“I didn’t want to be an innovator anymore, I just wanted to make the quick and easy buck.
I just wanted in.
The Notorious BIG said it best: ‘either you’re slingin’ crack-rock, or you’ve got a wicked jump-shot.’
Nobody wants to work for it anymore.
There’s no honor in taking that after school job at Mickey Dee’s, honor’s in the dollar, kid.
So I went the white boy way of slinging crack-rock, I became a stock broker.”
– Boiler Room
Today The Executive Director of the British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC) announced it was temporarily suspending a group of so-called consultants from buying or selling the securities of 11 companies listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange (CSE).
After a lengthy investigation into the Vancouver based Bridgemark Group, the BCSC concluded that Bridgemark didn’t actually provide consulting services to these companies and rather used a consultant exemption to bypass filing a prospectus, this scheme netted Bridgemark a hefty $6.2 million dollar pay cheque after selling.
Anatomy Of the Scheme
According to the BSC report the process Bridgemark regularly engaged in was as follows:
With respect to Green 2, Cryptobloc, BLOK and New Point, the evidence obtained by Commission staff to date shows that:
1. the private placements raised a total amount of $17,927,500,
2. the four Issuers paid $15,331,000 back to the BridgeMark Group,
3. the BridgeMark Group sold shares of the four Issuers for $8,769,923,
4. the scheme generated profits of $6,173,423 to the BridgeMark Group,
5. members of the BridgeMark Group who purchased securities from these four Issuers under the Consultant Exemption may not have been consultants under National Instrument 45-106.
**On top of that, the BCSC also believes that Bridgemark did something similar with seven other companies earlier this year meaning BridgeMark has purchased more than 252 million securities from 11 listed companies.
11 Issuing Companies
The following are the 11 companies in question who did deals with Bridgemark, a few of which are currently facing a trading halt.
- Cryptobloc Technologies (CRYP)
- New Point Exploration (NP)
- Green 2 Blue Energy (GTBE)
- BLOK Technologies (BLOK)
- Kootenay Zinc (ZNK)
- Affinor Growers (AFI)
- Beleave (BE)
- Liht Cannabis (formerly known as Marapharm) (LIHT)
- PreveCeutical (PREV)
- Speakeasy Cannabis Club (EASY)
- Abattis (ATT)
Abbatis In Bed With Bridgemark
Perhaps more in bed with Bridgemark than anyone else is cannabis company Abattis, who continues to be sketchy as hell.
We previously wrote about 13 cannabis and crypto stocks on the OTC who were being investigated, Abbatis and Affinor Growers made that list as well. The OTC was trying to weed out shell companies that were engaging in ‘pump and dump’ activities.
Seems to fit the narrative thus far.
Abattis hired Anthony Jackson as their CFO, one of the founding members of Bridgemark and one of the one’s named in this BCSC report.
Our friends at The Deep Dive have also outlined the sketchiness of this company in great detail. According to The Dive’s research, another important link between Bridgemark and Abbatis exists:
On February 1, it was announced that Abattis would be acquiring Cannanumus and their claimed technology for the sum of $5,000,000 in cash, with additional milestone based payments amounting to up to $7 million. In exchange for the recently raised cash, Abattis would receive 49% of Cannanumus….Cannanumus itself was founded by Simran Gill, who from what we can tell, is a Principal at BridgeMark Financial.
The Deep Dive also uncovered:
On February 27, he was awarded 6,500,000 common shares of Abattis at a price of $0.263 as a form of compensation. In dollar terms, this equates to a paycheck of just over $1.7 million. Twelve days later, he was awarded a further 3,000,000 shares at $0.27, or $810,000 cash equivalent, as compensation for services performed. During this time, the $25 million acquisition of 90% of Gabriola Green Farms occurred. However, this is hardly with compensating the CEO of Abattis $1.7 million.
To make things even weirder, iin 2015 there was a lawsuit against Abbatis from Affinor Growers, another one of the 11 companies on the BCSC’s list.
In 2014 Abbatis had some more controversy.
The company filed suit against the former employees for breaching their fiduciary duties as managers of PhytaLab.
The two employees were also appointed as ongoing consultants of Abattis. As an emergency motion, a hearing on the matter is anticipated to take place within the next 2-3 business days, Abattis said on Friday, with a temporary restraining order to be put in place at that time.
Abbatis has been riddled with these types of claims, but continues to put on a brave face as their stock continues to bleed.
Here is perhaps the most awkward interview on the internet with Abbatis CEO Robert Abenante where he explains the nature of Abbatis and its operations and goals.
If You’re Legit, Mazel Tov
Let’s end this on a positive note.
If someone promotes a company (like we do) that they actually believe will succeed in the long run and uses logic and facts to back up their argument, mazel tov. That’s the other side of the coin to all of this.
Companies need to be promoted.
It’s like any other business, marketing and PR works, or else these companies wouldn’t spend hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars to get the word out. I’m going to get shaman-y here, it’s all about the intention behind the messaging. Getting paid by a company to promote them is great, again, mazel tov.
There are legit promoters and marketers around, it sometimes takes skill to spot. If you see a company slowly and steadily releasing news and climbing the charts to a much higher share price, there is a chance that they are doing things in an ethical way.
Always read disclosure statements and privacy policies closely, the smaller the print, the more important the information.
Stay safe out there.