Ongoing cannabis legalization is proliferating around the U.S. It goes without saying – the industry is on the rise. This rapid growth provides a promising future for the people involved in the business. While it is certainly worthwhile to invest in cannabis and pioneer the sector while there is less competition, one must approach any cannabis investment strategy with caution. Argonaut Advisors works with firms both at the early stages of their life cycle and those that are facing challenges down the road, providing much needed experienced cannabis consulting support to help meet their business objectives.
From our consultants’ firsthand experiences, we know cannabis entrepreneurs are faced with complexities that come alongside the rapid changes that are constantly happening within the industry. There are no one-size-fits-all solutions that can be readily found. In order to overcome new and unavoidable legal, financial, and operational problems, Argonaut Advisors, as the preeminent boutique cannabis consulting firm, will be an instrumental asset to your business.
While the cannabis industry has come a long way, evolving exponentially in this century, laws and regulations continue to be established on a state level resulting in complex micro-markets with each state having its own unique marijuana programs. Some have both legal recreational and medical marijuana programs, while most only allow medicinal use of marijuana at this point. Furthermore, some have decriminalized marijuana by classifying possession of small amounts as a misdemeanor or punishable by a citation or fine. Even so, some states have still not legalized cannabis on any level.
With decreasing stigma, the industry is more and more attractive to prospective entrepreneurs. However, there is still a great deal to learn as programs are still relatively new. One cannot expect to get into the legal cannabis space without in-depth knowledge and insight into the overall cannabis market – a feat that is incredibly challenging by an individual. The reality is that not all cannabis consultants are created equal. Enter, Argonaut Advisors.
License Application – When you apply for a cannabis business license, you will need to attain the specific license application for whatever type of business you will operate. Most businesses in the industry are either cultivators or dispensaries; however many other types of businesses exist.
A (Brief) Intro To Lines of Business:
Breeder / Genetics – Focus on developing cannabis seeds, creating new strains, and experimenting with cannabis traits.
Cultivator – Focus on growing cannabis. Cultivators typically require the biggest investment because of the equipment and technology needed to produce the highest quality plant.
Dispensary – A marijuana dispensary or retailer is the physical store where you can purchase marijuana products.
Extractor – Processors who take the raw cannabis plant to extract concentrates (such as cannabinoids or THC).
Manufacturer – Some states will only have licenses for manufacturers and dispensaries. Manufacturing includes growing, processing, packing and labeling, and distributing marijuana products to licensed dispensaries.
Ancillary Service Provider – Ancillary businesses provide B2B services to other marijuana businesses (typically, are “not plant touching”).
Business Plan – Quality of your business plan not only increases chances of winning a business license, but it will also help secure potential funding/investors. Potential required details include, amongst others, the overall business strategy, associated real estate, team overview, financial outlook, target market, competition, business model, value proposition, security plans, and risk mitigation.
Register + Obtain License – There may be many other requirements that a “regular” business would not typically have to fulfill. Some states may also announce specific windows when applications will be accepted while some are rolling.
Given the difficulty in maneuvering the minutiae of starting a business, cannabis consulting firms help entrepreneurs launch and establish their marijuana businesses. While it may be tempting to save money and go without (penny-wise, but pound foolish), it is by far the most surefire way to expand successfully, whether you are a startup or an existing firm.
Cannabis Business Tours – Before you spend a great deal of time conceptualizing your marijuana business, you need to understand the requirements of your facility. The best way to accomplish this is to visit an already operational facility – often through the introduction from the rolodex of a consulting firm.
Facility Design & Build – Mistakes in planning and construction can be costly, delay your timeline, and be disastrous to future success. By engaging the right team to assist in the design, engineering, and construction of a facility, these risks can be significantly tempered.
Cannabis License – It goes without saying, you cannot expect to participate in the legal cannabis industry without a business license, the process of which differs by states. These processes are often rigorous and highly competitive – a trusted partner will be this difference maker. Expert cannabis consultants have an in-depth understanding of the specific requirements crucial for creating a successful application.
Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) – One of the most critical requirements of your cannabis application and ongoing success is showing your ability to adapt to regulation changes, staying organized, and achieving/maintaining compliance. SOP requirements will typically involve developing or keeping employee documentation, training manuals, processing procedures, healthy and safety protocols, security measures, as well as emergency practices. Furthermore, they should contain procedures on how you will handle cash, maintain financial records, sales processes, marketing plans, and customer service. A consulting company can assist in the creation, but (more importantly) the implementation of high level SOPs.
METRC and Cannabis Business Compliance – The Marijuana Enforcement Tracking Reporting Compliance (METRC) helps you monitor and verify reported cannabis inventories, analyze trends, and stay on top of cannabis news to assess risk and identify non-compliant behavior. In most states, this platform is required by all cannabis related businesses (CRBs) and allows for seed-to-sale tracking in the case of a public health issue. Failure to maintain platform protocols can result in the suspension, revocation, or cancellation of your cannabis business license. Experienced cannabis consultants can help lessen the learning curve in the implementation of METRC.
Accounting – A cannabis consulting firm can help organize your business’s accounting and financial forecasts, adjusting to trends and details specific to the industry.
Marijuana Business Marketing and Branding – Marketing is important to build brand awareness and growth, but it is imperative to understand the restrictions on marketing in the industry which can range from limitations on web design, social media, and ads amongst other restrictions.
Given our status as a leader in the growing cannabis industry, Argonaut can serve as a trusted partner to navigate this complex and sometimes legally-ambiguous environment by ensuring your capital is put to efficient use.
Argonaut Advisors is a leader in the growing cannabis investing industry. In our three decades of experience, we have created value for both cannabis business operators and investors through our suite of services: investment sales (buying and selling of cannabis licenses), mergers and acquisitions, capital advisory, and cannabis real estate investments. Our cannabis consultants are the strategic middle-point between capital and operators. As a boutique cannabis capital advisor and consultant, we consistently create opportunities for both investors and operators. With hands-on operating experience and financial expertise specific to cannabis investing, our clients have access to differentiation that leads to value creation for both sides of the transaction. In more detail, our services as as follows:
Investment Sales – Our clients benefit from a profound knowledge of vertically integrated cannabis operations and deep networks of relationships offering a diverse pool of potential buyers and sellers.
M&A – Our clients benefit from our experience in sourcing cannabis investments, underwriting, and managing extensive due diligence processes.
Capital Advisory – Our clients benefit from our expertise in the capital markets ranging from debt, equity, convertibles, short and long-term notes, equipment financing, cannabis purchase order financing, and sales-leasebacks.
Real Estate – Our clients benefit from our assisting in sourcing, underwriting, and asset management of locations for cannabis cultivation facilities, dispensaries, or other uses.
The reality is that there is far more to the cannabis business than just growing and selling some marijuana. While still in its infancy, the industry is getting more competitive and complicated by the day. Whether you’re a new venture or an existing cannabis business, we can help.
Let us be your trusted partner in any of your capital or liquidity related needs!
A complement to Argonaut Advisors is Livfree Consulting, our management consulting sister company. With 30 years of combined experience, our team of cannabis experts has created hundreds of dynamic and lucrative opportunities for cannabis investors and operators in multiple states and countries. The network of cannabis entrepreneurs that Livfree has built over the years represents the best of what the industry has to offer.
Livfree Consulting is your strategic cannabis advisor for operational excellence and continuous growth. Our suite of services is as follows:
Operations – Hiring and Training, Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), Cultivation Operations, Processing & Packaging, Yield Optimization, Distribution & Wholesale, Benchmarking, Internal Audit
Real Estate & Design – Location/Asset Sourcing, Underwriting, Entitlements, Facility Design, Construction Management, Asset Management
Business & Strategy – Due Diligence, Financial Forecasting, Strategy, Internal Controls
Compliance – License Procurement, Regulatory Maintenance, Transfer Processes, Security
Our cultivation consultants will work with you to design operations that fully meet your business expectations, including sourcing the right real estate and facility, designing the best production technology, establishing the most efficient processes, and responding to everything in between. From the first harvest of the year to the last, we will ensure that you reach maximum profitability and optimal growth.
Overall, we will reduce your operational expenses while increasing throughput through our three strategic goals
Design, Design, Design – The keystone to every successful cannabis operation is a well-designed cultivation facility. Every square foot of canopy, whether it be nursery, vegetation, flower, indoor grow room or greenhouse bay, can be directly converted into dollars. Livfree has demonstrated world-class expertise in design, providing for some of the highest return per square foot of facility in the industry.
Standardization – The second step is to build a set of protocols that can be replicated across multiple facilities as well as state lines. This ensures quality control of the product from one harvest to the next. This also sets standards for management to properly communicate an efficient plan to its entire production team, with checks and balances throughout the life and harvest of the plant.
Market Research – Livfree’s vast network of operators and producers gives us the advantage of being in tune with cutting-edge scientific research and techniques. By discovering best practices, understanding best-selling products, and knowing the best industry professionals and suppliers, Livfree directly benefits its partners by utilizing this knowledge to develop a clear winning strategy.
Reach out to the Livfree team today so we can begin collaborating to meet your goals.
VISIT US: https://www.livfreeconsulting.com