Mitchell Kahn knows about building and scaling companies. His most recent startup raised over $220 million and was recently acquired for $875 million.
Mitchell and I got together for an episode of the DealMakers Podcast. He shared with our listeners how he got started as an entrepreneur, what he’s learned about funding and capital, growing a business, plus the serious business of recreational cannabis.
The Numbers Guy
Kahn knows his numbers. Growing up in middle-class suburban Milwaukee, his father was an accountant. He then went on to run several businesses and was always entrepreneurial-minded.
That laid the early seeds for what has become one of the largest legal marijuana businesses in history.
Mitch was always good at math and actually enjoyed it. He saw it as a good background to build upon and began following in his father’s footsteps in studying accounting. Then he moved to Chicago to attend law school.
While practicing law, it was hard to hold down the other side of what he had learned from his father. The entrepreneurial side. That’s when someone called his bluff and offered him an opportunity to help expand the real estate side of a sports retail company.
During his time there he saw the industry and world go through various cycles. They doubled their number of stores. Though they were ultimately beat out by another competitor who was also expanding fast across the country.
He learned the importance of having the financials to back up rapid expansion. He learned how all businesses are really in the capital game.
Unfortunately, he learned that it often doesn’t matter how great your product and service, company or business plan is. Not if your competition is better at raising capital than you.
Those were powerful lessons that he brought to the table in his own cannabis startup. Their initial raise for three dispensaries in IL was around $5M.
They’ve kept raising as they’ve grown to hold around 60 retail, grow and processing licenses in 11 different states. All together they raised close to $230M for the business in debt and equity.
Storytelling is everything which is something that Mitch was able to master. Being able to capture the essence of what you are doing in 15 to 20 slides is the key. For a winning deck, take a look at the pitch deck template created by Silicon Valley legend, Peter Thiel (see it here) where the most critical slides are highlighted.
Remember to unlock the pitch deck template that is being used by founders around the world to raise millions below
ACCESS THE PITCH DECK TEMPLATE
Important Money Lessons For Startup Founders
In fact, one piece of business advice Mitch Kahn really wants to pass on to other founders is to try and raise more capital earlier. Even if you do it with debt instead of equity.
He suggests using that capital to hire the best possible talent in every area. It will help you grow and grow faster.
Even with all the success, they’ve enjoyed Mitch (for the first time) shared how they almost ran out of money in the middle of constructing a large grow operation in PA.
See How I Can Help You With Your Fundraising Efforts
- Fundraising Process : get guidance from A to Z.
- Materials : our team creates epic pitch decks and financial models
- Investor Access : connect with the right investors for your business and close them