Thirty years ago, buying cannabis was difficult, expensive and illegal. Buying cannabis in 2019 is somewhere between picking up a prescription from a pharmacy and buying beer from a liquor store. Join columnist John Tudhope each week as he visits cannabis companies in Los Angeles and discusses the budding industry.
As I reach the end of my collegiate tenure, the phrase “networking event” has forced its way into my psyche.
Such events – hosted for young professionals to find contacts and learn about the latest industry news – are especially valuable in the world of cannabis because the industry itself is young, expanding and in need of talent.
A few months ago, I went to a monthly meetup hosted by the Southern California Cannabis Business Investment Group, and was introduced to a variety of companies and business owners involved in the cannabis industry. The event featured an industrial agriculture technology company, an edible manufacturer and a cannabis waste disposal company.
It was an eclectic group of cannabis professionals in a downtown venue, all vying to meet other insiders and interested consumers. Each month, SCCBIG chooses a group of speakers to discuss their business and to field questions from the audience about the industry.
When I went to their December meetup to learn about the cannabis industry, most people were in collared shirts or nice blouses, casually mulling around and discussing cannabis technology, products and news. The vibe of the room was professional, but did not feel pretentious or exclusive – this was a cannabis event, after all. The event featured a slate of businesses set up with tables, a presentation area and a bar serving grilled sandwiches, wine and beer.
SCCBIG was founded three years ago by entrepreneur James Jordan as a forum to connect cannabis investors with businesses looking for capital. Since then, Jordan said the events have created a tight-knit community of people interested in learning about the industry.
“People would show up and they wanted not just information on investments, but they wanted an education, they wanted to learn,” he said. “What originally started as a meetup group to find investors turned into a teaching platform.”
Published: February 19, 2019
Founder & Interim Editor of L.A. Cannabis News