Tommy Chong and Cheech Marin, names practically synonymous with cannabis culture, are making a long-awaited leap into the dispensary business. They have entered into a licensing partnership with Five Points Holdings Inc., which includes opening dispensaries in 5 states -- complete with Cheech & Chong memorabilia.
Many expected a deal like this years ago, given their iconic status, but Chong says now is the right time. "I always operate on stoner time, so I'm actually a little early [with this deal]," he said in an interview with Cheddar.
The initial dispensaries will be opened in California, Nevada, Arizona, Illinois and Washington, with the hope to expand worldwide according to Chong. The dispensaries are expected to feature a one-of-a-kind retail experience with products from popular cannabis brands, a throwback setting commemorating the duo, and for the first time ever, a place to purchase Cheech & Chong clothing and memorabilia.
The pair has gotten offers for similar deals before, but Chong says the move with Five Points Holdings is the right fit for them. "Our stores are going to be incredible, state of the art. You're talking about the guys who invented this lifestyle practically," said Chong.
During the coronavirus pandemic, Chong says existing dispensaries earned an additional layer of legitimacy. "The virus really helped us in the sense that we were deemed an essential business. They couldn't shut anybody down."
As for himself, the 82-year-old comedian said he is enjoying his time and taking care of his plants. "I don't mind staying home with my little babies growing on the roof."