About KO

KO Acquisitions

KO’s core focus is Mergers and Acquisitions in the number one cannabis market in the world—California. We don’t raise money. We don’t sell reports. We don’t do Investor Relations. We do one thing, over and over, every day.

Selecting an M&A banker strategy requires transaction experience, domain expertise, a large network, and a strong cultural fit. For companies looking to scale their cannabis business in the State of California, KO is that partner. We have our ear close to the ground, speak daily with dozens of entrepreneurs, and have unparalleled market knowledge from the bottom up.

This intimate knowledge of who’s who and what’s what allows us to align the needs of the participants to find the best fit and ensure a successful life post deal closing.

Karlson and Ott (the K and O) have been active in M&A for well over 20 years. The partners have completed transactions with brands, manufacturers, distribution and even farmers across a number of industries.

In late 2016 KO came together to focus on Cannabis and over the past two years we have built relationships with the leading companies and emerging brands from the Emerald Triangle to the streets of LA. We pay homage to those that blazed the trail before us and view our role as helping scale the industry in California to the benefit of our predecessors and those who will follow.

Kris Karlson

Kris Karlson

Kris is a co-founder of KO Acquisitions and leverages over 22 years of M&A expertise. In 1996 Kris founded Bowman/Hanson a boutique investment bank with the objective of creating a more efficient marketplace for sellers, buyers, and financiers of privately held middle-market companies.

Under Kris’ guidance and Bowman/Hanson the company completed dozens of transactions for companies in manufacturing, distribution and brands. Kris maintains a vast network of relationships with capital markets, including Family Offices, Private Equity, and Strategic Acquirers. Kris lives in Petaluma CA and is married with two sons.

Erik Ott

Erik Ott

Erik is a co-founder of KO Acquisitions. Erik has been in Investment Banking since 1995 when he co-founded Rainmaker Capital. Prior to Rainmaker, Erik was an entrepreneur who started and sold two companies in the consumer products market and also spent his early days as a Venture Capital Associate. In 2016 Erik joined the investment bank of Bowman/Hanson to focus on the cannabis industry.

In 2018 Bowman/Hanson rebranded as KO Acquisitions. Erik’s specialty is Mergers and Acquisitions and he is particularly adept at helping entrepreneurs present their business through tailored messaging to a variety of potential buyers. Erik is comfortable navigating un-charted territory, known for his straight-forward approach, and a pillar of strength when deal emotions take over. Erik lives in Petaluma CA and is married with three sons.

Cole Van Brunt

Cole joined KO Acquisitions in late 2017 after graduating from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.  Since joining KO Acquisitions, Cole has become an expert of the California cannabis landscape. He has watched the state transition into a recreational market and participated in the consolidation there after. Cole maintains a diverse network of cannabis operators, large and small. Born and raised in Marin, Cole currently lives in San Francisco.