Friday, May 10, 2013

The Dawn Of The Marijuana Vending Machine

Medbox: Dawn of the Marijuana Vending Machine 

“We are in the right place at the right time,” says Bruce Bedrick, a 44-year-old chiropractor, occasional pot user, and chief executive officer of Medbox (MDBX), maker of one of the world’s first marijuana vending machines. “We are planning to literally dominate the industry.”

The two investors Bedrick is addressing at the offices of NewGate Capital Partners in Winter Park, Fla., smile politely. NewGate partner Joe Alvarez Jr. says he likes Medbox’s product but has concerns about the company’s roller coaster stock, which zoomed from about $3 a share to $215 in November and has recently bounced between $20 and $30. Alvarez doesn’t use the phrase “pump-and-dump,” but it hangs there like a cloud of smoke. Either way, Bedrick takes umbrage. “This is all crazy talk,” he nearly shouts. “Wall Street plays games with our stock all the time. We’re a retailer’s wet dream. We’re the leading player in an industry that’s ready to explode.” Alvarez says he meant no offense.

Medbox’s core product resembles a Redbox DVD dispenser, only it’s black, refrigerated, and armored. Bedrick avoids the term vending machine because you can’t just saunter up to a Medbox, put in a few bills, and walk away with a stash of weed.  

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