Frequently Asked Questions

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Who is Seed to Sale Funding?

Seed to Sale Funding (SSF) is a subsidiary of The Vortex Group located in Troy, Michigan. It was founded by CEO and Principal Judy Rinkus to provide debt placement, loan brokerage and consulting services to the rapidly-emerging legal marijuana and hemp industries.

What experience do the principals of SSF have?

Judy is a career commercial banking executive who brings over 30 years of corporate loan structuring and placement to SSF. She is joined by Managing Director Nicole Swigert, who brings over 13 years of senior commercial loan experience to the table. Together, they provide professional and creative funding solutions to cannabis business loan funding.

My financial adviser recommended that I look into third-party financing for marijuana equipment loans and working capital financing. Local banks and credit unions have not been too enthusiastic about lending to the cannabis industry. Can SSF lend me money for those purposes?

Actually, SSF is a debt placement company that puts our cannabis industry borrowing clients together with a wide range of private and corporate financing sources throughout the U.S. that provide financing to the cannabis industry. In addition to sourcing loans for cannabis extraction equipment, lab equipment and growing equipment along with working capital needs, SSF can also help with real estate purchase and construction financing, leasing and acquisition structuring.

I have a background in agriculture and am investigating the cultivation and production side as I start a marijuana grow operation. What type of loans might be available for real estate project funding?

SSF’s primary funding sources include mortgage companies that offer the diverse set of cannabis real estate loans starting as low as $250,000, including: purchase or refinancing of land and existing structures; need-specific greenhouse financing and the construction of production facilities; bridge loans; and sale-leaseback structuring. Standard application and documentation processes can usually be expected with an eye towards efficient processing and timely underwriting.

I struggle like everyone else in the cannabis industry with the handling, securing and utilization of the large amounts cash generated by product sales. As we await a change in Federal banking restrictions, are there any alternatives?

It won’t come as news that the cash problem is the number one challenge in the marijuana business today. But under the right conditions, certain financing sources of SSF have shown the ability to provide clients with a more effective use of its larger cash stores. Contact us for a more comprehensive discussion of this “legacy cash” solution.

My new marijuana business is on the drawing board, but I’m already running low on the start-up cash. How will I be able to obtain a small business startup loan without historical financial information on my operation?

While the sources of funding in the cannabis industry are typically non-standard, those traditional Four C’s of Lending remain the keys to obtaining loans of any kind. Seasoned CFO’s and Treasurers use these as easily as they breathe — but a brief primer for those looking to start a marijuana business:

Credit: How you personally have performed on loans from banks and credit card companies, or how your company has honored trade payables and credit extensions, is very important when a young company asks for new money.

Cash Flow: Your company must generate enough funds to cover current obligations while presenting a business plan that demonstrates growth and profitability.

Collateral: Lenders have varying attitudes towards a secondary source of repayment. Strength of cash flow will dictate whether the underlying and/or outside assets are requested.

Character: Reputation and trustworthiness go a long way when a lender has to make a difficult loan decision.

SSF works with both its borrowers and its financing sources to find a loan structure that lays the proper foundation for future success. Contact us to start a conversation about new business loan requirements for a cannabis business startup.

I recently became aware of the availability for sale of an large, existing, vertically-integrated MMJ operation. Is there an opportunity to buy the entire business with a combination of investor cash and outside debt?

The key to acquisition financing is the establishment of the “enterprise value” of the target business, which by definition is measurably higher than its liquidation value. This is accomplished by analyzing pre- and post-financing cash flow, and whether it is sufficient to meet the lender’s risk threshold.

SSF’s experienced principals work closely with potential buyers to assemble a comprehensive loan package of past financial statements, underlying tax information, detailed projections and personal financial data on prospective owners, then help the buyers tell the acquisition “story” to the potential lender.