The burgeoning cannabis industry is quickly becoming a crowded space with new brands continually emerging. The growth is spawning enticing opportunities for those looking to join the industry and reap the benefits of incentives like equity, generous salaries, and the chance to become a leader at a high growth brand.
But when it comes to working for a cannabis company, how do you determine one from the next? How do you evaluate which companies are better positioned to be around for the long-term?
“It’s about finding the right companies, and there are several qualities you should look for to best determine what companies are well positioned to scale,” ForceBrands‘ Senior Client Strategist Devin Penhall said. “If they’re listed on the Canadian stock exchange, that’s a good start. Determine if the company is a single state or multi-state operator — if they’re the latter, they likely have more financial backing and are thus better positioned for long-term growth.”
Finances are particularly important when assessing a cannabis company’s overall credibility.
“It’s not enough to just look at investments,” Penhall said. “Look at where the investment is coming from. Is it coming from a large established company like Constellation Brands’ recent investment in Canopy Growth? There are a lot of people investing in cannabis but it’s important to look more closely at who companies are partnering with — partnerships help paint a more conclusive picture of a business’s trajectory and long-term goals.”
Read on as Penhall shares some of the top cannabis companies he thinks are well positioned to grow.
Harvest is a uniquely situated vertically integrated public cannabis company with a massive footprint. Already in 11 states, with a cultivation facility in Nevada and dispensaries in Pennsylvania (with many more applications pending in other states), they have plans to expand into 15 states by the end of the year. They plan to grow their team from 500 employees to 2,500 in the next 12 months. Harvest strives to make an impact — their Harvesting Hope non-profit organization was established in 2014 to provide a better quality of life for young children suffering from pediatric epilepsy. In addition, they host a number of monthly support groups and have donated more than $400,000 to charitable organizations, veterans, seniors, and patients-in-need since 2013.
This largely female-focused leadership team takes pride in carving a credible niche in the cannabis space with their premium edibles for ‘high functioning adults.’ They aim to hire people who care about the product. As the fastest growing cannabis brand in Colorado, culture reigns supreme. “It’s not a very stratified company structure — for example manufacturing staff, sales staff, every single person in the company is invited to dinner at the CEO’s home,” Chief Marketing Officer Heather Larimer told ForceBrands. The company also offers great employee benefits like full health care coverage and a competitive bonus structure. Creativity and innovation have fueled their growth and they plan to be multi-state in about 6-9 months.
3. Sunday Goods
Home to one of the largest grow facilities in the country, this Arizona-based company offers many varieties of cannabis that grow under the greenhouse roof of their expansive “Pharm.” But the greenhouse isn’t the only aspect that gives the company credibility; they have an accomplished leadership team driving the brand’s trendy design and aesthetic.
4. Lowell Smokes
This California-based cannabis brand under The Hacienda Company is known for its pack of pre-rolls. MedMen recently announced a strategic investment in the parent company, but Lowell Smokes has already established itself as one of the strongest cannabis brands in California. With more than 250+ dispensaries, quality packaging, a hefty amount of press, and influencer promotion from celebrities like Chelsea Handler and Snoop Dogg, Lowell Smokes is arguably one of the fastest growing cannabis brands in the country. Their nimble entrepreneurial team of about 100 people considers themselves a startup tech company. They have lofty ambitions to grow to 500 team members by the end of the year.
5. PAX Labs
Simply put, PAX is a technology company that makes cannabis experiences better. As one of the world’s most popular marijuana-vape startups, the company is showing no signs of slowing down. PAX’s CEO Bharat Vasan has big plans to take the company public in 2020, according to Business Insider. Under a new management team, PAX has built a unique culture and customer affinity. They’re actively building their team and plan to make more than 100 new hires this year.
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