Thursday, August 6, 2020
Green Quest 2020 Busts Open Cannabis Industry to Minority Entrepreneurs
My Green Network will empower a minority-controlled business to make a positive impact on the cannabis industry through its annual grant.
When I first began writing about the cannabis industry 10 years ago, most businesses were run by smaller operations. Not necessarily “mom & pop”, but there was certainly more opportunity and fewer barriers to entry into what was then the medical cannabis industry.
Since then, as recreational legalization has spread through the states, largely impassible gatekeepers have made it increasingly difficult for many small businesses to break into the cannabis industry. This has consolidated the industry into mostly a collection of large companies, which can ultimately minimize choice and stifle innovation.
How do those with incredible business ideas, but not the resource pool, find a way to carve out their segment of the market and launch their business? This is the issue that My Green Network identified when they first conceived of the idea for their unique shared cannabis industry working space.
They have now doubled down on this mission of cutting a path for cannabis entrepreneurs with the introduction of Green Quest 2020. I sat down with My Green Network CEO James Shih to hear first hand how his company is helping new cannabis ventures through their extensive support system.
How Does My Green Network Level the Playing Field?
“Imagine the legal cannabis market as a city of endless opportunities hidden in an impassable jungle. A select few are able to enter by expending massive wealth to fly over the tree-line,” said Shih.
The rest? Even if they are able to navigate the complex jungle of funding, licensing, building out manufacturing facilities, and securing a foothold in the cannabis market, success isn’t a given, and many will fold before having the chance to find an audience.
Unless these businesses are able to secure more than $1 million in funding for licensing fees and other startup costs, they are stopped before they can even enter the market. A lack of an effective and reliable network of suppliers for hardware, ingredients, and even banking services can also put a stop to cannabis dreams before they are actualized.
My Green Network (MyGN) removes the roadblocks to success that new business ideas face, improving equity in the cannabis industry.
“A MyGN cannabis business spends less than $50,000 for licensing, can pay rent as they scale, and can produce as needed with the costs shared by everyone in the facility. This means they can innovate, collaborate, and focus on making an amazing brand and product,” Shih revealed.
Fulfilling Dreams with Green Rush 2020
Seeing the difference their company can make in the success of their clients, they wanted to further extend this opportunity to an aspiring cannabis entrepreneur or business that otherwise wouldn’t have the ability.
Shih explains, “As a minority-controlled business ourselves, we want to build a wider network of minority cannabis businesses worldwide. Green Quest is our annual program that we can effectuate a change to ensure that through our facilities, we can directly grant at least one minority-controlled business every year the chance to enter the industry!”
The winner of Green Quest 2020 will receive a paid for type S cannabis license for shared manufacturing at the My Green Network Orange County facility, subsidized monthly rent for shared space at the facility, in-house branding and packaging design, and legal assistance for business formation and trademarks.
“Green Quest 2020 is our way to make this inaccessible market for minorities – simply put – accessible,” Shih said of the endeavour.
Launch Your Cannabis Business
If you are interested in taking part in Green Quest 2020, they are now accepting applications. Applicants will participate in a three round process where they demonstrate the potential of their business before the winner is chosen.
For the first round, passionate minority-controlled businesses are invited to submit a video statement outlining their unique business idea and relaying how they would contribute to the cannabis community if selected.
Candidates chosen to move on to the second round will next present their business plan and participate in interviews with My Green Network executives. In this round, judges are looking for inspiring leaders capable of making a powerful impact.
In the final round, finalists from round two will be placed before the public for the final vote. The intention is to bring together the entire cannabis community to choose, rather than focusing on the judges’ favorites.
In the end, My Green Network hopes, through Green Quest 2020, to start to bring true equity to the cannabis industry.
“I know it seems like a really grand vision, but we always shoot for the stars because the cornerstone of MyGN’s ideals revolves around taking what’s always been considered inaccessible – and destroying common thought by making it accessible,” Shih concluded.
Minority-controlled businesses are invited to present their ideas for Green Quest 2020. You can get started here. The deadline for entry is August 25th.
If you are a cannabis business looking to partner with My Green Network, you can learn more here.
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