I had a terrible head cold - but the message got through.
No, it was more than a message...
It was a revelation.
It was back in June, and I was on the floor of the Fourth Annual Cannabis Business Summit & Expo in Oakland, Calif. My head was fuzzy due to the combo of viral infection and strong cold medicine, but I knew the conversation I was in was important.
I was talking to Chet Billings, CEO of legal cannabis investing company Mentor Capital Inc., and he was trying to explain the importance of compliance in his business. He was talking about cannabis companies' need to follow all state and local business regulations - and to track their compliance.
Billings told me that we're now approaching an era when mergers and acquisitions among marijuana companies are starting to happen. And buyers will only go after smaller firms of the highest quality. If they don't have their compliance in order, he said, those acquirers will keep on trolling for more attractive fish.
The stakes are high, Billings said, and a lot of smaller operators simply don't have experience with government regulation or the manpower to pay it the attention it needs without tech software to do the heavy lifting.
I must have still looked confused, because then he put it to me in a way that I, as a lifelong movie fan, could understand: "It's like in the 1980s and '90s when video rental shops still proliferated the landscape."
Eventually, Billings recalled, Blockbuster came along and bought up the best video stores in each town. Hollywood Video picked up the second-best ones. And the dustiest, most unfriendly places got left alone - and went out of business.
"Why would you want a ratty, local dispensary that resembles an old video store?" Billings said. "One false key stroke is a permanent violation. You get enough of those noncompliance violations - and you lose your license... and any chance at being a success."
That's one of the reasons why I've frequently recommended Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) as a "starter" pot stock. The tech giant has made a big commitment to developing legal marijuana compliance software tools for governments and businesses.
And it's really just one of the many "lessons" I've learned while out on the trail this year that I've used to make some of my members a mint through investing in the right marijuana stocks.
Now I'm using those same lessons to bring you these five pot stock predictions for 2018. All five are catalysts that will really drive the marijuana market upward in the next year.
Don't miss them...
2018: The Year of Legal Cannabis Profits
As of Dec. 19, my Nova-X Report members have racked up 10 double-digit winners and 14 triple-digit winners through legal marijuana stocks I've shown them.
Since I first introduced them, some of these stocks have soared 287.18%... 414.81%... and 653.42%. One even saw peak gains of 1,588%.
So it's no wonder so many of you keep asking me about the best ways to invest in pot stocks. If you want to join those Nova-X members, just click here.
Moreover, despite the ongoing federal ban on cannabis, the general public's opinion is changing fast.
According to an October Gallup poll, 64% of all Americans - and more than half of all Republicans - support marijuana legalization. That support was clear in 2016, as residents of California, Nevada, Maine, and Massachusetts all voted to legalize recreational marijuana use.
Currently, 29 states and Washington, D.C., have legalized medical cannabis, and recreational marijuana is legal in seven states (and D.C.).
That means long-term investors who know cannabis is more than just a fad will capture the biggest profits.
I've got five big predictions - five big catalysts - that will help get them there.
Here they are...
About the Author
Michael A. Robinson is a 36-year Silicon Valley veteran and one of the top tech and biotech financial analysts working today. That's because, as a consultant, senior adviser, and board member for Silicon Valley venture capital firms, Michael enjoys privileged access to pioneering CEOs, scientists, and high-profile players. And he brings this entire world of Silicon Valley "insiders" right to you...
- He was one of five people involved in early meetings for the $160 billion "cloud" computing phenomenon.
- He was there as Lee Iacocca and Roger Smith, the CEOs of Chrysler and GM, led the robotics revolution that saved the U.S. automotive industry.
- As cyber-security was becoming a focus of national security, Michael was with Dave DeWalt, the CEO of McAfee, right before Intel acquired his company for $7.8 billion.
This all means the entire world is constantly seeking Michael's insight.
In addition to being a regular guest and panelist on CNBC and Fox Business, he is also a Pulitzer Prize-nominated writer and reporter. His first book Overdrawn: The Bailout of American Savings warned people about the coming financial collapse - years before the word "bailout" became a household word.
Silicon Valley defense publications vie for his analysis. He's worked for Defense Media Network and Signal Magazine, as well as The New York Times, American Enterprise, and The Wall Street Journal.
And even with decades of experience, Michael believes there has never been a moment in time quite like this.
Right now, medical breakthroughs that once took years to develop are moving at a record speed. And that means we are going to see highly lucrative biotech investment opportunities come in fast and furious.
To help you navigate the historic opportunity in biotech, Michael launched the Bio-Tech Profit Alliance.
His other publications include: Strategic Tech Investor, The Nova-X Report, Bio-Technology Profit Alliance and Nexus-9 Network.