North American Spending on Legal Cannabis is Expected to Grow to USD 47 Billion by 2027

NEW YORK, October 4, 2018 /PRNewswire/ --

According to a report published by Arcview Market Research, in partnership with BDS Analytics, worldwide consumer spending on legal cannabis is expected to reach USD 57 Billion by 2027. Recreational cannabis spending is projected to cross the USD 35 Billion mark, while medical cannabis spending is anticipated to hit USD 19.1 Billion. By region, the North American segment will account for most of the total spending, growing from USD 9.2 Billion in 2017 to USD 47.3 Billion by 2027 and at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 18%. Consumer spending on legal cannabis in the rest of the world is projected to grow at a higher rate of 47%. ICC International Cannabis Corp. (OTC: KNHBF), United Cannabis Corporation (OTC: CNAB), Freedom Leaf Inc. (OTC: FRLF), GB Sciences, Inc. (OTC: GBLX), PotNetwork Holdings, Inc. (OTC: POTN)

So far, this year has been very important for the cannabis industry. Canada has legalized cannabis on a national level, and the state of California has legalized sales of cannabis products for recreational use. These recent developments are expected to have significant financial and economic implications for the cannabis market as well as for the regions impacted by it. A report by Fortune indicates that, "In order to collect USD 1 Billion a year in taxes, the state will need to reach a projected USD 7 Billion in annual legal recreational cannabis sales. At that rate, California would easily be the country's largest legal marijuana market, as the entire legal cannabis industry in the U.S. is expected to pull in roughly USD 10 Billion in total sales for 2017. That number would almost certainly get a boost in the coming years, as legal markets grow in California and other states, such as Nevada and Massachusetts."

ICC International Cannabis Corp. (OTC: KNHBF) is also listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange under the ticker (CSE: WRLD). Just announced breaking news this morning that it, "has commenced construction of its Colombian Cannabis Centre of Excellence (the "Centre of Excellence" or "COE"). The Company's COE will serve as headquarters for the Company's flagship property (the "Cannabis Park"); located in the heart of the Bogota Savannah in Funza, Colombia.

The COE's mission is to advance ICC's craft Cannabis cultivation capabilities. Once complete, the COE will act as a collaboration facility, where renowned industry growers, geneticists and service providers can assemble and pursue revolutionary Cannabis centric projects and initiatives. It is ICC's belief that the COE will assist in catapulting Colombia into a world-class Cannabis cultivation jurisdiction.

ICC holds licenses to cultivate, produce, hold, sell and export cannabis and its by-products (see ICC news release dated June 22, 2018). Colombia has become a highly sought-after jurisdiction for cannabis cultivation activities as it has a world-leading combination of broad public and private sector acceptance, ideal growing conditions, and a massive addressable market.

ICC previously acquired 13 hectares of optimal agricultural land located in Funza, the heart of the Bogota savanna, which is also one of the safest areas in Colombia. It is conveniently located within a 20-kilometre drive to Bogota's international airport. The lease on this land has been prepaid for a period of 10 years.

Phase 1 of the Cannabis Park construction is currently underway; highlighted by a one hectare, polycarbonate greenhouse. Once Phase 1 is complete, ICC will begin test trials of its ten primary Cannabis strains. These test trials will assist in solidifying ICC's Colombian cultivation and production quotas. Upon completion of the test trials, ICC will present its findings to Colombian officials who will then award the Company its finalized quotas.

ICC's Colombian Cannabis Park is forecasted to produce between 25,000 and 40,000 kilograms of dried Cannabis flowers per year. Once fully optimized, ICC's Colombian assets are projected to generate up to 500,000 kilograms of dried Cannabis flower per annum.

Eugene Beukman, chief executive officer and director of ICC, stated: "ICC is extremely pleased that our vision for Cannabis Park is beginning to take shape with the construction of the Cannabis Centre of Excellence. We envision Cannabis Park as a place where the finest minds in the science and art of Cannabis cultivation and production will gather for the benefit of the industry as a whole. We believe that our commitment to the Centre of Excellence for reflects ICC's stated objective of being at the vanguard of Cannabis science. This marks our first step to becoming a major world wide producer of premium recreational and medicinal Cannabis."

United Cannabis Corporation (OTCQB: CNAB) is a biotechnology company dedicated to the development of phyto-therapeutic based products supported by patented technologies for the pharmaceutical, medical, and industrial markets. United Cannabis Corporation recently announced that it has signed an Agreement with Releaf Global Pty Ltd. to form and operate an Australian corporation ("NEWCO") for the purpose of commercializing the Company's patented Prana Bio Nutrient Medicinals, cannabis-centric products and technologies in Australia and other territories. Earnest Blackmon, United Cannabis' Chief Executive Officer, commented, "Australia represents a substantial opportunity for United Cannabis. Our Prana line is ideally suited for new markets as it provides patients and caregivers with a guided program to develop therapies targeted to a given patient's unique concerns. The resources provided by Releaf will expedite our ability to establish the infrastructure necessary for a full-scale domestic operation. The relationship also allows us to leverage our Jamaican operation, as Australian regulations provide for the importation of approved products from Jamaica. Our ability to serve the patients in Australia as soon as licenses are granted provides us with a distinct competitive advantage."

Freedom Leaf Inc. (OTCQB: FRLF) is a group of diversified, international, vertically-integrated hemp businesses concentrating on health, wellness, and education as well as cannabis media companies. Freedom Leaf Inc. recently announced that it has received a significant investment from cannabis private equity firm Merida Capital Partners to further expand its existing U.S. sales channels and accelerate its European hemp cultivation operations. Freedom Leaf and Merida have also agreed in principle to a strategic partnership by which Merida will provide certain operational resources and support for both Freedom Leaf's US hemp-based cannabidiol (CBD) sales efforts and their global cultivation operations. In connection with Merida's investment, Merida Senior Partner David Goldburg will be joining the Freedom Leaf Board of Directors. Clifford Perry, Chief Executive Officer of Freedom Leaf, commented on the investment and partnership, "Receiving an investment from a leading cannabis firm like Merida, which already has investments in key supply chain providers like KushCo, GrowGeneration and Emerald Scientific, should drive our US expansion and ensure we are building our CBD production business efficiently, while also giving us incredible support in our global expansion."

GB Sciences, Inc. (OTCQB: GBLX) is a diverse cannabis company, focused on standardized cultivation and production methods; as well as biopharmaceutical research and development. GB Sciences, Inc. recently announced that it has been granted a recreational production license for the manufacture of cannabis oils. Oils are the base ingredient for vape products, tinctures, edibles, and nutraceutical formulations. The Company received its medical marijuana production license on February 2nd, 2018. The State of Nevada instructed them to apply for the recreational license in June, for upgraded licenses. The Company's anticipated revenues from extracted and infused products were delayed by six months. Now, with the issuance of the recreational oil production license, the Company can begin selling its tinctures, oils, vape pens and edibles with estimated revenue starting at around USD 100,000 per month and growing to at least USD 300,000 per month. Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board, John Poss, states, "This is a great opportunity to spread our core scientific approach to multiple new retail products. Our core tenets of purity, consistency and trust can now truly extend from seed to sale across multiple lines of cannabis products. It is the first step in building and introducing a national, trusted brand family. This is a true inflection point in the growth of GB Sciences."

PotNetwork Holdings, Inc. (OTC: POTN) is a publicly traded company that acts as a holding company for its subsidiaries, First Capital Venture Co., the owner of Diamond CBD, Inc., the maker of Diamond CBD oils. PotNetwork Holdings, Inc. recently announced that its wholly owned subsidiary, Diamond CBD Inc., drew a substantial crowd September 14-16th, 2018 at the 100+ thousand square foot convention halls of Mana Wynwood in Miami, Florida. Diamond CBD focuses on the research, development, and multinational marketing of premium hemp extracts that contain a broad range of cannabinoids and natural hemp derivatives. Diamond CBD's team consists of hemp industry pioneers and natural product experts, chemists, doctors and scientists, dedicated to producing the finest and purest cannabidiol (CBD) oils. This year's World Vapor Expo Industry Showcase featured hundreds of companies, retailers, distributors, wholesalers, consumers and proprietors from around the globe. Part of Diamond CBD's key marketing strategy is to create a dominant presence at industry trade shows. Diamond CBD has a highly successful history of sales from these key trade shows. At this show the Company featured numerous products, drawing attention directly from prospective vendors from the U.S. and other countries. Featured at the show were Diamond CBD's Vape Additives, Liquid Gold Vape Juice, Chill CBD Gummies, Diamond CBD Tinctures and Biotech Creams, the Company's most successful products.

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