The cannabis industry is taking off, especially now that the plant is legal in 24 states and the District of Columbia. Women are among the top competitors in this ever-flourishing business. Now that folks are starting to loosen up on the regulations, sales are steadily increasing. It’s no surprise that female entrepreneurs are taking the opportunity to join the industry and are representing cannabis in a positive manner. Here are 7 female power players that are currently in the marijuana game.
1. Jane west
Jane West is Co Founder of Women Grow, a networking group for professional female entrepreneurs in the cannabis business. At the very first gathering, only 70 people attended. Women Grow has come a long way since then and has chapters in 44 cities. It also has 21,000 newsletter subscribers and 30,000 followers on Instagram. Way to go, Jane!
2. Amy Poinsett & Jessica Billingsley
This female duo launched MJ Freeway in 2010. MJ Freeway is a firm that provides software for the cannabis industry. Ever since it was established, the firm has increased revenue 100% a year and now had 40 employees, Poinsett said. “I feel our clients have always been excited to do business with a women-owned firm,” said Poinsett.
3. Meg Sanders
Meg Sanders is the CEO of Mindful, a dispensary based in Denver. Mindful grows and sells its own cannabis for both recreational and medical purposes. “I got into the industry because it was an incredible challenge and an opportunity to help patients,” said Sanders. The company currently has 105 employees and prepares to make up to $18 million in 2016. Meg encourages people to enter the industry only if they’re truly passionate about it. Not only are you creating an industry, you’re creating a business, Sanders points out. Right you are, Meg!
4. Emily Paxhia
Emily Paxhia is one of the founding partners of Poseidon Asset Management, an investment company that focuses entirely on cannabis. The company was launched just two years ago and invests in various cannabis-related companies, like agtech, compliance and industrial hemp technology. The fund has invested primarily in companies that are owned by women and is eager to find more, says Paxhia. Emily says that female founders are normally driven and show strong rates of success among startup founders.
5. AC Braddock
AC Braddock joined Eden Labs as a consultant in 2007. She became CEO of the Seattle firm in just three short years, which creates technology that extracts cannabis. Eden Labs is one of the 10 fastest growing firms in Seattle that is run by a female. Ever since Braddock took over, the firm has grown from 3 employees to 26. On top of that, sales are expected to reach $18 million by 2016.
6. Betty Aldworth
Two years ago, Betty Aldworth joined Students for Sensible Drug Policy as executive director. She also served as advocacy director for Colorado’s Amendment 64, which is responsible for the state’s legalization. On top of that, she was deputy director of the National Cannabis Industry Association. “I had long understood that prohibition was a failure and chose to continue my work as an advocate,” said Aldworth.
7. Jan Cole
In 2009, Jan Cole created The Farm, a recreational marijuana dispensary in Boulder, Colorado. Jan has been able to successfully run her business, which has grown to have 116 employees. Half of those employees just so happen to be women. She brings in about $14 million a year and has no problem admitting that her business is profitable. “Our strategy is not aggressive but a slow build for the long term”, says Cole.
What do you think of these powerful female figures in the cannabis industry? Do you look forward to seeing more women enter the industry? Let us know on social media or in the comments below.