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What the Viridian Acquisition and SAP Certification Means for Akerna

·3 min read

Enterprise resource platform (ERP) solutions are used to carry out the core processes needed to run a company — finance, manufacturing, HR, supply chain, services, and procurement, among others. Modern ERPs use advanced technologies, such as machine learning and artificial intelligence to provide efficiency across every aspect of a business.

With the rapid growth of the cannabis industry, the demand for best-in-class ERP software in the market is increasing.

Akerna Corp. (NASDAQ: KERN), the cannabis industry's first seed-to-sale ERP, has always been the first at every stage for a cannabis software company — from listing on Nasdaq to now being the only cannabis-compliant SAP Business One offering.

This comes after the recent acquisition of Viridian Sciences, a fully-integrated cannabis ERP system built on SAP Business One.

The acquisition springboards Akerna’s business model, solidifying its space as the first and only true ERP software solution specifically built for the cannabis industry, serving cannabis operators sized from startup to multistate operators (MSOs).

The SAP Solution for Cannabis

In February 2021, Akerna announced that the platform had received the SAP Certification in integration with SAP NetWeaver. With this SAP-certified integration, Akerna could provide its clients with in-depth ledger information that helps it stand out from other seed-to-sale software providers.

The recent SAP Business One offering strengthens Akerna’s channel connections with existing ERP providers with top-of-the-line capabilities.

Leading enterprise organizations across industries choose SAP Business One for its ability to automate key financial business functions — inventory management, automated compliance, business intelligence, unique tracking, reporting, basic and edibles processing, distribution, distribution and public cloud (AWS).

This is good news for any cannabis company looking to scale alongside the rapidly expanding industry that must leverage the right tools to do so.

“Cannabis companies looking to scale alongside the rapidly expanding industry must leverage the right tools to do so, and our combined ERP solutions are essential to that,” said Jessica Billingsley, Akerna CEO. “By combining Viridian's Business One solutions with Akerna's compliance and ecosystem, we continue to strengthen our channel connections with existing ERP providers and firmly solidify our strategic moat as the only scaled cannabis compliance and technology provider for the cannabis businesses of today and the post-legalized world.”


Photo: Akerna

Favorable Political Climate

With more states legalizing marijuana and a supportive new government, an end to the federal and state conflict is more likely now than ever.

In March, Representatives Ed Perlmutter and Steve Daines, among others, reintroduced The Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act. The legislation would normalize banking for the legal marijuana industry, which almost exclusively operates in cash because of its lack of access to financial institutions.

With federal legalization on the horizon and Congress reintroducing The SAFE Act, you can expect an increase in regulations. And, increased regulations necessitates the need for accelerated adoption of technology solutions.

For Akerna, federal legalization could dramatically expand the addressable market and accelerate its growth — positioning itself as the potential leading cannabis business for the legal world.

Akerna’s robust portfolio includes MJ Freeway, Leaf Data Systems, Ample Organics, Trellis, Solo Sciences, Last Call Analytics and now, Viridian Sciences. With over 80 integrations and professional services teams, this makes Akerna the cannabis industry's only scaled technology provider, enabling compliance, regulation and taxation.

Viridian Sciences Investment Highlights

  • $3.5 million in 2020 Software as a Service (SaaS) revenue

  • Acquisition price of $6 million in stock (1.7 times 2020 SaaS revenue)

  • Over 70% in software margins

  • Best cannabis ERP built on SAP Business One

  • Viridian's talented team of 24 employees

  • Portfolio of over 30 clients including Wana, Trulieve, Herbl and Canndescent

  • Positive cashflow contributor

  • Second COVID-19 acquisition after Trellis, a cultivation management and compliance software company in April 2020 at 1.8 times revenue

You can learn more about Akerna by visiting its website here.

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