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Cannabis industry REIT buys Mount Dora nursery and signs on medical marijuana dispensary

Medicinal marijuana smokable flower at the Curaleaf dispensary in Orlando. Photo taken March 25, 2019.
Medicinal marijuana smokable flower at the Curaleaf dispensary in Orlando. Photo taken March 25, 2019. (Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel)

An early pioneer in Florida’s medical marijuana industry just sold its Mount Dora location to a real estate investment trust (REIT) based in New York.

According to a recently filed deed in Lake County, GreenAcreage Real Estate Corp. paid $14 million for a 28.6-acre nursery at 4055 Britt Road.

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The sellers, Robert and Donald DeLeon, bought the property in 1999 for $228,000. At the site, the family ran a nursery by the name of DeLeon’s Bromeliads and Orchids.

According to the News Service of Florida, Robert and Donald DeLeon were among only of a handful of nursery owners in Florida that were granted medical marijuana licenses last year as part of a settlement with the state.

Their family-owned business applied for a license to grow and cultivate medical marijuana back in 2015 when only non-euphoric THC was allowed under state law. Though their first attempt was denied, the businessmen reapplied for the license after the constitutional amendment to allow medical marijuana in Florida won a majority approval from voters in 2016.

Insight on how this LA-based medical marijuana player gained a foothold in Florida, and the local submarkets it is exploring.

Their property in Mount Dora, located near U.S. Route 441 and Florida State Road 44, features several enclosed warehouse facilities for indoor cultivation.

GreenAcreage is an independently managed REIT that specializes in providing sale-leaseback and build-to-suit transactions for businesses in the regulated marijuana industry.

Records show the company entered into a lease agreement with one of the largest cannabis operators in Florida, Curaleaf.

Earlier this week, the vertically integrated cannabis operator opened a new dispensary in Clearwater marking its 29th retail location in the state.

Representatives at Curaleaf did not immediately respond for comment on the Mount Dora site.

In a press release, the company stated the Clearwater location will be the first of three new medical dispensaries it plans to open in the market this quarter. In 2018, it opened new medical marijuana dispensaries in Orlando and Lakeland.

In Florida, medical marijuana dispensaries are also required to grow and process their product. The Mount Dora grow operation positions the company to have enough inventory to keep up with its expansion.

Learn how California-based MedMen is gearing up for a major expansion of its marijuana operation in Central Florida.

In a similar deal, Los Angeles-based pot provider MedMen Enterprises paid $53 million for the medical marijuana treatment center license and other assets of the Treadwell Nursery in Lake County. Last year, GrowthSpotter reported MedMen had submitted plans to build up to three greenhouse buildings on the site.

Another U.S. provider of medical and lifestyle cannabis products, Surterra Wellness, paid $3.3 million for the former Lakeland nursery Sunshine Growers at 3516 Hamilton Road. And Fort Lauderdale-based research and cultivation company, Green Point Research, paid $2.15 million for another Sunshine Growers nursery at 2400 U.S. Highway 17, last year in October.

According to data from the Florida Office of Medical Marijuana Use, there are nearly 400,000 medical marijuana patients enrolled in the Florida program, which is about 2% of the state’s population.

Earlier this month, West Palm Beach-based AFC Gamma announced it has $120 million in capital to lend to cannabis operators. The commercial mortgage REIT raised $80 million of equity from 20 family offices and has a credit line of up to $40 million, according to the release.

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Have a tip about Central Florida development? Contact me at arabines@GrowthSpotter.com or (407) 420-5427, or tweet me at @amanda_rabines. Follow GrowthSpotter on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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