Rachelle Gordon January 18th, 2019 In the global cannabis space, Canada has emerged as one of the fastest-growing marketplaces yet. Mere months after the... Lift & Co. Conference and Expo Cements Position as Canada’s Meeting Place for Cannabis

Rachelle Gordon

January 18th, 2019

In the global cannabis space, Canada has emerged as one of the fastest-growing marketplaces yet. Mere months after the nation became the first industrialized country to fully legalize the plant, over 18,000 eager marijuana executives, entrepreneurs, and thought-leaders descended upon the Vancouver Convention Centre for the Lift & Co. (TSXV:LIFT) Conference and Expo. Featuring dozens of speakers, engaging exhibits, and plenty of networking opportunities, the event offered attendees a glimpse into what is certain to be one of the biggest industries the world has ever seen.

“Every year this event brings an increasing number of consumers together with licensed businesses to discover products and brands,”  said Matei Olaru, CEO of Lift & Co. in a press release. This year with legalization, we saw more new companies than ever choose Lift & Co. as the channel to introduce their products to the market. It’s just a sign of what’s to come (at our event) in Toronto this June and beyond.”

One Day Cannabis Business Conference Focuses on Industry Reports From High Level Execs, What’s Next Globally

The first day of the Lift & Co. show was specifically tailored towards current cannabis businessmen and women, offering an insider update from C-level executives and top leaders within the space. Some topics covered included branding, investments, and the growing dichotomy between the “old school” marijuana producers and advocates and corporate money looking to cash in while the getting’s good.  

“Are we doing enough to welcome the original trailblazers, the pioneers, into the corporate weed, for lack of a better term, world. The short answer is, ‘No, we need to do more,’” said panelist Will Stewart, VP of Harvest One Cannabis (CVE:HVT) (OTCMKTS:HRVOF). “One [thing to do] is welcome the pioneers as the pioneers as they are and the knowledge that they have, not as a show pony or a token.”

Expo Floor Exudes Excitement, Deal Flow

The sprawling exhibit hall showcased over 160,000 square feet of some of the best and brightest cannabis brands that Canada has to offer, with large faux-pot leaves and mock-up storefronts scattered throughout. Ancillary companies, such as vaporizer hardware distributors, accounting and tax firms, and packaging providers made up a large number of the participants as well. It was evident based on the large amount of traffic weaving in and out that any and all services relating to the cannabis plant are in high demand (no pun intended).

Women in Cannabis – Closing the Gap?

The subject of female inclusion within the cannabis space is one that is oft discussed, yet the majority of the industry is still made up of men. During the “Women’s Zen Lunch,” topics such as workplace diversity, harassment, and wellness were all touched on but panelist Karen Parent of event sponsor Zenabis (CVE:ZENA) hopes to soon see a world where special luncheons and panels dedicated like the one she was speaking one don’t need to exist.

“Let’s get it together,” she told the crowd, who cheered enthusiastically. “We can do better.”

Lift & Co. Sets Sights on TO

After a record-breaking event in Vancouver, it’s all eyes on Toronto as Lift & Co. presents their annual summer conference June 6-9 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. Based upon the turnout for the West Coast show, TO promises to be even bigger, cementing the Lift & Co. expo as one of the largest industry conferences in North America and Canada’s meeting place for cannabis.

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Rachelle Gordon

About Rachelle Gordon

Rachelle Gordon is a Minneapolis-based writer. Find her online at www.rachellegordon.net.

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