New Silverpeak owners plan largest marijuana chain in state |

New Silverpeak owners plan largest marijuana chain in state

Silverpeak dispensary sold to new owners who plan to turn the company into the largest chain of marijuana stores in Colorado by the end of next year.
Kelsey Brunner/The Aspen Times

The new owners of Silverpeak dispensary in Aspen plan to turn it into the largest chain of marijuana stores in the state by the end of next year.

A big step in the process occurred Wednesday when Pitkin County commissioners unanimously approved transferring the company’s grow and retail licenses to the new owners, James Young of Aspen and Chapman Ducote of Aspen and Miami, Florida.

“It’s a great opportunity,” Ducote told commissioners. “We have long legs and big aspirations to expand the brand.”

The idea is to spread Silverpeak’s high-end marijuana retail experience throughout the state, Ducote said in an interview after Wednesday’s meeting. The company he and Young formed — called Silverpeak — has closed on or is in the process of closing on 27 retail marijuana stores across the state that will eventually be rebranded as Silverpeak in one form or another by the end of 2020, they said.

The company also is investing in marijuana production and manufacturing assets, Ducote said. The Silverpeak sale includes the company’s High Valley Farms marijuana cultivation facility in Basalt and the retail store on Cooper Avenue in downtown Aspen.

Ducote said he and Young plan to retain all of Silverpeak’s employees after the sale goes through.

The state of Colorado’s Marijuana Enforcement Division has already approved the license transfer, which was contingent on the commissioners’ approval.

Representatives of Pitkin County’s Environmental Health and Building departments recently toured the Basalt facility and found a first-class operation, said Kurt Dahl, environmental health manager. Several minor issues need to be fixed in the next 30 days before the county officially signs off on the new arrangement.

Ducote said he plans to look at using solar power and possibly invest in a water treatment facility that will allow the Basalt growing facility to draw water from the Roaring Fork River instead of trucking in water.

Commissioner George Newman brought up the fight between High Valley Farms and its neighbors in 2015 and 2016 over marijuana odors coming from the facility. That problem was fixed in 2016 and county officials said Wednesday that no complaints have been registered since, though Newman reiterated that the new owners will have to continue to mitigate the odor and could lose their license if they fail to do so.

Ducote is professional race car driver, entrepreneur and athlete, according to his website. Young is the owner of Vanguard Scientific Systems, which sells the equipment that extracts the oil from cannabis used in vaping devices, edibles and other products.

A call to former Silverpeak owner Jordan Lewis seeking comment on Wednesday was not returned.