Jimmy Buffett knows one thing about marijuana users — there are some folks who simply cannot roll a good joint. The Margaritaville mega-mogul also knows a business opportunity when he smells one.
It could be why in January, Margaritaville Enterprises LLC tried to trademark the term “Coral Reefer,” the name of Buffett’s back-up band.
If granted, the trademark would essentially give the “Cheeseburger in Paradise” singer a license to print (even more) money, through sales of branded products such as electronic cigarettes, electronic cigarette refill cartridges sold empty; smoking pipes, smoking pipe cleaners, smoking pipe racks, smokeless cigarette vaporizers, lighters and ashtrays.
It could also be the reason behind the Margaritaville corporate headquarters upcoming relocation to Orlando — home base of his good pal, uber-attorney John Morgan.
Margaritaville Enterprises LLC, a subsidiary of Margaritaville Holdings LLC, lists West Palm Beach as its principal address, but has a mailing address at the Loews Hotel in Universal Orlando.
In a profile on Morgan published last year, Tampa Bay Times reporter Adam Smith noted that the lawyer owns a piece of a Margaritaville casino in Biloxi.
Coincidentally (or maybe not), Morgan is also the mastermind behind United for Care, the most vocal supporters of Amendment 2, which seeks to legalize medical marijuana in Florida.
By now, one would have to be really, really high not to connect these dots.
If Morgan is successful in convincing 60 percent of Florida voters to support Amendment 2 — a likely prospect given a May 2014 Quinnipiac University poll showing over 80 percent approval among all age groups — it would result in a Buffett bonanza, armed with a boatload of “Coral Reefer” branded e-cigarettes and other medical marijuana-related paraphernalia.
Don’t tell that to the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, which issued a request for more information to Margaritaville officials in April. The letter stated, in effect, that if Coral Reefer products are for marijuana use — a substance still illegal by federal law — then there will be no trademark awarded.
However, if Buffett gets his trademark (maybe), and Amendment 2 passes, creating a marketplace for medical marijuana in the Sunshine State (probably), who knows what could happen next.
As the old saying goes: Where there’s (pot) smoke there’s … a golden opportunity to sell Margaritaville vaporizers, ashtrays and lighters.