Buffett to license Coral Reefer brand of Cannabis products

From Fortune.com: “Marijuanaville – Jimmy Buffett Gets Into the Weed Business With Billionaire Wrigley Heir

Jimmy Buffett has been playing with the Coral Reefer Band for well over four decades now, so it’s less than surprising to see the veteran singer-songwriter finally getting into the weed business.

The “Margaritaville” singer will license the “Coral Reefer” brand to Surterra, a big medical marijuana company whose board has since last month been chaired by William “Beau” Wrigley, Jr.—the former CEO of the Wrigley confectionery firm.

Georgia-based Surterra is currently licensed in Florida and Texas, and plans to build out cultivation space in the former state while conducting research trials on cannabinoid treatment for issues such as pain and post-traumatic stress disorder. The company has raised more than $100 million in the last few years, most recently in a $65 million round last month that was led by Wrigley’s Wychwood Asset Management.

As The Wall Street Journal noted when reporting the Buffett news Tuesday, weed companies often have to turn to rich people and their family investment firms for finance, due to restrictions on investments in such operations by big institutional investors.

Buffett will earn royalties from Surterra’s Coral Reefer-branded vape pens, edibles, lotions and gel caps, but gain no stake in the venture. According to the Journal‘s report, he was approached by other cannabis ventures but opted for Surterra because of its medical, rather than recreational, focus.

That said, Wrigley told Bloomberg last month that Surterra would eventually move into the recreational marijuana market, which should pull in more than $5 billion this year across the nine states where it can legally operate.

Buffett makes Forbes Celebrity 100

Jimmy Buffett comes in at #47 with 52 million in earnings on the Forbes Celebrity 100: The World’s Highest-Paid Entertainers 2018.

There’s never been a better time to be famous. The world’s 100 top-earning celebrities pulled in a combined $6.3 billion pretax over the past 12 months, up 22% from last year; 11 superstars crossed the $100 million threshold, more than double the number from the last two years combined.

The Celebrity 100 list ranks front-of-camera stars around the globe using their pretax earnings from June 1, 2017 through June 1, 2018, before deducting fees for managers, lawyers and agents. Estimates are based on numbers from Nielsen, Pollstar, IMDB, SoundScan, NPD BookScan and ComScore, as well as interviews with industry experts and many of the stars themselves.

View the 2018 Forbes Celebrity 100 List

Article on Buffett’s Margaritaville Empire in Variety Magazine

From Variety Magazine: “Jimmy Buffett Cashes in on ‘Margaritaville’ Brand With Restaurants, Spirits, More

Before Jimmy Buffett, “rock ’n’ roll” and “leisure” hardly counted as overlapping industries. British rockers might have done photo shoots at their lavish country estates, but publicly, for the most part, the essential rock maxim remained: Never let ’em see you not sweat. But it was Buffett’s genius — as a businessman, if not necessarily an artist — to play down the shiftlessness of some of his early beach-bum character studies and play up relaxation as an aspirational lifestyle. Cut to now, when Margaritaville, the company named after Buffett’s sole No. 1 pop hit, brings in between $1.5 billion and $2 billion annually.

The singer-songwriter’s last studio album, 2013’s “Songs From St. Somewhere,” debuted at No. 4, not bad for a pirate looking at 66 at the time. But as income streams go, new — and even catalog — recordings count as an asterisk on a pimple on the empire the singer has amassed as one of music’s savviest branding kings. In 2016, Forbes declared Buffett America’s 13th-wealthiest celebrity, with a net worth of $550 million, so Spotify royalties are the least of his concerns. Margaritaville’s physical locations clearly attract more than just hardcore Parrotheads; the company’s 70-plus restaurants, bars, hotels, resorts, casinos, cruises and vacation rentals draw more than 20 million visitors each year. And no one need leave home to experience a piece of Margaritaville when there are tequilas, rums, lagers, iced teas, shrimp, tortilla chips, clothes, shoes, bedsheets and pool and tailgating accessories designed to make the most landlocked hovel seem downright Gulf Coast-adjacent.

The ancillary branding began modestly but early with the 1987 opening of the first Margaritaville restaurant in Key West; it took until 1993 before they got around to a second location. Now there are 32, and that’s not counting the three Air Margaritavilles in airport terminals, nine Landshark Bar & Grills, seven Cheeseburger in Paradises and seven 5 O’Clock Somewhere bars. There are two casinos and the hotel/resorts are up to eight, with eight more on the way in the coming years, including a 234-room, 29-story property set to open in 2020 in beachy Times Square. If the danger remains that Buffett’s fan base might age out of the leisure sector, there’s some accounting for that with two planned retirement communities for the “55 and better” set, with Latitude Margaritavilles being developed in Daytona Beach and Hilton Head that promise a Buffett-esque headspace 24/7/365/∞.

Forbes article on Margaritaville Multibillion-Dollar Empire

From Forbes: “How Jimmy Buffett Turned Hit Song ‘Margaritaville’ Into A Multibillion-Dollar Empire

Jimmy Buffett’s classic hit “Margaritaville” is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. The song debuted on the 1977 “Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes” album and quickly took on a life of its own, becoming a state of mind and way of life rooted in fun and escapism for those “growing older, but not up”.

The song about life in this euphoric place where days are wasted away nibblin’ on sponge cake and watchin’ the sun bake has also morphed into a global lifestyle brand that currently has more than $4.8 billion in the development pipeline and sees $1.5 billion in annual system-wide sales. This year, Margaritaville Holdings announced a partnership with Minto Communities to develop Latitude Margaritaville, new active adult communities for those “55 and better”, including the $1 billion Daytona Beach, Florida location and a second in Hilton Head, South Carolina.

“Since I wrote the song 40 years ago, Margaritaville has affected just about everything we’ve done,” said Jimmy Buffett. “From getting me on the radio first, to the evolution of the brand in so many areas that we couldn’t possibly conceive of in the beginning.”

Buffett, 70, was reported to have a net worth of $550 million as of 2016 and was ranked No. 13 on FORBES first-ever list of America’s Wealthiest Celebrities. His 2016 earnings alone total an approximate $40.5 million. The singer, songwriter, bestselling author and business tycoon remains true to his loyal and like-minded fans.

“I love that as successful as we’ve become, the basic principle that I learned on Bourbon Street, of having fun and engaging with fans, has always been a focus,” Buffett said. “I love Margaritaville, the entire idea of it.”

Read the full article at Forbes.com

Buffett-inspired Margaritaville retirement community on GMA

From ABC’s Good Morning America” “Jimmy Buffett-inspired Margaritaville retirement community coming soon

Buffett’s Margaritaville company, known for restaurants, hotels and vacation resorts, recently announced it has partnered with Minto Communities, a development and building company in Florida, to build a string of easy, breezy senior neighborhoods.

The first has been dubbed Latitude Margaritaville in Daytona Beach, Florida.

“It’s going to be a very fun place,” Bill Bullock, senior vice president of Minto Communities, told ABC News. “We expect our first residents to be living in the community by late summer of 2018.”

The $1 billion project is expected to create almost 7,000 homes offering fitness facilities, lap pools, spas, live entertainment, personal beachfront access and, of course, booze in the blender that will soon render that frozen concoction that helps residents hang on.

Bullock said the 2 or 3-bedroom homes, which feature a den and garages in the golf cart-friendly community, will start in “the very low $200,000s to $350,000.”

“It was very important to us to make this as obtainable as possible,” he said. “We have over 10,000 registrations in two weeks. It’s just been amazing.”

Residents in Latitude Margaritaville have to be aged “55 and better,” Bullock explained.

Latitude Margaritaville Daytona Beach

Latitude Margaritaville Daytona Beach

From the Orland Business Journal: “Nearly $1B Daytona Beach community inks Margaritaville as partner

A new massive mixed-use community now on the rise in Daytona Beach may soon become the place to watch the sun bake all of those active adults covered with oil.

Master developer Minto Communities LLC and Margaritaville Holdings Inc. on Feb. 16 announced a partnership to develop new Jimmy Buffett-inspired active-adult communities nationwide — starting with Latitude Margaritaville at LPGA Boulevard and Interstate 95 in Daytona Beach

The 6,900-home active-adult community— a nearly $1 billion project expected to transform Daytona Beach’s landscape— is already under construction and a sales center is expected to open this fall, said a news release.
Latitude Margaritaville Daytona Beach

“We are excited to partner with Minto and believe this relationship will redefine lifestyle destination living in Daytona Beach,” Margaritaville CEO John Cohlan said in a prepared statement. “With Minto’s expertise in creating master-planned developments and Margaritaville’s inherent ability to deliver fun and escapism, Latitude Margaritaville has the exact coordinates for those looking to live the Margaritaville lifestyle as they grow older, but not up.”

The overall project, which was previously called Tomoka, will bring homes, shops, amenities and transportation to nearby vacation destinations and beaches, and thousands of jobs, expected to bring a big boom to Daytona Beach’s residential population, as previously reported by Orlando Business Journal. It’s even been known to be called “The Villages East,” or a smaller version of The Villages in Central Florida.

Daytona Beach’s population growth, in turn, will create more opportunities for businesses.

Meanwhile, the addition of the Margaritaville brand will bring a “no worries” tropical vibe to the community, the release said. Plans include:

  • Walkable neighborhoods with a town center
  • Fitness center with an aerobics studio, indoor lap pool and spa
  • Indoor and outdoor dining with signature Margaritaville food and beverage concepts, plus other concepts
  • Arts and learning programs for residents and guests
  • A resort pool area with beach entry
  • Band shell for live entertainment
  • A separate private beachfront club with breathtaking views and beachfront amenities on the Atlantic Ocean, which residents can access via a continuous loop shuttle service.

From the Daytona Beach News Journal Online: “Jimmy Buffett community coming to Daytona

Canadian developer Minto Communities announced that Buffett’s Margaritaville Holdings company has agreed to become a strategic partner in developing its planned 6,900-home community for residents 55-and-older on the north side of LPGA Boulevard, just west of Interstate 95.

The first homes are expected to be ready for move in by fall 2018, said William Bullock, a senior vice president with Minto.

Prices for homes are expected to range from the “low $200,000s to the mid-$300,000s,” Bullock said. “We want this to be accessible to as many people as possible.”

Sail on Howard Kaufman

From Billboard: “Howard Kaufman, Veteran Rock Manager, Dies at 79

Howard Kaufman, a frequent collaborator of Irving Azoff’s and an influential artist manager whose clients have included some of the biggest names in rock n’ roll, has died, Billboard has confirmed. He was 79. The cause of death is as yet unknown.

Kaufman’s longtime management company, H.K. Management, had an artist roster that included Aerosmith, Stevie Nicks, Jimmy Buffett, Chicago, Lenny Kravitz and Def Leppard.

In 1974, Kaufman teamed with Azoff to form Front Line Management, which notably guided the careers of the Eagles, Steely Dan, and Buffett, among others. The company disbanded in the early 1980s, around the time the Eagles began their long hiatus, but was resurrected by the pair in early 2005. The revamped Front Line experienced rapid growth and in 2008 was acquired by Ticketmaster, which named Azoff CEO.

From Coral Reeferette Nadirah Shakoor: The music industry and the world lost a great man last night, Mr Howard Kaufman. He always told it like it was, straight no chaser. Howard was a colleague, a mentor and a friend. He definitely made his mark in history as one of the greatest! I am honored to have known him for over 30 years and my heart aches at his loss. If Prince and Michael need management on the other side they are in the best of hands. Rest in peace my dear friend you will be well remembered. My heart felt Condolences to his wife, three children, Jimmy and his many clients and friends