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| 1 minute read

Takeaways on the cannabis industry from MJBizCon 2021

Friends, in past years, after the mishegas of MJBizCon, I’ve provided my take on the temperature of the industry in these Cannabis Musings, and on what I learned in my conversations at the conference (such as here). With so many meetings, and such a diverse set of conversations, there’s an endless number of opinions from which to draw upon. At the same time, I realize that my perspective is highly skewed, not only by my semi-outsider status as a service provider, and by the fact that one can only schedule so many meetings in a day, but also by the natural skepticism that makes me an effective lawyer. And, admittedly, I never actually made it to the event itself this year – I spent my time running around the Las Vegas Strip meeting up with people. So, I feel like it’d be cheating to offer up a broad perspective on the state of the industry based on four very long days in Vegas (I’ll wait until year-end for that).

That being said, the general tone felt to me somewhere between the boundless optimism of 2018’s event and the somber reflection of 2019’s event. I think that the growing realization that federal legalization is still a ways away (link) has tempered expectations (something also evidenced in the markets (link)), setting the tone for a more uncertain future to try to navigate. I had a number of discussions about the future of cultivation amidst falling wholesale flower prices, the pace of M&A despite public stock prices being well off their spring highs, the continued disconnect in access to capital driven by exuberant demand for certain asset classes (meaning that some capital is really cheap because investors really want it, while the rest is really expensive - I sort of mused on this this a few weeks ago here), and the influx of competition in every aspect of the industry.

Overall, the people with whom I spoke were optimistic on a macro level, less so on a micro. On the one hand, they all seemed comfortable forecasting a rosy future for the industry as a whole, but were worried about everything in-between. As for myself, all I can think about right now is my submission to present at MJBizCon 2022 on the knish as the next novel form factor.

Tags

cannabis, mjbizcon, cannabis future, cannabis investment, mjbizcon2021

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