Cannabusinesses are sprouting up across the country where medical and adult-use cannabis is legal. The type of cannabis business ranges from cultivators, dispensaries and delivery services to bakeries, edible manufacturers and innovative cannabis-related products.
According to ArcView, an Oakland-based cannabis market research and investment company, legal sales grew to $5.4 billion in 2015, up from $4.6 billion in 2014. This was in part due to the new adult-use market sales, which increased by 184%. The good news is that demand for legal medical and adult-use cannabis continues to grow.
Grabbing hold of a niche within this expanding cannabis industry can be exciting. Yet, no matter what type of marijuana business you have or want to grow, how you conduct business—from setting it up to managing it—requires a unique set of business knowledge.
The journey isn’t always easy, but it is possible. Oaksterdam University, called the ‘Harvard Business School of Cannabis’ by the Washington Post, is at the forefront of helping people realize their dreams of cannabis business ownership. Here are the Top 10 Reasons our students name as important about their Oaksterdam University education.
10. Cannabis Laws and Regulations are Cumbersome. It is true that 58% of Americans support legalization of cannabis for adult use, but cannabis is still recognized as a Schedule 1 Substance under the federal Controlled Substance Act. In addition to this, states, cities and counties all have different regulations.
9. Many Unknowns. Owning and operating a cannabis business is still a fairly new endeavor in the United States. They come with a lot of unknowns, especially if you’re located in a state that is just setting up regulations.
8. Not Everyone Will Look Fondly Upon Your Business. There’s still a stigma around cannabis; many people associate it with a ‘stoner’ stereotype. This extends to landlords, who worry about federal policies and rouge operators causing their building to be seized. Some will charge a higher rent to offset their own risks.
7. Currently a Cash Business. Banks are federally regulated and less than eager to work with cannabusinesses. Without safe transaction options, many cannabis businesses are forced to conduct transactions in cash, which is a risky proposition.
6. Unique Operation. In addition to finding the best legal business structure to set up as, a cannabis business comes with a unique set of operation considerations from security to patient relations.
5. Marketing Your Business Requires Creativity. Promoting your cannabis business isn’t as easy as putting an ad in the newspaper. Many media outlets –including social media—have rules against promoting illegal substances.
4. Patients Have Real Needs. If your business serves patients, it will be necessary to truly understand them and their ailments. You’ll also have to know the laws governing who can and cannot use cannabis.
3. Cannabis the Plant. Without this incredible plant, there wouldn’t be a cannabis market. Understanding cannabis, from its benefits and the science supporting them to knowing the basics of growing it, is helpful to any cannabusiness decision-maker.
2. Need to Mitigate Risks. Understanding the legal, social and political risks you take as a cannabis business owner or manager will help in the long run. Breaking the law, even if unknowingly, could shut down your business. Growing a cannabusiness with your eyes wide open makes a difference.
1. Setting Up to Be Successful. At the end of the day, starting off on the right foot will generally help you be successful long term. Oaksterdam University is focused on teaching and sharing information. Once you’ve graduated from OU, the connections and resources available from the college are advantageous no matter where your business is located.
Oaksterdam University is pleased to offer two incredible learning opportunities in the next two weeks to help new and existing cannabis business owners and managers conduct business the right way. They include 1) a Half Day Cannabis Business Course on March 5, 2016, as part of the California Cannabis Business Expo, and 2) a Horticulture Seminar in Las Vegas March 11 to 14, 2016.
Take hold of your cannabis business’s future, register for one of these programs today! Click below to learn more or to register.