CSE’s Grace Pedota is joined by Chris Jones, CEO of Cannabis Xpress to discuss his experience launching a new cannabis retail venture in the midst of the pandemic, and the recent steps he has taken to deliver his vision for a speedier and more efficient model of cannabis retail.
Here’s an overview of what Grace and Chris cover in this edition of the #HashtagFinance podcast:
0:35 – Introducing Chris Jones
3:20 – Trend-spotting during his time at Origin House
4:42 – Founding the Star Buds retail chain
6:58 – Why he chose Barrie for his debut retail location
9:19 – Ontario’s quick transition to virtual inspections
12:35 – Insights from his first retail launch
14:13 – Cannabis Xpress – focused on speed and efficiency
18:28 – Who is the ideal customer for Cannabis Xpress?
20:47 – Drive through cannabis stores?
22:05 – Characteristics of cannabis 3.0
23:50 – How COVID has been positive for the cannabis industry
26:20 – Teaching ‘cannabis’ at post-secondary institutions
28:00 – Advice for new cannabis retailers
CSE’s Grace Pedota recently chatted with Robyn Rabinovich, Senior Account Director, Cannabis at Hill+Knowlton Strategies, to reflect on her professional experiences in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry, dating back to the onset of the MMPR program in Canada.
In this comprehensive discussion, Robyn shares her favourite aspects of working at start-ups like CannTrust and TerrAscend (3:34), how Hill+Knowlton has uniquely positioned itself to provide B2B support to the industry (4:48), defining Cannabis 2.0 and what to expect from the 3.0 era (6:09), and her perspective on the Ontario cannabis retail situation amid COVID-19 shutdowns (11:54).
Listen until the end to hear her thoughts on how new technological applications are benefiting the cannabis industry, the prospects for consumption lounges in Toronto, and the new favourite quarantine pastime for those in the cannabis industry (hint: it’s not product consumption!)
CSE’s Grace Pedota hosted Traci Costa for her second appearance on #HashtagFinance to discuss her company, Peakaboo Beans Inc. (CSE:BEAN), ringing the bell to open the market at the CSE, and her thoughts on International Women’s Day.
In this discussion, Traci shares how Peekaboo Beans is celebrating new beginnings after “resetting” the company last year (2:21), the advantages of having top female talent in the BEAN boardroom (6:51), and the company’s reasons for rebranding after 14 years as Peekaboo Beans (10:49).
Listen until the end to hear how Traci regularly uses the Tik Tok app, and why sustainability is at the heart of how her company operates.
CSE’s Grace Pedota recently hosted Sophia Ruffolo – CEO and Founder of femmebought – to discuss her mission to promote women-owned businesses and close the funding gap for female-led companies.
In this discussion, Sophia shares the insights that are driving her mission for economic parity for women, including the dramatically low number of Fortune 500 companies led by women (3:30), the wide gap in VC funding for male-vs-female led companies (4:25), and the global response to her efforts to promote gender equality in business (8:27).
Listen until the end to hear how she made a 180 degree turn from her legal career in banking, the potential pitfalls of raising private capital, and the role she is playing in demystifying cannabis for women business owners.
CSE’s Grace Pedota was recently joined by Melissa Rolston, Founder of JADA, who dropped by to share her personal journey in the cannabis industry which has led her to launch her new venture – a cannabis infused skincare brand.
In this discussion, Melissa shares how she was inspired by her work in chronic pain management and photography (1:15), how one particular case she treated demonstrated how cannabinoid therapy can work effectively alongside chemotherapy (4:45), and the key allies in the industry that have helped her in her mission to evangelize “Empowerment from the skin to within” (10:26).
Listen until the end to learn about her new company called JADA, why she has partnered with DANA to address the market for high-end cannabis jewelry, and how her company is set up to help “break the stigma”.
CSE’s Grace Pedota recently caught up with Helen Bilhete, Head of Corporate Development at Newsfile, to discuss her recent experience at the “boutique” newswire service and her other career endeavors, including acting.
During this chat, Helen shares her perspective on how newswire services work a lot like courier systems (3:10), the journey she underwent to build courage and success in sales (8:55), and the distinct benefits of not being afraid to “stand out” on Bay Street (12:34).
CSE’s Grace Pedota recently sat down with Ingrid Hibbard, CEO & President of Pelangio Exploration Inc., to reflect on her career as an explorer, including a 23 year run as CEO of Pelangio Exploration.
In this discussion, Ingrid shares why “location, location, location” is still the name of the game in prospecting (1:15), how many people misunderstand the technical sophistication of the industry (4:38), and the technique she and her father used to stake claims when she was younger. (Hint: it involved an airplane and toilet paper.) (6:31)
Listen until the end to hear her thoughts on ecological sustainability in the industry, how the price of gold is going to influence this year’s PDAC Convention, and why millennials should care about investing in the mining sector!
Cameron Chell, Founder and Chairman at Draganfly Inc., joined Grace Pedota in the podcast studio to share his thoughts on delivering drone systems innovation to the public markets (1:02), the opportunities emerging as a result of US government security concerns around foreign drone systems control (2:23), and the future of unmanned vehicles beyond aerial drones (4:11). Listen until the end to hear how Cameron envisions Draganfly punching above its “weight class.”
Jo Vos, Managing Director of Leafly, joined Grace Pedota in the podcast studio to share how their platform is empowering cannabis shoppers through education (2:04), the challenge of presenting plant data differently to keep pace with a rapidly maturing audience (4:02), and the importance of standardizing industry terminology (11:38). Listen until the end to learn more about Jo’s vision of how Leafly is bridging the cannabis marketing world and regulation, the ongoing opportunity to break down cannabis stigma through informed dialogue, and her personal tips for downhill cyclists!
Dan Nelson, CEO of Wikileaf Technologies (CSE:WIKI), joins Grace Pedota to discuss the Wikileaf Market Open at the CSE Media Centre (0:39), how his own experience with cannabis inspired him to create a dispensary comparison platform (2:09), and Wikileaf’s mission to empower cannabis consumers with information (12:07). Listen until the end to learn about the company’s partnership with Chuck Rifici and Nesta Holding Co., for his experience with consumer brand and product loyalty, and to hear about Dan’s climb up Mount Kilimanjaro!