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Training the next generation of CannaBusiness owners 

Training the next generation of CannaBusiness owners 

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In the rapidly expanding and changing cannabis industry, setting a strong foundation is crucial for long-term success. 

But for many entrepreneurs in this space, particularly Black, Indigenous, and people of color, there is a distinct lack of affordable and current education on exactly how to set up such a business.

The newly launched Black CannaBusiness CEO Intensive aims to change this. 

The Black CannaBusiness CEO Intensive is a six-week immersive business training experience that empowers minority cannabis business owners to thrive in the cannabis industry. The Intensive is hosted by the Black CannaBusiness Magazine, a leading industry publication and the host of the annual Black CannaBusiness Conference, where the Hot Box Pitch Contest is hosted. 

A program with a purpose 

The program came from an idea, a gap in the market. There were plenty of programs where people could come, soak in information for a day or two, and leave. But there wasn’t an option for people looking for full business support, particularly not for business owners of color. The CEO Intensive was designed to help participants develop a strong foundation and receive continued support. 

The Black CannaBusiness CEO Intensive ended two days of in-person learning in Boston with a ceremony honoring cannabis professionals of color in the community. Including: Rolling Leaf, Justincredible, 6 Bricks, Major Bloom, We Can Deliver, Lowkey Dispensary, Your Green Package, Freshly Baked, Legal Greens.

As the name suggests, the program is intensive. It will launch in four cities in the US, each offering a regional cohort and in-person meeting. After being accepted to their regional cohort, participants begin a 6-week online course. Topics include finances, products, marketing, sales, customer experience, risk management, and more. At the end, they gather together for a series of in-person meetings, spanning 14 hours in just two days. But the learning doesn’t end after graduation.

The CEO Intensive also offers a post-graduate mentorship program and ongoing business support, so attendees can continue to learn and evolve their businesses. They can also participate in yearly academic programs, networking events, and other support groups. 

“Once they’re on the right track, we want to follow the lifecycle of their brand so we can continue to help them implement the tools and keep business evolution top of mind,” said Kristi Price, founder of the Black CannaBusiness Magazine. “This is the start of the journey they’re on and we’re on to create bigger and better cannabis businesses.” 

Best of all, the first year is entirely free for the accepted participants. Cannabis is a cost-intensive industry to enter, and Price didn’t want any additional barriers to the program. 

The CEO Intensive participants toured NETA’s cultivation facility as an instructional outing, learning the ins and outs of the process of cultivation.

Creating strong programs through partnerships 

A program as robust as the CEO Intensive is no small undertaking, and it was with the support of Parallel, a multi-state operator, that it came to fruition. The company will represent the partnership throughout their Massachusetts adult-use and medical locations.

“It’s been exciting to work with Parallel on this,” Price said. “We’re happy to partner with them on this program.” 

Building the future of cannabis 

This is the first CEO intensive, but not the last. Price said the program will grow and adapt with each group of participants, seeking continuous improvement for their members and their curriculum.  

“I’m really excited to engage with our readers and followers,” said Price. “We have a really special group of people applying, and I can’t wait to get started.” 
Interested applicants can learn more about the program and submit themselves for consideration on the Black CannaBusiness website.

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