Marijuana in the Media Part III - Not Mainstream in 2020
May the purest business be blessed, with the odds deliberately stacked against them. The arrest rates and access to capital are unequivocally one-sided. And acts of police brutality all resting on your shoulders. Rise and stay away from fear mindsets, mainstream media, and mainstream ideas. Breakaway from the norms with balance and unity.
It's been nearly a year since Major Bloom had an article written up in WGBH, which was a decent start to 2020. The segment sparked an internal analysis of branding opportunities and narrative pieces for the small business. If you are interested in knowing what 2020 has been like for a licensed cannabis Economic Empowerment start-up company, here are some noteworthy milestones you won't find mainstream:
HCA Amendment: They signed their first HCA in Winter 2018; two years later, they expanded another retail and manufacturing agreement under their belt. For the Worcester location, the retail HCA had been signed in the Winter of 2019 and the first half of 2020, amended to include manufacturing.
With recent changes in delivery regulations and the state putting an effort to create an equitable legal market, as an economic empowerment business, the aim is to have the Delivery HCA and License by March '21.
Special Permits: Though beneficial, not all municipalities require a special permit process to get through to operating a marijuana establishment. Around the MA market, cities like Boston, Worcester, and Attleboro incorporate this process before construction.
On the business side, permitting and planning review processes will help you think about your operation from a creative perspective. Major Bloom was awarded a manufacturing & retail special permit on two separate meeting agendas for the same municipality in the last year.
Licenses: A delivery certificate is very similar to a provisional license when comparing the state's application submission process. To lower barriers for the delivery type, the state accepted applications without delivery Host Community Agreements.
Otherwise, an HCA is needed to obtain a license, and in 2020 we received three Provisional Licenses and a Delivery certificate. The delivery, retail, and manufacturing state consent are in Worcester, while Major Bloom received another retail Provisional License in Attleboro.
Funding: People wouldn't care to understand, nor is there a right way to explain it all, though what comes to mind in a pressing form is a "front," as we often refer to it in a trusting nature from the pre-regulated world.
Consignment is a popular term also to include debt or loan. My personal favorite is good faith. As many come into the game, here are some grams, pay me back when you sell; that's how it started. And the story continues, here are millions in resources, to be paid back on sales.
Construction Permit: Getting a special permit for a marijuana business followed by approval to start building out the facility in the second most populated municipality in New England will make you feel like you can project manage a Skyscraper in the middle of Time Square.
It's a great time to build and work on infrastructure during the COVID because there is more flexibility when the general public has slowed down. There are some industries and institutions, like the education systems, which are changing because of COVID. Government processes, like permitting, are also under that same transformation. It was a pleasure to successfully take on the duty to acquire a construction permit during the pandemic.
Design-Build Team: Day ones. That's it! And for those who question how "day one(s)" is defined, it's a great time to clarify. The broader way to explain the terms is simply by referring to a friend. Details into the friendship include a friend you've to know for a long time or someone you've friend instantly when you met.
My college quarterback from 15-years ago is the connection point between the design-build team and the project. He is a hell of an entrepreneur, a day one, like many other trades who have blessed the space with progression on construction. We started with a blank canvass, just four brick walls with junk in-between, and we are building something more significant than just a dispensary.
Operations Team: Starting the business and getting through to operations is like double-dutch, jumping in at the right time. Bringing on a team is very much the same, catching the rhythm.
State and local inspections can swing openings by weeks, which can impact budgets. In all honesty, the priority is not to be concerned about operating the expense budget but to finish the build-out. It's been extraordinary to interview potential candidates and share the process.
It's been a transcending year. With so many challenges and problems on the other end are opportunity and solutions. The challenge for many people and businesses is financial. And if money is not an issue, then trying to keep pace with the changing world can be a problem.
For many operating businesses in a thriving cannabis market, their problems are not like the rest of the world. Cannabis Flower supply is short because demand is high. Many cannabis businesses also have a problem with hiring from diverse communities while also giving back to groups that have been harmed by prohibition. And lastly, laboratory testing results are entirely too long for producers.
These topics are generally not covered in the media but are the most thought-provoking and meticulous. Use this as motivation past media coverage because it doesn't translate into prosperity; it only provides a glorified advertisement. The cannabis community requires direct communication with their weed dealer. Like Nike becoming a marketing firm, the marijuana company becomes a media business dropping content unparalleled.