New México

Unity Rd. Breaks Into New Mexico With Multi-Unit Signed Agreement

3-Unit Agreement Marks 20th Entrepreneurial Group to Join the Cannabis Dispensary Franchise and Accelerates Nationwide Development With Entrance Into New State; Local Partners Awarded Three Dispensary Licenses by the State of New Mexico

RUIDOSO, N.M., March 22, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Unity Rd., the national cannabis dispensary franchise from Item 9 Labs Corp. (OTCQX: INLB), announced today the signing of an agreement that will bring three shops to New Mexico, further solidifying its position as a fast-growing leader in cannabis franchising. Behind the agreement is serial entrepreneur, Joe Hernandez and his business partner, who mark the franchise's 20th entrepreneurial group to join and first partners in New Mexico. Unity Rd. recently helped the duo secure state approval for dispensary licenses of all three shops and will be assisting the team in moving forward with development.

Hernandez brings more than 25 years of combined real estate investment and business management experience to the table, and has owned several businesses in the transportation, insurance and home services industries across multiple states. He and his partner plan to open three dispensaries throughout New Mexico. They currently have confirmed local city approval in Ruidoso and are awaiting approval from two additional cities for development.

"We have been looking to enter the cannabis space for the past few years but knew we first needed to find an experienced and knowledgeable partner to help us navigate licensing, operations and compliance," said Hernandez. "Unity Rd. is the first of its kind to help entrepreneurs like us enter a new cannabis market with a head start. Their proven systems, training and ongoing support is the perfect solution we need to navigate the delicate and complex industry."

The future shops are poised for success with the state's legalization of adult-use cannabis in 2021 and market opening later this year. Entrance into New Mexico marks 10 states, from coast-to-coast, where Unity Rd. partners are in various stages of development – fulfilling the dispensary franchise's mission to keep dispensary ownership local.

"Entrepreneurs like Joe and his partner see the value of cannabis, its benefits and the booming path the industry is headed," shared Item 9 Labs Corp. CEO, Andrew Bowden. "With the rise in legalization across the country, we are making moves to keep dispensary ownership local, while providing support to owners through the backing of a national franchise system. Their entrepreneurial spirit and professional background will support Unity Rd.'s continued growth and our mission within New Mexico communities."

Unity Rd.'s goal is to inspire confidence in the benefits of cannabis for all. The growing retail franchise offers a direct route for cannabis entrepreneurs interested in staking their claim in an industry that is bursting with potential. The dispensary franchisor's time-tested Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and experienced team, with 200-plus years of combined cannabis and franchising experience, guide franchise partners through every operational function of the business – from securing a license to assisting with cash flow, product selection or changing regulations.

"Unity Rd. is the intersection where independent business ownership meets cannabis," added Mike Weinberger, chief franchise officer at Unity Rd. "We anticipate continued development of the Unity Rd. brand in New Mexico with like-minded entrepreneurs who are interested in entering the state at the start of its adult-use program."

Industry newcomers have deemed Unity Rd. the go-to franchise opportunity for entering and navigating the complex cannabis industry. The dispensary franchise is actively seeking qualified franchise partners throughout the U.S. who would benefit from the systems, processes and ongoing support the franchise offers.

To learn more about the Unity Rd. franchise opportunity, contact [email protected], call 720-923-5262 or visit

Unity Rd. is bridging the two previously disconnected worlds of cannabis and franchising. The industry trailblazer is the first to bring the cannabis dispensary franchise model to the United States—with duality of prowess in both industries to back it up. Built up from a collective 200 years in the legal cannabis industry and franchising, the company helps eager operators enter the complex industry with ease. The marijuana franchise pioneer offers its partners the knowledge, resources, and ongoing support needed to compliantly and successfully operate a dispensary. Launched in 2018, Unity Rd. has signed multiple agreements with 20 entrepreneurial groups across the country. Recently, it was named one of the top cannabis retail leaders in the nation by MJBizDaily magazine and one of the "Best Cannabis Companies to Work For" in both the dispensary and cultivation categories in Cannabis Business Times' elite 2020 list. The company is also the first cannabis business to earn a Franchise Times Dealmakers award. For more information, visit

MEDIA CONTACT: Anna Pool, Fishman PR, [email protected], 847.945.1300

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