CBx Daily

Cannabis Industry Is Ripe For Money Moves

Jun 3

By Alexandra Bacchus

  • Cannabis industry that’s projected to do $30-$45B in revenue by 2022
  • Connecticut allows a 3-month head start for minority cannabis business owners to apply for licenses

With marijuana now legal in two-thirds of the United States, budding entrepreneurs have their sights set on cannabis as the next big industry. However, Black-Americans and other minority groups face an uphill battle for inclusion in the cannabis industry that’s projected to do $30 billion to $45 billion in revenue by 2022.

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Why This Matters: As states continue to legalize marijuana and make it easier for people to start businesses, many of those same states have hardly kept up with equitable legislation to encourage minority entrepreneurs. Especially, when you consider that more than 80% of cannabis retail owners in America are white. States such as California and Connecticut, are testing out models to make cannabis more inclusive for aspiring entrepreneurs. Cities like Oakland, San Francisco, and Los Angeles have designed special programs with trainings, workshops, and consultations with potential minority ganja-preneurs, and Connecticut allows a three month head start for these business owners to apply for licenses.

The largest marijuana stocks are up by triple and quadruple digits since 2016, so fair access to cannabis investment will mean big money for the culture

This matters because more diversity in the market will mean a wider variety of products will make it to the mainstream. However, the current paths to funding cannabis businesses are largely through venture capital and private equity, not through small business loans that entrepreneurs typically have easier access to. A handful of black celebrity investors have gotten into the business early and serve as models for success, such as Snoop Dogg, Wiz Khalifa, and Whoopi Goldberg, but it’s not as easy without the initial capital they had access to.

Situational Awareness: Industry inclusion aside, this comes down to a fair chance at building wealth. The median white family has 41 times the wealth of the median black family, and 21 times that of the median Latino family. The gap needs to close, and the legal cannabis industry is a great place to begin because it’s just getting started. The largest marijuana stocks are up by triple and quadruple digits since 2016, so fair access to cannabis investment will mean big money for the culture.

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