The Game partnered with a California marijuana dispensary called The Reserve years ago and the deal has paid off. Terra Tech has purchased The Reserve and will rename it. The sales of The Game’s dispensary turned a nice profit and his strain, Trees, will continue to be sold exclusively with the new owners.
Terra Tech, a national cannabis company with local roots, will finally get to run a store in its own backyard.
The Irvine-based firm on Thursday announced a $7 million deal to buy The Reserve dispensary in Santa Ana, which has been co-owned by rapper The Game.
Terra Tech plans to rebrand the shop as Blüm, the name for its growing chain of dispensaries. The company already has one Blüm dispensary in Oakland, four in Nevada and another coming soon to San Leandro. Terra Tech also owns cultivation and extraction facilities.
But the deal in Santa Ana marks the publicly traded company’s first retail space in Southern California.
“We’re excited to have something close to our corporate headquarters,” said Derek Peterson, CEO of Terra Tech. “We see this as being one of the flagship locations for us.”
The deal has been a long time coming.
Through a 2014 ballot measure, Santa Ana became the first and only city in Orange County to allow medical marijuana dispensaries. The city then held a lottery to see who would get a chance to secure one of 20 available permits.
As much as they wanted to open a store in Orange County, Peterson said his company opted against entering the lottery, preferring to pursue opportunities based on merit rather than luck.
They saw the Los Angeles scene as just too risky, with the city still scrambling to license and regulate its shops. So Peterson said they continued expanding the Blüm footprint in other parts of the country, while always keeping an eye on opportunities close to home.
Darice Smolenski, original owner of The Reserve, made the gamble in Santa Ana — and it paid off.
Shortly after she opened her store on Tech Center Drive in 2016, rapper The Game bought an ownership stake in the shop. He performed at the store and developed a line of flowers and concentrates called Trees that’s only available at The Reserve.
While Terra Tech is buying out The Game’s ownership stake as part of the deal, Peterson said they plan to continue as the exclusive carrier of his Trees line.
“The guy’s got a great heart,” Peterson said, pointing to how The Game has contributed to causes like Michigan’s Flint water crisis. “We want to continue a partnership with him.”