420 Investor Interview: Tom Bollich, CEO of Surna

Surna (SRNA), based in Boulder, CO, addresses one of the key challenges facing the cannabis cultivation industry: Energy consumption. The company, which began operations this year, has technology that it has acquired that will help growers reduce one of the largest costs in their business. CEO Tom Bollich, perhaps best known for his role as co-founder of Zynga, took the helm earlier this year.


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Alan: Thank you, Tom, for taking the time to tell us about Surna. Before we get started, can you tell us about your background?

Tom: Thanks for having me, Alan. I began my career in robotics engineering, specifically artificial intelligence. I co-founded and acted as CTO and Studio Head for Zynga, which developed online games – like Words with Friends, FarmVille, and DrawSomething. Zynga created some of the first games that you saw on Facebook and top games on mobile devices. After I left Zynga, I created another gaming company based in Toronto called HugeMonster Inc. I still sit on their Board as Chairman. I also sit on the board for Fatty Crew LLC, a group of multinational restaurants.

In 2013, I saw the cannabis industry taking off, so I packed up and moved out to Boulder, Colorado.

Alan: Why did you decide to enter the MJ industry?

Tom: I’ve seen the birth of an industry before during my time at Zynga so I know what it looks like. All the signs point to cannabis being the next big industry, maybe the biggest since the explosion of the Internet. The main difference between this and online gaming is that people get tired of games, but I haven’t seen many people get tired of cannabis. It’s amazing when you think of the potential for this industry. The numbers are astounding and the societal push is leaning ...

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