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Wana Brands founder Nancy Whiteman steps down as Canopy Growth USA moves forward

One of the biggest success stories in cannabis has been Colorado-based Wana Brands founder Nancy Whiteman. Whiteman built the business out of her home kitchen and has led it to become one of the leading edibles brands in the country. She made headlines when after years of offers from numerous companies, she agreed to sell to Canopy Growth (NASDAQ: CGC) in a deal valued at $279 million.



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Earlier this week, Canopy Growth confirmed that its shareholders agreed to spin out Canopy USA, which will accelerate the planned acquisition of Wana Brands.


Nancy Whiteman


Co-Founder & CEO, Wana Brands


Today Wana Brands, Mountain High Products, LLC, Wana Wellness, LLC and The Cima Group, LLC announced that Whiteman would be stepping down from her day-to-day role at the end of May 2024 to pursue philanthropic activities and other interests.


“This transition has been in the works for a while, and after almost 14 years since co-founding Wana in 2010, I’m stepping down from my day-to-day role as Wana’s CEO,” said Whiteman in a statement. “I’m thrilled that Joe Hodas will be taking my place at the helm of Wana. While it is never easy for a founder to step away from the company they started, I’ve got full confidence that Joe and our Wana leadership team are well-positioned to continue Wana’s growth.”


She went on to say, “I am looking forward to being able to devote more time to the Wana Brands Foundation. While we have already made almost $5 million in donations to over 150 organizations.”


Whiteman won’t be leaving the company completely, she will remain as a member of the Board of Managers leading Canopy USA. She will also play an active role with the Wana Brands Foundation (WBF), which she created in 2022 and is one of the largest cannabis-related philanthropy funds to date.


Hodas is Wana’s current CMO, a four-year veteran of the company, and a 12-year veteran of the legalized industry.


“To say it is equal parts exciting and intimidating to fill some of the largest shoes in cannabis would be a gross understatement. I am so honored and privileged to have been part of Wana’s history, learning from Nancy and being inculcated in her vision, and to now be tapped to take that vision into the future,” said Hodas. “And unfortunately for Nancy, I have her cell number saved in my favorites!”


To date, the Wana Brands Foundation has distributed almost $5 million across philanthropic efforts addressing research, food security, shelter, safety, mental health, sustainability, human connection, and social justice

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