Founded by Keegan Peterson in 2015, the first and only workforce management company for the cannabis industry, Wurk, announced that it had raised $3.2 million in a bridge funding round.
Looking back at Wurk’s Growth
Wurk launched in the industry to offer businesses a range of workforce management tools and solutions, including payroll management, employee scheduling, and human resource management solutions. On November 8th, 2016, Wurk successfully raised $1 Million in its’ seed stage funding. On April 11, 2017, Wurk raised an additional $2 million in an extended seed round.
Returning investors, Poseidon Asset Management led this round. Phyto Partners, Altitude Investment Partners, Arcview Investor Network and Arcadian Fund also were apart of this round.
Poseidon Asset Management has been providing access to a diverse range of companies in the cannabis industry since 2013 and investments include Flowhub, Meadow, Baker Technologies and Wurk.
Keegan Peterson, CEO of Wurk and I had the opportunity to discuss more on this round, where the funds would be used and even gained a bit of advice and insight on raising capital to share with the DCN community.
First off, congratulations on this round, it is so exciting seeing the growth of Wurk over the past few years. Going into this round, what will the funds be allocated?
Keegan Peterson: Wurk plans to use this funding to make key strategic hires and further build out its cannabis labor management technology. The industry is growing at a rapid pace, and it’s imperative that our systems are able to withstand this expansion and continue to provide our customers with the highest level of service and support as possible.
We also plan to scale out our team internally to better allocate time and skills to specific aspects of our operations. We need to stay up-to-date on changing state regulations, and the larger our team, the better we can perform on this front. The platform is designed to scale nationally with the growth of the cannabis industry while incorporating local laws and regulations unique to each state.
Wurk closed $2million in funding last year, let’s talk about achievements. What significant milestones can you share what your team achieved with that round of funding?
Keegan Peterson: We’ve increased our client portfolio tenfold, and have expanded to 27 states across the country. Wurk is now the largest tax processor in the cannabis industry, with our main hub of operations in Denver, a small service center in Indianapolis, and we’re looking to open an office in Los Angeles within the next six months.
Building a good relationship with your investors is critical, what advice or lessons can you share with our readers who are new in the fundraising process?
Keegan Peterson: Finding an investor that understands each phase of the startup process and approaches the situation in its own frame is key. It’s important to negotiate a deal that works for everyone involved. As entrepreneurs, we often enter these deals thinking there should be a premium, while investors believe with risk there should be a discount. In the cannabis industry, this is heightened since there’s so much more risk involved.
You also want to create a strong foundation for a working relationship. There are ups and downs in the fundraising process, and utilizing VCs’ knowledge, and insights can go a long way in maximizing the personal transaction. Find investors that inspire you as the entrepreneur to make good decisions and move forward in ways that are productive and strategic for the company and its growth.
Thank you, Keegan, for taking the time to give us some insight into Wurk. We can’t wait to see what 2018 brings for you, the team and for the companies you are helping along the way.
To learn more about Wurk, visit www.enjoywurk.com
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