A wrongful termination complaint is targeting Jay-Z’s Monogram cannabis company. The lawsuit alleges Monogram unlawfully transported products across state borders. Its overseeing entity, TPCO Holding Corp., faces accusations of gender bias and submitting incorrect financial records.
A representative for The Parent Co., the California-based company operating as TPCO, refuted the lawsuit’s claims as unfounded.
TPCO, a prominent cannabis manufacturer, operates 11 retail locations throughout California. Additionally, they employ a workforce of over 650 individuals, as disclosed in financial reports sent to the Securities and Exchange Commission.
As reported by SFGate, former TPCO Vice President Cathi Clay initiated the lawsuit on February 16, 2023.
A representative for The Parent Co., the California-based company operating as TPCO, refuted the lawsuit’s claims as unfounded. Jay-Z’s Monogram cannabis brand resides under the TPCO umbrella. Shawn Carter, the rapper’s legal name, currently holds the role listed as acting chief visionary officer.
Per SFGate, Clay’s lawsuit claims she experienced years of harassment from the company’s executives, including Chief Financial Officer Mike Batesole.
The lawsuit asserts that TPCO executives engaged in “hostile, disparaging behavior” and “publicly doubted Ms. Clay’s competence.” Additionally, CFO Batesole apparently “made numerous unsuitable remarks about women, recruiting ‘housewives’ for accounts payable positions, individuals of color, and also employee skill sets.”
Also, upon warning executives about inaccuracies in the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filings for 2021 and 2022, Clay faced reprimand. Furthermore, the suit claims that Monogram-labeled illicitly transported cannabis items “to New York, for a Monogram event featuring Shawn Carter,” Jay-Z’s real name. Transporting legal weed across state lines, even through and to legal states, is still federally illegal. States cannot allow interstate transport or the sale of cannabis at this time.
Following an August whistleblower report, Clay stepped down from her position. In January, TPCO reorganized its business agreement with Monogram.
Gold Flora Corp Merger
In January, TPCO restructured its business agreement with Monogram. Last month, TPCO announced a merger with Gold Flora, which will now operate as Gold Flora Corp. Under the terms of the merger, TPCO’s Troy Datcher will serve as the new company’s board chair. Gold Flora’s Laurie Holcomb will become CEO. TPCO shares continue to trade on Canada’s NEO Stock Exchange as GRAM. On OTC or pink sheet markets, it also trades as GRAMF.
Jay-Z continues to work closely with Monogram’s brand team to ensure their offerings. These include the OG Handroll, a 1.5-gram pre-roll.
Monogram’s diverse range of light, medium, and heavy options cater to a wide audience, from cannabis connoisseurs to newcomers alike. Monogram’s cannabis strains—No. 88, No. 96, No. 70, and No. 01, developed by veteran grower DeAndre “De” Watson, come in three strengths: “light,” “medium,” and “heavy.”
Monogram should likely overcome these challenges. Between Jay-Z’s entertainment company, Roc Nation, and the guidance of industry veterans, his pot company will likely emerge and be unscathed. However, it really depends on how stringently authorities want to address these charges.
Roc Nation plays an essential role in promoting Monogram products and elevating the brand’s visibility through its influence. Positioning it as a leader in the cannabis space with a reputation for quality and innovation is also parallel to the Rocawear brand’s current mission and vision.
The brand’s growth in the weed market shows no signs of slowing down. With Jay-Z’s vision and the expertise of his team Monogram is well-positioned for massive growth. According to Jay-Z, as Monogram navigates this challenging terrain, its commitment to upholding the cannabis industry’s legacy is strong. Additionally, Jay-z says that pushing the boundaries of innovation remains unwavering.
As the legal proceedings unfold, Monogram’s supporters will also eagerly await the brand’s next move.