Nick Lachey, The Drug Kingpin? Ex-98 Degrees Star Could Make Millions If Pot Legalized in Ohio

Nick Lachey is a “budding” marijuana mogul — according to an article in the Washington Post.

The former boy band singer and Jessica Simpson spouse is poised to rake in some big bucks if a law legalizing marijuana is passed in Ohio.

According to the wording of that legislation, the commercial cultivation of marijuana would be restricted to 10 large farms in Ohio, and guess who’s one of the owner of these farms: one half of the once popular reality show, Newlyweds: Nick and Jessica, Nick Lachey. Some of the other notable owners include Nanette Lepore, former NBA star Oscar Robertson, Frostee Rucker, and two of President William Howard Taft’s great-great-grandnephews. There are twenty-something other owners, but you probably wouldn’t recognize their names.

The Washington Post reports that the owners of these farms are funding the campaign that’s pushing the legislation forward. Each “ownership group” had to contribute $4 million to the campaign, and will have to put up $10 million to buy the land and get the marijuana growing operation started.

Nick Lachey’s farm will be a 29-acre piece of land outside of Akron, Ohio. If the new marijuana law is passed, then all of the marijuana shops in Ohio will be legally mandated to buy from either Lachey’s farm or the other 9 farms that have been designated as the official marijuana growers.

A study by the Marijuana Policies of Ohio Taskforce reports that those 10 farms will make about $1.1 billion worth of weed every year.

“They are creating a constitutionally mandated oligopoly,” argues Ethan Nadelmann, executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance.

Nick Lachey did not respond to the Washington Post‘s request for an interview, but he did release a statement via his press representative.

“Ohio is my home, and as a resident and local business owner I am proud to be part of a movement that has the potential to create jobs, reinvigorate the local economy and improve the safety of our communities,” the statement read.

“Passage of this proposal will result in much-needed economic development opportunities across Ohio, and update the state’s position on marijuana in a smart and safe way.”

Ohio voters will vote on marijuana legalization on November 2. Interestingly enough, according to, Nick Lachey won’t be able to vote on the issue next week because he is registered to vote in California.

“My partners and I are in early talks with stakeholders in the Summit County community and doing our due diligence to make sure we operate in a safe manner – not to mention make ourselves good neighbors,” Lachey said in an interview via email.

“We’re excited to help drive millions of dollars in tax revenue directly into the local community and will continue building out our plans in the road ahead.”

Nick Lachey started his showbiz career as a student at the Cincinnati’s School for Creative and Performing Arts. He and his brother, Drew Lachey, formed the group 98 Degrees along with two other guy friends. The group became platinum selling success story in the 1990s. However, their success was overshadowed by bands with larger and more passionate fan-bases, like Nsync and the Backstreet Boys.

Nick Lachey and Jessica Simspson
Nick Lachey and Jessica Simspson were married in 2002 but divorced in 2005. Photo by Mark Mainz/Getty Images.

But Nick Lachey bounced back and became a reality TV star. Lachey married Jessica Simpson in 2002 and soon the two of them were the stars of MTV’s Newlyweds. The show was a runaway success. As the article in the Washington Post notes, many viewers were drawn to Nick’s cute “good-guy” persona playing off of Jessica’s more “ditzy-blonde” attitude.

Nick Lachey and Jessica Simpson were married for 3 years, from 2002 to 2005. Jessica Simpson recently said her marriage to Nick was her biggest money mistake.

“The biggest money mistakes? I don’t know. For some reason I thought of my first marriage,” the 35-year-old said in a CNBC interview on a visit to the New York Stock Exchange.

The Nick Lachey and Jessica Simpson marriage may not have lasted, but Jessica Simpson’s business success has. She has become a fashion mogul and is reportedly worth $150 million, the Mirror reports.

Perhaps Nick Lachey wants to follow in her footsteps with a weed empire.

[Photo by Noam Galai / Getty Images]

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