Fresh Healthy Vending International, Inc. (OTCQB: VEND) share volume was robust Mar. 5, with 700,434 shares changing hands, slightly higher than its three-month average volume of 685,285 shares.
Vending Franchisees Expanding
The surge in volume and share price is being fueled by the San Diego-based vending machine company’s spate of positive news releases that range from more vending machine sales to the raising of new capital for expansion.
On Mar. 4, the San Diego-based company announced sales of 47 Fresh Healthy Vending machines to five new franchisees, in addition to 19 machines that were sold to existing franchisees during the month of February 2014.
The 66 new machines, representing approximately $660,000 in sales bookings, will increase the company's reach across seven states and include franchisee territories in Texas, Kentucky, Ohio, South Carolina, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan.
Raises Additional $500,000
On Feb. 27, Fresh Healthy Vending announced that it has raised additional capital through the issuance of senior secured promissory notes to three investors in the aggregate principal amount of $501,000.
The proceeds from this issuance will be used principally to provide general working capital which may be utilized in support of the proposed acquisition of certain micro-market assets from Corporate Refreshment Services, LLC and initial further placements of micro-market installations that will comprise the first phase of expansion for the Company's corporate-owned micro-market business.
Acquisition of Micro-Market Platform
On Feb. 24, Fresh Healthy Vending said that entered into a non-binding term sheet for the acquisition of an integrated micro-market platform and all existing micro-market assets and operations from Corporate Refreshment Services, LLC (CRS). The assets purchase will include all micro-market operations and assets belonging to CRS including, but not limited to, all micro-market locations, inventories, accounts receivable, software, systems and intellectual property.
Upon closing of this proposed purchase, Fresh Healthy Vending plans to rapidly increase the number of company-owned micro-markets in the San Diego area. Additionally, the “company expects to begin offering the integrated micro-market platform to all existing and prospective franchisees.
Fresh Healthy Vending executives describe the soon to be Fresh Micro-Market as “a mini whole foods for the office break room.” A micro-market is an unstaffed, self-checkout, mini food store that integrates seamlessly into an office space.
On Mar. 5, VEND shares closed at $6.18 up 63 cents from its closing price of $5.65 the previous day.
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New Dispenser Continues To Lift Medbox
Meanwhile, Hollywood, Calif.-based Medbox, Inc. (OTCPINK Markets: MDBX), a maker identity-verifying medical-marijuana dispensers, share value continued cliimb on news of the rollout of its new patented dispenser.
MDBX share price closed at $30.70 on Mar. 5, up $1.41, or 4.81%, from its closing price of $29.29 the previous day. Its stock volume was 178,721 shares.
Medbox’s dispensers even have the precaution of requiring a finger print check for identity. The company hopes to ultimately place these dispensers in the thousands of clinics and approved facilities that it hopes one day will dispense medical marijuana.
Rollout with Orders Coming in
In a Feb. 26 release, Medbox announced the rollout of its new dispenser and said it had already taken orders for the new product.
Company executives stated the underlying technology has been awarded a patent (US 7,844,363 B1) that the company benefits from and there is also a patent pending on additional features and functionality as follows:
- Designed to securely store and dispense marijuana via an attached Point-of-Sale terminal (not pictured) at the control of dispensary operators and never directly accessible by consumers
- Engineered to have a UL safe rating between Residential Security Container (RSC) and Class B rated safes for the US and upgraded U.L. TL-15 designation for Canadian placements meeting or exceeding any state or country's requirements for secure storage and dispensing of marijuana
- Re-enforced steel plate structure & steel bolted inner access door
- Double walled & insulated sides/top for fire and thermal protection
- Inner door secured by multi-point interior locking system
- Fully electric operated and controlled locking system
- Fully programmable pass codes and fingerprint recognition for multi-level operator access
- No key or mechanical override mechanism ensuring no unwanted access
- Intrusion alert feature via SMS or email message after 5 unsuccessful access attempts or upon interior motion sensor activation.
"We have over 100 of our prior dispensing safes out in the field, and pre-orders for over 200 more of our next generation dispensing safes for Washington, Illinois, Nevada, and San Diego. We have a busy rest of the year ahead of us!" Medbox Vice President Matt Feinstein, stated in a written statement.
New Patents Awarded
At the same time, Medbox is developing and patenting even more practical products for the cannabis industry.
On Jan. 21, Medbox announced that it has expanded its intellectual property portfolio with the confirmation that it has been awarded two additional patents for its Vaporfection brand of products. The announcement was made in conjunction with a comprehensive shareholder update, and Form 10 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
The patents, awarded to the company's wholly owned subsidiary, Vaporfection International, Inc., specifically relate to:
- Vapor Glass™ technology, which features the use of laboratory grade glass encased heating element positioned in the center of the laboratory grade glass heating chamber air pathway. This unique Glass on Glass design results in a superior quality and efficient air/heat flow vapor, which ensures that nothing but the purest convection heated air enters the plant material, which releases the purest, naturally flavored and virtually odorless vapor into the users’ respiratory system. This method is unlike most vaporizers that apply conduction heat to the plant material using ceramics, metals and other possible contaminates in the air pathway.
- Vapor Sense™ technology, which features a touch screen interface linked to an automatic temperature sensing control system. The technology uses a digital microprocessor temperature controller directly connected to a thermo coupling temperature sensor in the heating chamber. It also incorporates a fixed temperature setting option, auto shut-off, and cool-down safety features.
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Marijuana-Industry Optimism Fuels mCig’s Share Value
Finally, Australian vaporizer and e-cigarette maker mCig Inc.’s (OTCQB: MCIG) stock volume also soared Mar. 5 with 8,622,537 shares changing hands, double its three-month average of 4,422,819 shares.
The ongoing robust activity is being fueled by the company’s recent product announcements and the general optimism regarding the eventual legalization of marijuana. On Feb 3, mCig unveiled VitaCig, Inc., mCig’s new product made by its wholly-owned subsidiary.
Taking the same approach applied to the marijuana industry, mCig said it decided to avoid direct competition with the ultra-competitive and highly fragmented nicotine-based eCig industry. Instead, mCig decided to develop a niche product by embracing the potential of eCig technology (the ability to easily vaporize pre-packaged liquids from a pocket-sized device) as a medical delivery device.
In the fall of 2013 the company began quietly working on the new product codenamed: "Vita".
“We incorporated a new subsidiary: VitaCig, Inc. trademarked the name "VitaCig", and developed the "VitaCig" - a nicotine-free eCig that delivers a water-vapor comprised of vitamins, nutrients, and natural flavors,” mCig’s CEO Paul Rosenberg said, in a written statement.
As far as mCig is aware, a product comparable to VitaCig does not exist on the market. The company believes that VitaCig could cannibalize both the existing eCig market as well as the e-Hookah markets by providing a superior, enjoyable experience without the nicotine or overly sweet flavors. It believes the product will appeal to a wide market including: Smokers looking to quit, Smokers looking to reduce nicotine consumption, non-smokers, and rehabilitation patients suffering from illnesses.
“With the mCig we developed a brand that immediately disrupted the vaporizer market. With VitaCig we are hoping to disrupt the eCig market,” Rosenberg said. “At this stage, it would be foolish to compete head on with the major tobacco companies who are embracing electronic cigarette technology and rolling out nicotine based products,” he added.
On Mar. 5, MCIG’s share price closed at 65 cents, up 13 cents from the share price of 52 cents the previous day.
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