Mr. Heckele graduated from the University of Arizona, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree (B.S.) in microbiology, a Master of Business Administration degree (M.B.A.), with an emphasis on business finance, and a Juris Doctor degree (J.D.), with an emphasis on real estate and business finance. Mr. Heckele is presently the Managing Partner at his law firm, Giordano & Heckele, PLLC, in Tucson, Arizona. Prior to his involvement with Zone, his legal practice focused on transaction law in the areas of real estate and business, along with estate planning; and he served as general counsel to several companies.
In January 2018, Mr. Heckele dedicated his full-time efforts to MAVES Holdings, LLC – a cannabis-investment management vehicle in which he and his Partner (and Director, V.P., and COO of Zone) Charles Lloyd manage several asset-specific investment vehicles (ASIVs™) dedicated to cannabis-related business activities. Presently, MAVES manages approximately $8M in investment capital in various cannabis-related businesses, including industrial cannabis cultivation, processing, manufacturing, and distribution companies in California and New York, and a cannabis banking solution (operating in CA and NV) headquartered in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Mr. Heckele’s primary role in MAVES and for its ASIVs is investment strategy – specifically, reviewing offering documents for cannabis-related businesses seeking capital to start-up or scale-up. In doing so, Mr. Heckele made it a point to look at the businesses’ (a) model (generally), to determine its viability, (b) financials, to determine its profitability, and (c) operators – the most important feature, to make sure they were the right people to execute the business and financial models. Mr. Heckele was also in charge of general business management, investor subscription, and compliance.
Given the early success of MAVES and its ASIVs, and the advent of 26 U.S.C. § 1400Z-2 (i.e. special rules for capital gains invested in opportunity zones), which may be the biggest tax deferral/reduction program in history, Messrs. Heckele and Lloyd registered Zone Opportunity Fund as a qualified opportunity fund (QOF) dedicated to investing capital gains (and other investment capital) in cannabis-based (and real estate) investments. Zone is the first and (presently) only QOF committed to cannabis-based investments.
Mr. Heckele will utilize his diverse business and legal background and cannabis investment experience to manage capital invested in Zone Opportunity Fund, the first and (presently) only QOF committed to cannabis-related investments.