Marijuana Company With Alabama Roots Becomes Major National Pot Brand

In 2008, real estate developers Tripp Keber and Chuck Smith owned and operated an upscale RV resort just outside Gulf Shores with aspirations of building a national chain.

But the recession would see those dreams dashed, and in 2009 the business partners took a risk and diversified their investment portfolio in a new way by putting money into an up-and-coming cannabis company in Colorado.

Business was good, and they soon realized that legal pot was quickly becoming a booming industry. So in June 2010, they took the next step, incorporating a humble Denver-based cannabis start-up called Dixie Elixirs.

"Seven or eight years ago there was something called the 'green rush,' and my partner Tripp said, 'I think we should take a look at investing in this industry,'" Smith said in a December phone interview.

"I guess we had pretty good vision. We saw that there was going to probably be...

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