The cannabis industry has long been fragmented, both geographically and politically. Recognizing this, Mark Bonner, CEO of Cannaverse Technologies and creator of Cannaland, decided to take matters into his own hands.
With a background in renewable energy, Mark Bonner brings a unique perspective to the cannabis industry. He saw the potential for a more streamlined, efficient and secure approach and set out to create it — a metaverse known as Cannaland. It is the world's first cannabis platform powered by blockchain technology, and Mark Bonner is at the forefront of the industry, leading the charge for a more unified, sustainable future.
Given his extensive experience, our team at Cointelegraph felt it was only fitting to sit down with Mark Bonner to discuss his vision for the industry and how the metaverse plays a role in it.
Cointelegraph: With all the talk of the metaverse and what it can do, many critics think that the digital realm is only for enthusiasts. Would you agree they are the main target market, or who would you suggest can benefit from the metaverse?
Mark Bonner: The metaverse is providing the platform that will allow pioneers, thought leaders and decision-makers the opportunity to innovate and experiment as digital and virtually enhanced worlds evolve.
In Cannaverse Technologies’ Cannaland, whether you are a brand owner, a business-to-business (B2B) company involved in a specialized part or all aspects of the cannabis industry, or a canna-curious consumer who wants to learn more but finds navigating the dispensary environment a bit nerve-wracking, a metaverse landscape can be designed to provide an immersive experience for not only enthusiasts and consumers, but a general B2B community as well.
CT: What value do you see an immersive experience bringing to both your industry and the world at large?
MB: In essence, the evolution of 2D Web2 today to the Web3 3D immersive experience of tomorrow will transform and define how we interact, transact, operate and ultimately become productive in a virtual environment that will in many ways go beyond our physical world’s Web2 capabilities today.
CT: What verticals do you see the metaverse having an impact on?
MB: The metaverse is a powerful tool that can address a wide range of verticals. One example of this is in the realm of branding and advertising. By using a metaverse platform, businesses can create a 360-degree immersive experience for consumers. This allows them to interact with businesses, services and products in a more engaging, interactive way. This can be especially beneficial for B2B and business-to-consumer (B2C) companies looking to connect with their audience in new, innovative ways.
Another vertical that can be addressed by the metaverse is the real estate industry. By utilizing virtual land and property sales, consumers can purchase and lease property in a digital environment. Additionally, digital solutions such as shopping malls, shop-in-shop concepts and architectural solutions can be created to enhance this experience. These features open up a world of possibilities for developers and real estate companies to create new, exciting projects that can be enjoyed by consumers in a virtual world.
CT: Can you provide a real-world use case to demonstrate how these verticals may be applied?
MB: Cannabis carried negative consequences for anyone growing, advertising and distributing the product.
This is where I stumbled upon a real-world solution to a real-world problem. What if I could create a space where you could advertise, make it possible to transact (with a native token) for a cannabis-related product and deliver it, all in one place? This was unheard of in the cannabis community.
CT: What is your vision for the cannabis industry?
MB: Creating the world’s first cannabis metaverse, pioneering cannabis product marketing, manufacturing and merchandising with an innovative blockchain payment system. Potentially unlocking and empowering cultivators, growers, testing labs, manufacturers, wholesalers, retailers, medical dispensaries and consumption lounges with the ability to scale and monetize their brands while directly addressing the existing gaps in the cannabis industry.
Cannaland revolutionizes the global cannabis industry by connecting every facet of the cannabis and hemp communities in a digital smart city.
CT: What can users expect from the world’s first cannabis-themed metaverse?
MB: Surrounding the consumer with businesses, services, products and other appealing digital lifestyle items, the metaverse encourages participation and transactions. The Cannaland platform offers virtual land and property sales, including purchasing and leasing property, and the creation of shopping malls and shop-in-shop options, while also providing digital architectural solutions for clients. It has a mobile app for the easy purchase/lease of land and its native token, as well as a game app that allows users to "play-to-earn" and "play-to-learn."
Education is another key focus for Cannaland, which offers Cannalearn, a space for collaboration with higher educational facilities, universities, doctors and researchers to study, publish and store relevant information about cannabis. They hope to educate governments, authorities and universities about cannabis and the industry, rather than punish those who partake in it.
In terms of entertainment, Cannaland offers a variety of options such as music concerts, sports events, consumption lounges, edible events, interactive movies, storytelling and socializing in the metaverse. It also offers metaverse tourism, with Cannaland virtual reality cannabis cities becoming tourist destinations in the metaverse. This includes famous cannabis landmarks such as Freetown Christiania in Denmark, Netherlands' best coffee shops, Jamaica's 4’20 Senty, MoBay Weed Run and Uruguay — the world's pioneering cannabis country.
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