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Editors’ Note: This is the transcript version of the podcast. Please note that due to time and audio constraints, transcription may not be perfect. We encourage you to listen to the podcast, embedded below if you need any clarification. We hope you enjoy!

After 15 years of experience in Financial services, Jason Malcolm was hungry for a challenge. As the Principal of Arcview Management Consulting, Jason helps budding Cannabis businesses flourish in the quickly changing cannabis industry.

Bryan Fields @bryanfields24 and Kellan Finney @Kellan_Finneygain insight into Jason’s knowledge on the Cannabis market by discussing:

  • The competitive cannabis market
  • Launching cannabis programs
  • Licensing structure and complexity
  • Strategic feedback that leads to success
  • Hurdles that operators are faced with
  • Lessons learned for future generations
  • Don’t forget to hit that share button!

Become a supporter of The Dime Podcast: https://anchor.fm/thedime/support

Arcview Management Consulting is a global management firm with extensive knowledge in cannabis and hemp to better help companies succeed and scale in the industry. You can learn more by visiting https://arcviewconsulting.com.


[00:00:00]Bryan Fields: This is the dime, dive into the cannabis and hemp industry through trends, insights, predictions, and tangents. What’s up guys. Welcome back to the dine as always. I’ve got my right hand in telling Cindy here with me. And this week we’ve got a very special guest Jason Malcolm principal of Arcview management consulting.

Jason, thanks for taking the time. How are you doing today?

[00:00:24]Jason Malcolm: Doing great. That’s fine.

[00:00:26]Bryan Fields: Yeah, we’re looking forward to diving into these items. Kellan, how you doing?

[00:00:30]Kellan Finney: Doing good. Just enjoying the rain here in Colorado. We need it.

[00:00:33]Bryan Fields: Don’t bring that negativity around here. So Jason, before we get started, can you tell our listeners a little bit about your background?

[00:00:38]Jason Malcolm: Yeah, certainly. So like most people in cannabis, I come from a very different background. I spent the last 15 plus years in financial service. Mainly management consulting. I worked for the big four KPMG KPMG advisory spinoff FIS, which is a large impact company, as well as some small boutique consulting firms, my boat, which was risk management process improvement, but it was yours.[00:01:00]

I think most in certain industries, you kind of get to a point where you studied yourself. Whatever I see myself body 10 years is banking really row on a, B is risk where I was 10 years ago. It’s not so much as exciting as it used to be. And, you know, I kind of said to myself, let me try something that is completely uncertain, challenging industry.

And, you know, the view looking forward is always blurry and it’s never really clear. And I said, you know what, let’s dive into cannabis and then see how I do. So I ended up getting a phone call from a former client in blind slash friend introduced me. And I came on board and I’m loving every minute of it.

It’s been about eight months.

[00:01:39]Bryan Fields: I’m excited to kind of dive into some of those areas, but to kind of follow up with there. Was there a single moment you realize I’m going to go for cannabis? I feel like in everyone’s journey, they’re always wavering these decisions. And like you said, and then there has to be some defining moment that says, I think it’s cannabis.

You

[00:01:56]Jason Malcolm: know, it’s funny because I remember conversations. So I’m born and [00:02:00] raised in Staten island, New York. So I’m a new Yorker. I lived there for 27 years. I do find it to New Jersey and I’ve been in the same spot since then. But I remember talking to my friends in high school. Cannabis legalization.

I kid you not like there was a one day, this is going to happen. And I’m like, I don’t really know if going to happen. And I was like, sure, why not? Let’s say over the years, you know, you slowly see a taking form and maturing into what it is today. And I think the mature market in Colorado is really interesting.

So sophistic. That it has a spark. It really supports anybody’s interests that are into any type of new markets or emerging markets. And I think that’s what really put cannabis in the maps. And, and I just kind of bottled it all the legalization. And it was all these states that have legalized for adult use, even medical at this point.

And it’s always been a back burner. And from my career, I said to myself, I never really saw myself hanging my [00:03:00] hat up in financial services. So I have always thought to myself, What would the next best thing look like? Is it diving into a technology payments or industry right now? Is it the payment industry?

Is it completely getting out of financial services and starting something? The interesting part about RQ manager. Obviously it’s a consultant shop professional services, right? We sell our people, we sell our skillsets and the framework and consulting is pretty much universal when it comes down to strategy or tactical.

For that matter between banking and canvas, it’s very, very similar. What’s different obviously is the products and the topics, but that’s obviously come over time. But in any event, I saw this as a great opportunity for myself. One, I have difficult. I’ll just have to learn about the product itself and let’s face it.

The industry’s really exciting. A lot of things happening in this space that really perks up everyone’s eyes and ears. Even though you’re not the cannabis [00:04:00] enthusiast, you don’t have to do a lot of people that are saying, oh, I suffer from anxiety. I’ve suffered from depression. Maybe I’ll take these CBD companies from XYZ.

It has a little THC, right. And they get hooked on it. And so I know some of these people, they go to the doctor working, whatever it is, just do it. Right. It’s not unhealthy or harmful. I just thought it was perfect. You know, between those discussions, when you’re young and high school, I’m a true believer of what comes around, goes around, you know, life.

So full circle between my experience and management consultant and kind of bringing it over to new space in cannabis and then cannabis being. Very interesting space.

[00:04:43]Bryan Fields: It’s kind of explore that, right. It’s it’s an exploding industry. And like you said, there’s, there’s massive opportunities across board and, and like you were saying specifically here on these phones, so take us through kind of like what a Daymond life is like for you and the type of projects and the type of conversations you’re having with [00:05:00] clients in the space.

I mean,

[00:05:01]Jason Malcolm: it’s, there’s no common theme, I guess what I’m about to dive into all of our clients. Really interesting ideas. And a lot of them share some similarities and a lot of don’t. But what we’re seeing a lot today is obviously right now, I’ll start off with the licensing strategy, competitive markets, right?

New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, all new markets. Big markets it’s to tri-state space. Right? New Jersey’s making great progress there. They’re there they’re full steam ahead. I think they’re coming out more with the finalizing their rules pretty soon, right? New York on the other hand, not as put together as New Jersey at the moment, obviously homo and that whole debacle has a few pickups in the process, but we do see a light at the tunnel there as well, and Connecticut, which is something fairly new.

We’ve seen a lot of it. For our clients operated in one of the three markets or possibly two out of the three markets. So we are helping them be teamed up with cannabis capital group or a [00:06:00] licensing strategy. And we are talking to a lot of those poaching cultivation, manufacturing, retail, as well as distribution licensing.

In addition to that, being that all these new states kind of, you know, reforming, or I should say, launching cannabis programs where you are seeing a great deal of interest and existing operators and expanding. Their footprint within the country to multiple states. So a lot of what we’re doing right now is assessing which states make the most sense for their products.

So in other words, which states have pre-rolls right. So right now I think it’s Massachusetts for that matter. California is a big market for that Washington, of course, Colorado. What’s the strategy. What’s the cost. Right. And then what makes the most sense for them for like a three to five year? We have a lot of interest in state by state expansions that applies to early operators and mature operators.

And then we also see a lot of interest [00:07:00] in new operations and new, not new techniques, but very challenging techniques to make themselves unique in the market. So tissue culture, for example, is something not a lot of people do. It’s a very complex process. But we’re working with somebody. How they should be able to watch their operations within the state.

That’s pretty saturated in terms of cultivation, retail, processing licenses. Right? Well, what does that look like? How can they can make themselves competitive within that market? And what would the infrastructure look like? What would the building look like? Right. How much would it be for lands?

Right. Trying to piece all the pieces together in the puzzle so that they can actually go up and grab investors. Additionally, Oh, huge demand and investor, right. And roadmaps to, you know, high level strategy of what they’ll look like over the next one to two years. And a lot of people, you know, they have a business and then they’ve never really taken a step back, has been so focused on strategy [00:08:00] operations, right.

And growing their business. They’ve never really taken a step back and say, okay, how much is my business? And, you know, I really want to raise money, so I want to grow faster. I want to scale faster, but I can’t do that unless I have some type of valuation on my business. So licensed evaluations or evaluations of the business itself, as well as the invested back to really get them prepared to socialize their business strategy and model to potential investors, whether it’s friends, family, or you know, that’s a, that’s a fair mix of what we are operating, how we’re operating.

[00:08:34]Bryan Fields: So I want to kind of take one of the items you said and kind of go to Kellen on this one, Kellen from a license standpoint, from an east coast, obviously people are getting more and more interested in being in this space. And they’re interested in dabbling into is it is now the right time for license, or should I wait for the rules and legislation to move forward?

How do we handle that conversation? What do you normally tell clients, come to us and say, Hey, I’m interested in being east coast. When is the right time? The east coast is going to be a

[00:08:59]Kellan Finney:[00:09:00] very interesting market. In my opinion, I think that it’s going to cost a lot of money to play that game. Right. I mean, it’s a mass.

The tri-state is massive. There’s you have all of the financial headquarters of the world in New York, right? So like, these are the biggest of the biggest players are having have the same exact ideas. It really depends on the client, right? If it’s like a couple of friends who are just trying to start a small cannabis company and they’re excited about weed and they’re like, Hey, I know there’s a lot of people that live in New York.

I was going to go after a license in New York. Then we tend to kind of try to advise them to maybe look at other markets as a starting point, just because new York’s been taking notes, New Jersey date. There’s some smart people in those states. They’ve been taking notes. They’ve seen how the Colorado market played out.

They’ve seen how the California market played. They’ve watched all of these other states come online and they, they have a roadmap for how they’re going to execute this. And the individuals that are probably drafting a lot of the regulations are [00:10:00] probably going to have a piece of who ends up getting the licenses.

And there’s nothing wrong with that, I guess. Right. But it is going to be limited licenses states, right. And so there’s going to be very, very high level competition to obtain one of those licenses and those. Because of the potential windfall, if you can license, I mean, look at Florida, they are just, people are selling paper in Florida for $50 million, just for the right to participate in, in the quote unquote limited market.

Right. And so it really depends on the case. Right. Is there a large operator who’s got experience in another state and they’re looking to become part of the MSO gang. Then I say, go for it. Right. Then you probably have the firepower and the capital, or at least access to the capital to bring on consulting firms and lawyers and all the right pieces to at least have.

A competitive shot at Jamie, one of those licenses, but it’s going to be tough, right? Like there’s probably to, I think there’s five licenses that are probably going to be released in New York. Right. Is that correct? From my last [00:11:00] reading

[00:11:00]Bryan Fields: super limited. And I always refer to it as like the golden ticket from Willy Wonka.

Right? If you win one of those, you’re provided an opportunity that is, is literally life changing. And I think what you said, calendar is really important too, from like a geographical location. East coast has so many clusters states in that, in that small little region. So you don’t have to be in all of the states.

So you can kind of hand pick the strategic location. Do you want to be. And if you don’t get opportunities in New York and New Jersey being in one of those surrounding areas, maybe it’s not ideal initially, but should be more of a conceptual thought process because the Titans you’re fighting with are the biggest of

[00:11:36]Kellan Finney: the Vegas for Jason.

How similar are the licensed structures in Connecticut, New Jersey and New York? Are they all going to be very similar or are they going to. Drastically different, like, cause in Washington you’re not allowed to be completely vertically integrated. Right. You’re not allowed to have a dispensary and the cultivation, but in Colorado, they kind of encourage that.

You want to kind of talk our listeners through how that structure is going to work. [00:12:00] Yeah.

[00:12:00]Jason Malcolm: So they’re all variable. All very different New York being the most different one out of three. So New York, if you have, if you apply for a cultivation license, you will also apply for a processing and distribution and that prostitute would just be sent there to be multiple locations.

Does that, does it have to be the same location, but you are able to be vertically integrated. There’s also a micro business. They do apply for which gives you, you know, limited canopy space with cultivation, prostituting, dispensary, retail. And I’ll just mention over your own products license that operates very similar, a little different.

So you can vertically integrate in New York. The only thing is if you own a retail, if you apply for a retail license, any other interests, Dispense a distribution and processing. So they do restrict you there. However, in New Jersey, I believe their rules are coming out in a couple of days. Now. I believe they are restricting vertical integration and Connecticut it’s very similar.

I don’t think [00:13:00] it is committed under the medical marijuana program in Connecticut, but for the adult use program right now,

[00:13:09]Bryan Fields: This is the crazy part too, is that like state to state all the rules change, which means you need to make sure when you are submitting those efforts, unless you’ve got yourself a wide ranging team that is dealing with pockets, I mean, you need to take strategic approaches because it’s expensive.

Right? I think one of the conversations we have all the time, especially with, with current operators is just the sheer costs going forward. Just to add to it, right. Just as a chance to play the game, but at the end of the day, right? Like what you’re playing for is literally a golden ticket for an opportunity to, to have a massive piece of the puzzle as it started out, come on

[00:13:45]Jason Malcolm: mind.

So we, we talked to a lot of people, all firms that their clients come to them and they say, I’m interested in. No, I can’t, I want to be a cannabis operator. And like, I want to know why I want to know about lobbying [00:14:00] before they even understand the process. Third is throwing money at lobby capabilities, right.

Lobby functions. So there’s going to be a lot of people that are going to have. A bundle of cash. Like Floyd Mayweather walks around in his private jet. You see on Instagram all the time and they’re gonna be, they’re gonna want to pay up for it to get the best chance possible. To get that license awarded now just don’t want to say no.

Give him New York to benefit it down and say, well, the first last are kind of in the middle. So maybe they will take lessons learned from other states. Right. And kind of try to perfect the process where they really want to, because on social equity and be true to those statements and be true to that hampered on the war, on drugs and everything else.

So if that’s the case, then that’s great right now, it’s all [00:15:00] about your story and about your team. And that’s, that’s more of an interesting approach in my opinion. And that’s. We’re helping some of our clients craft that story and develop those teams. And in some cases, some of our clients are working with social equity consultants, which I think is a really good idea as well.

So they really fully understand what that looks and feels like from application. Phelan

[00:15:23]Bryan Fields: for our listeners who are maybe not able to visually understand the complexity of some of these licenses. Can you kind of take us through just the sheer size of what these documents look like?

[00:15:33]Kellan Finney: Yeah. We have a client in Florida and that’s part of our due diligence process I went through and I read a lot of the licensed applications in Florida that were submitted.

From 2015 to 2017. And I mean, it is incredible the amount of information that they were able to accumulate into to a license application. I mean, some of them, I think are like 500 pages long and they have like a dozen individuals with [00:16:00] resumes that are just eye-popping in terms of some of the experiences that they’re bringing to the table.

And I mean, you got to remember that they in Florida, the way it played out is they, they only awarded a specific number of license. And then a lot of these companies went and actually sued the state of Florida to have more licenses released. But I make sense because they spent a ton of money putting these applications together and they got individuals that are just phenomenal in terms of their, their background and experience.

And for instance, in terms of the, the manufacturing portion, they were pulling people that ran massive manufacturing facilities for like Pepsi or Coca-Cola, or really, really well. Respected brands and were willing to jump over and they weren’t awarded the license. And so the complexity associated with even putting together an application, I mean, it’s a year long process and you have to pay all of these individuals to bring all of these unique skillsets to the table because it’s, most of the time, [00:17:00] like Jason said, you want to go for a vertically integrated application.

Right. And in order to do that, you need to bring in multiple people who are experts at cultivating, right? You’re talking horticulturists, you’re talking managers. You need to bring in people that are experts. Extraction from a, from a chemistry perspective, right? You need to bring in people that are absolutely experts at testing in terms of in-house analytics.

You need to bring the entire retail team together, right. And managing the real estate setting all of this up from a CGMP, common, good manufacturing practice perspective. Right. And then you need doctors to be able to, to evaluate the products. Cause it is a medical market, right. It’s insane. The quantity of highly skilled individuals that need to be brought together to even have a shot at getting one of these golden tickets.

[00:17:48]Bryan Fields: No. What I’m hearing is that the uphill battle is not really worth it. Right? And that it’s not really worth entering the space from a licensing standpoint. Is there additional outlets or ways into the cannabis [00:18:00] space If you aren’t afforded, let’s say a deep pocket of opportunity where you have an extensive team when you’re looking to get into

[00:18:05]Kellan Finney: this.

I mean, there’s, we’re talking the hardest markets to get into, right? Like Florida, 20 million people live there. If you’re trying to capture a market share, and there’s only a limited number of operators and there’s 20 million people. It’s a bigger windfall for you, if you will, right. Versus New Mexico, not, not nearly as many people live in New Mexico, you can go out and get a micro license.

If you’ve never grown cannabis, where you can be completely vertically integrated, you’re managing significantly less people, significantly less canopy. Right. And you don’t need a massive team and you can go apply for a license without nearly as much capital. Yeah. The upside isn’t as well as, as great as trying to just enter one of these massive market.

But you can still get your feet wet. I, Oklahoma, they’re just handing out licenses left and right in Oklahoma. Right? I mean, there’s states that you can go get a license. It’s just, there’s not the market opportunity that you see in the tri-states [00:19:00] or Florida or California for it. And for that matter, you know what I mean?

So there is lower hanging fruit in terms of. Trying to be an operator in the cannabis space. You know what I mean? Like right now we’re just discussing the hardest markets to get it.

[00:19:14]Jason Malcolm: And I do want to say, I do want to correct myself because she says something that reminds me of my comment on New Jersey.

New Jersey does allow for microbes. It’s not like you can have a cultivation of retail operation. You’ve got a micro business. Sure.

[00:19:32]Bryan Fields: I think this kind of goes into like the complexity of going forward and understanding like strategically which location you want to attack. So I guess then to kind of come back to you, Jason.

So when operators come to you in the space, obviously you have to do some due diligence first and kind of get the pulse of the room. Are they experienced? Do they have deep pockets? Right. If a group comes in. Jason, we were going for New York there, you’re going to have to kind of assess them and be like, Hey guys, like, I don’t mean to be the bearer of bad news, but maybe we should take a couple of miles to the left and go to this state or this state.

So [00:20:00] how do you kind of take that conversation and then kind of provide them, you know, strategic feedback on helping them best position to succeed.

[00:20:07]Jason Malcolm: It’s really, it’s a tough conversation to have. You kind of just tell them a lot of bad news upfront, right. And you have to be obviously very transparent with the clients and any kind of talk to them about, I think you have a great idea that you want to open up a retail operation and Brooklyn, New York.

That’s fantastic. But you know what? We tell our clients that you have about a million, 2,000,005 in capital sitting on the sidelines because the states would want to see some significant amount of capital on the application, at least in a bank account or an S. So that they’re have every competence in you that you could launch this operation successfully and not kind of bold in the first six months.

And then you have the location side of things, right? So it’s like, you have to, you have to confirm real location and locations in New York are not cheap to buy or to rent. Right? So now you have that. And then to, to [00:21:00] college point, I mean, these applications, I don’t know if new York’s or limit the exhibits, the amount of pages per exhibit like some other states did, but you know, you’re looking at hundreds of pages that you’re going to be submitting and the consultants that you want to have on staff to help you, if you do want that, as well as putting together a couple of hundred K for the licensing fee, whatever they like.

Right in the medical, I think there was like 200 and change. So if you don’t have access to capital, it’s going to be very, very difficult for you to operate in this business. And that’s kind of where I start my conversation, which I don’t know if it’s a good thing or a bad thing, but it’s very straightforward and to a point, and it gives everyone a really nice.

Overview, whether it’s negative or positive, what they’re about to get themselves into a lot of people love the idea of cannabis and love the idea of operating within the cannabis industry, but they also have the false impression that they think cannabis is a get rich, quick scheme because they hear all these great stories and [00:22:00] it’s the complete opposite.

of that It’s very difficult to operate within this space, right. It’s still considered a schedule, one drug. So even though states tolerate it and have rules and regulations around operating, but then each one of these states, you know, the big guy on top, it’s still kind of saying traditional financing No, thank you.

It’s not going to happen. Oh, wait. You want to get taxed? Yes. Well, we don’t admit apply to 88 and really prevent you from running off any type of business expenses and really give you a hard time in operating your business, cut into your margins. You know, so it’s a difficult conversation to have, but you know, a lot of people take it either way, right?

So they’re like they get really discouraged. Or they say, you know what? I think I have a really great story. I’m going to go for this. And we’re going to, we’re going to work with you on the strategy. I want to go out and I’m going to friends and family, but I think he could help me with this. And there’s other means of capital to support.

Obviously, you know, some of these capital, for instance, you know, we have crowdfunding [00:23:00] platforms that you could possibly launch on plan touching and non-clients. Companies as well as, you know, obviously if there’s a, there’s a big ask and a big need, there’s something that we could actually float to ECS or other investors.

Then we have those routes as well. But that’s complimentary Arco system that we have is, you know, capital is our investment banker pretty much FMR based, broken up and relicensed broker dealer ventures is memory-based managed fund. You know, deploys capital to early operators for launch opportunity than the other consultant side.

So we’re well equipped to handle all of those answers to all of those challenges, but it’s really up to the clients who really, you know, make that let’s face it. It’s, it’s a, it’s a difficult industry and nothing is guaranteed.

[00:23:43]Bryan Fields: Yeah. And I think what you said about the mindset is so important too, because if you’re going to go on and get deterred early on in the process of all of these obstacles, you’ll never make it in this space because unfortunately in cannabis, there’s all these additional obstacles.

And while we all can agree until we’re blue in the face, that they’re silly and [00:24:00] ridiculous, the way the game is played and everyone has to deal with it. And it’s not our decision that that federal legislation is like this, but that the rules are like this. This is just how the space is. And I think it goes back to understanding.

When you do make that commitment with a resource like yourself, Jason, like with art view, you’re looking for a strategic partner to help you every step of the way, because you’re going to run into these ridiculous obstacles time in, in time out, and you have to have the right partner to help you get through all of those.

And I think that’s one of the important conversations I don’t think are understood enough for some of the operators in the space. Consultancy sure has some sort of bad stigma sometimes attached to it. But at the end of the day, the type of resource and the value that your firm firm brings to the table is almost unparalleled to the type of need that exists between these operations that meets these challenge.

Yeah.

[00:24:49]Jason Malcolm: I completely agree. It’s important to have someone to help you one, grab that story and know what the state representatives are looking for, because we’ve done it before in other states and [00:25:00] two, you want somebody to really have the eyes and ears to the ground to adjust and amend for any type of last minute changes.

Which Does happen? Let’s face it, right. It always happens within each one of these states. So that’s, those are definitely some of the benefits. I think the big question here is will this operate or function the same way when the fed legalizes Cannabis Would it be as complex? Would it be easier? I don’t know the question.

And it’s funny. It’s interesting. Whatever, what happens to two 80 E does that still exist? If the legalizes cannabis at the national level? I think it’s a lot of tax dollars. They replicate

[00:25:40]Bryan Fields: that a very different way. I think they like their money and I think it does get removed. Obviously I would want to consult with someone as a professional, but I think it does remove because I think it was based on, I think.

Neil was telling us how it was based on a ridiculous story of how a drug dealer kind of was writing off his business expenses.

[00:25:59]Jason Malcolm: And [00:26:00]

[00:26:01]Kellan Finney: then they were like, okay, you were in this side, but no one else is going to wait

[00:26:06]Jason Malcolm: for that judge for that person ruin the fall.

[00:26:09]Bryan Fields: So let’s, let’s continue on the trial. With Gomo out.

I’m going to butcher her name. Kathy hotel is in, is that good for New York? Obviously, we’re kind of not doing so well right now. I don’t want to speak it well about my home state, but we’re not doing so great. And new Jersey’s chugging along. They’re getting things through there. They’re looking at early twenties.

And for New York, I mean, I don’t even know how, how

[00:26:31]Jason Malcolm: far we’ve gotten to appoint someone to, to lead the program. That’s the starting point. That’s the bottleneck in mind, but he no longer seems to be the front runner. And look, I think for a lot of people that are following the New York program or a better engaged time.

New York politics. I think it was very clear that governor Cuomo’s priority was not cannabis. It was everything, but I think [00:27:00] cannabis came along in the conversations because of the loss of all that tax revenue from the city tourism and everything else. Right. So I think that was an easy way to fill in that gap.

Now, with that being said, there’s really very little that’s been done. Our one of our own has been a legal counsel has been tagged as one of the candidates for a lead role within the organization. I’m not sure if it’s the executive director role, but it might be a sub director role and he’s pretty close to those conversations.

And I think New York will be Avery or leaning towards someone of color or a woman. I think the latter might make sense. You know, if you want to have a political spin on it, which I’m sure, you know, every politician or especially in New York, would like to have given everything to have FOMO, but once that person is appointed, then things.

And let’s not forget New York [00:28:00] slated. They already budgeted some cannabis revenue in their 2022 budget. And it’s in their best interest to move forward. As quick as possible know, kind of ended here with this kind of icing on the cake. For her, this is a quick and big wins. So if she wants to pursue politics, if she wants to run for the governor, this could be one of in her tool belt to say, Hey, this was lagging for months under my predecessor.

According to the table. And I think that will go over very well, especially in a lot of communities. It does.

[00:28:38]Bryan Fields: It’s an easy layup for her, and I’m hopeful that things move fast. But I’m going to ask you this question, Jason, because I think the one thing that makes things move faster than anything is money.

And if New Jersey comes online, let’s say early 20, 22 and New York is still just playing in the mud. I mean, there has to be some spreadsheet and Helen’s favorite way of [00:29:00] just multiplying the number and just watching the spreadsheet, just shoot up. I mean, there has to be just an insane amount of revenue that is going to be crossing over the bridge into New Jersey because people from New York want cannabis and if they can drive 15 minutes, but realistically, probably 50 crossings.

To get cannabis, they’ll do it. And I wonder when and how fast they move, because I think as soon as New Jersey announces a date, it’s no longer an F it’s a, it’s a really fast clap. So you think that’ll help make New York get their stuff together?

[00:29:31]Jason Malcolm: Probably. I mean, I was kind of hoping that the markets in New Jersey kind of go in line together.

It’s really important. It was such easy to access, right. It’s really important to not over enforce, not overtax one over the other kind of had our standardized format so that you really. Right. It’s kind of more about convenience, more than price. And obviously that’s not changed. I think New [00:30:00] Jersey is a huge influx of new Yorkers and new Jerseyans come in you know, mature smokers and very early on, you know you know, want to experience cannabis in some way or some form discreetly, but we want to be flooding to New Jersey and.

People are already driving to Massachusetts from New York and New Jersey and Connecticut to purchase a tested, regulated product from a state so they can feel safe in consuming, but whatever reasons. So I think New Jersey is going to have a nice big pop. I’ll be interested. I’ll be really interested to see.

Impact on Massachusetts program, right? When both states are up and running, especially when genetic and it’s running down, but we’ll add this conversation. My buddies, it’ll be interesting to see how they will operate.

[00:30:51]Bryan Fields: I think the, the original intention was to try to do some sort of tri-state agreement, but obviously we’re not doing so great there.

So let’s kind of switch, we’re switch [00:31:00] gears. The biggest misconception since you’ve been in the cannabis. I didn’t

[00:31:04]Jason Malcolm: expect. I knew what was going to be challenging because of the uncertainty, right? The taxation, all that stuff. But as you talked to a lot of your clients or prospects that matter, and they really share with you some of the burdens and some of the challenges, I did not expect that side of the story.

I mean, a lot of these cases, a lot of, a lot of operators opening close within 12 months because they just can’t. Don’t have the means to capital, to burn over the first six to nine months of operations. And that’s something that I didn’t really think too much about when I entered this market. I thought things are going to be.

These are cannabis programs and they would be turning into a dog years. That’s going to happen across the whole Eastern seaboard. I was thinking like very optimistic, but I didn’t think about [00:32:00] the challenges. And I didn’t know about two 80 when I walked into this business either. Right. So I think that was the biggest misconception is, is really understanding.

The true hurdles that these operators are faced with. Let’s face it in some cases, some of that’s truly capitalize or fantastic location and a lot of foot traffic and really deal with these hurdles as much as the others. But there’s a lot of people that don’t. And look without capital. You’re not gonna be able to operate within the cannabis space, right.

From friends, family, or PCs, et cetera. And then you also can hire professional services to help you with your strategy. Right? I think that’s the, that’s the biggest misconception that I knew somewhat about when I walked into this, but not, I didn’t fully understood it until I experienced it. As really well

[00:32:48]Bryan Fields: set, you could sum up your experience into a main takeaway or lesson learned to pass onto the next generation.

What would that.

[00:32:57]Jason Malcolm: Well, I think everyone that starts to kind of [00:33:00] branch out on their own, you know, like myself went to a different industry David and Jake, my partners that are better at helping me, you know, manage this business and deal flow and everything else. I think the, one of the biggest challenges is sometimes you almost feel, you know, in some cases you get a little defeated in some days, right?

Because of all these challenges that are out there. But I think the message here is if you’re passionate about. You see that there is momentum and traction, then I just stay the course and keep your head down and continue with your original business plan. And, you know, I think it has a passion for something.

I think if someone feels strongly about something, you know, I think you should explore it. I think you should move forward and should give it your best shot. Yeah. I think that’s

[00:33:42]Bryan Fields: really well said. I, especially in our industry. So let’s prediction time. We’re going to be on the record, New Jersey. There’s going to give a fake.

Yeah, he is set to legalize and adult rec can start, let’s say January 1st, 2022. So just a date to put on the calendar. [00:34:00] How soon after New Jersey comes online is New York and soon

[00:34:05]Jason Malcolm: after does New York come online after New Jersey?

[00:34:07]Bryan Fields: Yeah. So hypothetically New Jersey does it the first appointing plane to which we know not going to be a real date, but just as a placeholder.

How soon after?

[00:34:16]Jason Malcolm: Well, I was saying by earliest. And bye

[00:34:21]Bryan Fields: earliest two quarters after Helen.

[00:34:24]Kellan Finney: I agree. Awesome. I’m excited because I wanted to work this into the conversation. So I’m glad we came back to, this is some of the best Dysport performing dispensaries in Colorado when they first for the, like, for the last five years, I think has been dispensary’s out in the middle of nowhere on the border of Colorado and Kansas.

There’s no town. It’s just, they literally parked in dispensary. Right? And they’ve just been killing it because people are coming across the border. Like we were just talking for Kansas to buy legal, legal cannabis, right. Or Wyoming. Right. And so I think that new York’s a lot more progressive as far as the politics go and they’re going to want to [00:35:00] push it through quicker.

Once they see. The first few quarters of revenue posted by these dispensaries that are just sitting right across the bridge, if you will. Right. So I’m going to get quarter three, the end of Q3, beginning of Q4 next year. If, if New Jersey goes legal, cause these rules take a long time and like, okay, they get the rules in place.

You still have to build a facility to grow. And build a retail location, so then sell the cannabis. Right? It’s not like the rules are stamped and they’re like, okay, everyone can start selling weed. Right. There’s this whole infrastructure thing too. So it’ll light a fire under them. If it happens in Q1 of 2022.

You still got to build the industry, right? It’s not like you just turn the lights on and everyone’s buying cannabis left

[00:35:49]Jason Malcolm: and right. Earliest end of Q2, but the latest Q4, but it’s a large band. Yes. And to Kevin’s point, that supply chain has to be created. Everything has to really start from [00:36:00] scratch. It’s a medical market, but it’s going to be completely different.

And they’re gonna miss out on a lot of revenue next year. Right? So optimistic

[00:36:12]Bryan Fields: of those responses. I’m definitely wrong, but I just can’t, I can’t imagine, I can’t imagine that New Jersey is going to come online and we’re just going to sit on. So I’m going to say 30 days after

makes people move. And I think what happens is they get the politicians in the room. When they say, guys, this need Babin. Like there is, I couldn’t even possibly imagine how much money New York is going to miss out on. If they just like this, like, it will be a catastrophic mistake and just a monumental failure across.

Party lines, the globe, whatever you want to call it from a New York standpoint to miss out on what is so much needed tax revenue, just because we can’t get [00:37:00] out of our own way, it’s unacceptable. And I think that gets people to move a little faster and shore the supply chain issues, going to have a huge, huge problem, but all the operators already said, there’s going to be massive shortages.

The supply is not going to work from the beginning. Even if everything was queued up, we’re still going to have shorter. So I’m not really so concerned about that. And I wonder if there don’t have the infrastructure in line, if they start kind of being a little more leniencies on some of these medical dispensary’s and say like, Hey, like you might be able to switch.

I don’t know if they have these weird exceptions and how that works, but at the end of the day, money moves.

[00:37:36]Jason Malcolm: I would say let’s place a bet on this. And, you know the losers would take went out to dinner

in Colorado. So it’s gonna be hard for that to happen, but I would say, okay, let’s go with this stuff. You say 30 days out. So bad about that. When he, 22, I say two, two, I will stick with my early projection. And then Helen, what are you going to do? [00:38:00]

[00:38:01]Bryan Fields: This? Isn’t the price is right style, right? This isn’t one of those we’re 31 days and I’m out and you’d be closest to the home.

[00:38:10]Kellan Finney: You can have all of Q1.

[00:38:11]Bryan Fields: I think the important part is like, if you’re listening to this podcast, you should let us know how you feel. Do you think New York is going to miss out on it? And if so, what sort of timeframe after New Jersey kind of blocks a day and, you know, do we think you’re going to go for it?

Jason before we wrap, where can our listeners get in touch? If they have any questions that they, they have consulting projects, where can they reach out to Akio

[00:38:31]Jason Malcolm: consulting.com? Just hit the link, discuss your project and write us a note and we’ll get back to you within 24 48 hours. Awesome. Thanks so much

[00:38:40]Bryan Fields: for your time, Jason.

Thank you.[00:39:00]

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Editors’ Note: This is the transcript version of the podcast. Please note that due to time and audio constraints, transcription may not be perfect. We encourage you to listen to the podcast, embedded below if you need any clarification. We hope you enjoy!

Bryan and Kellan sit down with Money Coach and Brand Builder, Jordan Highley of Make More Capital.

After working as a public school educator, Jordan Highley wanted to provide financial education to individuals who are looking to build generational wealth. Make More Capital is his financial education brand that seeks to empower ambitious people on how they can cut out expensive fees and keep more of their profit.

Listen to The Dime Podcast to hear Jordan discuss:

  • Money Management
  • What Cannabis company first caught his eye
  • Background into the History of Cannabis
  • Removing the Stigma of Cannabis
  • Impacts of Global Cannabis being legalized

After listening to today’s episode, you can learn more about Jordan’s work by visiting https://makemorecapital.com/ and following him on Twitter @makemorecapital

Let @bryanfields24 and @kellan_finney know what you think of today’s episode on social media!

Become a supporter of The Dime Podcast: https://anchor.fm/thedime/support


[00:00:00]Bryan Fields: This is the dime, dive into the cannabis and hemp industry through trends, insights, predictions, and tangents. What’s up guys. And welcome back to another episode of the dime as always. I’ve got my right hand, man, Alan Finney here with me. And this week we’ve got a very special guest Jordan Haile investor and educator.

Jordan, how you doing? Welcome to the show.

[00:00:23]Jordan Highley: I’m doing well today, guys. Thanks for having me on happy to talk about cannabis and the big generational opportunity. No one seems to be. Yeah.

[00:00:30]Bryan Fields: Yeah. And some people may aware of, and we’re excited to kind of get the others that are not aware of it. A little more excited.

Kellen. How you doing today

[00:00:38]Kellan Finney: will doing well. Doing well. Brian, how about yourself? Doing

[00:00:40]Bryan Fields: good. Thanks. So I think before we start Jordan, I think it’d be great for our listeners to get a little background about you and kind of what got you interested into cannabis.

[00:00:49]Jordan Highley: Okay. So I’ll try to keep that short. I I studied at university with the idea of becoming a teacher.

So sort of communicating and teaching has always been something that I’d like to like to do and wanting to do what got me back [00:01:00] interested in cannabis though. I would just want to say that, you know, as a, as a teenager in a culture where, you know, you start drinking early in high school, And then there’s cannabis and you’re told growing up that cannabis is what’s going to kill all your brain cells.

And then just by personal experience, like, well, that doesn’t seem to be the case when I try one, you know, versus the other. And so for me, what, what just became very interesting about cannabis was, you know, returning to Canada in 2017. So I’ll touch a bit on that in a moment, but returning to Canada and seeing that it was going to be a reality that in Canada, we were legalized.

And that was a process that was being done. Now, just to backs up a bit, I said, I studied to be a teacher. I could’ve gone to teacher’s college in Canada for two more years. So it’s like I could have paid for more training to become a teacher. Or I knew that there’s the opportunity to go teach English in Asia.

And that just caught me. I was like, I thought about it a lot. And I was like, that just sounds like a better play to go get paid, to teach, to learn and actually do it and then get to travel and all that. So I took a different path and that sort of problem. Kept me on a different path than most people now.

So yeah, I went to teach in Asia and then I just want to say that I think this is really cool. So just that, like didn’t realize it at the time, but I had just a [00:02:00] good saving habit. I decided to save half my paycheck every month and then live off the rest. So after the two years in Korea, I had $30,000 saved and didn’t think leave it as a skill at the time.

Even like my ex-girlfriend was like, you’re just so cheap. I was like, no, this is a good habit. Hopefully I’ll be wealthy someday. But then, so just the whole idea with that is that for the year teaching abroad, I had saved up so much. And, but the first thing I did was I invested in. In Canada through a financial advisor in mutual funds, like the classic way.

So we’ll get back to that later, but that’s just something I did initially. Then I went to travel for a whole year with 20 grand and that sort of just opened my eyes to the value of a dollar. And you know, how people everywhere kind of the same, want the same thing. Generally, as long as, you know, basic necessities are taken care of.

So that. Took me around the world. And then I came back to Canada and cannabis was going to be legalized. So I think that’s just a good bit of history on how I came to be self-taught investor and all that doing what I do now. Random

[00:02:49]Kellan Finney: tangent, I have to ask, where are you part of

[00:02:51]Jordan Highley: the TOEFL? No, not Toffel, but I did United TESOL.

[00:02:54]Kellan Finney: Okay. My sister was part of the TOEFL and she taught in Asia for five, six years. So I just figured I [00:03:00] might as well throw it out there. You never know,

[00:03:03]Jordan Highley: sort restorative similar in that they’re required to, to get into like Japan, China and Korea. More more restricted countries, I guess, for teaching and cause they’ll pay you a better salary and all that.

So they want you to have more trains, but it was just such a cool experience. And I honestly had some of the best times in my life. So it was looking back. I was just like, so grateful I did that. But then I just want to like take this point and then lead that into how I became an investor because so at the 10,000 K I invested in classic beauty funds through financial advisor because I just asked my dad, I was like, Hey, I need to, to build some wealth.

How do I do this? And so it was funny though, because a year after year and a half, after that initial investors. I’d come back from traveling and decided to come home and just start over sort of thing. And I found out that I owed $1,400 in tax penalties because I invested when I was a non-resident. So I’d come home visited for a month, invested that 10 K then went backpacking.

If you’re not living in Canada, you can’t use a TFA, which would be like your Roth IRA because you’re not living there paying tax. So I found that out and I was like, [00:04:00] you know, I was someone that thought investing was too risky, so I wouldn’t do it. But I was like, if this financial advisor can do this and not know the rules, this is ridiculous.

Like I must be able to learn how to invest. And then I found out the difference between a real financial advisor and a mutual fund sales representative. Then I found out about the fees. Then I went down the rabbit hole of what is money and then started managing my money myself. But so it’s just funny how, like that’s, that sort of thing was done there.

And it brought me back into here. So it was like, kind of cool how it worked out.

[00:04:25]Bryan Fields: I applaud you for kind of going down that hole and figuring out and not being deterred from the club failure, the bad experience, because a lot of people might be a little more hesitant to kind of continue on that same path, but it seems like you kind of went the other route and kind of doubled down and said, you know what?

I can figure this out myself. This is not going to be an opportunity for me to shy away. I’m going to kind of dive in and get my hands dirty and figure it out. So I guess my followup question. What was the first cannabis company that caught your eye when you started kind of figuring out like there might be something here as an opportunity?

[00:04:56]Jordan Highley: Yeah. So good timing. So I think this whole kerfuffle with that financial advisor [00:05:00] happened around September of 2017 and then it was November, 2017 that I got around to opening my first self-directed investigator. And that was a roar actually. So my first try investing was with the roar cannabis back in 2017, before everything had gotten a little bit out of control valuation wise, and it just, it opened my eyes within two weeks.

I had doubled my money with equity and I was like, holy crap. Investing works. So it was Aurora. I was in, I think I bought it 2 57. I sold out two weeks later or a week later at $5 and something just cause I didn’t know what I was doing, but I was like, this can’t go on forever. But that was the first. Yeah,

[00:05:30]Bryan Fields: it’s funny.

We can talk about this offline. I was in on that same, right around that same time. And my eyes were like, we shit. It was wow. Wow. Then, and I think there’s opportunity to kind of bring that back to us. And before we kind of dive into like the fun stuff and the investing standpoint, it’s going to take a different approach and talk about kind of like the history of cannabis.

I think sometimes it’s not really spoken about, about how we got to the point we are. So let’s kind of take it back from the beginning and start with like the story you were sharing before we

[00:05:58]Jordan Highley: started here. Good point. Yeah. [00:06:00] So I’m well, on my channel too, there’s a, I did a series last year called reality check cannabis in 2020.

And I did an eight episode series. I forget exactly. But at that time I was like, okay, this is like, I had the thought last year that the Senate and the devil. Biden could win. The Senate could actually flip just because things had gone so far, one way, it almost just feels like it has to go back the other way.

I had learned a lot about the history of cannabis myself there too. And it was just how, like, you know, first discoveries or first findings of it goes back 10,000 years to China being used as an original sort of textile for cloth material rope and then medicine. And there’s actually an excerpt that I have from that series.

So it’s a bit of a rap, like I rap on the series, so I’m just. Go through it for you guys here, but just, just goes to show. An entertaining way to sort of learn that the medicine, but then what I’ll get to is like the factors that helped it become illegal. That’s something that I learned. And I just want to mention, because you can look at it and just realize that it’s like, it’s just people that have it power that made decisions and it can be changed, but it’s just crazy that it hasn’t since then, but learning about like how cannabis has an [00:07:00] actual medicine over the years, Was just that, that was really eye opening.

And then even just my personal experience with it, seeing the data coming out now more and more it just made me want to look and it reaffirmed everything, but just this is it. So here’s where it gets crazy. It’s the OGN aesthetic. If you’re still numb to the pain caused over the years, it’s pathetic this man mixed cannabis with wine to get invasive in the skin, it worked, he realized it helps you heal from within discoveries of this magnitude were far and few in between Arabic scholars figured out its effectiveness for epilepsy at the same time.

Found it to be effective treatment for gout, oedema, headaches, this got published and repeated. And so then this is like 6,000 years ago to 4,000 years ago. Centuries later used by Arab traders for asthma, malaria, and fever from India and east Africa. The commodity was a keeper traveling alongside the Spanish, brought to the Americas.

He was practically foreclosing rope before the mass hysteria. Napoleon brought him back from Egypt to investigate the crop it’s pain-relieving sedative qualities, help with tumors and cough. Since the 18 hundreds cannabis rose to pharmaceutical success. Irish stock O’Shaughnessy deemed it had no negative medical effects.

And so this was in the 1850s, it was introduced in the U S Pharmacopia in 1842, actually as well, because it was becoming [00:08:00] popular in the U S by 19 hundreds, more than a hundred papers published in therapeutic uses for nausea, rheumatism, and pain. And over the counter solution, cannabis was never seen as criminal and idea totally absurd until it became associated with one little four-letter.

Drug, but so it just goes to show how, like that’s what anyone, you know, hundreds of years ago, 200 years ago would think of the plant. And it’s funny how we’ve been grown up to think of it as the complete opposite. And that’s sort of the anomaly, I think that’s really well said.

[00:08:24]Bryan Fields: Right? And it goes into like the stigma aspect of it.

And if you ask a large group of people, depending on where you are in the world, we can, we get mixed responses. Right? You have some people. It’s a gateway drug. We got one of our favorites, the devil’s lettuce. Right. And you got my personal favorite, the governor of Nebraska. If you legalize cannabis, he will kill your kids, which I will still put up on there on the, my favorite quotes of all time, because it is just so ridiculous

[00:08:49]Jordan Highley: at the same time.

It’s wild

[00:08:53]Bryan Fields: and it’s in this year, right? Like we’re not even talking about something that happened 10 years ago, 15 years. Correct. So like for someone like [00:09:00] him, who’s hopefully knowledgeable about what’s actually happening to make a statement like that. That’s so backwards is eyeopening. So I guess starting from the stigma standpoint, based on what you said, Jordan, how do we go forward and start educating people on the benefits of cannabis and start with removing the stigma?

Because I feel like we can talk about the benefits, but people aren’t going to get past that issue they have with thinking and knowing for so long, that cannabis

[00:09:25]Jordan Highley: is just. bad That’s a great question. And I don’t think it’s, there’s no simple answer. I do think it’s really a matter of individuals sort of choosing maybe, you know, their own lived experience over the the message the common messaging in society.

I also think too, it’s like, I don’t know about you, but I go through a lot of the studies and I see what comes out and. Despite Saying that Hey, THC or CBD seems to be very effective. All of these studies also say, but there needs to be a lot more looks into it. It’s just like, no, no. At this point we know THC seems to be the miracle pain reliever and we know CBD is good for inflammation and other things.

And like, I don’t know, it’s when our [00:10:00] established institution starts actually like take that seriously. And I think that will probably come from descheduling it because people need the, you know, the government to do at first and all that. But like, it’s just, it’s going to take decades, not decades, but like, Generations it’s going to take generations, but then I think the good thing is, is that at least, I don’t know how old you guys are.

Like, we’re pretty far into our life where I think any generation below us is going to be aware of what the, you know, more truths about the planet versus people that are older than us. But I think, yeah, probably descheduling just because people, they want it to come from the government or from leadership institutions for it to be true sort of thing.

Right. Can

[00:10:34]Bryan Fields: shed some light on that. I know we’ve been to some conferences a while back where there were representatives and of course we can’t mention specifics or any of those kinds of conversations, but it seems like the government’s been interested in kind of learning more about this and how to regulate this.

Can you kind of shed some light on that?

[00:10:48]Kellan Finney: Yeah, I mean, it was even five years ago. I was at a conference on California that was strictly a science-based conference associated with cannabis. Right. And the conference was the Emerald conference. And so [00:11:00] really, really heavy science, a bunch of really smart scientists, presenting very intense, scientific research that they’d been doing on the planet.

And there was groups from certain branches of the federal government that were there as focus groups internally that had been assigned. And at the end of the day, I think we were talking with some, some individuals the other day, too, that it’s kind of like a, an old Western standoff, right? Like the DEA, the FDA and other governing bodies that typically.

Regulate these kinds of substances, at least in the us are all standing there and little standoff. And unfortunately though they are not the ones that are going to be able to decide what happens. It’s going to, at least in the U S it’s going to have to come from the Senate and the house, right? Like we’re going to have to pass a bill through our legislative branch to be able to change the opinion of the masses.

You can reference surveys that say over 60% of the us population would approve of recreational cannabis right now. But unfortunately the representatives that [00:12:00] are speaking for part of those, the individuals that are in favor of cannabis legalization don’t share those same opinions. Right. Because if they did, it would already be legalized.

Right. And so there’s a huge standoff between the left and the right side of our governments, if you will, in those houses. Right. And until they. Come up with some legislation that. It can be agreed upon by both sides on the aisle and actually pushed through whether it’s the scheduling or rescheduling or decriminalization.

Right. One of those two things, nothing is going to change from a mass cultural stigma. Nothing’s going to change until that happens. Right. And, and then when that happens, you’re going to see all of these other governing bodies, like NIST, like FDA, like the DEA, they’re going to change all of how they behave and then that’s going to help accelerate.

And potentially be the huge catalyst that really, really drives the old way of thinking if you will, for the last 60 years out. Our society. Right. And I’d like to believe [00:13:00] that if the us does that, that it’s going to be a cascading effect across the globe. Right. Then Europe’s going to be like, okay, maybe it’s a good idea.

And you’re going to see all of these other countries across the entire globe kind of follow suit, hopefully. Right.

[00:13:12]Jordan Highley: That’s the idea. Germany has got an upcoming election on September 26 and apparently four out of the six parties. There are running on legalizing adult use cannabis because that’s become a really big issue there.

So that we’re seeing that first and foremost. So I’m glad that you touched on that. And I think it’s big dimension that the us is obviously the global leader. So with us, does everyone else will follow and just to touch on the history 1961, I think it was a UN convention or there was some sort of thing, but this is.

Harry Anslinger who was in charge of making cannabis illegal back. Then he basically bullied the rest of the world into following the U S drug policy and said that if you don’t do it, we’re going to veto anything you try to get done. So don’t even try. And so it’s like when you think the laws are still in place, based on that sort of mentality and that sort of negotiation, we just have to unlock that, that next step to, to see what can happen.

But I do think once the us does it, it’s going to be a domino effect and be faster. It’ll speed up the process, but let’s kind of

[00:13:56]Bryan Fields: tie that in too, from an investment stand. [00:14:00] The roadmap that Kellen presented to us, obviously he’s going to take some time to, and I’m sure you get flooded with this question, right?

You keep talking about fundamentals. The numbers are great. My stock price is down. Yeah.

[00:14:12]Jordan Highley: Why? Because. I want to quote Ben Graham in the short term, the market is a voting machine, but in the longterm, the market is a weighing machine. So yes, it seems weird that the fundamentals are so good and the share prices are down, but those don’t always correlate.

And that’s where opportunity is actually found in the market. But I think the other thing to remind people, and this is where most people aren’t going to understand it and they might miss the boat. Is that the media, I think, is always going to push that federal legalization needs to happen for these companies to be success.

And if you’re following that narrative, then you’re going to think that the big opportunity would be to buy the compromised bill maybe next year of getting passed. But I think if anyone’s been a bit more focused and paying attention to themselves, it is a state led story. Right. And state’s rights do supersede on before yeah.

Come before federal rights. So fundamentally I think that’s a very important thing to understand. [00:15:00] And like you said, if you’re living in a state where it’s not legal, you don’t know that it’s a different world versus states that are so that’s ultimately why though, just because they don’t correlate, but that’s where opportunities found.

So I think if you’ve done the research and you’ve read enough on it, like, I think you probably see what we’re seeing as an investor. Yeah. And like, I think

[00:15:16]Bryan Fields: you started really well about that’s where the opportunity lies, because I think sometimes people are so short-sided and looking for that instant gratification of, I bought this stock six weeks ago.

And since then, Even, and then down, I’m going to move into something more aggressive crypto, one of these names.

[00:15:32]Jordan Highley: I just want to use this to tie that to the example with your buddy, your buddy also is at stocks. It’s like, Hey, don’t forget, you’re investing in a real company, not just a stock. Right? So it’s, it’s so easy to over-complicate it, but like unconvinced yourself by doing that, you know, like an AB even kind

[00:15:45]Bryan Fields: of continue you on that roadmap where you kind of take a step back right.

From an investment standpoint and then take a step forward and think to yourself. Okay. I invested in February stock prices traded down. But New York. New Jersey, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Maryland, [00:16:00] Pennsylvania, all the east coast is

[00:16:02]Jordan Highley: coming online, New Mexico, Virginia.

[00:16:04]Bryan Fields: Right. And we’re just like, this is just in the foreseeable future.

We’re talking about like a small

[00:16:10]Jordan Highley: cluster of states are coming online and New Jersey is going to be online November, according to Boris, I believe so.

[00:16:15]Bryan Fields: Hopefully New York will get their

[00:16:16]Jordan Highley: stuff together, but it’s good. That coma is gone. Cause that might speed up the process. Everything forward. Let’s just move forward.

[00:16:24]Bryan Fields: The question I always post to my friends when they asked me that it’s like, who do you think is going to get that piece of the puzzle, right? That, that piece of the pie, when it gets split up, it’s the companies operating in those states and look at some of these numbers that they’re projecting from a market size standpoint.

I mean, these are massive, massive markets that are currently underway. And then all of a sudden, they’re just going to hand out 20%, 30%, 15%, 8%. And those are just massive movements to these fish that are just massive already. And I think that’s the part that’s so wild to me is that like, if you take a more [00:17:00] forward approach and we’re a higher level approach and think about the future of what the space is, We’re still on the first

[00:17:06]Jordan Highley: day.

Of course. And I don’t, I don’t necessarily know you a whole lot of future growth valuations. Like I imagine a lot of technical investors do with Tesla or Amazon, but I don’t see why you would not put a cannabis company in that exact same category or even more potential growth because a hundred percent growth year over year, pretty evident for all of them still, you know, in like the third or fourth year of operation.

And then, like you said, they’re just getting better. I completely agree. We might be in the second inning or we might’ve just gotten there, but it’s still so early. But I think too people often look back right. And instead of looking forward and that’s their biggest.

[00:17:36]Bryan Fields: Yeah. And it’s, it’s just so wild too, because like these companies released these blowout earnings and people’s first responses.

Well, the stock

[00:17:42]Jordan Highley: price went down. Yeah, exactly. Now I’ve got a question for you guys actually, just to flip it. Are you guys getting a lot of good questions that poke holes in the thesis? Because that’s one thing I’m always trying to get people to poke holes and try and find gaps in the story. But the only gap anyone can say.

But the share prices are down, which is good because that doesn’t poke any holes.

[00:17:59]Kellan Finney: Right. I’ve had [00:18:00] one kind of conversation that’s been reoccurring in terms of investing

[00:18:04]Bryan Fields: instead of trading

[00:18:05]Kellan Finney: cannabis stocks. Right. Right. And the one kind of pushback I get from a lot of individuals that are more sophisticated than me is parking their money.

Cannabis stock right now. Cause there’s only one. I think that technically pays dividends. Right. And so that the whole dividend aspect of it and the security from a longterm perspective, that’s a big pushback I get in terms of, oh, it’s not, do I invest in cannabis or do I not? It’s do I invest in cannabis or do I invest in another sector?

Right. And with the entire market showing so much growth, at least in the U S. A lot of individuals have pulled their money out of cannabis because they’re trading cannabis stocks. So you see this huge volatility. They’re not investing in cannabis companies because there’s no incentive. They say, okay, yeah, that’s a potential growth story.

Like Amazon, or like Google or alphabet, excuse me. Right. But there’s no. Passive income for [00:19:00] individuals to just park their money there for 10 years while they live off of the dividends or something like that. So that’s one pushback I’ve been given as far as like being true investing in the

[00:19:09]Jordan Highley: cannabis sector.

That seems more of just personal methodology versus actual what we’re seeing unfold though. So that’s helpful, but that makes total sense. But at the same time, like I just gotta ask you guys to like re are you guys cannabis, connoisseurs, or is it almost more of a. You want to write the past wrong and you want this to get done and not to say that, like, you’re letting your emotions get in the way, but like, it just doesn’t seem like anything can stop this as

[00:19:32]Bryan Fields: that’s one of my biggest fears is that like, I feel like sometimes my circle gets kind of like a lot of confirmation bias and that kind of gives me some hesitancy seeing part, like I’m thinking about it and it’s like, I am emotional.

Tied to this, which is probably the first reason you gotta like tell yourself this is not a good thing. But then I think about it and look at the fundamentals and thinking about forward approach. And then I tell myself, I’m like, all right, like whatever, emotional fears that I have, make sure that it’s a sizeable portion so that it’s diversified [00:20:00] against my overall approach and obviously different risk profiles for different people.

And everyone should consult and advise. But the, the pushback that I get often is it’s the Canadian reference. Well, or on Canada, B, they were doing great. And now they got murdered. Why is the U S going to be any different?

[00:20:16]Jordan Highley: Oh, that’s I love that too, because that is like, and it’s true though, because in investing the quote, this time that’s different is, is obviously you don’t want to say that too loosely or not, but if you actually were to look at like the U S companies ran two prices higher than they’re trading at right now in 2018.

So that’s something crazy to think about. This time, it really is different fundamentally. And you know, in that aspect, obviously saying that it’s just, it’s funny and that’s the irony of it, but the U S situation is very different. And that’s why I think with what we saw on Canon 2018, once safe passes that allows trillions of assets under management, potentially billions, but, you know, to flood in it if possible.

And I think just as much as I’ve tried to find holes too, and been like, okay, like what could possibly go wrong? Obviously you just want to make sure that you have enough cash [00:21:00] right. To last, so that you don’t have to dip in. But I think Todd has a great point. Todd Harrison, when he mentioned. New York and New Jersey need functional banking.

Right. And like, that’s the one thing that is like, that’s, that’s so true. And I don’t think you can really argue that. And so that’s one thing that at least that’s the best case. That’s like, I, I still think safe is a matter of when, not if right. But it’s just, that’s got to come for that to come alive. So

[00:21:23]Bryan Fields: we’ll continue on that thesis though.

Like when someone asked or why is it different this time? You know, why is it different than Canada? Why is the U S different? What would you say.

[00:21:33]Jordan Highley: Well, so it’s the amount of money that these companies are actually making on the ground. So in 2018, I recall canopy, I think was making maybe $20 million free.

I might’ve been making 25 or like in, in revenue revenue. So not even earnings. And when canopy was making 20 million in gurning or in revenue, sorry, they were valued at $20 billion making 20 million. And then rate like canopy on August six, they just posted their numbers 134 million or [00:22:00] 136 million in revenue.

And they posted a positive net income just because of some of their biological assets. I’m sure. And then lost cashflow loss of this. And then you look at Cara leaf valued at 8 billion posting 320 million in a single quarter. It’s just like it is night and day. It’s just because since three years have passed two groups of companies, Canadian LPs.

And S MSO has have been operating. Canadian LP has been growing a ton of cannabis for a market that they can’t sell that cannabis to, and therefore losing money versus like you’ve explained today, the new markets opening up as these more efficiently run USMS MSO are actually not burning the money that they’ve been given working with what they have and, you know, not pulling, not biting off more than they can chew.

And we’re just seeing the fruits of that. And so you do have to take that you do have to take that step back and see that, that big overall view. But I think if you can identify that then the writing’s on the wall.

[00:22:50]Kellan Finney: I think it’s also important to mention that I’ve heard that clearly. Inventory problems in the U S in terms of not being able to grow enough cannabis to supply some of their markets in [00:23:00] different states.

So it’s a, it’s a complete opposite

[00:23:02]Jordan Highley: problem. Exactly. And then you just have

like, California has more people than Canada. That it’s a thing. People just. You know, if our just country in the world by GDP,

[00:23:14]Bryan Fields: like people don’t grasp that, right? Like they don’t grasp that concept. And they, and another concept I don’t think is understood enough is this whole vertical integration scheme.

And this interstate is inability to kind of operate like economies of scale. And I think we’ve talked about this, a bunch on this podcast that like, this is just another hurdle that the cannabis operators have to fight through that are going to have to change their business line. And when they do. Get these kinds of chains released and they’re able to kind of double down on what they do best.

Then you can really see core competencies and unique selling points kind of start to shine through, and then you can see the real growth happen, right? Like right now they’re making handover like just out way, just not of my, like Helen was saying with purely, they don’t have enough product to keep on the shelf.

Like that’s just an insane concept. And then here we are in east coast, we don’t [00:24:00] even have Spencer’s open. We don’t know when from New York standpoint, hopefully soon, like you said, this is the part where it’s really attractive. And my guess, coming back to you. When was the last time or in history, what other sort of opportunities do you see that you can kind of associate with something like

[00:24:16]Jordan Highley: cannabis?

Yeah, I think it’s a good point. You mentioned that. I think most people don’t comprehend the scale because it’s really difficult and you have to almost practice every day to try and get that under wraps. But I do compare this to like tech in the late nineties and obviously I wasn’t alive. Versed in ed investing that or would not.

But I remember saying as a teenager, like when I’m an adult, like I’m, I would not have missed out on investing in apple or Amazon, even though I don’t, I didn’t know anything about investing for some reason. I remembered saying that to myself and I’m glad I said, that’d be an to remember that because it almost stuck in like, just when I get older, if there’s a big opportunity, like.

this Then I want to make sure that I’m in and I’m not going to miss out because it’s just like, you know, being concentrated in an opportunity, this potentially big, just based on all the fundamentals. You know, that’s where I would say someone who doesn’t see [00:25:00] this as a good place to park your money time in the market’s better than timing the market for such a big sort of opportunity.

But yeah, I’ve compared to tech because we’ll prohibition. Like my thought too is when I, when I you’ve probably heard me say this on the channel, prohibition only ends once in a lifetime usually. And like, how lucky is that? But then the U S. 50 individual prohibitions 18 of which have sort of been, you know, reformed only 12 or so are online.

We haven’t even seen the other six from online and then you’ve got another 32 states. So how are we not going to be able to play this entire, you know, the cycles of this industry for the next decade? I don’t see how that’s not an option. The

[00:25:33]Kellan Finney: opportunity there too, is that from a retail investor, you have an opportunity that’s never, ever been presented.

Yeah, as opposed to any other industry, because right now I think it’s like 4% of institutions actually are invested in the industry and with this kind of growth potential to be able to participate in something that the big banks can’t back right there as a generational wealth opportunity in and of itself.

You know what I mean? Cause they’re going to, they want to, they’re going to want in based on just the fundamentals

[00:25:59]Jordan Highley: of these companies. [00:26:00] Yeah. I can imagine. It’s it’s weird seeing all of that. You know, whether, whether banks are not allowing people to buy, but then, you know, so that’s typically why we might see more selling because if people can’t buy more of a get impatient, but yeah, I think so anyone that has enough wealth or money they’re going to be wanting to get in, in the next session.

And that’s why we’re seeing all this momentum and probably some positive results of the lobbying effort we’ve seen over the summer so far. And it’s just like, I just think it’s going to carry on through. Yeah, I

[00:26:28]Bryan Fields: think it’s going to surprise a lot of people. I think people have heard cannabis and there they know about the opportunity.

They might not be familiar with some of the bigger players, which they should check out your channel and this dollar podcast, if not sure, but I think it’s the same breath. I think when they see the real fundamentals and they see the. Total size of these companies. They’re going to be blown away by what they’ve been able to accomplish it.

And I wonder when we have that first outside industry acquisition kind of come into the space for just a ridiculous amount of money. I think that’s when you’ll see people go, oh, this is real. Like there’s some real companies in [00:27:00] here that are, are starting to really dominate the space. And I think that’s going to be the biggest push forward.

[00:27:07]Jordan Highley: I’d say, I’ll just, I’ll say in first and second, but just like, we don’t know, we don’t know. Right? So as, as a retail investor too, we don’t know how high us capital once they are allowed to get, and we don’t know how high they can take this. And I’m not to say that they’re, you know, these companies are going to be worth a hundred billion or anything like that.

But if you look at it in 2018 and these companies were making 20 million in revenue and they got up to 20 billion worth of valuation, there’s no reason to believe that when given the opportunity, these companies wouldn’t. You know, shoot up to most, probably more because they’re in the U S and because the numbers are so much better, it’s just, you know, it, because it hasn’t happened.

We can’t imagine it, but I, I just, I do think, like you say, it’s going to surprise people because it’s going to be quick. Like it has in the past. Right. When it happens, it happens fast and you don’t want to be chasing, you want to be in, so yeah, that’s sorta. So

[00:27:54]Bryan Fields: I, I guess one of the negative standpoints that I think can get brought up and I think we should do a better job of addressing some of those, [00:28:00] because I think sometimes people we do kind of like pro confirmation bias.

That’s kind of what the circle is. So one of the hesitancies that I think some people come to address and say, it’s like, well, talk about the vaping market and how like that has a negative effect. I think there’s going to be continued to have negative. PR. So tell him from your standpoint, obviously, cannabis there’s safety issues, because people are unsure of exactly what’s happening.

Plus people are consuming black market products to be proud of from guests. Is there any hesitancies from your standpoint that safety could be a reason or health concerns could be a reason that cannabis never makes it to the evaluation Jordan’s talking about. Yeah. I mean, I’ve had some

[00:28:37]Kellan Finney: conversations with some of my friends and there it is a really unique point in time that cannabis is at right now.

I mean, right now you can go purchase cannabis flower. That is clearly unadultered, it’s the flower. They haven’t added anything. And I compare it to, or I didn’t put my buddy, he compared it to the back of industry in the early 19 hundreds. Right. And so [00:29:00] if we get to a point where cannabis starts to be adulterated, and we saw that in the vape industry with the vape crisis in early 2019, and, and granted it wasn’t legal companies, it was the illicit market, cutting it as they do with other illegal narcotics in terms of stretching what they’ve purchased.

Right. But at the same time, if that occurs in other products use across the, the cannabis industry, It could quickly change the conversation to look at how bad these products are for you. It’s a giant health crisis because I mean, in the early 1930s, doctors were recommending cigarettes and there was no huge health consequences.

And it turns out when they started adding all these addictive chemicals and doing all of these. Immoral

[00:29:46]Bryan Fields: things

[00:29:47]Jordan Highley: on opioids are healthy for you too, though. Right?

[00:29:49]Kellan Finney: Totally. Right. So like that’s one area I see that could potentially be detrimental from a PR perspective. For the industry. Right. But I think that the way around [00:30:00] that is federal legalization and regulation.

Do you know what I mean? Like legalize it and then we can regulate it. We won’t have to deal with these issues. You know,

[00:30:08]Jordan Highley: that’s the crazy thing it’s like, there is no black market issue of, you know, stuff coming from China or wherever stuff being created without knowing the safety of it. If you just create a legalized, right.

Besides that, that’s what baffles my mind, at least to counter with your friends. It sucks. And it, from a PR standpoint, and what’s sad is that PR is going to be what’s pumped out. But I mean, the good thing is, is there’s also studies like the 1894 British Raj commission, the lindane commission, the LaGuardia commission, the Shafer commission, all these studies over the years, gone to Jamaica.

Basically the us government paid top tier academics to study cannabis and all of them could not find any negative harm to the human. Besides, obviously putting smoke in your lungs is not good. So that’s moderation. Anyone should practice any smoking moderation if you’re going to. But like the whole idea is that like we’ve checked and there’s no negative effects.

So the only thing left is to deschedule it so that we can actually see what the positive effects are. But like you said, it’s PR is [00:31:00] different from reality. So GHD

[00:31:02]Kellan Finney: has this, like they’ve done huge toxicology reports on GHC because it’s a pharmaceutical, right? Like you can go get prescribed at THC. Right.

So like they’ve done toxicology analysis on it and it’s clearly very safe to subscribe as a

[00:31:15]Jordan Highley: pharmaceutical, really, because I wasn’t even aware of that, but yeah, no, like

[00:31:19]Kellan Finney: Delta, so Delta, H and Delta at nine have toxicology studies done on them. We were actually talking to a pharmaceutical chemist who was mentioning these things and like, he’s like, they’re completely safe to consume because they had to do those for the pharmacy.

Versions of them that are prescribed for cancer patients

[00:31:32]Jordan Highley: at this point. Gotcha. Is that dropping off Jonah ball or dropping off

[00:31:36]Kellan Finney: phenomenal. And then Syntech, I think is the other one, right? Is that what it was Brian syntax or

[00:31:41]Jordan Highley: something? I’m not sure.

Yeah, but they’re safe. And so it’s like the whole, like THC is as legitimate of a medicine on this earth as we can possibly.

[00:31:54]Bryan Fields: But it’s been stigmatized for so long. And I think some people have these issues with kind of getting past [00:32:00] and we challenged them and say like, Hey, I know you felt this way for 63 years.

But I’m sorry. You’re wrong. Police report says it and they didn’t make it. Who are you dude? And how long have you been in this

[00:32:11]Jordan Highley: space to go back and it can do the history bit with dancing or stuff. I forgot to mention that. So it’s just, it’s very interesting because I read a few books. Like obviously the emperor wears no clothes by Jack hair.

That was one that there were three or four that I read last year that sort of inspired that series. Yeah, looking at it. There’s obviously just players back then that were in positions of power and, you know, had the ability to make decisions that put the laws in place that they are now. And like, it’s just the crazy part is, is that they’re still in law in place today.

Right. And we haven’t changed them, but so let’s say let’s go back to 1980. There’s a lot of immigration coming from Mexico. And one way to sort of instill fear or at least make it seem as if there’s no reason to be afraid of this immigration. So William Randolph Hearst was a man. So he’s one of the three players.

I’ll name them out of Harry Anslinger, [00:33:00] who was head of the fear, federal bureau of narcotics. Then we have William Randolph Hearst who was think of like gay. A media empire magnet back then, and he created the yellow. I forget the word for it, but yellow sort of eye-popping sensationalists newspaper articles as opposed to real reporting.

And then Andrew Mellon, Andrew Mellon, who was the secretary? Secretary treasury of the U S back then he also happened to be the banker for DuPont chemicals. So, and I’ve looked at the history, I don’t know about you guys, and it’s not like I want to be politically correct, but I only use the term cannabis for cannabis and hemp for him.

So William Randolph Hearst with his media empire of newspapers, it was like, well, if we call it marijuana, it’s going to sound Mexican. And that way we can tie it to evil behavior and use it against the immigration problems. So that’s one way to get this message out into the room. And completely misinformed them.

And then around that same time, prohibition of alcohol ended and there was a former division for that federal bureau of prohibition. I forget something like that, but then that ended. And then [00:34:00] Harry J Anslinger was the head of that. A government bureau. And then when that ended, he ended up being recruited to become head of the federal bureau of narcotics.

So it’s almost like, well, since everyone wants alcohol, we need to find a new enemy in a way. And it also happened that his brother-in-law was Andrew Mellon, who happened to be one of the wealth, wealth, magnets from the east coast, like a hundred years ago, if you know, Carnegie Mellon, university Mellon, Mel LLO.

And it’s just very common. But so he was the treasury secretary and his brother-in-law was Henry, Henry J Anslinger. So convenient though, right. That he could just put his brother in there. Married to his wife in a position. But then at the same time, this treasury secretary who could do that, he also happened to be the bank of DuPont and DuPont in 1934 was creating a synthetic fiber called nylon.

And if you look at him, hemp is the most strongest natural fiber in the world. So if you can make the hemp plant illegal, or if you can create a tax so that people aren’t going to grow it, then DuPont is going to make a heck of a lot of money selling synthetic fiber nylon. So, you know, that just, it also just happened to line in sync.

And then it was, it happened to be though in 1937 [00:35:00] Where Harry J Anslinger ends up pushing towards like the American medical association that marijuana is evil or marijuana is bad. We need to get rid of it. And that’s where the doctors they’re like what’s marijuana. Like we know cannabis because cannabis is the name of a plant.

And so just imagine over years of people in power, being able to use that power, they basically. Made cannabis a little, they made it they introduced the tax. So farmers couldn’t grow it. Otherwise you’d be taxed. And back then, you, you wouldn’t risk growing it to be taxed You know, everyone was making like five, $10 a day sort of thing back then.

But what’s crazy is too, is that world war II came around and the U S. needed to legalize hemp So they got all the hemp farmers to grow as much hemp as possible, so they can win the war for rope and like lubricants for airplane wheels and all that stuff. So like they brought it back and then after they won the war, they’re like, okay, we need to make it illegal again.

This is just so stupid, but that’s all out there in the history, if you want to look at it. And then last thing though, and I mentioned cannabis was introduced in the U S. In 1850 or 1842 or something like that? 1852 Harry dancing, or was the one that removed it [00:36:00] after world war two group mid world war II in 1942.

He who has no scientific basis or no scientific training whatsoever was able to remove something from the U S from a Copia as if. It’s just, that all happened. And then that led into the sixties where he forced the UN every other country disorder obliged by the, you can just imagine how that all happened because no one had the internet, no one had access to free information.

No one had the ability to object, but that was crazy that those are still in the Nixon and the 71, he was like, wow, we can make a lot of money. If we find an enemy to, to arrest and criminal. Creating the prison industrial complex. And yeah. So it’s

[00:36:35]Bryan Fields: one of those where I feel like we need like a Netflix documentary in order to do that for a lot of people would be like, wait a minute.

Like, is that really what happened? And they’re like, this is some emotion.

[00:36:44]Jordan Highley: I mean, you can go to my YouTube channel and check that out in episodes five, I cover five and six. The history of the plant and then history of the U S and I mean, it’s long, but it’s, it’s all there. And it’s just like shit eyeopening for you when you were kind of going through it.

It was, and who knows what their [00:37:00] intentions were back then. They probably knew that they could make money. And they’re not saying like, oh, well, Make this plant illegal, then no one else gets it. It’s just like, oh no, this will make it better. You know, nylon will sell more or something like that. The intent probably like they never intended for it to last this long.

And to go this big, I imagine, but you know, here we are today, it was eyeopening. It was crazy. And all I could try and do was try and present it in a way that people would want to watch it. So

[00:37:23]Bryan Fields: they’re probably like this got out of control.

[00:37:26]Jordan Highley: Yeah, it, it does. Like, we just think when no one does anything to object, right.

And just to think if individuals hadn’t started pushing and fighting for cannabis, legalization themselves and individual states, how much do you know we wouldn’t be where we are now? So it’s all about the individual on the ground willing to say, no, this is, this is crap. Cannabis has helped me. And, you know, I want to get that story out there.

So, so let’s

[00:37:49]Bryan Fields: go back to the individuals, right? I think a question that Kellen and I always get asked that we’d love for kind of your insight on, is from a fundamental standpoint, you’ve got all these different companies operating in the cannabis space [00:38:00] specifically here in the U S how do you Jordan make an informed decision and understand which one of these companies you would like to say?

This is how I separate the companies. This is what I would recommend.

[00:38:12]Jordan Highley: Good question. So I, I would say I’m a student of. Naturally starting with like the intelligent investor and a few of these. So for me, it was originally looking for under price value or a good margin of safety. So I typically like to look at the market cap of the overall company, because that’s really what matters.

It’s like when people talk about the share price being oh, truly is more expensive than Cresco. I should buy Cresco. It’s like, no, that’s not what it means though. Regardless. I like to look at market cap price to sales. You know, also for myself, like I just, I like to be looking at the numbers constantly.

And one of the reasons I do my show is because it keeps me in check. Obviously I get a bit of confirmation bias, but like, I, I do look for other stories that that would tell otherwise, but me doing that two times or three times a week, just make sure. Everything I’ve checked. You know, my plan is still in line, but I think if you were to look at any other industry, any [00:39:00] other industry that is allowed to trade on the New York stock exchange or the NASDAQ, and you look at their market cap versus their price to sales, especially if they’re in a growth industry and there’s still growth to come, you can find those companies trading at a price to sales.

20 X especially if it’s a high growth industry, at least, at least. And then when you look at the market cap to 2021 revenue estimates versus even 20, 22 revenue estimates, and we’re already in August, 2021, right? Like time is going by very quickly. When you see these price to sales are sitting at 3, 4, 5, that’s all I need to know.

Like there’s nothing else. It’s, it’s that. And then it’s seeing, you know, Illinois sales growing every single. And man it’s just that, that, that, that Colorado blueprint, seeing what Colorado has done from 2014 to now, it’s safe to say that just based on the fact that people have always consumed cannabis and it’s not like they’re creating a new market for a new product, they’re just creating illegal one.

It’s just, it’s a no brainer, but that’s really the one main metric I look at. Obviously you want to see what earnings and all that, but I’m not trained in finance. So [00:40:00] I like to just know that, you know, these few boxes are checked on the ground and that’s enough for me. I think,

[00:40:04]Bryan Fields: I think that’s really well said.

So let’s continue on that. What is the biggest misconception since you’ve kind of been headfirst into the cannabis

[00:40:12]Jordan Highley: space? That’s a good question. Well, I think a big one is that they need federal legalization. And I think I didn’t mention this earlier, but I’m glad that you asked this. If I can bring it back in 2018, when we saw the big bowl.

That’s when August 1st or second, few days into August constellation brands invest 5 billion into canopy. Right. And that’s that, that’s when it took off. And like at that point I’d invested about 12 grand into Fria. And I had made a plan. I told myself, Hey Jordan, when on October 17th, you’re going to sell all of your shoes.

And then October 17th rolls around and I didn’t know anything. I got greedy. I was like, no, this is going to keep going up, you know, classic mistake. But the whole idea for me was like, if, as long as I don’t sell, I will lose anything. And you know, it was a long process, but again, I’m glad I held out an average down and went up.

But that whole point saying is that like, I think people are going to think in the U S federal legalization is going to be that [00:41:00] big. That Canada had, but we know as investors that I think it’s safe, it’s allowing the capital to flow in. So I think the biggest misconception is just that as time goes on, I think federal legalization is going to take longer and longer.

And at the same time when 91% of America wants it legalized and work, technically living in a democracy, I think at some point you got to make the rules that line up with everything too. So like, I imagine they’re, they’re pushing for that. Regardless of how long that takes. I think the biggest misconception for investors is just keep educating yourself and just looking into why safe is that, that big catalyst and not federal legalization.

But I do feel that when safe would come, we might see the numbers go super, super high, like overvalued, come pull back down. And then, you know, whenever that data we got, like, it’s the same thing. It’s just, it’s a cycle. And I think the biggest misconception is that it’s a one and done thing too. Like you can probably play this second.

In the coming year sort of thing, because we have so many different separated markets coming online and stuff. So it’s just yeah. To

[00:41:55]Bryan Fields: see an article that summarized what other aspects [00:42:00] 90% of the United States agreed on because I don’t. There’s going to be many. I just don’t think there’s many things. I mean, you could probably find maybe one hand worth of items and maybe we should spend some time on the internet looking to see that, but I’d be

[00:42:12]Jordan Highley: curious to know how many there were, where they were.

Maybe you shouldn’t raise your kids to lie. That’s probably one thing 92% can agree on. I don’t know about this

[00:42:23]Bryan Fields: research study that says like, lying is like good for your kids. It keeps you feeling safe. Right. And something like that, like while you’re hurt or feeling so like yeah. All right, continuing on.

Before we do predictions, we ask all of our guests, if you can sum up your experience into a main takeaway or lesson learned to pass onto the next generation, what would that be?

[00:42:42]Jordan Highley: Learn to trust yourself? Again, I think that’s a big thing. Like being able to become a clearer thinker and think critically, and then being able to trust yourself, because believe me for the two years that I had invested in a freer and then, you know, began averaging again.

That was me basically building the stomach to be an investor, [00:43:00] but testing everything that I had learned, reading the intelligent investor and all these different books and it wasn’t easy, but the moment that a freer went from, you know, $3 in March to $35 last February, it sort of made it all worth it.

And that gave me the confidence that like, wow, I did this once and it was right then. So like, just to say. In the culture, you go to school and all that, you’re going to learn a bunch of stuff. Right. And you might be learning, you might be taught a lot of what to think, not necessarily how to think. And so we need to say like investing in yourself, but trying to trust yourself.

I don’t know. The more we get older, the more we think that all the answers lie out there. Right. But if you can just find the data and do the digging yourself, I think it’s just very worthwhile. So just flex that muscle as much as you can, because when you’re right, it gives you that confidence and you can keep building that snowball.

[00:43:47]Bryan Fields: All right. It’s prediction. What is number one last and that either the us or the individuals operating in the U S can learn. From the Canadian [00:44:00] process of cannabis,

[00:44:01]Jordan Highley: don’t allow a big tobacco or big alcohol to get involved. My one thought is just like, obviously now we want to see this happen because cannabis should be legalized for, you know, personal choice and just the freedom of that.

But like every other industry that becomes corporatized, that’s my one worry down the line. So. That’s to say, I don’t keep doing what they’re doing. Like what we saw in Canada. It just, it can’t happen though, in the U S I just, I don’t think that’s possible. So I want to say that actually, maybe that’s the answer, but stick to your guns and trust your gut, because what they’ve been doing, it seems to work fine.

Right? So like also, you know, a lot of just like kill them with kindness. Cause I think that’s the best thing that they’ve done so far, but they’re doing it as bad. Like that’s how you got to do it. So

[00:44:39]Kellan Finney: once federal legalization occurs, it’s not just going to be like, you can go buy pot anywhere. Or you can go get cannabis anywhere you want.

And if you’re an operator, if federal legalization happens, it’s not. You’re the next day. You’re just going to sell out every single day. Moving forward that, I mean, it’s still you still going to have to build a solid company. These companies are still going to have to [00:45:00] figure out where to put their best people in what positions.

And they’re still going to have to run sound businesses. It’s just going to be a relief that once it does occur from a federal standpoint, but it’s not going to change everything overnight, having federal

[00:45:14]Jordan Highley: legalization occur. Well, I would add too though, like individuals let’s get these non-violent drug offenders out of jail.

That’s huge. Unbelievable. Because listening to what wasn’t your podcast, it was another one recently with the Dangelo brothers and just saying. That’s not the case where they just get released. Like it takes time and it should be the people that put them in jail. That should be the ones taking initiative to get them out.

That’s not the case in a way. So that should be the priority even like right now in every state that has legalized

[00:45:40]Bryan Fields: for me, I’m going to go with the fact that like, even in Canada, when they were operating in 2018, they industry’s still so early. There’s still so much to learn, to uncover, to understand in order to improve.

And I think. Patience is going to be such a crucial factor where I think there’s a misconception where it’s like, oh, you’re in cannabis. You must be doing really well. And I [00:46:00] think that’s kind of a misconception that people don’t realize is that the industry is hard. There’s all these additional challenges.

And it’s still so early that it’s not as established where there aren’t these normal practices, like in tech or oil and gas. If you’re out there and you’re wondering about being in the space, it’s still very early, but there’s still all these challenges. So I think you could learn from what Canada did, but I think the us is going to make a ton more of their mistakes.

And I think we’re still so early and we’ve got a ton more mistakes to continue there

[00:46:27]Jordan Highley: to me a hundred percent. And we’re still on the first ending. Like that’s,

[00:46:29]Bryan Fields: what’s great. Yeah. Cool. Jordan for our listeners that want to get in touch, they want to learn more and they want to see your videos. Where should they.

[00:46:37]Jordan Highley: They can check out my content on YouTube. So the channel is I’d make more, make more capital. I do three episodes a week right now. So Wednesday, Friday and Sunday, typically Sundays, the good one with this weekend cannabis news, but I just, there’s just so much news. And so I just try to pump out whatever I can.

And again, it helps me with the research, but other than that, if you’re on Tik TOK, I actually go by highly invested. So it’s a different handle on their Instagram, [00:47:00] make more capital. And I had a podcast too called highway. So people can check that out, but that was more of like my entrepreneurship journey and same idea.

You guys are doing, communicating with other like minded people to learn and just share that knowledge. So all those spaces we’ll link that

[00:47:12]Bryan Fields: all up in the show notes and laughed Abby, come back on. And when we we get some good announcements here and kind of dive into the fundamentals, so appreciate your time.

Thank you.

[00:47:19]Jordan Highley: Thank you guys for having me. It’s been a pleasure and yes, after safe, let’s do that. So then we can go over that, but then also prepare that like, there’s still going to be lots to come because there’s still so many states that haven’t even gotten started. So we can

[00:47:29]Bryan Fields: all be here celebrating with champagne as our stock prices, just go right down and cannabis.

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Editors’ Note: This is the transcript version of the podcast. Please note that due to time and audio constraints, transcription may not be perfect. We encourage you to listen to the podcast, embedded below if you need any clarification. We hope you enjoy!

Listen today to hear Cannabis journalist and author, Andrew Ward talk with hosts Bryan @bryanfields24 and Kellan @kellan_finney about the world of Cannabis culture and writing.

You will also here insights about

  • Educating the Public about Cannabis
  • THC Caps and Future Legislation
  • Inspiration for his book The Art of Marijuana Etiquette
  • Professions in Cannabis

After working for a startup, Andrew Ward was trying to find a sector of the marketing and writing world he fit into and could be passionate about. He saw the newly budding cannabis industry and threw himself into the field. Now with over 500 published pieces, Andrew is a key figure in the cannabis community. You can purchase Andrew’s books on Amazon as well as other favorite retailers.

You can support The Dime Podcast by following us on Social Media or by sharing your favorite episode with a friend.


[00:00:00]Bryan Fields: This is the dime, dive into the cannabis and hemp industry through trends, insights, predictions, and tangents.

What’s up guys. Welcome back to another episode of the dime. It’s always, I’ve got my right hand, Nan Kellen Sydney. And this week we’ve got a very special guest Andrew Ward. Author of the art of marijuana, etiquette and featured writer in all the industry’s top publications.

Andrew, thanks for taking the time.

How you doing today?

[00:00:27]Andrew Ward: Hey guys. Thanks a lot. I appreciate you having me doing real well, excited to be here.

[00:00:31]Bryan Fields: A Brooklyn base. We’re pushing the east coast really hard. Kevin, how you doing? Yeah.

Doing

[00:00:35]Kellan Finey: well, feeling feeling like the minority out here at being the only west coast guy on the show today,

[00:00:40]Andrew Ward: you got the access to nature.

So you know, a little bit about.

[00:00:43]Bryan Fields: I think to steal off a common land force. I think it’s east coast best coast, I think is what he said.

That’s the way I heard it. Okay. Before we get into it, Andrew, can you kind of give the list? There’s a little bit about your background.

[00:00:58]Andrew Ward: Yeah. So I’ve been a writer. [00:01:00] Based for about five years now.

I’m a freelance writer work with some notable publications currently include Benzinga high times business insider started writing for a new psychedelics publications coming out soon called psychedelia. I’ve also written for some of the top brands in the industry. Not going to name them just cause I don’t know if they want to be named out, but you know, some notable brands that if you’ve been in some of the major markets, especially in the west coast and some starting on the east coast have worked with them as well as some up and coming spots, advocacy groups, things like that, kind of tried to keep a diverse background in the space graduate in 2008, with a degree in creative writing and was told, I was never going to be able to use the degree because of the recession.

And I was able to use the sales and marketing jobs that I had for a few years and actually leverage it into what ended up becoming the cannabis job and. Yeah, since then, it’s really grown into a great career. It’s still pretty surreal. The art of marijuana advocates. My second book came out in 2021. I wrote my first book cannabis jobs in 2019.

So yeah, it’s all been kind of a blur and it’s really awesome to be here talking about

it. So tell us a single moment or a defining moment in your [00:02:00] life where you realized you wanted to be in the cannabis.

So, when I wanted to be in the cannabis industry was right around 2017. I probably a couple of months back, I’d been working at a startup that really didn’t pan out well it was paying well, but aside from that, it really didn’t live up to any of the expectations that I had real clear writing on the wall was that we were going to part ways, but I.

The hell with it. We’re going to ride until the wheels come off and we’re gonna, you know, do a best effort, but we’re also going to have stack the money and prepare for this freelance career that was going to be embarking on. I got laid off January of 2017 had a little bit of a nest egg. So I spent the next two months kind of trying to figure out what sectors I want it to be in.

I was kind of. Feeling it out. I hadn’t had enough time to really prep and find the industry I wanted to be in. So I ended up defaulting back into a lot of areas that I’ll read new startups, tech, things like that, really, you know, nothing wrong with them, but they just really weren’t appealing to me.

Weren’t really making me happier stimulated. It was just kind of, it was just harder to find work. And then probably around month, two and a half three, I was, you know packing a bowl like I usually do in the evening, just kind of kicking back [00:03:00] and you know, it wasn’t. But I saw an interview that I think it was Dave , who was doing it.

And basically he said something along the lines of, you know, find something that you love and find someone to pay you for it. And I was thinking, I was like, yeah, I’m trying to do that right now. And I was like, well, what do I love? And, you know, I pretty much had the bowl in my hand. And I was like, oh shit, this is an opportunity right here.

I’m sorry I curse on this, by the way. I thought I just wanted to make sure. So I was like, oh shit. Actually, it has an opportunity for it and it might actually be a little early. So I started feeling it out and I, you know, I’ve been reading a lot of the publications, you know, I think at that time it was civilized high times.

Mary Jane were kind of the go tos and a few occasional news stories here and there. I thought, you know, I could get involved in this and kind of bring over my sales and marketing experience as well as with my journalism background and kind of, you know, see what we can do with it. And that’s where it all started out.

And I started cold emailing, like a, would a business development leads. Basically it said it was like, I have two articles from when I wrote at AOL on weed. Are you willing to take a low-income shot on [00:04:00] me as a writer? And I booked my first job was a rosin press company. Out of Colorado, ended up working with them for about four years.

Yep. Yeah. Colorado Kellen shout out. They were, they were awesome. Great client. I actually wrote for cannabis publication, cannabis culture in Canada, and then the raspberries company got me introduced to pot guide, which was my first us publication in Colorado also. And it kind of took off from there.

And, you know, ever since then, it’s kind of been a whole fun journey for the last five years.

[00:04:29]Bryan Fields: Great story, especially when we’re describing with the ball in your hand, right? Like realizing like, this is, this is what I love. This is the industry. And I guess my question follow-up would be like, when you told people or shared with them that you were taking a journey and it was early, right.

From an east coast standpoint, you’re telling them you’re going to be in the cannabis industry. What were the types of looks that people are giving you when you were expressing that

[00:04:48]Andrew Ward: people thought that was a terrible idea? So it was a combination of either they thought I was going to go to jail for being a drug dealer.

Somehow even now I explained it was writing and it’s nothing related to it. Other people thought it was just another step in, you [00:05:00] know, a bad mental health just a spiral. You’ve been laid off. It’s the winter time. Are you okay? Like you’re really entering the space that has no prospects, like, or do you want to sabotage your career?

Like, it was really like, concerns about my decisions on a mental health or professional level across the board. I’ve always had a good intuition on myself. You know, I’ve made some mistakes along the way, like we all have, but you know, I also just feel like when I know something is right, I just go with it.

And I told everyone, I was like, just give me six months to a year. And I can start getting a proof of concept going. And, you know, I also told people, I was like, as much as I know, I want to get into marijuana right away. And I did, I also knew that there wasn’t gonna be enough money unless I really struck lightning, you know, right out the gate and you know, was able to do it.

And I wasn’t. So it probably took about two years before that. So I was really working in a couple of different spaces. So I’ve worked in, you know, HR. Tack, you know, staffing those sort of areas, more traditional fields. And I think that started to make people realize that this is actually a business plan.

And by year three, when it finally accelerated, they’re like, okay, well, we’ll stop criticizing

[00:05:58]Bryan Fields: you like in the [00:06:00] beginning. And they’re like, that seems like a crazy idea. Now. They’re like, yeah, we knew it was going to be great from the beginning edge

[00:06:05]Andrew Ward: cannabis.

[00:06:05]Bryan Fields: It’s an emerging

[00:06:06]Andrew Ward: market. Yeah, I’m, I’m sure we’re not too far away from people being like, I was the one who told you to get into the cannabis industry.

It was like, yeah, sure. Okay, cool. Yeah.

[00:06:15]Bryan Fields: Just read receipts. None of those were actually true, but I think that’s the sign you’re onto something, right. Is when people start pushing back like you.

[00:06:22]Andrew Ward: Yeah, absolutely. You know, I’m in any time there is a setback along the way, like, you know, anytime in business freelance, anybody who’s managing their own clients.

When you lose a client, you know, you kind of go into a little bit of a spiral and trying to figure out what you do. And the w I really started to know which people in my. Tight circles. Got it. And didn’t get it when I would have my back. And so on which ones we kind of try to offer advice or how they respond.

I was dating someone at the time and she told me, he was like, well, maybe you should just go back to the office. And I was like, you know, I get where you’re coming from with that. But if you know me and my drive on this, you know, That that’s not an option for me because cannabis in the office was not something at the time really that was taken much shape outside of, you know, [00:07:00] some of the west coast states.

And, you know, just the freedom as a writer, as a creative, I’m not against going back to an office one day, but at that time there was just no way that that was making the right sense for me. So over time, you really started to see the people that kind of understood and went along for the ride and kind of understood that this.

Going to be a journey and that, you know, it’s still ongoing and you know, those are the ones now that I like to have in my corner. Yeah.

[00:07:21]Bryan Fields: And I mean, back then, I would assume we were in the first inning now we’re probably like in the bottom of the first

[00:07:27]Andrew Ward: or second year. Yeah. It’s funny though. The people that think we’re in like the seventh or eighth, it’s like, no, no, no, no, no.

We are. Nope. Not at all.

[00:07:35]Bryan Fields: Yeah. We’re still missing like major, major markets coming online and we still don’t have like any of the normal infrastructure that most businesses and industries just take for granted like banking, for instance.

[00:07:47]Andrew Ward: Absolutely. Yeah. It it’s hilarious too. Well, sadly hilarious. The way that some people like we’re going to have it all done in the next five years and we’re going to have it all regularly rabbit it all figured out.

I was like, go talk to anyone in the alcohol industry and ask how things are going on their space. You know, [00:08:00] they’re still fragmented 80 years after prohibition or 80 plus years after bro. You know, cannabis is a good chance of if we’re like, have it all figured out before we retire from the industry, then we will have done at a really quick pace.

Yeah. Which doesn’t seem like we’re really moving at that speed. So just enjoy it while we’re here.

[00:08:16]Bryan Fields: So you’ve written over 500 publications,

[00:08:19]Andrew Ward: I think. Like 700 bi-lines it’s a padded a little bit because there’s a whole tangent go on. So I won’t do it. But a lot of companies do content scraping where they’ll take the content from one partner and then put it on, on their site.

So that’ll count as a byline for you. You won’t get paid for it, but you know, they’ll use it. So that’s kind of had it up. So it’s. 500, 600 original articles. Seven, 800. By-lines now in cannabis. That’s incredible. Yeah. So

[00:08:46]Bryan Fields: I, this is my question for you. So, which topic that you’ve written about has surprised you the most.

[00:08:52]Andrew Ward: Hmm, in terms of surprise. I don’t know. I would love to say it was the most effective series that I’m doing on prisoners, because [00:09:00] I would love to be surprised about the process that those people went through or are going through. But that really actually is pretty par for the course that the system kind of screws them over and sticks it to them.

You know, I think the thing that really surprised me more than anything was the response out of COVID, you know, it was the uncertainty, what was going to happen to us? Are we going to get laid off? Are we going to see regression? And as soon as the essential status. You just saw the whole 180 on expectations.

You know, there were a few people that were maybe warmer to the idea that we were going to end up in that area. But you know, the kind of like what you’re saying, a lot of people was like, oh, I told you getting cannabis. There were a lot of people in COVID times, early on were saying, you know, we got to get out.

We got to figure out we got to pivot. What are we gonna do? And to see the response on the staffing side, the job side, you know, the industry altogether. I think that was what was really most surprising. Really pleasant surprise for sure. But I didn’t, you know, just five years ago getting into this space, I wouldn’t have thought that we would have been there by now and, you know, just to see the response we had after the panic that it momentarily set

[00:09:54]Bryan Fields: in, it was great.

Carolyn diamond. There was that a defining moment for you as well, obviously COVID was, was hard for [00:10:00] all of us. Was that something that you were surprised with? The industry’s kind of bounced.

[00:10:03]Kellan Finey: Yeah, I think it was the first time that you saw like government support for this space, like openly. Right. And there’s just been so many times being in the industry where you talk to people and you’re like, oh, I’m in the cannabis industry.

And at least from my experience, people are like, oh, so you just grow. And I’m like, no, I actually don’t even know how to grow any weed.

[00:10:24]Andrew Ward: I’ve never done

[00:10:24]Kellan Finey: that before, but just to be like, stereotype like that previous, and then to see like stage response and having it be declared essential across the west coast mainly right in the adult use states was phenomenal in my opinion.

I mean, it was just a complete 180 from. Cultural acceptance now everyone’s like, oh wow. It’s a real thing. It’s here to stay. And, and all the support was phenomenal. What was your opinion on that, Brian? Over on the, on the east coast, seeing that?

[00:10:51]Bryan Fields: Yeah, so obviously the pandemic was challenging and in the beginning I was a little more dependent on alcohol than I’d like to publicly [00:11:00] admit, but times were tough and things were really stressed out.

And, you know, at the end of the day, you know, You were leaning on things you need to lean on. And I think the defining moment for me was telling was when you sent me the care package, which really changed my perspective because I’ve had on and off love and hate with cannabis. When I’ve had some bad products were kind of sent me down my anxiety on a rabbit hole, and then you kind of send me some of the lower one to ones and.

Rejuvenated my love for the products, because I think there’s major misconception out there that like high THC is everything that everyone consumes and that everyone’s looking to just to get blitzed off their face. And for me, I didn’t like that feeling. What I love about cannabis is like the creative respect, the fun, the enjoying the ideas, like the free flowing, the energy that gives me an and that’s not for me is not the high THC.

So that was a big moment in my life to where I kind of commuting on cannabis. And it was there for me where I didn’t have to wake up in the morning after. Wow, like crushed an entire bottle of wine. Good for you, Brian, but also with a headache. So it was a tough moment.

[00:11:57]Andrew Ward: You know, I’m working with a bunch of clients and that’s really a big narrative [00:12:00] that they’re trying to get across now is that, you know, THC is important, but it’s not the only factor, you know, low dose is really great as well as, you know, the entire whole plant profile.

Really, it depends on what you’re seeking and, you know, THC is, it’s kind of like this outdated metric that we use, you know it’s just one part of the whole equation to it. Is there a big concern with the THC caps? Because you know, for people like you, one to ones are awesome, but you know, there’s medical patients that could need those high doses.

And, you know, those caps are really going to be a problem. And all they’re seeing is the reaction of, you know a recreational user quote, unquote recreational user shouldn’t have a hundred plus milligram product or something like that. But, you know, It’s a big wide spectrum and there’s a lot of education needs to come from it.

And, you know, hopefully COVID will have taught people that a little bit, I think on the, on the public side, we’re getting that. But with lawmakers, it didn’t seem to budge the needle at all.

[00:12:49]Bryan Fields: I think it’s money driven that why they’re

[00:12:51]Andrew Ward: pushing that concept money driven, but also I think fear, I think it’s a lot of it is that a lot of lawmakers don’t know anything about cannabis and they’re being told whatever [00:13:00] their lobbyists and whatever they’re.

The people in their ear are telling them. So, you know, if you told them cannabis was moldy and gave you cancer, you know, if you don’t know anything about it, and that’s what your circle saying, you’re going to believe those sort of laws, you know, someone comes in there and tells you, you know, THC is the driving force for what’s causing, you know, cannabis, intoxication and the effects of cannabis.

And we don’t have to worry about anything else. So we should cap everything at 50 to a hundred milligrams. a product It makes sense, but you know, you would also expect lawmakers to be better and actually read and understand, but yeah, that’s too high of a bar of a threshold for commercial right now, I suppose. I mean, it’s

[00:13:36]Kellan Finey: tough too, because early stages in Colorado, there was a hard time.

With like quality control on animals. Right. And you have one or two stories that came out where some recreational user, first time trying it go to dispensary, purchased an edible and then had a freak out and the cops were called and it made the headlines. Then that’s what the politicians are kind of planting their flag on.

Right. So [00:14:00] it’s, it’s challenging because you do have these two spectrums of consumers, right? You have the consumer. Uses regularly and could probably handle much higher caps. And then you have the soccer mom who you really probably don’t want to eat a hundred milligrams. Right. So, so like where’s the balance there, you know what I mean?

It’s a really hard target to hit with one with one arrow.

[00:14:23]Andrew Ward: A hundred percent and yeah, I don’t even know if you can hit it all with one arrow. You know, it’s such a large demographic of consumers needs, like you just said, you know, just those two points alone, discover one area of it. You know, one of the things I would love to see is more public education on ratios and dosing, you know, like Brian said, one-on-one is great.

But one of my favorite things, I love telling people that aren’t too aware of the cannabis space is, you know, if you’re new to cannabis, Before trying out a product is really good to have a CBD product on hand, whether it be a sublingual or a smoked product, be available or flour, because it can help offset the effects of it.

You know, I stopped short of telling people it’s essentially a [00:15:00] kill switch. Imagine, if you could get drunk and drink a glass of water and it actually would negate a lot of the effects or another drug. There really aren’t many that have that. And you know, those freak out moments. Sure. Those high dose pro like products, you know, you don’t want them to get into the hands of the soccer moms or the newcomers or people that don’t react well to it.

But if you would also educate them and said, Hey, you know, Bring a CBD pen with you and, you know, just smoke on this. If you feel the effects are too long, you know? Yeah. Maybe one or two people ended up calling the hospital still, but that will even drop down that low number of people that were reporting those.

So I think it just comes down to public education, but again, lawmakers don’t know anything about the bill for the most part. So unless it’s, you know, Blumenauer or a handful of the other ones that actually know what they’re talking about, we’re going to see what the hell they put them. But like, to

[00:15:45]Bryan Fields: kind of follow up on that, like no one kind of bats, an eye when the same soccer, mom drinks, five bottles of wine.

And then once it gets, find a car, right? Like, no, one’s like, well, we should have educated her on the fact that like, that was a bad choice decision. People are adults. And if you’re going to make adult decisions, you should [00:16:00] probably know what you’re doing in those instances. And you’re right. Like there’s this massive stigma behind it and all these other issues.

From an educational standpoint. Like, I don’t even know where we start. Right. Because we’ve done some analysis on like CBD THC, especially here on the east coast. And there’s such a, I wouldn’t say misinformed, but such a lack of understanding. The industry as a whole people byproducts and go, will it get me high?

And they’re like, what’d you buy? And he goes, I bought a CBD product from the gas station and it’s like, no, we know she shouldn’t get you high. And he’s like, someone’s like, well, I took it. And then I got high. And now you’re wondering, you’re like, was it the placebo effect? Was it type of product? Was it the person just telling themselves this there’s so many layers to this.

I guess, Andrew, where do we start from an educational standpoint?

[00:16:41]Andrew Ward: Yeah. You know, I think what you just said is so true, because I actually had a friend who did the same thing, bought CBD products from a gas station. They actually work. You know, it’s such a dice roll. You know, when you were saying now my first thought was regulation.

You actually have to have legalization regulation to have that in place because once you have that in place, then we have some uniform codes and then we can actually start setting up the street. [00:17:00] Otherwise it’s all about on the public. And, you know, there has been some great works for advocates and, you know, writers and, you know, some company is in the media space.

Like a lot of people are putting together an effort to educate folks, but we only have a certain amount of a reach. You actually have to have the government behind it. So, you know, they want to talk about how, you know, cannabis is problematic. It’s like, okay, well legalize it or decriminalize it at the very least and put together information campaigns and put together all this stuff to get out to the public and, you know, talk to them about milligrams talk with them about.

THC is just one part of the subject. You know, you’re not gonna be able to reach everyone and it’s going to be a large campaign and it’s not always going to appeal to everyone, but by putting that sort of information out there, we’ll definitely start to tackle the information gap. And, you know, maybe in a few decades the cage, we won’t have to put together these materials, you know?

I mean, if someone reminded me, what was it click it or ticket, but finally we got people to start putting their seatbelts on, you know, it’s just these small sort of things that you might not think actually work that come together. So I don’t know. You know, standardization and putting other campaigns actually could be the most effective way.

Yeah. And I think

[00:17:59]Kellan Finey:[00:18:00] decriminalization provides potentially could provide funding for a program that could certify budtenders, right? Like their CPAs, their CFAs. I know those are very drastically different certifications. Right. But providing a standard like tests that are accreditation program for the budtenders would be a game changer in the whole industry, because then any consumer that goes into a dispensary nationwide at that point, It’s going to talk to someone who at least is on the same page as someone out in California, who on the same page as someone out in New York.

And they’re all going to be communicating similar information from what’s going on with these products in terms of GHG and CBD, and then the whole entire terpene conversation as well. So I think that decriminalization legalization is the first step in building those kinds of programs from an

[00:18:46]Bryan Fields: educational state.

I, I think that was awesome. I kind of wish we can cut that out and steal that as you’re saying that I was like, dude, that’s right, perfect. You’re right. That a hundred percent has to happen. Right. There has to be like a general [00:19:00] understanding and general framework so people can kind of be licensed. I mean, I don’t know particularly, but I think there’s one for like, if you’re a bartender, you take some sort of like test as well.

To kind of accredit yourself towards this understanding and you’re right. Like it’s only a matter of time and some company likely will do something like that and probably come a really successful.

[00:19:18]Andrew Ward: Yeah. You’re starting to see some companies, you know, get into the space of trying to make cannabis yeas and some stuff like that.

So they’re kind of dancing in their periphery. So it kind of, I can see like a serve safe, kind of like what you’re saying, become one of the first things, how to handle cannabis and then branching into more of a deeper education sort of thing. It only makes sense. You know, it’s a product so readily used by the public and it is a medical and recreational product.

So you might as well get the informed folks behind it and only make sense. I think

[00:19:43]Bryan Fields: that’s the most exciting part for me personally. And thinking about the cannabis industry is that. Essentially cannabis will operate. Like all of the other industries they’ll have all the same type of like certifications and testings and steps and steps.

And here we are in the infancy and talking about like, oh, this has it. And this industry and this emergency, and we know someone’s going to [00:20:00] come out in the near future grade this, and it’s just the, as if you’re an entrepreneur, like this is the most exciting time to be in a space like cannabis, where you can really lay the groundwork to build something that can have lasting right.

[00:20:12]Andrew Ward: Yeah, this is you know, a generational opportunity. I don’t think we’ve seen something like this since the.com bubble. And I think this is going to obviously have a lot more strengthened security behind it and that I can’t really recall much else in a long time since then. So yeah, it’s a really great time to get into the industry and, you know, just learn and get in.

[00:20:29]Bryan Fields: So let’s kind of switch gears here. The art of marijuana etiquette, sophisticated guide. Yeah. Yeah. Where’d the inspiration

[00:20:37]Andrew Ward: come from my editor. So I tell people I have a very non traditional route that I think a lot of people think with books. And this is the case with a lot of books is you pitch, you get a literary age.

You get connected and then you get a big advance and then you write a book. That’s not what happened with me at all around year three, when people stopped criticizing me for being a cannabis writer, I think the first book really helped. [00:21:00] They this publisher, my publisher Skyhorse they’re a subsidiary of Simon and Schuster until they got bought by penguins.

How the hell that breaking water works out now, but Skyhorse reached out to me and basically said, you know, we’re looking for a book on cannabis jobs, and this is the same process with marijuana etiquette. So basically they were like, you know, we got this thought on an idea for a book. Are you interested in working with it?

And I said, yeah. And we started talking and brainstorming. With marijuana etiquette, they originally had this idea for kind of doing it more comedic, sort of, you know those Regal sort of fancy etiquette teachers from the old like 1900 days. And we worked at tone for a couple of months and day one of writing it.

I basically sat at the computer and I was like, this is going to be a terrible if I have to write this. So I contacted the editor. It was just almost like. I can either give you the advanced back and you go find another writer or you can let me write the book from the perspective of, you know, a person in the cannabis space who knows a bunch of people who has a bunch of experience.

And I can, you know, get opinions from those folks and myself and give you a book from, you know, the, on the [00:22:00] ground, in the actual community sort of thing. And thankfully they, they went with that and they let me run with it. And yeah, we got to work on it from there. Yeah, it was a fun process from there because then it was just kind of filling in the gaps, you know, thinking of all the standard rules, then the rules that I wish had been discussed really checked a lot of blog posts and other books are written on it.

Mainly Lizzie post book that had come out while our book was in production and, you know, kind of assessing and making sure that we were kind of going into an area that I thought wasn’t really going to be covered by everyone. Else’s and hopefully that was the case. Who do you

[00:22:30]Bryan Fields: intend to read the book? Or who do you think is the correct audience for as P like people who consume cannabis, people who are interested in cannabis?

So

[00:22:37]Andrew Ward: I think it’s a combination of two things. I think, you know, anybody who loves cannabis books and community related things it’s kind of something to snap up and have as a coffee table, book, bookshelf book, you know, kind of take it out some through it that sort of. I also think it’s really good for the more of the newcomers, the one-on-ones the, you know, the people that want to possibly get into cannabis, but might be overwhelmed by it or don’t have a community themselves for it.

So, yeah, it’s kind [00:23:00] of a fun semi serious. Also semi informative, sort of look into that. So really geared toward the amateurs, but also keeping in mind the OGs, the legacies, as well as just the people that are coming up and helping shape the industry along the way. And kind of giving a nod to all of them, but really keeping it on a simple tone that wasn’t going to get lost or anyone that didn’t really know much about the plant just yet.

[00:23:20]Bryan Fields: That’s perfectly said. And when I started kind of reading and going through it, I had an envisioned for what I thought it would be like when it says like etiquette and, and like a sophisticated guide to the highlights and kind of went in thinking it would be like that and was, was so different than I thought it was such a warm, easy read with.

Like the personality really came through on the pages and it’s fun to be. Sometimes in cannabis, you can do that where you can really body your spirit into the writing. And I think it really comes through because it’s, it is informative. And it’s funny too. Some of the cliches, you kind of dive into like puff, puff, pass.

Never like leave the circle, which I thought was really funny and I different interesting way to kind of communicate the information.

[00:23:56]Andrew Ward: Thanks. I appreciate it. Yeah. It’s, you know the way I looked at it was, you know I didn’t want to make it [00:24:00] too overwhelming. I didn’t want to make it too hard. You know, I just wanted to make it a fun read.

I kind of modified the Hemingway rule of write drunk. Edit sober, definitely wrote high yet. Semi sober. And that was kind of, you know, the first couple of rounds then, you know, we refined refine it further on, but you know, the first couple of rounds, I was chock full of grammar errors and, you know, the syntax was even clunkier than it was right now because it was really just, you know, trying to get into that spirit and try to have fun.

And basically I was trying to think. Basically, if I was smoking a joint with you guys in a room and you were asking me questions, it was kind of how I wanted to put it that way. And then from there we just refined it and, you know, shout out to my editor, Jason, he did really good. Cause every once in a while I’d be like, okay, that made no sense whatsoever.

You got to he’s like you were definitely spoken too much there or that. I also have these weird things in the book. I don’t know if people noticed that, like I tried to put in nonsense references. I worked in the R and B group T at TLC, like two or three times. And those are kind of like in non-music entertainment references to like, I think I put them in a hiking chapter at one point, you know, it was just kind of like, I’m stoned.

Let’s have fun with this. Like I [00:25:00] want, like if I’m reading a book, what kind of random bull crap is going to pop up? It’s going to make me laugh or at least like, what the hell is this person thinking. Yeah, that was kind of the tone I was going for. So I’m glad you got that. I love it. So

[00:25:10]Bryan Fields: when you were researching it, did anything kind of surprise you or, or kind of different than you originally thought based on the origin of any of these topics?

[00:25:18]Andrew Ward: You know, I’ve, I’ve been asked that a lot and, you know, I would love to say that there was, but there really wasn’t a ton. I mean, after being in, you know, just a regular consumer, I got into it a little late compared to my friends in high school, who did I got into college. So I, by the time I wrote the book, I was 33.

So I had about 15 or so years just consuming with different groups of people, you know, from. State cities, stuff like that. And then working in the industry gave it a different another layer on top of it. So really there wasn’t too much, you know, aside from maybe the international perspectives, international areas, you know, there’s so much different, you know, nuances preferences to every region.

And then there are also some in the U S but we didn’t really dive in too much into that. So it wasn’t really eye-opening when it came to topics. So the one that did kind of open my eyes was. There was a [00:26:00] real split on tipping when it came to all the illicit and the legal side, 50% of the crowd was very adamant about tipping your bud tenders, as well as your delivery folks.

And then others were saying, you know, the prices are built in that they don’t have to tip and, you know, citing other reasons and things like that. So yeah, that one I thought was really interesting. And there was no

[00:26:17]Bryan Fields: clear answer. Yeah. I’m glad you brought that up because I wanted to ask Kellen’s opinion on that since obviously out in Colorado, things are really different.

What’s your template. So Colorado is

[00:26:25]Kellan Finey: unique. It kind of builds in this whole cause of the banking situation. Right? So when you go and purchase. A product and a dispensary in Colorado, you are in essence using an ATM with your data card. Right? So not since you put it in, it looks like same old, any other commercial story, you’d buy something that right.

Put your card in and then a debit withdraw. So then the, you pay a debit fee, right? And then the stores typically have to round up to the whole list number. Right. So they, and then they give you cash back. Right? So like the whole thing is like, say you buy something for [00:27:00] $70, you’re going to end up paying like 78 or $80 for it.

So then you end up with like a $5 bill. Right. And so like in today’s day and age, I’m like, well, what am I gonna do with a $5 bill? And so then I just like forces me into this situation and they’ll have like two jars. It’s like pick one, you know, Bitcoin or Ethereum or whatever. And I’ll just like, I have to choose which one to tip.

So that’s my experience in Colorado because technically I always end up leaving with him cash. I’m just like, I’m just going to tip. So I always tip right now. It wasn’t the case always on like California, Washington. When I lived out there, it was a different experience. So we’ll see what New York, how it is in New York.

If they get the baking stuff figured out before it goes full

[00:27:40]Bryan Fields: adult yet. Can you expand on like that scenario? Because I think for some people who don’t really understand exactly what you’re referring to, because like you went to a dispensary, you bought products with your money and they gave you cash back.

Can you kind of share some more? Why that, why that is? Yeah, so, I mean,

[00:27:57]Kellan Finey: it may be a little bit above my pay grade from like the [00:28:00] technical portion of it from like how the whole financial stuff moves

[00:28:03]Bryan Fields: around the IRS lessons

[00:28:04]Andrew Ward: for

[00:28:04]Bryan Fields: our conversation.

[00:28:07]Kellan Finey: In essence, your doing an ATM withdraw from like an ATM machine, right.

And for their system to process it either it’s got to be like a metric glitch or has to do with how cause the ATM company is separate from the dispensary company. Right. So then you’re paying the ATM company $3 and then the dispensary charges, the ATM company X amount, right from like a balance sheet perspective.

And then they re they have to round up for whatever reason. So then they’re charging. The other company is 75. You’re only buying $70 worth of products. You get $2 back in cash. Right. And then the ATM company gets their $3 fee. Right. So that’s kind of the best way that I understand it. There’s probably someone who’s a lot

[00:28:54]Andrew Ward: more educated.

Can I, can I just jump in real quick guys, if anybody’s listening [00:29:00] after hearing calendar, Can you please call your lawmakers and ask them to pass banking, at least regulations for cannabis because this convoluted mess would stop if we actually had some federal regulations,

[00:29:10]Bryan Fields: right? Yes. Yeah. I think that’s perfectly said, because I think like that scenario you described is so shocking to people, right?

When I went to Vegas to plan it it was, and I bought all these products. I was so excited and as we’re finishing the transaction, he’s like, I have to round up, but you’ll get cash. And I was like, sure, whatever that means through it. I’m just so excited to buy these products. And he needs me back $8 and I’m thinking to myself, I was like, I gave you a credit card.

You’re giving me cash back. I was like, am I toxic? Like, what is

[00:29:41]Andrew Ward: this stuff? Right?

[00:29:42]Bryan Fields: He’s like, well, we round it up. And then we had to do this and. This is very confusing. And I got after. I’m like, what the hell is going on here? And I think that’s the part that’s like so surprising is because people are like, well, it’s illegal industry in the shore, but something like this is a hurdle and just makes it harder.

[00:29:59]Andrew Ward: It’s also [00:30:00] a billion dollar industry and immediately one of the top producers in the world for the American market. And it’s like, you’d think at least they’d come around on the banking. Right? There’s criminal reform. The one I care about. And the Mo I think that the most of the industry should care about, but banking is essential.

And the fact of the matter is it’s a billion dollar industry and a closet, illegal space. That’s going to become federally legalized. Like, why the hell have we at least not gotten our stuff together and at least filmed some fix to at least get that through while we remedy everything. Yeah.

[00:30:29]Bryan Fields: That one seems like an easiest one, right?

At least it

[00:30:31]Andrew Ward: should be in mind. It would be a win-win for both parties and maybe that’s why they don’t want to do it because they don’t want to make each other look good. I don’t know. The two party system is a whole mess for me in, in and of itself. And cannabis regulations is snagged up in it, just like everything else right now, even the IRS

[00:30:47]Kellan Finey: is complaining too, because they’re really receiving so much cash from these companies.

And they’re like, we don’t have money counters. Like this is the 21st century. Like everyone pays electronically. Like, what are you doing? Bringing me a [00:31:00] briefcase. They’re like,

[00:31:00]Andrew Ward: I’m paying my tax. We all need to collectively just roll up to Congress with the IRS and everyone just like, can we get something done here, guys?

Like, can you leave until the next couple of hundred of you figured now? I don’t know. Obviously it’s not going to happen, but like, it just seems like such a common sense thing that at this point, Yeah, we’re still here. We’ll we’ll get there. It’ll be fixed soon. But yeah, when I don’t know what it’s going to be like in New York, I almost could expect to see them like selling water with like cannabis as a gift and like large donation tip jars is the actual cash.

It’s not like we’ll find a way around it to make an easier process because new Yorkers don’t have time, but stuff.

[00:31:34]Bryan Fields: No, I’m the idea of it being moved back is just kind of, it’s just a daunting thought because like we’ve already passed it. Everyone’s like, okay, great. When can I get the products? And it’s like, not for six months.

Maybe not

[00:31:44]Andrew Ward: for longer. Yeah. Meanwhile, Arizona, it takes five months and they can get off the ground and then they’re doing

[00:31:49]Bryan Fields: well. I, I wonder, like from an east coast standpoint, it’ll tend with all the recent kind of cluster states passing it once that first one kind of figures it out and goes, this is the date.

I bet you, everyone gets their act together [00:32:00] really, really fast because if not, you’re just going to see money transfer. Across state lines pretty quickly. Absolutely.

[00:32:05]Andrew Ward: Yeah. Once your neighbors start open up the market, you’re in trouble. I mean, that’s kind of surprised when New York hasn’t done already with Massachusetts, but we were talking about it before, you know, New Jersey once they do it, I don’t know what new York’s going to do because Pennsylvania is knocking on adult use and they’re killing it as a medical market too.

So it’s knowing pressure on New York and, you know, Cuomo, maybe a hole, put it through. Desperation. As you know, every time he gets into controversy, cannabis seems to get a fair piece of legislation passed. And so, I don’t know, maybe it will do that to smooth things over this time.

[00:32:34]Bryan Fields: Do you, by the time this comes out, things will be really different for

[00:32:37]Andrew Ward: him one way, or I know, I know, but he, you know,

[00:32:45]Bryan Fields: August 4th, just to clarify, it’s August

[00:32:47]Andrew Ward: 4th at this prediction. So Trump and Cuomo in my mind are very much the same. They’re New York brash kind of asshole politicians. And the fact that Biden and everyone is telling Cuomo to resign, I think will mean he’s not [00:33:00] going to resign. He’s going to dig his feet in.

I think it was going to be a mess. I hope I’m wrong, but I, Como is very, very, you know, a politician and he’s much about himself. I, my God says he’ll still be there. We might have some cannabis legislation accelerated through because of it. I don’t know. I don’t think so. At this point, to be honest with you, I think.

He’s got himself nailed to the wall. We’ll see what happens though. He’s he’s going to stick around I think, but I’ll

[00:33:24]Bryan Fields: make sure to cut that whole thing if he does go bad for him. So it’s just perfectly,

[00:33:29]Andrew Ward: oh, well here. I’m good. I’m glad he’s gone. Perfect. Perfect. Perfect.

[00:33:37]Bryan Fields: Perfect. So let’s let’s switch gears real quick for a quick rapid fire

[00:33:43]Andrew Ward: Q and a.

[00:33:44]Bryan Fields: Yeah, let’s do it. I’m gonna go Andrew first then calendars. Eating the Roach after a session gets you higher.

[00:33:51]Andrew Ward: I’d say true, just because it has an edible effect. I’ve never done it though.

[00:33:55]Kellan Finey: I had one of my good friends I lived with for like four years in college and he [00:34:00] ate it every single time.

And that’s what he squared by. So I’m not true.

[00:34:05]Bryan Fields: I don’t know if it makes you a higher, not they in college. They made us food Tang. And I don’t know if that’s like a real saying where you felt like, shoot it down your throat. I don’t know what that means. Hopefully it’s nothing bad. Cause I don’t know what that means.

Just thinking about it now. It’s probably bad to say that without knowing Right. Just as that’s the bad thought. But yeah, I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone either. It didn’t taste good. And it was like a blonde, it got stuck in my throat. It was a terrible experience. So I would say don’t do it. If someone asks

[00:34:28]Andrew Ward: good, this flavor,

[00:34:30]Bryan Fields: best snack for hosting a cannabis get together

[00:34:32]Andrew Ward: amongst.

Oh shit is rapid-fire. I don’t know. That’s tough. I mean, I’m just going to go with my favorite and go with spicy chili Doritos. They’re not going to be the best choice for the room, but I don’t know what to give everyone and I’ll eat the shit out of it. John. I love the

[00:34:48]Bryan Fields: munchies guys like that has everything.

The spicy munchies has everything inside of it. It is the best combination bag on the planet and has the right name because that’s the way you do it. They knew their market. They knew their market and [00:35:00] they crushed it. Right. You can grab those at gas station a hundred out of a hundred times. Be happy with the people are going to be stoked.

And go the

[00:35:05]Andrew Ward: spicy version. Wait, can also though shout out to Ben and Jerry’s, cause they’re essentially the ice cream version of munchies and they’ve got me through many, a stone sessions. Yeah.

[00:35:13]Bryan Fields: That is my, my go-to now is ice cream and it is incredible. I make the homemade Sundays. It don’t do better than that.

Oh yeah.

[00:35:20]Kellan Finey: I’m picking which one I want when I’m

[00:35:21]Andrew Ward: at the store. Oh yeah, that’s a tough one. Like a three for 10 special deck.

[00:35:30]Bryan Fields: The pecking order. If you, if you roll it, you spark it true or false. Yes.

[00:35:35]Andrew Ward: That is the rule in the book. The only time that that is possibly changed is if someone else is hosting and S and the non hosts rolled it, then kind of up to you to, to decide. I would

[00:35:46]Kellan Finey: agree. And by hosting, do you mean like providing.

I would say if someone gives like, cause I’ve had, I’ve been in groups where like someone’s a much better roller, but then it doesn’t have any cannabis. And then the, another person provides all the cannabis for the [00:36:00] blind or the joint. And so then he’ll give the honors back to the individual.

[00:36:04]Andrew Ward: Yeah, I agree.

I was thinking host is the person, you know, whose roof, if it’s like the house that you’re in. But I think, I think also provider, yeah, those two kind of transcend

[00:36:14]Bryan Fields: the roller. I was told one time it’s bad luck. If the person who rolls it doesn’t smoke it. So I wonder if that’s true, but the next question I ask will definitely demonstrate it.

Not being true. New dog has a professional blunt roller in his staff. Are you aware of any other celebrities or influencers who have.

[00:36:32]Andrew Ward: Yeah, Waka Flocka did that years ago. Not really. Yeah. Waka Flocka. I think it was the first one I heard talking about that. I think that’s great. I mean, you’re rich, you smoke a lot of weed.

Edit what? A 50 to a hundred K jobs roll the joints. Like if you’re that good at it, man, shit. People are making millions off of video games. You might as well be making money off of rolling joints. So good at this point. Yeah, I’m terrible. I’m terrible at it. I buy the money. If I have enough money to pay for someone to full-time [00:37:00] role.

I would do that in a heartbeat. Yeah. I

[00:37:02]Bryan Fields: mean, that’s, that’s the way to do it. My question would be how much does someone like that get paid? Right? Like, and is that like a 24, 7 job? Or are you like an executive assistant? Because if Snoop is a club leaves at 4:00 AM and is interested in a, in a joint.

Kind of get out and

[00:37:17]Andrew Ward: network. Yeah. I don’t know if you can pre-roll them for Snoop because then the freshness goes away. So you can’t be that efficient. I actually do know. I weirdly this Waka Flocka story stuck in my head a lot, I guess since my early days that he was listing it for 50 K a year and I was like a couple of years ago.

So he’s got a little bit less notoriety. The market’s gotten bigger. I don’t know. I mean, for a Snoop joint roller, depending on the amount of time, 75, so 120 K a year could be. And this one says

[00:37:43]Bryan Fields: 60 grand for soup. That was pretty spicy. It’s pretty low. I’ve thought about at least six figures, but pretty fair,

[00:37:51]Andrew Ward: fair.

But is it on call? Like Brian was saying, like, if you’re getting calls in the middle of the night, like we need joints, we can’t pre-roll I don’t know. You know, is it a nine to five joint rolling [00:38:00] situation or. You know, I don’t know. You gotta be like, from the

[00:38:03]Bryan Fields: time or a humidor, like for like the joints, right?

Like just keep all them in there and keep them clean. I stepped Rogan came out and said something. I wrote almost fault the article and said, like, it would save him a ton of time to have someone on his team that do that because how many times he’s gone and going through some. And then he’s like, oh, it’d be perfect time to have like a joint here.

And then he has to stop and do that. He’s like, it would save me hours every single day. If I had someone on my team doing that. I wonder if that becomes a popular kind of role, like chief of staff where you’re really as cheap of role. Yeah,

[00:38:31]Andrew Ward: honestly one of the best business tips I got when I was growing, my writing business from friends was you know, when you have the money, right.

The first things you need to do is automate the processes that you don’t want to do that are going to save you time and money. And I mean, Seth Rogan, if it’s going to save him hours of the day and you know, weeks like, hell yeah, invest that money. You’re going to make that well back then, you know, someone of his caliber, it makes perfect sense to do it.

I think I would do that job for free though. Well, if he’s offering money, I’m definitely not. No for sure. All day, [00:39:00]

[00:39:00]Bryan Fields: probably the perfect situation, the way it could be way worse. Switch gears back to like the normal topics, biggest misconception in the

cannabinoid industry for you.

[00:39:11]Andrew Ward: I think we kind of touched on him a little bit already.

I think THC being the primary driver factor THC caps are a big issue. And I think the idea that, you know, things are going to get sorted out really quickly and easily, you know, even if we were to legalize in the next two to five years, which some people are predicting. It’s still going to take decades to figure out all the regulations and the hurdles and the back and forth to it all.

So I think, you know, people think that we’re in this time where things are all going to get done, and we’re going to wrap it up real soon in, in, in a way that’s true. But at the same time, like we were saying before, this is going to be going on a lot longer than we probably are all going to be operating in this space.

[00:39:48]Bryan Fields: Your experience in the cannabinoid space into one main takeaway or lesson learned pass onto the next generation, what would that.

[00:39:56]Andrew Ward: Cool man, show up, get involved previous to [00:40:00] the canvas space, being legal. The only way you could get a job was being trustworthy and showing up and introducing yourself the way I got into a lot of the space meeting advocates, as well as business folks was going to trade events, going to networking events, smoking at lounges.

You’ll go into a process to rally as you know, don’t overlook any of it, you know, get involved, go there. Even though the industry is becoming. You know, more of a mainstream commodity, a serious thing. It’s still got all those elements show up. Your resume is not going to be the only thing that’s going to carry you.

Get involved the industry, show your face, show you really care. It’s the best way to certify yourself.

[00:40:34]Bryan Fields: Really well said. Prediction time, 10 years from now, the most popular way people will consume cannabis. Is that the, a bowl blonde dab rig the capsule, a tablet, new invention. We haven’t gotten back.

Let’s see production.

[00:40:50]Andrew Ward: I think we’re going to go beverages. A lot of people are banking on beverages feeling beverages. I mean, we got psychedelic water came out, you know, I think we’re already seeing other, you know, substances [00:41:00] and compounds getting in there. A lot of people look for familiarity.

To consume. One of the early beliefs was that the elderly were going to shift towards pills. And I think that worked to a certain degree, but I think edibles really proved to be one. So yeah, my gut says beverages are probably going to be a way edibles will be a close second, but also I think flour is going to have for a very long time, it’s going to have its market share.

And I hope it doesn’t fade away more than, you know, at least a 25% of the market holds onto it and, you know, keeps on to the culture. But it’s definitely going to shift, I think, to. I agree with, with all of those

[00:41:30]Kellan Finey: statements. I mean, I see flour maintaining a significant market share for at least the next decade.

And granted, if you can still purchase flower that’s unadulterated, if it turns into most flower being consumed into as joints, and then they can start to place additives into the flower, like you saw in the tobacco industry. Right. I could totally see. Even a larger decrease in market share for flour. But I think the next big product category [00:42:00] is going to be beverages or edibles beverages.

I think probably over edibles, a little more, just because of when most people go to let loose and become inebriated. They’re familiar with drinking something to that loose and become a need created. So I see that similarity just like Andrew was saying. So I’m going to go with that. What about you, Brian?

What are you.

[00:42:20]Bryan Fields: For all the listeners out there that have listened to our podcasts for everyone knows talent, stole my stuff verbiage. I’m gonna take a different approach because this is taken. And I intentionally left that I can usually have that. The capsules, I think what you were saying about like familiarity aspect is so, so important.

And I think when people go to envision like a quote unquote, bad audio, A medical product. They’re used to taking some sort of capsule form to kind of help them relax or to suit a need. And I think that’ll be a common stay for people where they don’t really think about it. I think the flower aspect will still have its popularity, but I think [00:43:00] it’ll, it’ll push towards a different Democrat.

More of the, the true traditionalist. And I think that the older generation that is looking for kind of a one-to-one or like a multipurpose variety of cannabinoids to kind of help them with their arthritis or whatever needs. I think the capsule idea of what will help that, because I think there’ll be easier for them to get mentally past.

[00:43:19]Andrew Ward: Absolutely. Yeah, it’s that comfort, you know, it eliminates a big barrier. A lot of people don’t want to smoke, you know, if they, if they’ve never smoked before they never vaped before, but they’ve always, I everyone’s had a drink. Everyone’s had a snack, everyone’s had a pill, you know, those are the comforts.

They’re going to know it. It’s going to be a lot more comforting, but just to jump into Kellen what you were saying too. I think the big thing in New York,The One, I’m excited to see is consumption lounges. You know, one of the things we put through is a lot of licenses on consumption lounges. And like you said, people are getting, letting loose on beverages and things like that.

I’m really interested to see the intersection of how many consumption lounges end up replicating looking like bars. So the consumption lounge space is so wide open that we’re seeing so many different varieties. It almost seems like restaurants where some are almost. [00:44:00] Fast casual. Some are high brow, some are more, you know, all different across the board.

And basically and I wonder how that’s going to affect bars and how much that’s going to end up replicating bars. But yeah, it’s another reason why I think beverages are going to be the dominant force along the way. And then if you know, CVS Rite aid and all of them end up getting into cannabis, like a lot of people think then I think pills will end up becoming very close by.

[00:44:19]Bryan Fields: You think that guide bars will be able to serve both. If they can get those licenses.

[00:44:24]Andrew Ward: I think eventually I think bars are going to eventually want it because they are going to see a lot of the district decrease into their consumers as time goes on. I mean, look, I love Buddhists. I love being drunk. I love the effect in the moment, you know, but you can overdo it real quick and your night can go to hell.

And the next day, we all know what a hangover feels like. And as you get older, they only get worse. We cannabis, you do sometimes feel a hangover effect where you’re tired or sluggish the next day. But you know, it’s never really all that bad. And going back to, like I was saying about CBD, you know, you can use that to offset the effects to a certain degree.

There’s different elements to it. And I think that bars eventually going to. [00:45:00] Really bad by this, you know, besides from people that really love alcohol, you know, a lot of people are going to opt for cannabis lounges and the alternatives in their varieties they have. So, yeah, I think possibly by a decade you could see bars asking to get cannabis integrated into their stuff.

Yeah.

[00:45:14]Bryan Fields: That’s, that’s so, so important because like you were saying, like the hangover effect is such a nasty one and for alcohol to me, like, I love it also, but the next day hanging over, it makes me wonder, like, why do I, why do I do this to myself? Like I can consume all of the THC products I want and I.

Feel as awful as this, the next day. And you know, if right now you were like one choice, one product, the rest of your life to buy boost. Sorry. Goodbye.

[00:45:37]Andrew Ward: A hundred percent. I mean, every time I’ve been hung over in my thirties, I’ve reached for a bowl to help me get through it. I’ve never the next day after smoking too much pot of reach for a bottle of booze to make me feel better.

Cause he imagined, oh my God. Yeah, that’d be terrible. So yeah, I think we’re heading in that direction.

[00:45:55]Bryan Fields: So I guess for all of our listeners that want to get in touch. You know, tell us where they can [00:46:00] reach you and how

[00:46:01]Andrew Ward: they can learn more. Yeah. So I’m social media. You follow me at the Cantor writer on Instagram and Twitter.

I’m kind of kicking around on tech talk, but you know, if you want to follow a dead account, go on there right now. You can follow me on my website. I am Andrew ward.com. All my social media is have a link tree where you can find more of my stuff too. And then yeah, if you have any business pitches, articles, or you want to talk about doing anything, feel free to reach me at Andrew at I’m Andrew Ward.

And they want to go

[00:46:26]Bryan Fields: by the book. So you understand what the highlight is and be sophisticated

[00:46:30]Andrew Ward: with your experience. Yes, please. Thank you. I’m terrible at plugging my book. So thank you for doing that. Simon Schuster, Amazon. There’s a bunch of links where you can buy from other bookstores and other independent sources too. So go check it out. I appreciate all the support. Thanks for your time, Angie. Thanks a lot guys.[00:47:00]

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Editors’ Note: This is the transcript version of the podcast. Please note that due to time and audio constraints, transcription may not be perfect. We encourage you to listen to the podcast, embedded below if you need any clarification. We hope you enjoy!

Bryan Fields (Twitter: @bryanfields24) and Kellan Finney (Twitter: @Kellan_Finney) discuss the next big companies to enter the Cannabis arena with Matthew O’Brien of Four PM.

In today’s episode catch insight into

  • Companies that are currently investing in Cannabis
  • Value and importance of the Budtender
  • Educating and helping customers find their cannabis experience
  • How the US legalizing Cannabis federally will impact Canada
  • Uber and Amazon transporting Cannabis in the future

The goal of Four PM is to provide readers with valuable industry insights so they can stay up to date on the complex and rapidly changing modern cannabis industry.

Sign up to receive Four PM Newsletter on their site: https://www.fourpm.co/

Don’t forget to follow The Dime Podcast (https://anchor.fm/thedime) on Instagram and Twitter


[00:00:00]Bryan Fields: This is the dime, dive into the cannabis and hemp industry through trends, insights, predictions, and

tangents. What’s up guys. Welcome back to another episode of the dime has always got my right hand, man. Tell him Finney here with me. And this week we’ve got a very special guest Matthew O’Brien managing editor, founder of 4:00 PM.

Matt, thanks for taking the time. How are you doing today?

[00:00:25]Matt: I’ve never been better and I appreciate the invitation.

Yeah. We’re excited to dive in

[00:00:29]Kellan Finney: Kelly. How are you? I’m doing well, just enjoying the summer out here in Colorado. Are you Brian doing

[00:00:34]Bryan Fields: well? I didn’t have a great night’s sleep last night, but water under the bridge.

So let’s get after it. Not before we kinda dive into the hardening questions. I’d love to kind of get a little background about you and how

[00:00:43]Matt: you got into the Connecticut space. And cannabis really started back in 2016. I was actually an art at the time, and I read a book on the economics, which laid out a rather pragmatic argument as to why we as a sort of spices or species or civilization.

Should effectively embrace this [00:01:00] concept of legalizing all drugs. And at the time I was growing up in a pretty rural part of Donegal, which is in the Northern part of Ireland and very sort of dogmatic viewpoints on a variety of subjects, whether that be, you know, people attending church sort of women’s rights, et cetera, et cetera.

So this was like very much in conflict with my sort of worldview. And I just couldn’t deny the merit of the arguments that were being made quickly realized that if I want them to sort of pursue this path, Arden was not the place to do so. Realize that Canada was on the path to legalize cannabis in the upcoming months.

And then, yeah, in fact, we decided to pack up my things with a relatively short amount or a relatively smaller, minimally headed off into the great north van. I haven’t really looked back since

[00:01:40]Bryan Fields: 4:00 PM. And you kind of share a little bit about

[00:01:43]Matt: what that is. Yeah, for sure. So for myself, Extremely fortunate.

I’ve worked in pretty much every single vertical of the cannabis industry started off about 10 being have managed stores have managed supply chains. I’ve worked with every single person that operates in the industry. I’ve probably had some sort of relationship with them in [00:02:00] my prior occupations. And I often just felt that there was an absence of a publication specifically for cannabis professionals.

I feel like there’s a lot of good publications out there. For sort of consumers, whether that be like a Leafly or one of the others, would that be like the commitment and as a cannabis professional, I just felt that someone needed to be able to summarize the most relevant events that were occurring for me as an industry professional, such that I could continue to progress in the industry with an informed perspective.

And it was honestly just one of these things where by nobody else seemed like they were going to do it. So I just took it upon myself to sort of pick up that.

[00:02:31]Bryan Fields: Yeah, I love it. And I guess from my perspective, there’s like you were saying tons of opportunities in this space and tons of journalists and yours is one that I look forward to on a regular basis.

And it’s one of those where if I don’t get it that day, I look, I grab it the next day. And it’s always one of those where I really commend what you’re doing, because it’s not an easy challenge to kind of take on, obviously selecting a topic and then just proctoring through some virtual content. So I guess an easy question would be.

Take us through the approach from a day-to-day standpoint, you know, when you sit down, you’re like, all right, I’m gonna write about this [00:03:00] topic. How do you kind of go through that?

[00:03:02]Matt: So my sort of trade secret is that the first three hours of my day is really just looking at every single publication in the industry itself, you know, using platforms like Reddit using platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter, just trying to get a sense and kind of get my pulse on, like, what are people talking about?

What’s what’s happening in the industry from a sort of global perspective. I consider myself to be someone who’s like pretty well plugged in. So we’re often not, if something’s going to happen, I’ll have someone informing me. I had to tell him, you know, it should be on your radar. There’s going to be a press release coming your way.

There might be like a deadline on when you can talk about it. But usually I kind of know what’s going to happen ever before anyone else, because I have those relationships in place. So first three hours a day is really just trying to do like a pretty broad analysis of what’s occurring in the industry as a set from a global standpoint.

And then. For the next hour thereafter, it’s really just about refining. Like what do I want to talk about putting myself in the shoes of a cannabis professional, if I’m hustling, like every single person that works in this industry, what information do I actually need and really emphasizing that the need as opposed to want.

And [00:04:00] then, yeah, from there, it’s really just about me writing it in such a way. Whereby when someone receives this, they want to open it. They’re able to understand what I’m saying. There’s no corporate bullshit. We’re just telling it exactly.

[00:04:09]Bryan Fields: Yeah. And then at the end of every article you have the, and I’m probably going to say it wrong, who our take on it, which I think is the perfect way, because so many people kind of describe what’s going on, but the reason I come back is it’s not so you to summarize articles, I read I’m looking for your perspective and I enjoy that.

So the one I wanted to dive into today was one that I thought was really interesting. The built by the budtender theory. Can you kind of shed some light on that, what that means and kind of how that came about.

[00:04:34]Matt: Yeah. Yeah, for sure. So my, my humble opinion is that there’s a huge disconnect in the cannabis industry from an executive level versus out of what’s actually happening on the ground.

I feel like there’s a lot of people coming into this industry from regular, the CPG industries, whether that be the alcoholic beverage industry, whether that be tobacco. And they’re trying to use these sort of frameworks to. Understand like what’s happening in cannabis. But my perspective is that I think there’s a lot of shortcomings in that approach.

I think that granted, those industries have [00:05:00] similarities, but at the end of the day, like they are miles apart. If you think cannabis is tobacco or alcohol, then you don’t understand cannabis. And that might sound like a cynical statement. But that, that to me is just a. And I feel like a lot of these individuals are very overdependent upon spreadsheets, no offense to, you know, some of the data providers that are out there, but at the end of the day, like there is only so much insight you can extract from these reports.

Whereas if you’re a budtender, you’re on the grind, having conversations with consumers on a day-to-day basis, you actually understand what’s happening in cannabis. A lot of times. Very far ahead of time before it will ever arrive at any of these people’s desks. So my perspective is that I think there will be many very successful cannabis companies built by budtenders based upon the insights we start gathering in lifetime.

And that really sort of speaks to how long it takes for these insights to arrive on these people’s desks. And I think even when they do. They didn’t want to understand it for what it is because they don’t understand the industry. And the only way you’re going to understand the industry is to understand the consumer.

And my perspective is that if you want to understand the consumer, we’re going to kind of this retail store for, you know, [00:06:00] a week at the very least, ideally a little bit more than that. Take the time to understand what consumers. And then work back from there. I think that’s

[00:06:06]Bryan Fields: perfectly said, I just want to push back on the Excel sheet nerds out there.

Those are kind of like domains we operate in. So Google hasn’t see with that, but totally understand what you’re saying. Kelly kind of take that, dive into that.

[00:06:20]Kellan Finney: I do, honestly, Matt, we’re going to be great friends for sure, because I got started by working in the industry. Right. Spent a lot of time in the lab, worked my way up last minute.

Ethicacy cultivation, vertically integrated and all these things. And the biggest mistake that I saw in the industry once I started consulting was you would come up with these groups that are very business oriented, as far as the team members. And they’re taught, you’re having conversations prior to building facilities.

And they’re like, well, if we just change this one, Variable in the Excel sheet, look how much more money we can make. Right. Right. And they don’t understand that. Like actually, if you change that variable, it’s [00:07:00] gonna create. A really low end product and you’re going to end up not selling it, or you’re going to have all these issues and the actual growing or cultivation of it.

If you start cutting corners here. And so there’s a ton of nuance items that go into designing these companies that I think that a lot of them right now are flawed and they’re, they’re going to spend a ton of money learning the hard way. And so I do think that budtenders potentially, or. Individuals who have kind of worked their way up from the ground up in these organizations.

And hopefully they get promoted to positions of decision-making power to kind of help drive these these shifts, if you will, because I mean time and time again, and at least in the U S in our kind of adult and medical market, I have a ton of friends that are down in Florida that say that they quit purchasing products from the dispensaries and floor.

Because they can get better products from the black market, because they’re just all of these massive facilities that they’re cutting corners. And they’re like, Hey, well, if we just add [00:08:00] another 500 square feet to each bloom room, look, we’re going to grow 20 times more biomass. And now we’ll make more revenue and our shareholders will be happy, but it turns out when you add that extra 500 square feet.

You encounter all these issues with pest mitigation and proper light distribution and watering. And then that creates a ton of problems in terms of the actual grow cycle of the plant. And so it’s just systemic, right? Like they just don’t understand that cutting corners in specific areas right now caused ton of issues downstream from a processing production.

And so I couldn’t agree more with that, that statement as far as I think that the really, really successful cannabis companies in 2050 years are not going to be the top 10 companies right now, in my opinion, for no more

[00:08:44]Bryan Fields: reception as well, much one pack in so many different directions. So I guess my first one would be like organizations.

I’m not so familiar with have been educational policies that go on with the budtenders to kind of walk through, you know, making sure that they are armed and equipped with the correct information. But [00:09:00] at the same part from a leadership standpoint, obviously being with your customers and hearing what’s going on is critical.

And I would believe, I mean, you’d see it all the time. Kim rivers is always at the grand openings of all of these and, and I don’t believe, really believe it’s maybe just the phone rocket needs a good photo, but I’m sure she’s there just to kind of see and get a pulse for what’s happening. But at the same part, you know, she can’t be in all a hundred Florida dispensary.

You can all the time, she got to rely on her leadership structure in order to make, you know, informed. Decisions and recommendations. And it does start with the bud tender when the customer comes in and understanding that like, it’s not about promoting just the products that we have. It’s about promoting direct products and telling, and I kind of go back and forth all the time on that.

So I guess Matt, back to you is like, how does bud tender with being kind of pushed with management to push a certain type of product, but no, Internally it’s other products probably best for this customer. Like how does he balance that perspective when dealing

[00:09:57]Matt: one-on-one with these customers? It’s a great [00:10:00] question to be like, I don’t know, is there a one right answer or one wrong answer in the sense that it really depends upon what you value most?

Like if the manager and the store doesn’t appreciate the fact that you’re willing to pay, you’re willing to play the long-term game. And what I mean by that is you’re actually trying to develop a report with the customer, such that your customer attention increases. Money they’re actually spending in your store will increase correspondingly.

If they’re not actually willing to recognize the Marist, that approach. There are some times in any occupation whereby you just have to, you know, suck it up and implement the approach that has being asked of you. Ideally, as I said, we do have an organizational structure where by they’re actually open to receiving feedback.

I E if you feel the approach is flawed, that the C-suite is open to receiving, you know, critical feedback as regards the limitations of the approaches they’re putting in place. I think it’s really just an individual question. Like personally, when I was a bud tender, I actually had to leave the first store I worked with because I kind of clashed heads with the manager on the basis.

That to the very point you just made, he was asking us to recommend products, which he himself was telling us he would never smoke. And [00:11:00] I found myself in the situation. I was like, oh, you’re asking me to jeopardize relationships. I’m building what the customers, despite the fact that you yourself have said openly to every single member of your staff, that the products are, you know, dirt quality But yet you just want to move them such that you can, you know, get our award from your manager and so on, so forth. So I think it honestly just comes down to like, do you, do you believe in yourself, do you believe that if you leave the store, you’re going to have to get employment elsewhere? I personally think that the basketball tenders are in very short supply and I don’t think any of them will ever have difficulty getting employment.

If the store that we’re working with, isn’t actually willing to implement an approach whereby they put the customer first. I do. I

[00:11:36]Kellan Finney: think that that’s brilliant. I want to add one other thing too, is that I think in the United States, there’s it differs state to state too, right? In Colorado. That problem is so prevalent that I have specific dispensers.

I’ll go to. And I’ll talk to about tenders and in Colorado, most dispensers are vertically integrated with the grow, right? And so every single time, I pretty much say no to the first three or four products they recommend [00:12:00] because it’s products that they are trying to push. And then like once we start talking, they open up a little more and they get a little, little more warmer and then I can actually see exactly what products they’re trying, what they like.

And, but if, if I wasn’t aware of that, I, they would just guide me down the wrong path. Right. So we’re like Washington, when I was in, in the state of Washington, they, the retail dispensaries can’t be vertically integrated. They can still provide like incentives to the bond tenders. Right? Like certain brands can be like, oh, like, if we hit these numbers, I’ll give you some product or X, Y, Z.

I’ve noticed that it’s, it’s a lot that disparity is not nearly as prevalent in the state of Washington because it’s by design versus like a state of Colorado. So I think it, it is a case by case study even further down in the United States, at least.

[00:12:45]Bryan Fields: And then this is maybe just more of like an inexperienced, but just, I never been a bun tenor.

So are they paid hourly or are they commission-based saying, look, if you do X amount of total sales, you make commission on top, is it, is it structured? Like.

[00:12:58]Matt: I think they feel it’s quite like it [00:13:00] very much very state by state. I think it all just comes back to the regulations that they put in place. I know in Canada, it is entirely done in terms of RD compensation, but there are states out there where by you do get compensation, depending upon the sales, which you, you reach such that there are incentives in place for you to push products that you yourself might not actually get.

Yeah. And that’s

[00:13:19]Bryan Fields: where it really, it really gets tricky. And just a little story today when we were having you on, I went into the New York store for a medical purpose because I wanted to ask questions like that. I wanted to bring up with you and what my experience was, Barry non-pushy. I asked him questions.

He pushed me in the direction, but he didn’t recommend products aggressively where in some of the west coast states, they were a little more aggressive with like, this is the one you should go for. This is at, and it was always the highest. Price product. So I wonder like Dylan was saying, it probably is bearing and state to state.

And of course, New York being just medical only, probably very different experience with the bud tender style. So I guess the next question would be how build trust [00:14:00] and the blend, the education and the experience between the consumer and the budget. Because obviously the perspective of the individual is going to be not the perspective, but the end result of the experience is going to be influenced depending on what they know, what they don’t know, assumptions in that experience.

So how, how does that experience work? Because like, sometimes people walk in and ask questions like, Hey, I want to get stoned. Right. And they want to get a certain high THC product, but maybe the budtenders, like you might want to consume more like a one-to-one ratio. So how does, how does the bud tender kind of blend the educational level of understanding the consumer and how to communicate that information?

[00:14:37]Matt: I think you got to pick your battles. Like it’s a lesson, the hard way, which is that no, two cannabis conservators. Ideally, if someone’s coming in, they’ll have an openness to receiving information that sort of conflicts with their existing perspective, like one such being the whole indicus that be the hybrid dichotomy that exists in the industry as much as I would like to think that it’s only a matter of time until that sort of fades out of existence.

The reality is there is a cohort of cannabis consumers who are so bought into that, that even [00:15:00] in the mentioning that this might not actually be what they think it is, is enough for them to walk out the door. And I had that happen to me once and I just realized, okay. And certainly incidences the customer is always.

And I say that’s kind of a contradictory statement in the sense I’m saying in certain incidents, the customer’s always right, because more often than not, you know, you do have to sort of test the waters, just like, you know, when you’re, when you’re taking a bath, like you kind of dip your toes in the water and see is it too hot?

And if the water’s nice and warm, you know, you can go when it’s too hot and you probably don’t want to go in for a little while yet. So the way I approached it, You know, you’re not trying to completely change someone’s perspective and that single a ton of your having assumed that you’re going to have 10, 15 in Congress with this customer on an each one of those.

And Congress provided them with a small snippet of information, which over time will accumulate to change their perspective on the subject. So it really is all about personalization, understanding what the customer wants. If someone comes in and they’re saying, you know, The highest THC indigo. I don’t think it’s the right time in the right place to tell that person that they’re wrong.

You just have to acknowledge the fact that, okay, what you’re asking for is a high THC product, which is going to [00:16:00] produce relaxing effect. Yes. Okay. You don’t necessarily have to tell that customer that indicas it’s, the teams are bullshit. You just have to understand what is their actual desired experience we cannabis.

And then it’s your job to recommend products that are ideally going to provide that best express. Yeah, that’s perfectly said.

[00:16:16]Bryan Fields: And I hope we, if the Endeca sativa part, because I wish you’d would just say that louder and louder, because it is so ridiculous that that continues to be, oh yeah, I got this great sativa and it’s like, okay, dude, like how many times are we going to talk about this?

So I’m telling you from your perspective, right? Like, we’ve talked about like the high THC, we’ve talked about the terpene. I mean, is this all part of the experience of a bud tender kind of communicating from educational. Working backwards through you’re looking for a relaxed feeling. So here’s the kind of path we’d recommend you to take.

[00:16:45]Kellan Finney: I mean, I hadn’t heard that and I’ve never been a bud tender, but I think that that’s absolutely brilliant. And I got to applaud your soft skills for me being able to come up with that. Cause like a lot of people that is like, absolutely. One-on-one how you deal with like a disgruntled customer or anything like [00:17:00] that.

Like you take it away from what they’re attached to. And look for the underlying reason. I think that that’s brilliant. The only thing that I would add to that is that as science catches up with the black market, the more and more genetics that are run on these strains in terms of trying to trace the lineages back and try to either support or disprove the whole sativa hybrid IndyCar.

I mean, a lot of it is just shenanigans. When you really get into the actual genetic information, that’s coming out of some of these strains and, and there are strains, of course, that are higher and linalool are higher than Mirasee turpines. And, and that would be a better way to kind of organize the effects from a medicinal standpoint that the cannabis plants provide, but the sativa hybrid Endeca then needs to go.

It’s just, I mean, I understand that it was a good categorization system. In the olden days. Right. But at this point with more science, we need to come up with a better letter to classify the [00:18:00] expected consumer experience with what’s going

[00:18:02]Bryan Fields: on in those plants. We know when that like really became

[00:18:05]Kellan Finney: popular. I don’t honestly, it’s been my whole life, honestly, when I was in that 12, maybe 15 years ago in high school.

I never remember hearing sativa hybrid Endeca it has to be something. Came about with legalization. I’m not sure. Are you sure Matt, you know, Matthew,

[00:18:23]Matt: it’s a great question. And to be honest with you, like there’s still a lot of debate as to what those origins of those terms are actually representative of like my, my, I was gonna say my limited understanding is that it’s just a plant structure of cannabis plants.

Like an indicator is normally shorter and height with broader leaves as a TIVA is typically tolerant height with Natalie. So I think. I think we just got, I sort of tread carefully in saying that those terms do mean something, the way we’re currently presenting the consumers is just absolute bullshit.

Like let’s just call it what it is and the problem, and kind of not to go too far down. The rabbit hole is. We are starting off the relationships we’re trying to build with consumers based upon misinformation. And the end result of that is just [00:19:00] expectations that can never be fulfilled because we’re trying to tell consumers that this product is going to produce this outcome.

Despite the fact that we all know that that is absolute bullshit. And the problem then that then arises is that that consumer goes home. They consume that product with the expectation. It’s going to produce a specific outcome and say, for example, you know, Brian, Google home purchasing indicate you’re new to the cannabis.

If you’re consuming that right before you go to the bed with the expectation, it’s going to be relaxing. And then it’s actually producing a stimulating effect. You’re probably telling yourself, like cannabis isn’t for you. But the problem isn’t that cannabis has view. You’re just being told harsh information, despite the fact that we should know better at this point in

[00:19:34]Bryan Fields: time, that’s perfectly said.

And I mean, for me personally, I mean, it’s all right, because. At my house, my parents would often meet, say, Hey, Brian, like we know you typically don’t prefer the downers. So here’s some sativa. And I look at my dad and I’m like, why? Right? Like, what are we doing here? Like, you’re handing me something like someone you don’t really know.

So well, you bought off the black market and they told you this and we’re just passing rumor theory here. And it’s like, how many times are we going to take that approach and [00:20:00] say, Southern work anymore. Like, let’s actually go figure out what we’re looking for, because for me, like, I don’t want to have to be sliding into the couch and have my eyes closed because I’m so stoned.

And then I have to like put the hood over. So I’m with you. Like it’s very off putting and it’s about kind of changing the stigma and starting with the education, which from the east coast standpoint, we got a long way to go because we just haven’t had enough exposure. Who kind of what you were saying, like good experiences with budtenders who play such a, such an important role with kind of taking the industry and moving it.

So I want to kind of switch gears and bring up one of the points you said in our previous conversation, why Canada is becoming increasingly irrelevant. Can you kind of expand on that?

[00:20:41]Matt: Yeah, it’s a, it’s a rather controversial viewpoint, but I think Canada became the sort of darling of the cannabis industry by lack of choice.

In the sense that the only G seven nation that legalized cannabis, you know, every single fortune 500 companies looking at cannabis, and they’re asking themselves like, is this industry, is this an Israel we want to partake in which for a [00:21:00] lot of companies, the answer is yes, perhaps it’s a little bit too early for emotes, but the outcome of that thought process is that, okay, we need to sort of capture market share as early as possible.

And with the current regulations that are in place. And a lot of these companies being publicly traded, like they can’t actually invest capital into us kind of as a company. So that, to the earlier point, right. Cannabis became the darling of the cannabis industry by lack of choice. Right. To sort of expand upon the point that cannabis is becoming our Canada is becoming increasingly irrelevant.

We all know it’s only a matter of time until such point as the U S legalizes cannabis on a federal level. It’s going to happen. 68% of Americans are not in favor of legalization if they don’t. I think it just makes an absolute mockery of the premise of America being the. Free leaders of the world and it being a democracy because if 68% of people want something, but they’re not actually willing to go out and enact legislative changes, then, you know, is it a democracy?

I, I, on that basis, I think that us has to legalize cannabis. And at that point in time, we’re going to quickly realize that a lot of the early capital that come into Canada, Shouldn’t have actually [00:22:00] been invested in those Canadian companies. They should have been a little bit more patient and they should have just decided, okay, what is the right play?

I personally don’t even think that investing in cannabis companies that are heavily focused on. Cultivation is the right approach, more than happy to get into that in a later segment of the conversation, because my sort of contrarian viewpoint is that the future of the cannabis industry is not cannabis it’s cannabinoids.

And I think we’re going to see a completely alternative approach to the production of cannabinoids. So all in all, I think all of those billions of dollars that have been invested are going to be written down in the not-so-distant future. And they’re all going to realize that it was just lack of patients that ultimately was the sort of underlying root cause of that.

Yeah, it’s

[00:22:37]Bryan Fields: really well set in and kind of take it one step further. I think the fact that those Canadian companies are on the public, both markets make it more accessible because they can’t tell you how many text messages I get. And you say, Hey, I’m looking to invest in cannabis. Like I want to invest in like canopy or till, right.

And it’s like, wait times we talk about like, this is, this is where it is. And he’s like, well, where are those? And it’s like, [00:23:00] Still the same place. And then we kind of get into this conversation about like identifying the right ones and it just kind of kicks a tailing down the wrong perspective. And I wonder, like, I know big canopy is trying to come over.

Right. They talked about the acreage approach and they’ve made some sort of announcement that they’re going to be in here. I think by December, end of the year, I think he said that in, I mean, we’re halfway through 2021. Yeah. Well, I wonder if he’s going to need good on his prediction. So do you have any thoughts on if those kinds of statements that, you know, I think it was David Klein when he made those statements that he was going to operate in the United States before the end of the year.

Do you have any statements on that?

[00:23:34]Kellan Finney: I mean, at the end of the day, if they have enough money, then they could totally make it happen. Right. I am not super privy on how that would work from like a stock market perspective. Cause they went public on the Toronto stock exchange. Right. I don’t know how a company can transition from the Toronto stock exchange to say the NASDAQ.

I know that Tesla did it, but they were listed in [00:24:00] America to begin with. So that is way above my pay grade. As far as like transitioning from the Toronto market, that’s centered around Canada’s currency, right to the United States market. That’s centered around the U S dollar. Because I think that that is going to be the most.

That would be the biggest benefit from a monetary perspective. Yeah. You’re going to capture some sales, but that’s a long ways down the road, right? Like building infrastructure, launching a brand that could of course make that quicker from an M and a kind of perspective. Right. But

[00:24:32]Bryan Fields: sorry to interrupt. The U S players could buy the Canadian companies, like at a certain point, like they’re outpacing the growth.

It used to be where the Canadians wanted to come in and now it can be the other way where like, Hey, we’re the bigger fish now. So like you maybe,

[00:24:45]Kellan Finney: maybe you see a pull, something like time Warner and Yahoo did, right where time Warner came in and, and clearly Yahoo is worth significantly more money and they merged.

Right. But then the executives at time Warner ended up having [00:25:00] more power than Steve case did after everything was said and done. And then. Well, when behold, now you have the executives and the management team at Aurora who now has a very. Attractive NSO and that exact brand name, but the people that are running the show are the people that were running the show for Aurora.

Right? So there, there could be something like that. I mean, it’s just, there’s a lot of different avenues for them to take in terms of approaching the U S market and getting into the U S market. I mean, I think it’s a really, really long shot to say that they’re just going to spend the money, go in, buy a license and set up shop in America.

I think that’s going to have to be done in a much more creative

[00:25:37]Bryan Fields: fashion. So they want that. And I kind of want to switch gears because I feel like we’re just kind of speculating on unknowns.

[00:25:43]Matt: So

[00:25:44]Bryan Fields: between the Uber CEO coming out and saying, they’re going to consider Canada. The Amazon, which is big, big news, the NFL, the recent news of the Olympian, not like why are all these massive, massive companies?

I mean, apple announced with the iPhone, the the apple store, all [00:26:00] these massive companies don’t have to make these proclamations. Why are they.

[00:26:04]Matt: Think they all know what we know, which is that inevitably the cannabis industry is a, is a trillion dollar industry. And if you’re, if you’re a big company like apple, Facebook, Amazon, you know, take your pick and any of the trillion dollar companies that are already in existence, like you, you have to, you have to penetrate new markets rather aggressively such that you’re still considered a quote unquote group stock.

And at the point at which these companies start stagnate, are you either not actually expanding into new markets? People are just going to sell off their stocks in favor of companies that are actually growing at a higher yeah. So I think it’s honestly just a case of the economics of the cannabis industry is driving a lot of these decisions for Uber as an example, I’m sure they know flying well, that it’s only a matter of time until they incorporate cannabis into their portfolio of the goods that they add, that they transport.

I think that’s going to happen relatively soon. I would actually be very surprised if they don’t actually make a move into the Canadian market relatively soon. BC, which is a British Columbia should say, which is on the west coast. Canada, I think is right for [00:27:00] an entrance points by Uber because they could transport products on behalf of cannabis retailers in that specific market with Amazon.

I think Amazon will be one of the most important cannabis companies in the world. In a matter of time, the reality is they have all the distribution in place as is. All they have to do is then introduce cannabis into their market. It’ll be very interesting to see how they approach their entrance into the industry, but just based upon the investments that they’re making in cannabis reform as this, I think they’ve invested like a hundred thousand dollars, which ultimately for Amazon is pennies on the dollar, but you know, it’s, it’s a signal that they are actively investing in.

And companies like Amazon don’t make those investments unless they feel as though they’re going to get an ROI on that investment. So inevitably Amazon’s going to enter the industry. My prediction is that they’re probably going to do a medical play to start. And I think then over time, they’re probably going to introduce adult use into that framework.

But yeah, I think it’s just the economic state. They know that there’s money to be made and ultimately they are for-profit entities and it’ll be a huge missed opportunity if they don’t explore the idea of actually monetizing or capitalizing on that.

[00:27:57]Kellan Finney: Yeah, I think we were talking to some other [00:28:00] highly intellectual individuals and they, they just said that for Amazon, it’s just another, another brown box to ship.

You know what I

[00:28:06]Matt: mean? Which is kind of depressing, but, you know, I, I hate to, I hate to agree because there is something special about cannabis. Like the, the culture of cannabis is an extremely different versus that of any other industry. Like, and it, maybe another industry. People from across the world are actively communicating on platforms like LinkedIn and Twitter and sharing ideas.

Like have you ever seen employees at burger king, having conversations with the employees at KFC as the, you know, potential best practices or ideas, et cetera, it just doesn’t happen. So I hope that it doesn’t just become another drawing box, but if I was asked, I think you’re probably correct.

[00:28:41]Bryan Fields: Being in factor is good.

Oh, hard to do from Uber standpoint. Right. You can get your Uber eats, you can get your drizzly booze, and now you can get your, your canvas. You can get like the trifecta three and one, and it kind of put it back on, on Amazon. Like those are the types of small, small steps they’re getting announced to the world.

And for the [00:29:00] majority of the world, it’s nothing right. It’s another news. But I think for the people in this room and for the industry, That’s a massive, massive sign. We’ve talked about one of like the global leaders coming out and making a public statement saying that like, we’re not going to drug test anymore.

Now they’re going to start making, you know, financial commitments. These are all steps like you were saying. So that way. They will reveal themselves and be like, Hey, we’re in the space. People are going to be, oh my God, no way. When did Amazon come in? And we’re all going to be like, back in July in 2021, they started taking all these steps forward.

And like that’s where these small steps kind of combined these massive boulders with the movement of the hand. Yeah. Right. Any predictions on next big company to, to kind of make an announcement coming

[00:29:45]Matt: in? I think Google is going to make some pretty big announcements in the not-so-distant future. I’ve had conversations with creators on YouTube, which is a wholly owned subsidiary of alphabet, which is the parent company of Google.

And they have said in private that Google or alphabet rather [00:30:00] is actively reaching out to them, offering monetization on the platform for the very first time. What that suggests to me is that. The current conundrum of cannabis companies not able or being in it, their inability, I should say to access programmatic advertising capabilities of YouTube and all the other platforms, which are under the alphabet umbrella.

I think that’s going to change. And it’s very interesting for companies like Leafly and Weedmaps because albeit their advertisement capabilities. are Sophisticated. They are nothing in comparison to that of Google. So I think going to be the next big company that makes an announcement I’m at, I think they’re going to apple as a starting point in that they’re going to allow cannabis marketplace apps to actually sell well cannabis through the apps that have been listed on the Amazon store.

I think the next step is they’re going to make a more sort of broad announcement that Canadian cannabis companies are allowed to advertise on their platform and then pending the federal legalization of cannabis in the state. I think that us operators will then be able to access the platform. You think Google

[00:30:56]Bryan Fields: will bite them, killing those businesses?

You said? Or do you think he’ll fall off? [00:31:00] Cause how does that work? Because it’s really hard. I mean, it’s almost nearly impossible to fight a Titan like that ensure they’ve got a stranglehold on the industry now, like you’re saying as soon as a massive fish comes into the, to the waters. Against

[00:31:13]Matt: substantially different.

They doesn’t yell like history has a habit of repeating itself and use that as a perfect case example as to what happens. Like what they’re probably going to do is they’re going to scrape all the data, which is being accumulate on these platforms. And as a consumer, it’s all about removing friction, or I should say for a company it’s all about removing friction for consumers.

So as opposed to you having to click on Weedmaps and actually interacting with our platform, they’re just going to surface that information in the search bar. And that’s exactly the playbook we used the Kelly Yelp, but I will not be one bit surprised when history repeats itself. Yeah. I mean, Amazon

[00:31:43]Bryan Fields: did it with Allbirds, right?

They sell batteries. They scraped the internet for products that they can resell and they rebuild it and can’t blame them because obviously the end of the day data is king. But, I mean, it’s one of those where as these massive conglomerate just keeps blowing up, swelling up bigger piece of the pie.

[00:32:00] There’s only five or six companies, but that’s a conversation for a different time. I don’t want to take it too far down that rabbit hole. So the next topic I wanted to bring up is cultured cannabinoids. What do you mean by that?

[00:32:11]Matt: Yeah. This to me is probably the most interesting of all trends and the trend I probably spend most time are, I should say that the train that pay closest attention to in the industry, because.

To sort of offer a little bit of context before we dive into what culture combos are. I think it’s important to remember that right now, as an industry, we currently have access to two, maybe three cannabinoids, like then in the sense that we’ve commercialized CBD and we’ve commercialized TNC, it seems like we’re sort of on the path to commercialize CDN.

I guess you could make the argument that Delta eight has been commercialized. I think that’s a very short term play. I think a lot of those operators are going to fade out of existence because the regulators are going to make it as. However, there are about 180 cannabinoids that we know of. Now, the problem is the current genetics that we have make it such that it is very inefficient from a cost standpoint, to produce those [00:33:00] cannabinoids in a quantity that would actually allow for the commercialization of them.

Now, that is the, what I call the agricultural cannabis supply chain. We plant cannabis drops in the ground. They produce a flower. We extract cannabinoids from that biomass. Typically it’s about 22%. If you’re good at actually cultivating cannabis. However, what culture cannabinoids are is a completely, completely different alternative to the existing supply chain that we have in place.

So culture cannabinoids are, is effectively. We’re using fermentation tanks and we are using a approach whereby we are effectively using. Biosynthesis to produce cannabinoids, where this gets very, very interesting. And Ben, who is the CEO of a company called Solibri completely blew my brain on this topic because I was completely against the idea that a different alternative could emerge the cultivation of cannabis to ultimately obtain access to those.

But the approach which he presented to me is that they’re going to be able to produce these cannabinoids of a 10% of cost of what it currently costs today to produce cannabinoids and better yet, they’re going to be able to. [00:34:00] Each and every one of those hundred and 80 cannabinoids are referenced. Now, what that does in my humble opinion is that it completely changes the game.

At that point in time, it is no longer a cannabis industry. It’s a cannabinoid industry. Now I think there’s going to be like a small percentage of the market that will remain a cannabis industry. Ultimately, if you want to, if you are a consumer who has a preference would ride flower, then the only way to produce dry flower is ultimately cultivate.

However, I think we’re going to see a complete expansion of the market whereby all of the CPG companies. So like any fortune 500 company that has a CPG company is going to commit to the cannabis industry. And they’re not going to be acquiring cultivation facilities. They’re going to be working with these cultured cannabinoid companies, such that they can obtain access to any and all of the 180 cannabinoids that they want.

And then they’re just going to start adding them to their existing product portfolios as an ingredient. And to me, that is the future of the industry. And that’s why I like to say the future of cannabis is not cannabis. The future of cannabis is cannabis. Hey, good.

[00:34:53]Bryan Fields: Perfectly said. And I know this is bad audio, but Kellen has a massive smile on his face.

So killing one, pick up, take back to the next

[00:34:59]Kellan Finney:[00:35:00] level. Yeah. I actually saw a little pretext. I worked my graduate degrees in metabolic engineering. I worked on metabolic engineering. It’d be Kolai to manufacturer a molecule called a diffic acid, which is used to make nylon is the precursor for nylon.

So. I was a really, really big fan of the technology ever since I’ve been an undergrad. The applications are endless the couple issues that are going to have to be navigated before the consumer accepts cultured cannabinoids. And, and as far as the cannabis industry as a whole, I couldn’t agree more. I think that at the end of the day, Even hemp and the CBD companies are also have THC as an inventory product that they just can’t sell right now.

So regardless, it’s all going to fall under one umbrella in my opinion. But as far as cultured cannabinoid goes, there’s going to be a couple obstacles that need to be tackled. The biggest one that I haven’t come up with a solution yet, which of course, there’s going to be a lot smarter people working on it than me.

But [00:36:00] it’s going to be classified as a GMO. Right. And so you’re not going to have any access to the European market, unless you have significant lobbying that goes in to change those laws. Because at the end of the day, That molecule is being manufactured by a genetically modified organism, right? Whether it’s yeast or Cola, depending on how you want to navigate the, the IP and patent world, right.

That’s going to be one of the major hurdles that needs to be tackled from a consumer standpoint. The other obstacle I see that could potentially be detrimental to the culture of cannabis is right now, there’s only a couple of companies that can tactically utilize e-coli or yeast to manufacturer THC or CBD.

And that is solely based on the patents that they have on

[00:36:46]Bryan Fields: THCA synthesis. And CBDA so base.

[00:36:50]Kellan Finney: So the actual enzyme that converts CBG the precursor to either CBD or THCA CBDA, those are passed. So then you’re either going to [00:37:00] have to utilize some sort of CRISPR technology to generate a custom enzyme, to be able to manufacture that.

Right, or you’re going to have to go after a different capital. I didn’t. And there’s a couple companies in America. One is Criollo right. That I don’t know if I pronounce that. Right. We, we chatted with Jeff at gorilla and, and they’re actually doing CBG because of that exact situation. Right. And so what that tees it up for?

And I agree with you on this is that the fortune 500 companies are licking their chops for this week in their chops at this right now. And it’s because that entire process is patentable. So they can go out and start patenting these enzymes, and then they can own the process. And now big pharma has their means of running monopolies for 20 plus years.

Right. And when they have the opportunity to run monopolies, they find ways around the GMO hurdle that I mentioned previously. But that that’s where I think that it could be a big threat to canvas culture. And I mean, it could [00:38:00] potentially, I see it going this way.

[00:38:01]Bryan Fields: I see CBD and THC

[00:38:04]Kellan Finney: being solely derived from agricultural means.

Right. And I see the rest of the 138 plus cannabinoids, most likely being manufactured, either synthetically through like a biomimic Mammut pre-process that’s like your traditional organic chemistry, where they mix a bunch of stuff together and stir it up into that, like a potion, right. Or through.

Engineering the Surrey choli and then they’re going to kind of utilize a lot of those cannabinoids for pharmaceutical and medicinal purposes. Right. Which I’m not going to say if that’s good or bad, if there’s other cannabinoids that should be available from a recreational standpoint. Whole kind of situation looks like down the line, but those are definitely going to be some of the hurdles that will need to be crossed.

And I mean, I don’t think it’s, it’s an, if I just think it’s a win, especially if you look at Kronos and the amount of money they’re pouring it pouring [00:39:00] into biosynthetic means. And, and at the end of the day, the pharmaceutical companies see the opportunity to patent those enzymes and own that supply chain aspect.

And there will be money in it. So. It’s just a matter of when I don’t know exactly. I don’t have a great prediction on when that’s actually gonna kind of play out, but that’s, those are my opinions on the obstacles that, that technology is going to have to go through to be able to be commercial, commercially viable for

[00:39:25]Bryan Fields: conservators.

What sort of timeframe are we talking about for them? Because like, we have such a disconnect from a global standpoint, even like a domestic standpoint between the west coast needs. What type of timeframe do you think, Matt, are we talking about where these other cannabinoids are going to rise in popularity?

We did really interesting study where we found the massive difference from a search trend standpoint on THC and CBD based on location. And it was really surprising when you kind of correlated back to like which states were recreational, which ones are not. So, I mean, from an educational standpoint, like we’re already from a timeframe that you think it’ll be more.

Commonly [00:40:00] understood of this culture

[00:40:01]Matt: contamination from the information that I’ve been provided. I think five years is a pretty good timeline. And the reason why I say five years is that my understanding is that the company, which I referenced earlier asked lead by they’re going to start commercializing CBG at the beginning of next year now, because this is such a new technology and that there’s still a lot of R and D that has to be done before they can necessarily commercialize these products.

I think, I think they’re probably. Gonna take a few years just to actually reach scale whereby they can produce these cannabinoids in such a quantity that they can. Meaningfully supply the market based upon the demand for them. I don’t think there’s going to be any shortage of demand. Like if they can actually produce these molecules of a 10% of the cost of what cannabinoids are being produced at today, then to me, that is enough to drive consumer adoption of this approach versus the alternative.

I think, you know, brings up a fantastic point, which is, I’d say another. This particular sort of subsets there’ll be industry is going to have to overcome, which is that from a consumer standpoint, a lot of people have in their mind that, you know, [00:41:00] synthetic phenomenons are bad coming from Ireland, we were always told, never consume what’s called spites.

And a lot of people actually find it very hard to make a distinction between something which has produced the biosynthesis versus something, which is synthetic. So I’ll be at these molecules will actually be D. In reality, I’d say for a large percentage of consumers are going to have it in their head, that these are actually synthetic combines and the cause of all this sort of mass hysteria regarding the vape crisis, which actually proved to be actual synthetic cannabinoids, not biosynthetic and adenoids.

I think from a consumer education standpoint, there are huge hurdles that have to be overcome before you’re going to see consumers, meaningfully adopt them. So that’s why I say about five years. It could prove to be a little bit longer. But it would be very interesting to see then in Europe, if the same investments are actually made to produce these, you know, going to go with state of the art custom built cultivation facilities for cannabis.

Or whether they perhaps just skip a step, whether they, as opposed to building up those cultivation facilities, they actually just started to build out these fermentation times as opposed to necessarily pursuing that path, such that they just skip one step in [00:42:00] favor of adopting. What is a more sort of modern technology I’m going to take the

[00:42:02]Bryan Fields: other side of that approach though?

I disagree. I think if you could get a product for $21 or product for, let’s say $8. You’re not going to really look at the back and see BMO, not like I don’t think there’s enough information that can be consumed in one of these experiences where you can kind of go through it’s THC CBD, terpene understand type of product type, where it was grown, or there’s just too much going on.

So at least in my opinion, I think. We’ll be more trusting. I mean, people buy deed products all the time, off the internet and have no idea what is actually happening. Right. Like every time we talk to someone about that, they’re like surprised. They’re like, no, it’s definitely regulated. And I was like, what makes you think that?

And they’re like, because if I can buy it on the internet and I was like, it’s terrible, like silk road, right? Like that’s not how that works. That’s where I kind of, I, I challenged that thought and I mean, we count and I dove into this a bunch of times. I just don’t see. It’s just so much information to communicate in [00:43:00] such a tiny amount of time.

And that’s only one product, right? And I think price is such a differentiating factor when it’s a new consumer on only $1 or $8 substantial difference. And if, if they can drive that cost. I’m going to be willing to play game. I think,

[00:43:15]Kellan Finney: I think the cost is even more so if you’re looking at like CBC or even other cannabinoids that like are prevalent in less than.

0.1% in a natural cannabis plant. And now you’re able to manufacture it at scale with bioengineering, because like, you don’t have to grow it. You could literally make literal ton adenoid in, in a couple of days with this technology. And like, instead of like, okay, we planted the seed, like we’ll come back in 14 weeks and we’ll harvest.

And then we’ll cure it and then we’ll extract it. And maybe

[00:43:48]Bryan Fields: next, next September,

[00:43:50]Kellan Finney: we’ll have, have a couple of kilos for you.

[00:43:54]Matt: Fingers crossed

[00:43:55]Bryan Fields: of snow early frost in Colorado, right? Like fingers crossed nothing terribly.

[00:43:59]Matt: Yeah. Wrong

[00:43:59]Bryan Fields:[00:44:00] happens. Can you imagine that spreadsheet cell

[00:44:05]Matt: it is on that day? I will definitely vote in favor of moving towards the information we can extract from spreadsheets because.

It’s just obvious. I think to individuals like ourselves in this call, consumers are so price sensitive in the industry. And like, despite the fact that I’m not the biggest advocate of this whole idea of, you know, the highest tier, the highest ESE percentage products, the consumers don’t give a shit of, like my opinion, consumers are going to consumers are going to vote with their dollars.

And if someone comes along and they say, you know, there’s a GMO product, which is going to cost 50% last versus not a builder product I have. And you know, it was producing the cultivation of cannabis. I think we all know what they’re going to choose. There might be a very small percentage of consumers who opt for a different option, but I think long term, this has to be the future of the industry, if not for, you know, a failure on the part of these companies to execute and their already.

Yeah.

[00:44:49]Bryan Fields: And for consistency as well. So I think that was we could spend 50 minutes on that. Let’s take a different approach, Matt, your biggest misconception since you’ve been in the cannabis. [00:45:00]

[00:45:00]Matt: My biggest misconception is that we’re all in the industry can. Same reason. I think that there is a to kind of articulate that in a different way, this assumption that there is a culture of cannabis.

I think there is many cultures of cannabis. I think. For myself. I’d like to think I’m part of the culture of cannabis, where by I am much more interested in our patients receiving access to cannabis versus that of our companies making profits from the plant. I think that the new sort of cohort of people going into the cannabis are much more interested in cannabis from a commercialization standpoint.

And that’s not to say that I’m not, I am deeply interested in what’s happening from a commercialization standpoint, but if I’ve just started defining the culture of cannabis that I sort of recognize. It is this idea that, you know, we are a community, we are collectively seeking to change the world for everyone’s best interest.

My assumption was that everyone sort of shared those ideals. I think I quickly realized that as I said, there are many different cultures of cannabis. That is the one I recognize most with our self identify with, but I’ve just come to accept that. You know, very different motivations for joining the cannabis industry.

And I, I don’t [00:46:00] look down upon anyone who is coming into the industry, such that they can generate a dollar. I do look down upon people who are coming in to screw people over. That is something I have no tolerance for, nor will I ever have a tolerance for. However, that was sort of an assumption, which has recently been challenged.

And I just kind of came to accept that there is no single culture of cannabis. Rather. There is multiple that exist within the industry. You could sum up your experience

[00:46:20]Bryan Fields: into a main takeaway or lesson learned to pass onto the next generation. What would that be

[00:46:26]Matt: play? The long game? This industry is just getting started.

And I think there’s a lot of people who can make this industry with the intention of making a quick buck. I think this industry is going to change the world in ways, which we can barely begin to even estimate. Right. Honestly, I think if you’re in this industry and you’re willing to play the long game, you will be significantly rewarded as a result of that.

And that might mean, you know, taking a lesser down position, such that you work with a company who actually values your values and going to go back to the original conversation of, you know, not asking your staff to recommend products that use yourself with not [00:47:00] consume items like that. I think a lot of people are really in a rush.

I think a lot of people will feel as though if they don’t really sort of. Make the most out of the industry right now, they’re going to miss out on the chance to the reality is cannabis remains illegal in 99% of nations around the world. We are all going to look back upon these times and laugh at how nerdy we were and how, you know, we were overlooking the fact that it was just getting started.

So I think if you play the long game and you’re patient, and you’re willing to work with people who share similar values to you, I don’t see a world in which you don’t actually benefit from the. I guess the commercialization of cannabis, but just, just play the long game. Short term games are great, but unfortunately short term gains usually come at a cost.

So yeah, to play the long-term game. All right, prediction time, we’ve talked a

[00:47:42]Bryan Fields: ton about the importance of budtenders and the role that they play in helping consumers find the right product. In my opinion, for bud tender, to make an accurate product recommendation, the customer needs to be able to answer a few basic questions about their own personal experience and what they’re looking for.

Matt. What do you think is the most [00:48:00] important item for a consumer to know about themselves prior to asking a bud tender a

[00:48:04]Matt: recommendation that cannabis affects everyone differently? That to me is if we want to change the conversation away from the advocacy to the bill economy, that single piece of information is enough to completely turn the industry on its head in terms of phasing that out of its existence.

The reason why it’s at the intensity of a hybrid economy is based on the assumption that the same effect you have in the cup from a cannabis. It’s going to produce the same effect for that on myself, liquidity, beginning to realize that each of us has a pretty unique endocannabinoid system, the way cannabinoid and terpene profiles interact with each of us is very pro.

So at time, if I’m a consumer, you know, granted, I can take some of the things which has been offered from a bud tender from a quality standpoint, like as an example of keynotes about Pedro. And he told me that this product was high quality. I can take that at face value. However, if he was informed me that this product is going to equal this outcome, I would then sort of cross reference that with you.

That’s what affected you, but I know that cannabis affects everyone differently. So I have to sort of work through the process [00:49:00] of what is the right chemical composition of cannabis for that of myself. So I think that singular piece of information is enough to completely turn the industry on its head and finally phase out this indicative of economy.

[00:49:10]Kellan Finney: I agree with that. I would just add that consumers need to understand why they’re going into, to purchase any cannabinoid product, right. And also what they’re comfortable, what means or media they’re comfortable consuming that cannabis with. Right. A lot of people are uncomfortable smoking for health, health reasons, right?

So going in knowing that you’re not going to purchase something that you’re gonna light on fire and you’re using it to help you sleep is going to have. The bud tender died you through that selection process the first time? I think those two factors coupled with understanding that everyone reacts differently to, to cannabinoids and terpenes together, I think that could really make a, make your, if you’re a first time consumer it’ll make your experience so much more enjoyable.

What do you think, Brian? [00:50:00] I think

[00:50:00]Bryan Fields: for me, it’s about you don’t always have to be consuming cannabinoids to get it. Sometimes I’ve got pain and I want CBD to kind of alleviate the pain. I don’t want to take Advil. So that’s the route I can take. Or if I am looking to feel kind of light, I’ll take like a two to one because the balance of the cannabinoids together make me feel like my intended hopeful, hopeful perspective.

So I think it’s about having more chances than not, right? Like you go in there, you can have an authentic experience, maybe a bad bud tender, maybe bed, product choice, maybe a bad day. There’s so many variables to play and it’s not one size fits all. And it’s one of those. It’d be great if it was like a Lockton science where this product that makes you feel like this for this individual, but we’re not there yet.

So I think being patient and trying different product types and kind of taking a variety of different information recommendations you have, I think will be the perfect way for people who are experiencing cannabis for the first time and not have a one and done experience. It’s not the same type of cannabis where you had an edible.

And he got so scared. He couldn’t leave your room. It’s not the same space anymore. [00:51:00] Very, very different. And it starts with understanding that you have to know about all of these in place, what you’re doing and how the game works. So, Matt, before we wrap up, where can our listeners get in touch with you?

I’ll link up everything

[00:51:12]Matt: in the show notes. If you want to reach out, I’d say, do it on LinkedIn or Twitter. Alternatively, a funny enough, I probably would see the last messages on Twitter. So if I was like sort of reverse engineer myself, I said, that’s probably the best place to reach out. I’ll probably respond to you fast run that ever settling in, just because like so many messages of people pitching me services.

I don’t want on LinkedIn such that I’ve kind of reached the point in time or by a filter a lot of that out. But yeah, if you wanna check out for VM, it’s just fou rpm.com. Newsletter. We send out every single day. What the excitement of some, if there’s no news to report, but yeah, LinkedIn and Twitter are probably the two best platforms, which I don’t.

I would definitely

[00:51:46]Bryan Fields: recommend it for everyone out there listening. It’s well worth the read and it’s not too long. If you’re one of those where at, I don’t really have time to read, you can quickly skim through it. And sometimes if I’m looking for, in a rush, I just go right down because I’m just looking for Matt’s take on it.

So I definitely recommend it. Thanks for your time, Matt. [00:52:00] Appreciate it. And look forward my [00:52:01]Matt: absolute pleasure precipitation. Just thanks.

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Editors’ Note: This is the transcript version of the podcast. Please note that due to time and audio constraints, transcription may not be perfect. We encourage you to listen to the podcast, embedded below if you need any clarification. We hope you enjoy!

Bryan Fields @bryanfields24 and Kellan Finney @Kellan_Finney sit down with Peter Vogel, the CEO of Leafwire. Leafwire was founded to provide a welcoming and safe community for Cannabis business professionals. This community allows entrepreneurs, investors and individuals interested in cannabis to connect, share news and collaborate. With Leaf wire, everyone grows together.

Featured in Today’s episode:

  • How Leafwire has become the LinkedIn of Cannabis & Hemp Industry
  • How investors can find upcoming businesses to invest in
  • What is new and upcoming for Leafwire
  • How Leafwire is helping people network in the Cannabis industry

You will also hear what Peter thinks the biggest misconception in the Cannabis Industry is as well as advice he has to share.

Peter Vogel is the CEO of Leafwire. After working in Technology startups for 20 years, Peter Vogel decided to step into the Cannabis business industry. You can join Leafwire to learn industry news and to network to

Don’t forget to Follow The Dime Podcast (https://anchor.fm/thedime) on Instagram and Twitter


[00:00:00]Bryan Fields: This is the dime, dive into the cannabis and hemp industry through trends, insights, predictions, and tangents.

What’s up guys. Welcome back to another episode of the dime as always. I’ve got my right hand, man, Colin Finney here with me. And this week we’ve got a very special guest here, Volvo CEO and founder of belief, wire pier.

Thanks for taking the time, how you doing today?

[00:00:24]Peter Vogel: Doing great. Awesome to be here. Thanks for having me on

[00:00:26]Bryan Fields: We’re excited to kind of dive in . Kellan, how are you doing?

[00:00:29]Kellan Finney: I’m doing well. I’m doing well. How about yourself, Brian?

[00:00:31]Bryan Fields: Doing well. Thanks. So before we kind of dive in Peter, I’d love to get a little background about you and they got into cannabis.

[00:00:38]Peter Vogel: Yeah, for sure. I was before cannabis. I was in the tech startup space for about 20 years and I’ve helped co-found and work for lots of startups in the kind of online marketing and advertising space. And that was where I was basically since I got out of college. And then back in, I guess now it’s about 2017.

I had lunch with [00:01:00] a buddy who I knew from also being in the tech startup space, a guy who’s now CEO of a company called simplifier. His name is Maryann Rasmussen, very experienced guy in the cannabis space and he, and a bunch of investors that come up with this idea for Leafwire. But they, they were all running their own companies and they had no one to kind of take it and run with it.

So we had lunch. I was. Kind of bored of the same tech startup world that I’d been in for 20 years. And I lived in Denver, so obviously tons of people around me who worked in cannabis and I knew it was a legit real industry. And I basically said to my wife, you know, where do I want to be in five years? So I want to be stuck in the same industry or do I want to be, you know, an experienced cannabis executive with, you know, lots of contacts and knowledge and be an industry.

Little me. So I made that call and decided for my future down the road, that cannabis was the industry that was going to be the place to be. So I jumped in headfirst and haven’t looked back. And

[00:01:57]Bryan Fields: for those who are just unfamiliar with Leafwire, can [00:02:00] you give us the simplistic version of what it is and the value it brings to the space?

[00:02:04]Peter Vogel: Yeah. Yes. We’d love to, of course. So the simplest way we pitch Leafwire to new people. Who’ve never heard of us is that we’re the LinkedIn of the cannabis hemp industry. So we’re the largest business network in cannabis. There there’s not really any other business networks out there. That, you know, have any audience or that are, you know, known by anyone.

So we’re, we’re mostly the only really business network and we’re, you know, by far any of the other people that have sites that are anyone similar, we’re probably 10 X bigger. And we’re up to, we now have about 40,000 members. And those 40,000 members all join, create profiles. So just like a LinkedIn or Facebook, he joined as an

individual, create your profile and you can add your company and your experiences.

And we’ve had about 18,000 company profiles created as well. So that’s 18,000 companies in this space. So it’s pretty wide following and, you know, on a day-to-day basis, we often have, you know, a thousand people on the platform, you know, [00:03:00] posting news, promoting events, connecting, messaging, commenting, et cetera.

So it’s, it’s a pretty engaged, vibrant community,

[00:03:07]Bryan Fields: the very main dashboard. So I guess my question to you would be, do you have to be in

 the industry to be operating on.

[00:03:12]Peter Vogel: You do not we don’t have any requirements of who joins. We have a job board with thousands of cannabis and hemp jobs. So if you want to come on and look for a job, you know, great.

If you want to come on and learn about the industry because you want to get into it, you know, great as well, people always ask me when they’re new in the industry, what, what they should do, how they should get start. And I always tell them one to get on the Leafwire, and just start reading the newsfeed every day, see what everyone’s posting, get a feel for the industry, read the news.

And when you see a lot of the articles, you can go subscribe to their newsletters. And then all of a sudden you could be getting 10 newsletters a day and you can get a really good gauge on the industry just by seeing what’s everyone writing about what are people asking about? What’s what’s everyone on Leafwire.

Like what events, what questions, what industries are hot. And then you can also, if you want to get a little more [00:04:00] aggressive, you can start connecting with people versus just, you know, a lot of the users are passive. They just want to watch and listen. You know, a lot of people deal with social media differently.

If you want to get more involved and you actually want to get more connected, or if you want people to actually reach out to you, you need to start connecting with people. You need to start posting. Occasionally you need to start commenting, liking like participants. You know, like any social network or business network, the more you participate, you know, the better your terms will be.

So that that’s, that’s what I tell people when they’re getting into the industry. So yes, we welcome new people. Most people we get are people who already work in the industry, but we’re happy to have anyone who wants to come learn about the cannabis industry or look for it.

[00:04:42]Bryan Fields: Yeah, I think that’s really well said.

And for those who haven’t have Basit and see with the social media, because their aunt Sarah is liking all their posts. They don’t have to worry about aunt Sarah being on Leafwiree. Right. You can, you can operate on there. And I think, you know what you said, Peter is really valuable for our listeners out there who are interested in the space, but are kind of unfamiliar with exactly how it is art, [00:05:00] right?

It’s a daunting task, the industry being so ever evolving. And we’re exactly a star night. I think what you said is perfect, right? Start somewhere and continue to operate forward and utilizing a platform like leaf buyers, really good resource for those out there who are junk, familiar. So telling where do you get your news?

How do you operate with other individuals? Obviously we’re connected with a bunch of different people across the space. Are you utilizing the more platform kind of diving. Yeah, no,

[00:05:25]Kellan Finney: I actually do utilize leaf buyer for exactly what Peter was saying. I just use it to scroll the news and kind of get an idea of what’s trending in the space.

I do it probably once a week. It helps us with keeping our finger on the pulse and see what everyone else is kind of talking about in the space. I use that and then. As well as a 4:00 PM. Okay. So there’s a bunch of really good sources out there, but I like Leafwiree. Cause it’s like almost like my apple news, you know how it like combines all these different sources to look at so that you can go into these various rabbit holes is what, but my favorite thing about

[00:05:56]Peter Vogel: it.

Yeah. We also have, I’m sure you get to, [00:06:00] we have an email now that we’ve recently rebranded as the daily wire that goes out every day. And we curate what we think are like the top six posts of the day. So these are all user generated posts from members that they’re either posting mostly it’s news or events, things like that, that we think would be applicable or interesting to everyone.

So, so we do, we do just that when, when, when we do that daily email, we’re trying to make. An easy way that someone could look and see what we think are like the top six things of the day. And when we put that in the email and send it out every day. So that’s kind of a good point you made of, I think what’s valuable to people is being able to see what’s relevant and that kind of thing.

I want to

[00:06:38]Bryan Fields: take two steps. We’re probably a bunch more steps backwards. The idea before. Right. Like, obviously you’re having that conversation with your friends. What sort of like thought process was it? Was it the idea of a cannabis based community of trying to bring everyone together? Can you kind of take us through that idea?

Because I think, or at least my perspective, I’m always interested in hearing how these early conversations happen with founders, with [00:07:00] understanding. This is the idea. I think I’m ready to kind of dive in with, can you try to share some

[00:07:04]Peter Vogel: information in there? Sure. It did evolve a little bit. When I first came on, the concept was a little more to be the angel list of cannabis, not, I don’t know how familiar you are with angel list, but it’s basically became very popular in Silicon valley for tech startups to go on and then investors to go on and meet them.

So it was kind of like a meeting platform for techie startup. And in the beginning, it was mostly VCs and Silicon valley folks, and then it expanded. So the idea was to create a platform where investors could meet companies were looking to raise funds. So when we first launched, I mean, Leafwire, it kind of looked the same and it operated the same.

We realized pretty fast. It’s really hard to make money from companies who are fundraising, even trying to get them to pay a monthly subscription fee of 50 to a hundred bucks a month. Was like pulling teeth. So it was hard to figure out how to monetize it correctly. It didn’t really function as we thought it would.

And we also found it was really hard [00:08:00] for investors to Wade, through hundreds of companies, a lot of which, you know, in cannabis, there’s a lot of brand new young companies, which really aren’t far enough along for investors to be interested. So we had the dual problem. Not really having a direct monetization strategy.

We thought we did when we started, but it turned out. It didn’t really work. Like we thought. And then we found out it wasn’t even that valuable to investors because there’s so many companies and most investors were hesitant to kind of act on their own. And then at the same time, we were getting thousands of people joining and using leaf are much more like a LinkedIn.

So we realized. Why don’t we pivot a little bit here. We’ll still have investors join. We’ll still have companies post about their fundraising, but let’s focus more on being a networking platform for the entire industry. And so that, that’s where when that shift happened and we realized that we could be that to the entire industry and not just, you know, the folks who were trying to read.

Yeah,

[00:08:56]Bryan Fields: I think that’s, that’s really important because I haven’t seen a startup failing [00:09:00] fast is really the most critical. And what we originally described as a business plan sometimes realize, oh man, we really missed the marker here. And what we saw was actually was going to be our business case is really far to the right.

And the most important way is to continue to evolve and move forward. It’s interesting because I remember the conversations we had a couple of years back and seeing like, we’ve worked, it feels so similar to LinkedIn when I’m on there with the events and the news and the connection, it kind of company in that respect where I could feel like I’ve been on this type of platform.

And it’s not one of those where I’m not sure how to use it. I know exactly when I’m on the dashboards clean. I see the events. I see the news. I see the people. Pretty pretty vocal about what their interests are post to LinkedIn, where I get tons of people saying, Hey, I just want to connect this one.

There’s actually a purpose and a feasibility in their connection, which really helps me when I’m trying to allocate my time towards the social media. I find value in the platform. So I want to take it one step kind of back to the current, your day to day and lead fire. Let me see. There’s a million things going on in cannabis and your time is really valuable to how you want to help grow the platform.

But [00:10:00] what specifically, can you take us through what your role is like on a day to day?

[00:10:04]Peter Vogel: Well, it basically shifts throughout the year, depending you know, as CEO, if we’re fundraising, I’m very heavily invested time-wise in fundraising, helping create materials, helping strategize about what, what we should be doing.

Reaching out to investors, having calls, creating reports and things like that. Other times, my partner heads up kind of the tech side. We have a development team in Sri Lanka. So my partner kind of manages them and heads up product development and just overall strategy, what we’re, what we’re creating in a day-to-day basis.

And I have another partner who is now VP of marketing, who heads up kind of. Sales operations and marketing. And we we’re right now, we’re actually hiring for for a VP of sales as well. So currently as things shift, since we don’t have a VP of sales right now, I’m spending a ton of time doing sales.

A lot of our revenue comes from advertising and our revenue and on the platforms. While we’re hiring [00:11:00] someone one, I spend a lot of time interviewing people and then two, I spend a lot of time filling that gap. So it’s kind of like any startup, you do whatever needs to be filled at that specific time.

So it kind of changes all the time. Yeah. You were many

[00:11:13]Bryan Fields: can tell that burner. So let’s kind of take it a couple steps further. The future roadmap for leap wire. Obviously we know the current direction of where it is now, but where, where do you foresee moving towards as the industry kind of evolves? Is it going to be location?

Are you going to try and get it down to where for us east coasters who are new to this space, you’re going to kind of formulate more of the information on a more personalized note, or are you going to take it more general, broad, where others can kind of find whatever they’re looking for?

[00:11:38]Peter Vogel: Well, I mean, I guess the answer is kind of both one, we’re changing a database from one to another so that we can optimize the newsfeed based on each user.

So right now everybody sees the same name. W whatever you see is the same as what I see. And we know a lot of people would rather see, you know, only specific kinds of news. So they only want to see stuff from people that are connected with. So we’re [00:12:00] optimizing that the database and the way we show that.

So the people will actually be able to curate and see almost exactly what they want to see in the news stream. So we are doing that. We are though, you know, anticipating having more and more of an international footprint. I mean, right now, I think it’s like 92% us 5% Canada and about three or 4% international.

So we do already have members from Brazil, the UK, Germany, Argentina, all, all over the place. And you’ll see people on leaf wire posting pretty regularly. So we do want to continue to participate in some international conferences, some international podcasts, some get our help, continue to get our name out there with some partners.

In regard to kind of, what’s new for Leaf Wire though, and sense of what we’re doing. One we’re, we’re building a mobile app right now, which everything we’ve done in the fire so far has been web based. And you can use your phone. I mean, leaf are works on a phone it’s web optimized for mobile. It’s not great though.

And there are some people who just prefer apps. So we think [00:13:00] we can appeal to some new demographics, potentially some younger demographics also in increased engagement. So that even just our regular users. When they wake up in the morning, you know, a lot of the things first people do is roll over, pick up their phone and start flipping through smash.

When you’re waiting in a doctor’s office. You know, when you’re in line somewhere, a lot of people will we’ll use that time just to check the news. Or I know personally, you know, I go check Leafwire, I’ll check something like, you know, CNN or. I, I use LinkedIn as well, so I’ll check LinkedIn. So to have an app like that, I think will help a lot.

Another cool thing we’re doing is we’re tying in some more, you, you mentioned location, which is interesting. We’re tying some more location-based features so that people can use us at conference. As a tool for networking. So we’re right now, we’re the biggest network for people to use while they’re just sitting around at home.

We want to be the biggest network that people can use just as well when they’re at a conference. So we’re going to do some things in there. One that’s a geographically location-based so you can look up on your app and see of all the people you’re connected to [00:14:00] on leaf. How many of them are within, you know, quarter mile of where you’re standing and see, you would see at an event like who’s there and then it’ll give you a chance to schedule a meeting with that person.

And you can schedule it through the Leafwire and you’ll be able to take notes on that meeting. And then when you leave the events, all of your notes, all your contacts are still in there. Cause I find that things frustrating when you go to vet and you use a lot of events, have a mobile app, you download it.

It’s something you’ve never heard of or Hoover, or you’ve used a once or twice. You use it and you set up meetings and this and that, but when you go home, you never opened that again. So all of the contacts you made, everything are kind of lost and it’s wasted. So the idea. If you can, every time you connect with someone, we also want to make it, there was a company that did this back in the mid to late two thousands that kind of went away, but we want to make it so that if you’re on Leafwire, you can essentially hit a button and get connected with someone else via their mobile phone via, you know, some location technology.

So have it happen at like NFC or something like. So that you get connected [00:15:00] immediately without having to exchange business cards, which in our post pandemic world, not everyone wants to hand business cards back and forth all day long, or even remember to carry them around anymore. So imagine if you could just connect with everyone, just hit a button on your phone, and now they’re connected to you.

And there’s a little tag that says you met them at this conference. So when you get home, you can use your Leafwire network and look up and say, oh, who are those people I met at MJ biz. And they’re all. In your Leafwire network where you’re connecting with people anyway. So the idea is to be the adult bunch of those mobile features that make it networking and conferences easy.

[00:15:33]Bryan Fields: Yeah. I think that’s such an important point because I think, you know, trade shows have been around since beginning of time. And they’ve tried to adapt from networking stands by providing these apps, but when only. That statistic, just going to guess 30% of the users are downloading the app. And I want to connect with you specifically, and I’m sending you messages, but you’ve never downloaded the app.

There’s no connection. So having some sort of universal tool, right, don’t have to go to the conference, download the app, then hope that people are using it. [00:16:00] Just having one tool that I can rely on that have all that information is so valuable because I mean like that part is such a headache. And then the business cards that you push them.

How many times, Carolyn, have you lost a card or someone where you’re like, oh, this guy was great contact. I got to email him to become home. You’ve got 200 cards. You’re exhausted. And you’re like, which one was it? So depending on his app, is that a tool you would consider using? Obviously it’s, it’s connecting on a real pain point that you and I are.

No totally.

[00:16:29]Kellan Finney: And I was, this is that’s so funny. You mentioned all those features, Peter. Cause I was actually trolling the internet, looking at these new credit cards that they have that have like a RFID chip in them that literally linked to all your personal information. So then the idea is you take the little credit card.

And you like put it up against someone’s phone and it’ll just automatically pull your contact information into their phone. But then now you have all of these contacts just floating around in your phone. So with Leafwire, think it’s brilliant because it creates a database for you as well, like a record.

[00:17:00] Right? So then you can go home, you get back on your Leafwire and you’re like, okay, here’s all the people I contacted. It’s organized, it’s sorted, it’s all clean. So I think that that’s absolutely a brilliant idea from a networking standpoint at conferences. Yeah.

[00:17:14]Peter Vogel: I have the same pain point that that’s kind of part of the reason we came up with a strategy.

You know, you get home from a conference and you have, you know, a stack of 100 cards or something. And the last thing you want to do is sit there and enter them all into your Salesforce. You’re behind on everything. The day you get home. You don’t a lot of times people just don’t people follow up. I find it.

A lot of conferences is ridiculously low. I’m going to conferences walked around. And when we first started Leafwire little go to conferences, I go table to table and out a card, shake their hand, get their card, you know, invite them to join Lee fire. And then when I got home, I would literally email every single one of those people and invite them digitally and work pretty well.

I would in return, literally I’d hand out, you know, a hundred, 200. I would have probably one person [00:18:00] contact me and they were probably someone like selling insurance or something. So the quantity I’m always found that when you go to trade show, it is hundred percent up to you to follow up with who you want to.

Like, I always assume like no one else will follow up. Like you have to be the one to do it. Yeah. Proactively take the step that you want to happen. I think

[00:18:19]Kellan Finney: it’s also pretty wild that it’s taken this long for us to move away from a paper information, right? Like we were literally surrounded by computers 24 7, and we’re still just handing out paper with our information on

[00:18:31]Bryan Fields: it.

Yeah, and I mean, it’s even crazier too, because like, when you, when you digest as a business, you digest the total cost of a trade show event. And then two is, think about the connections, which are the most valuable part of the trade show or being kind of like forgotten part of the investment. You’re wondering like, how are companies evaluating these investments in these trade shows because the follow-ups are completely broken and that’s really where all the business.

He’s really invested in. So if you’re, if you’re able to kind of pitch the business and say, Hey, like [00:19:00] we know what the cost $70,000 for your team to do this patient, regardless of the other wasted time of travel, missed emails, delays all those things. Now you have a real tool to kind of connect and follow up so that those business opportunities aren’t left to like the sales person who like might get to it, or the person who entered the cards in it’s a huge, huge pain point.

And I mean, I think you can really nail down in a niche community. Like cannabis, which is ever evolving and find a tool like that, that can help automate the process to make it.

[00:19:29]Peter Vogel: Yeah, we hope so. That’s our goal. We want to make it all parts of it, easier for people. And to be the, like you said, the universal kind of tool for people to use.

And it just makes it easier. Cause you, you, you made the point, you know, maybe 30% of people download an app. How, what percentage of those people know how to use it? Yeah,

[00:19:45]Bryan Fields: so I don’t even use it. Like I’m sitting at the trade show, yelling at him. Also, did you message this person? He’s like, I didn’t download the app yet.

And it was like, well, great.

[00:19:55]Peter Vogel: There’s, there’s a learning curve. Like you download some brand new thing and you’re like, which, which tab do I [00:20:00] go to? And like, who’s on here. If there’s something that everyone’s already using, it’s so many times easier to just open up your phone and be like, oh, here’s the, and we also want to work.

This is kind of another step further, but we’re working with conference organizers and make it so that we can actually upload say the agenda to a conference. And at Leafwire, we can upload the map of the place and the Leafwire. We can upload whatever information they want so that you can actually use.

You don’t need that paper guide. You don’t need, which a lot of people are trying to get rid of. Anyway, I’m J visit. I think I already got rid of their paper, you know, the little thing to hand out. So if you also on your phone, you already have the belief, our app. If at every event you go to, you can just click agenda.

You can click, you know, map, but you can click meeting schedule meetings, and it just makes it, so it eliminates the need for all these other extra things.

[00:20:49]Bryan Fields: I can’t say how many times I’ve seen people like. Really valuable documents to someone else and then just turn the corner or even worse, right? Like you’re like, oh, this is really [00:21:00] valuable stuff.

I’ll look at it later. And you come home after the three days, you’ve got just tile of shit on your hotel. And you’re like, I don’t even remember how I’m going to ever go through any of these there’s handwritten notes across the 40. It’s just ridiculous to go back on gallons point. You’re right. Like the way we’re operating now with all the technology to think that we’re utilizing these pieces of paper.

Transfer information and it’s just

[00:21:20]Peter Vogel: ludicrous. I agree. A hundred percent,

[00:21:23]Bryan Fields: but let’s go into the recent investment into SeedInvest. Can you share some more details about that? I was really curious to learn, you know, how, how that thought process came about and kind of how that went. Yeah,

[00:21:34]Peter Vogel: for sure. That was essentially born out of necessity from the pandemic.

We are in the middle of raising a convertible note in 2020 I was about halfway through it was done pretty well. And then March hit and, you know, it was kind of like, there was so much fear and uncertainty people didn’t know, you know, if, if we’re going into this huge depression, people didn’t know. You know if the pandemic was going to get 10 [00:22:00] times worse.

I mean, there was no vaccine. People had no idea what would real life start up again ever? So we found one, everyone, all of a sudden was afraid to be spending money, doing anything. And the people who had money. So the VCs who have funds and they have money already ready. They were so worried about other current companies.

So each VC already has say 10 or 20 company they’ve invested in. They know those turn 20 companies might be struggling and they’re going to have to reinvest more money to keep their companies afloat. So all of the existing VCs who had money were doing that. So they were holding back and they were withholding funds for their own companies for reinvesting.

So I essentially counter my head on a wall for about nine months trying to raise money and had very little success and then started talking to some crowdfunding companies. We hit it off with seed invest. They liked the platform, they wanted to do it. And so we started a campaign and it worked. So we finished the note.

We raised a total of about a million dollars and it was, it was great because. You know, I don’t want to say it’s a [00:23:00] last ditch effort, but it was basically an alternative. It was the next thing to do besides just reaching out to investors directly. And at the time it worked I will say that it was definitely stressful.

You have to reach a certain level before you can kind of, so even if you raise, say 600 or 700, you have to get to X before you can actually withdraw. So you can go through the entire process and if you don’t reach some minimum, you don’t get anything and see you invest sets it up like that. Cause they’re trying to ensure you have enough to run.

So they don’t want to put their investors money into something that’s going to run out of money soon. So they, they have those minimums and we didn’t reach the minimums until essentially the last week of a 60 day campaign. So I didn’t know, for 50 days if it was going to work or not. Wow. So it was very a lot of early mornings, a lot of begging and pleading people.

To come on, you know, invest and it, it worked so I’m, I’m thankful for it, but it was definitely a, it wasn’t easy and it was a relatively stressful process, but, you know, at the time that was, you [00:24:00] know, kind of the, the best we could hope for. Yeah. And

[00:24:02]Bryan Fields: then in cannabis, nothing is really easy. Right. You can’t take the traditional route.

And I think like I would like it if you could kind of expand on that where like some of the options that are, that are opened to other industries. I’m just not a 40 here in cannabis and everything is harder. So, I mean, can you kind of take us through some of those traditional routes that weren’t affordable to you or what not available?

Well,

[00:24:23]Peter Vogel: so to answer that in a slightly different way first I get a lot of people come to me with brand new companies that want to raise money and they want to know what investors should I reach out to what VCs? And I basically tell most of them, like none of them like. No investors or VCs want to hear about your brand new company that has no traction.

You know, that you just started that mostly. And this is kind of true in tech as well. You have to go kind of the friends and family round to start to get some traction. You have to get people who know you and believe in you to invest. Not that require proof that it’s working or traction or anything like that.

So for most [00:25:00] brand new companies, that’s mostly the only thing available. And this wasn’t true back in, like, I’d say like 2015, 16, 17, 18. A lot of the VCs, everyone was investing in brand new companies because cannabis was so new. Any new company, people had money and they just wanted to jump on, you know, year or two late.

There’s hundreds of hundreds of startups and the VCs are getting flooded with everything under the sun. So now they only want to put their money into things that are kind of series a or later. And they want to see people that are generating at least, you know, 50 to a hundred K a month that have some proven product market fit that have like like an executive team in place that seems, you know, professional and seasoned.

They would rather do that and spend more money than invest. You know, in early stage companies, because they know it’s going to take them a lot more time, a lot more risks. So there a lot of the investing shifted from early seed stage to series a. So another answer your question. I mean the most obvious thing that’s not available to cannabis companies.[00:26:00]

Is larger institutional investors, a lot of private equity. Most of those funds have mandates in their company, directives that they’re not allowed to invest in anything that’s federally illegal. It doesn’t matter if it’s legal in a state or even if it’s an ancillary company, like likely far, like we don’t touch the plant.

We don’t sell anything. We’re just a tech platform. Like no, typically most big technology venture capital companies or private equity or institutional investors won’t touch anything with the word cannabis involved with it. So that’s definitely locked out a lot of loan programs as well. Aren’t available to play touching companies.

If they’re federal. SBA loans, that sort of thing. So you’re really focused on starting off friends and family. And then, you know, once you get some revenues, some traction you can start going to, you know, there’s lots of others, investors in cannabis. And then once you get to like a series a, you can actually hit up the VCs.

You know, there’s tons of funds out there that we all know that, you know, like Meredith [00:27:00] capital or Poseidon or Arkady and then I’ll have, you know, a hundred to 200 million in their funds. And they’re great at that point, but most of them aren’t errands until you.

[00:27:09]Bryan Fields: It’s hard. I it’s, it’s like hearing you say that, just kind of brings back some of the conversations we’ve had with partners where they, they thumbed us, especially during the pandemic and said, Hey guys, can you help us?

Like we’re running out of capital and everywhere we turn, people are closing the doors on that. You know, I had friends outside industry go like, why can’t they go like X? And it’s like, well, X isn’t available to people in the cannabis space because it’s federally legal. And they’re like, well, that’s silly.

And it’s like, I agree. It’s definitely silly, but still it doesn’t help them on how they can not close their doors. So Kellen, I mean, do you think other companies, especially in cannabis will take a similar approach? I

[00:27:44]Kellan Finney: do. I mean, there’s, I think until there’s actual preform from a federal law, But they’re going to have to kind of take every option that they have available to them, especially if they’re pre money, right?

If, if they’re pre money, like it’s really, really limited from an option standpoint. And if [00:28:00] you are pre money, you better have someone who either has an accounting background or is a CFA on your team because a lot of VCs and a lot of angels and high net worth individuals like Peter was saying jumped in just very excited about the industry, especially when California first went legal.

People were throwing money around, just try to get their share of this market. That’s going to be massive, but it turns out that cannabis isn’t tech and it’s still federally illegal. So it hasn’t grown like the tech industry grows. Right. And you don’t see these zero to a hundred million dollar companies that often it takes a long time to build these robust vertically integrated MSO kind of focused companies.

And a lot investors also got burned really, really hard, right. They jumped in super eager. Eyes wide open, like let’s go, cannabis is going to be the next big thing. And a lot of the entrepreneurs in the space just weren’t the right entrepreneur, I guess, for lack of a better. [00:29:00] A way to describe some of those individuals, but they got burned.

And then that really kind of forced a lot of the investors into these kind of groups. Right? So now you see like Poseidon and Ark view where the accredited investors kind of group together to help that potential different opportunities for investment, because. There’s strength in numbers, right? They were like, okay, I got burned by myself.

Now I’m going to go out and team up with all these other individuals. So that at least we have a fighting chance in terms of figuring out the needle in the haystack. Right. And so hopefully the safe banking act passes and a lot of these other means of obtaining capital. Become available to plant touching businesses as well as ancillary businesses.

And I think we’re going to start to see that change, right? I mean, Schumer mentioned that that’s probably going to be one thing that the integrates into that bill he’s putting together as far as making it institutions available to invest in, in the industry without any of the downside that the federal government.

Kind of threatened them with from an investment standpoint, but until that happens, [00:30:00] it’s you got to find every source available. And crowdsourcing, I think is probably one of the smarter ways to go. I know that it’s, there’s a lot more paperwork and you tend to end up, probably have to deal with a lot more investors and just kind of more busy work, but at least you’re still.

So doing it, you know

[00:30:16]Peter Vogel: what I mean? Yep. Yep. That’s that’s true. There’s a little bit more reporting. Once you do a public raise like that, not a ton, but there definitely is more more work,

[00:30:26]Bryan Fields: but you said Callan too, like needs to be said louder. Cause how many times have we been a part of these groups so that we’re going to raise 10 million in our first question?

With operating the fund, like who’s distributing the money. Who’s making these decisions because as an investor, like, that’s going to be your first question, right? Like you got five or six people who were all good at different steels, but you’re going to hand them a check for $10 million and say, good luck guys.

Like, just figure it out. No worries on that. None of you guys have any sort of financial background. So if the money individually and just like, wish me the best of luck. And that’s the crazy part though, is. You don’t need that much money. I mean, obviously in some instance you certainly do because cannabis is expensive, [00:31:00] but I think to go back, well, you can either like you have to start sometimes.

And that means having a minimal viable product and just demonstrating that you can put the piece of the puzzle all together and any sort of experience that you have in your previous background or entrepreneurial spirit can make a big difference, but it’s also different challenges in cannabis. And one of the biggest challenges, I think for sometimes as people have these grand Bosso ideas, but are unable to actually start and put the pieces going forward.

And I think as an investor, You don’t want to invest in someone who’s not able to kind of actionize based on their ideas. You want someone that is going to actually do what they say. You continue to push forward because as a, as an entrepreneur, there’s fires every day in every other area, and you have to be able to prioritize the needs, to continue to wear different hats, to grow

[00:31:41]Peter Vogel: your business.

Yeah, definitely. There are a lot of skills and experience definitely does come through from your past, but there are also lots of brand new challenges and cannabis has all of its own problems. So both of those things, some

[00:31:56]Bryan Fields: of them silly, right? Like we can all agree that they’re silly challenges, but the challenges of [00:32:00] the challenges, regardless of what we think of them very true.

So let’s go slightly different approach. The biggest misconception since you’ve been in the cannabinoid space,

[00:32:08]Peter Vogel: the biggest misconception in general, most people who aren’t aren’t in the industry. Think it’s easy to run a cannabis company. First of all they think people are just making money, hand over foot.

They, they think everyone’s just raking in the dough with, without realizing that you know, how many people are there that, you know, I met three years ago that I thought were super experienced and had such great companies. And half of them are all gone. So there’s so many that come and go that, you know, it’s just like any other, like most startups do fail and in cannabis it might be even harder cause it’s such a untested industry.

And so many things are changing and the laws and regulations make things so hard. So it’s probably even more challenging than any other industry perfectly said

[00:32:50]Bryan Fields: and hits home really, really, really deep. Before we do prediction times, we asked all of our guests to, if you could sum up your experience.

And the cannabinoid [00:33:00] space into one main takeaway or lesson learned pass on to the next generation. What would that be? I would

[00:33:05]Peter Vogel: say to be open to collaboration and be honest with what you don’t know. I think there’s people need to work together in this space. And if you don’t, if you’re not really good at marketing, if you’re not really good at finance or to find the people that are, and actually work with them and have them on your team or partner with them, or do trades of your services and theirs, or just work together, I think one of the most valuable things we’ve done at Lee fliers, we’ve done tons and tons of collaborations with everyone from recruiting companies to media companies, to, you know, conference companies.

And it’s, it’s, it’s helped us in a huge way.

[00:33:44]Bryan Fields: Five years from now, we’ll leave wire be way more valuable to operators in the industry or for companies outside looking to get into the industry. Well, of

[00:33:57]Peter Vogel: course we want to be the most [00:34:00] valuable connection and networking communication tool for the whole nation.

So I have to one say that in five years from now, I would hope that almost every day, no one in the industry has the leaf, our app and their mobile phone, and it’s using it at every single conference you go to for their, you know, for their meetings, their connections, their networking, and that, you know, we’re just the go-to platform for all of networking communication.

So, I mean, that has to be, you know, super important. But of course I dunno if it has to be a one or the other answer, but. Assuming we are that if you want to get into the industry, obviously that we would be the most important tool or access point you could have, because, you know, you could go to LinkedIn, but you’re going to have everything else on LinkedIn.

And if all you want is cannabis and hemp industry, you know, news events, connections, learning, et cetera. You know, we would be the most, you know, probably the important thing for them to do. So I’ll say. He took my [00:35:00] answer.

[00:35:00]Kellan Finney: I was going to say both as well, because I think one other feature that a lot of people.

It doesn’t occur to them. If they’re not in the, in the industry is you can’t advertise. If you’re a cannabis company on LinkedIn, you can’t advertise on Google, right? Like these platforms are not available because of their company directives that say you’re not allowed to advertise for federally illegal companies.

Right. So I don’t think that that’s going to change until federal legalization changes and that could be five years. And so I’m going to say balls because if you’re looking to get in, in the industry, And Leafwire is going to be the gatekeeper, right. In terms of getting your name out there, advertising the service that you’re trying to sell to the industry.

Right. And if you’re in the industry, it’s going to be the best way to kind of see what’s going on from a trending standpoint, what products are kind of popular, who’s doing what and what companies are trying to enter the space. So I’m going to say both as well. I know that’s kind of a cop out answer, but I think it’s the right one.

[00:35:58]Bryan Fields: I agree that they don’t, they both work in [00:36:00] Tyrella right. And obviously the inner working simply far will be really beneficial for operators in the space. But I think from an actual evaluation standpoint, I think the outside companies will get more value from having a platform where hypothetically they could fish in knowing that all the fish in that pond or people in the cannabis.

It’s like you were saying, Peter’s like, you can go to LinkedIn inundated with just like random things across the board. And sometimes time is so important where you don’t want to spend the time on a navigate between if it’s a cannabis company. If not, you want to know right now I want people in this space.

Here’s, here’s where I can go. Are these outside companies that are looking to migrate in. They want to skip this massive kind of first step, second step, third step. They wanted to operate in because it comes in issues of floating and market share. Opportunities is still being fought over across the board and the quicker you can get in and the quicker you can start claiming that market.

The quicker, you can start building that mode to separate yourself in an industry that is literally filling an infancy stage. And I think while it will be [00:37:00] incredibly valuable operators, I think it will be more valuable for people outside looking to kind of understand the pulse and exactly how the industry yeah.

[00:37:07]Peter Vogel: Yeah, I can agree with that as well.

[00:37:09]Kellan Finney: Yeah. I think that’s a really good point, Brian, that it’s already a targeted audience if you’re trying to get a product into the space.

[00:37:16]Peter Vogel: So

[00:37:17]Bryan Fields: yeah, the first, my first thing, when you’re marketing is understanding, where are the fish that you’re looking to up, right? Where are they operating?

And if you’ve got to do seven to 10 different platforms, And to be expensive and not going to be as targeted as you want. And you’re likely gonna miss a bunch of the times, but if you can fish in a location, you know, you’re looking for specific type of salmon. I mean, all day, every day, these patients are going to be throwing the bait in just being like, oh, they’re going to lay in another one.

And for these outside investors, we’re looking to invest in companies specifically in cannabis, right. You can turn to the various platforms, but you want to kind of hear the messaging, the voice, you want to understand more about the leaders, how they positioned themselves, some of the news. You got to have a targeted place to kind of do all of that very well.

Thank you, Peter. Before we wrap up, where can our listeners learn more about [00:38:00] you? Obviously we’ll tag the flyer in the show notes, but if they want to get in touch with you, you know, where can they find you specific?

[00:38:05]Peter Vogel: Well, of course I would say Leafwire to start off. You know, if anyone out there is not a member, please come join the community.

It’s a hundred percent free to join. You can access all the different features. You can connect with people. You can learn about the industry. I learned about events, et cetera. So come join [email protected] You know, the bigger our community, the stronger it is. You can also reach me at Peter Lee, fire.com.

[00:38:25]Bryan Fields: You automatically connected with everyone’s profile like Tom from MySpace. A message

[00:38:29]Peter Vogel: goes out for me to everybody offering to connect with them. But yes, you’re not

[00:38:33]Bryan Fields: automatically connect to the next time for my, honestly, if you’re you’re too young to know who Tom for my space is, I, I don’t know what to tell you.

[00:38:41]Peter Vogel: Yep. Thanks for your time, Peter. Thank you very much.

Wow.[00:39:00]

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A Note from Your Partners

The cannabinoid industry as a whole continues to rapidly evolve and grow with the total addressable market potentially reaching $100 billion by the end of this decade. With such rapid growth there is bound to be growing pains and learning opportunities. This is evident as the CBD hemp industry continues to experience dramatic ups and downs. Today, Delta 8 is restricted in 21 U.S. states. Six months ago Delta-8 was providing significant liquidity to operators capable of manufacturing the chemical. The scientific evidence continues to build regarding the benefits cannabinoids provide to the human body, and because of this evidence, the future outlook for hemp and cannabis could not be brighter. We look forward to continuing the journey with everyone involved.

– Kellan Finney

As operators look to expand their footprint, an increase in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) is a path toward larger strategic positions. Tim Seymour of CNBC recently said “You’re going to see those companies that have been waiting on the sidelines begin to start nibbling some more as valuations become attractive enough for certain capital-rich players.” Recently, conversations have intensified with outside organizations looking to dive headfirst into the exploding industry. These opportunities can lead us down two different paths. This could lead to either the acceleration of consolidation and strong growth, or it could lead to a more difficult path toward one entity, which has never been straightforward and is even more challenging when it comes to cannabis. The path you choose depends on your plan of action and the resources leading the charge.

– Bryan Fields

Editors’ Note: This is an excerpt from our Monthly Playbook. If you would like to read the full monthly playbook and join the thousands of others you can sign up below.

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