Episode 76: Cannabis with Ben
'I took the opportunity to meet with and talk with so many different cannabis operators. I quickly learned who knew what they were doing and who didn’t.' -Ben Click To Tweet
The cannabis industry is one of my favorite subjects, and it will be a regular topic on this show. Ben, my partner in the cannabis industry, is here to talk about how he went from being a corporate guy to operating a dispensary and more in this exciting new industry.
We talk about some of the requirements and licensing details along with compliance of state and local jurisdictions. We also touch on hiring the right political consultants and understanding the ins and outs of creating a business that is scalable. We also talk about the importance of giving back and helping the community.'Five years ago, the cannabis regulations were so new and changing so rapidly that I watched the industry evolve before me.' -Ben Click To Tweet
- Ben has been fascinated by the industry in the last five years. He didn’t know anything about it, but he kept getting pitched to.
- [02:07] He had a negative perception about marijuana and didn’t know anything about it. Then he started learning about the medicinal benefits and was introduced to some opportunities in Colorado.
- [02:44] His first deal was in Colorado. He was first introduced through an attorney. After meeting patients, I quickly became fascinated by this space.
- [03:49] He then met other people in the space through this attorney. Entrepreneurs and dispensary owners who had their own little grow space. The regulations evolved before his eyes because it changed so rapidly.
- [05:03] Ben quickly learned who was growing their business and had good a operational process.
- [06:25] The trend of the truth in any business that you are learning about.
- [07:08] How there are so many expert consultants who haven’t really actually built a marijuana business or built a business from the ground up.
- [07:59] There are a lot of moving parts in this space. Time is money and making the right move is critical. Getting the license can be a complicated process and it may involve a political aspect.
- [09:27] Even if the state provides you a license you need approval by your local jurisdiction. This includes a suitable location allowed by the local jurisdiction, and it has to meet the separation requirements.
- [10:36] You also have to be the type of operator that they want in their city. You have to get to know the people making this decision and help them to understand why you are different.
- [12:21] The people making these decisions want the best for their community. Separate yourself out as the best applicant by looking like a professional. You also want to be someone who is going to operate legally.
- [14:46] They also want people who are going to help and give back and improve the community. Be sincere and legitimate about what you are going to do. Have a realistic executable plan.
- [16:16] The importance of having a person on your team in the political camp. Each jurisdiction needs someone who understands the local market and the process. Be selective when choosing your political consultant. You want someone who has respect and trust of local politicians.
- [20:29] How a consultant can put you in front of the right people, but it is actually the package that you put together that gets you the license.
- [20:57] How do you get in line to get a license? It all starts with asking questions and finding the state and local processes and filling out the application.
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