Hall of Fame Quarterback Joe Montana Goes Green, Secures Big Investment for Pot Brand
The long-retired NFL champ just closed a big investment in Caliva, a California-based cannabis cultivator and retailer. Montana says he has high hopes for his latest business venture.
Published on January 25, 2019

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Legendary NFL quarterback Joe Montana is trading astroturf for a new kind of grass. 

According to the Sacramento Bee, the Hall of Fame inductee and former San Francisco 49ers star recently closed a sizeable investment in Caliva, a California-based licensed cannabis cultivator and retailer.

Montana, alongside other high-profile investors like former Yahoo! CEO Carol Bartz, closed a $75 million funding round for the San Jose-based brand, which operates just a few miles from Levi’s Stadium, where Montana’s old team plays. Caliva produces a full line of flower, pre-rolls, concentrates, and more, and announced on Thursday that it will use the newly-acquired venture funding to expand its product line and retail footprint.

"What we’re trying to do is be the #1 brand in California,” Caliva CEO Dennis O'Malley said in a statement announcing the capitol injection. “We believe this is where global brands are made."

It is not entirely clear if Montana is a cannabis user himself, but after Thursday’s announcement, the Super Bowl champ made it clear that he was getting into the ganja game for more than just a paycheck.

“[The cannabis industry] can provide relief to many people and can make a serious impact on opioid use or addiction,” Montana told the Sacramento Bee. That said, Caliva did not disclose what portion of the $75 million funding round was supplied by Montana. 

Over the past few years, a number of retired and current NFL players have espoused the benefits of cannabis in helping to reduce pain and treat long-term injuries caused by the gridiron. Players have repeatedly told stories about team doctors handing out opioids like advil, and frequently describe finding relief from both their injuries — and the pills themselves — through cannabis. 

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Zach Harris
Zach Harris is a writer based in Philadelphia whose work has appeared on Noisey, First We Feast, and Jenkem Magazine. You can find him on Twitter @10000youtubes complaining about NBA referees.
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