the Company’s response thereto. Words such as “expects”, “continue”, “will”, “anticipates” and “intends” or similar expressions are intended to identify forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based on the Company’s current projections and expectations about future events and financial trends that management believes might affect its financial condition, results of operations, business strategy and financial needs, and on certain assumptions and analysis made by the Company in light of the experience and perception of historical trends, current conditions and expected future developments and other factors management believes are appropriate. Forward-looking information and statements involve and are subject to assumptions and known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors which may cause actual events, results, performance, or achievements of the Company to be materially different from future events, results, performance, and achievements expressed or implied by forward-looking information and statements herein. Although the Company believes that any forward-looking information and statements herein are reasonable, in light of the use of assumptions and the significant risks and uncertainties inherent in such information and statements, there can be no assurance that any such forward-looking information and statements will prove to be accurate, and accordingly readers are advised to rely on their own evaluation of such risks and uncertainties and should not place undue reliance upon such forward-looking information and statements. Any forward-looking information and statements herein are made as of the date hereof, and except as required by applicable laws, the Company assumes no obligation and disclaims any intention to update or revise any forward-looking information and statements herein or to update the reasons that actual events or results could or do differ from those projected in any forward looking information and statements herein, whether as a result of new information, future events or results, or otherwise, except as required by applicable laws.
The Canadian Securities Exchange has not reviewed, approved or disapproved the content of this news release.
Director, Investor Relations & Corporate Communications