Former Edmonton Oilers owner and controversial Canadian businessman Peter Pocklington appears to be gearing up for his next big venture – this time in the cannabis sector.
Pocklington was listed in a June regulatory filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission last month as the manager of Magic Dragon Realty LLC., a California-based company that is trying to raise US$12.5 million to build a state-of-the-art indoor hydroponics cannabis cultivation facility.
The filing comes only a few months after Pocklington faced allegations of securities charges from the SEC after the medical device company he holds an ownership stake in was charged with defrauding investors by hiding his formal involvement and misappropriating investor funds.
The SEC alleged Pocklington and his attorney, Lantson Eldred, structured the ownership of California-based The Eye Machine, also known as Nova Oculus Partners, to conceal Pocklington's role in the medical device company. The company raised more than US$14 million between 2014 and 2017 from more than 260 investors.
Pocklington pleaded guilty to a federal felony perjury charge in October 2010 and was ordered in May 2013 to pay more than US$5 million as part of a settlement for unrelated securities fraud and registration charges for his involvement in private offerings related to two mining companies. He was also indicted for bankruptcy fraud in March 2009.
Pocklington wasn’t immediately reachable for comment and an email associated with him on the Magic Dragon Realty’s website was undeliverable.
It is unclear what drew Pocklington, who now lives in California, to the cannabis sector but Magic Dragon Realty’s filing shows that the company is looking to raise US$12.5 million in an equity offering. It intends to use US$1.25 million from that offering to pay the company’s executives, including Pocklington, as well as a “one-time management fee equal to 7 per cent of the gross proceeds of the offering” to the company’s majority member.
On the company’s website, Magic Dragon Realty encourages potential investors to “imagine being the savvy investor who was there when railroads gained a foothold in America, or when oil companies first found their market, when distillers and brewers could finally serve their customers within the law, or when e-commerce websites first appeared on the Internet.”
A pro forma document on the company’s website shows that in the next five years, Magic Dragon Realty forecasts it will generate US$50 million in revenue and net income of US$48 million. The company said it has yet to generate any revenue in its filing with the SEC.
The company’s business strategy includes the building of a 20,000 square foot indoor cannabis growing facility located in the Coachella Valley where it can grow up to 20,000 plants concurrently from seedling or clone to finished product. Magic Dragon Realty said it is “applying for a cannabis cultivation license and expect to be conducting business from our cultivation facility sometime in 2018.”
Pocklington owned the Edmonton Oilers during the NHL team’s heyday in the 1980s when it won a string of five Stanley Cup championships, but he drew the ire of the team’s fan base after he traded away the superstar Wayne Gretzky to Los Angeles in 1988. He sold the team to a group of investors in 1998.