November 23rd, 2018
The cannabis industry has exploded over the last year, culminating in the massive MjBizCon last week in fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada. Attracting a record-shattering 27,000 people from 70 unique countries (up from 18,000 just last year), this year’s event was a true testament to how far the marijuana market has come, as well as its exceptional potential for growth. Featuring over 1,000 unique exhibits and 30+ panels and speeches on everything from cultivation to compliance, MjBizCon 2018 held something for everyone.
“It’s like the Superbowl of cannabis!” Exclaimed CuraLeaf Inc. (OTCMKTS:LDVTF) CEO Joseph Lusardi. “All the companies come here and congregate. It’s an excellent way to not only interact with entrepreneurs from around the world but also see and stay up on the trends in the industry.”
Business Development and Investments Key Trends in Speaker Sessions
For those looking to gain up-to-date insider knowledge from top industry thought-leaders, MjBizCon 2018 offered dozens of unique panels, addresses, and fireside chats with a myriad of experts and entrepreneurs. Popular sessions included “Strain Management: How to Optimize Space in Your Cultivation Facility,” led by John Andrle of L’Eagle Services, “How to Increase Your Odds of Being Acquired,” with Dena Jalbert of Align Business Advisory Services, and “Raising Capital: A Look at Public and Private Opportunities in Canada and Beyond”, featuring Narbe Alexandrian of Canopy Rivers (OTCMKTS:CNPOF, TSX:RIV), a division of Canopy Growth (NYSE:CGC).
“I was glad to hear there’s still room to grow in Canada,” said Lisa Harun of Vapium, who attended several of the panels relating to the newly-minted market in the Great White North. “I was also happy to see so many female speakers – it’s exciting!”
“It was immediately evident from the turnout that consolidation is at the forefront of people’s minds,” he told CFN. “As cannabis continues to expand, we anticipate that consolidation will increase its pace, so it is reassuring to see so many entrepreneurs preparing to reach next level of growth or make a successful exit through M&A. Entrepreneurial success is defined by successful exits and the legal cannabis industry is going to witness this exponentially in 2019 and beyond.”
Expo Hall Featured 175,000 Square Feet of Commerce
The majority of the action at MjBizCon 2018 went down on the sprawling expo floor, which was constantly packed with people exploring the latest and greatest in vaporizer technology, trimming automation, tracking software, and everything in between.
“The amount of vendors is epic – way better than I could ever have imagined,” remarked Jonathan Hirsh, an influencer and cannabis education leader from Toronto, who was attending the Las Vegas show for his first time. “It was like being a kid in the candy store!”
Top industry business leaders and celebrities alike were spotted roaming the expansive exhibitor hall, including famed filmmaker Kevin Smith, KISS frontman Gene Simmons, and actor Kelsey Grammer. For CEO and Co-Founder of Marijuana Business Daily (the folks behind MjBizCon) Cassandra Farrington, it wasn’t the stars walking the floor that stood out to her – it was seeing the developments that many companies had experienced since the event’s inception in 2012.
“I love how the people who were here just a few years ago as first-time attendees with business plans looking for partners are now back as exhibiting companies, bringing their teams,” Farrington said. “There’s a virtuous cycle this event is fostering and it’s fantastic.”
Next Year’s Conference Moving to December, Bringing City-Wide Recognition
Not only was 2018 a record-breaking year for attendance, it also brought a new designation from the City of Las Vegas and Clark County. Authorities declared that next year, when the conference moves to mid-December, MjBizCon Week will take over town, bringing expanded event offerings across the Strip and beyond. The news cements MjBizCon as the cornerstone conference of the cannabis industry and must-attend for anyone in the business.
“Everyone in the cannabis space needs to go to MjBizCon, as it presents a tremendous opportunity to talk to decision makers at different companies, close deals, explore new products, and make lifelong friends,” said Sam Whetsel, CEO of Smokus Focus. “We wouldn’t miss it.”
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About Rachelle Gordon
Rachelle Gordon is a Minneapolis-based writer. Find her online at www.rachellegordon.net.
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