WASHINGTON, Dec. 21, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — The National Cannabis Industry Association (“NCIA“), the largest and oldest national trade association advancing the interests of the legal cannabis industry, is pleased to reflect on the impact and experience of its successful 7th Annual Cannabis Business Summit & Expo. Taking place December 15 – 17, 2021, at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, California, #CannaBizSummit gathered together an exclusive lineup of more than 125 speakers, over 80 educational sessions, and hundreds of exhibitors for a national audience at the industry’s most influential event and B2B trade show.
“In a word: amazing. I am truly amazed at the show of support from cannabis leaders from across the country over the course of the last three days,” says Aaron Smith, Co-Founder and CEO of NCIA. “Attendance exceeded expectations, and never have we hosted such an esteemed group of speakers and exhibitors on the leading edge of this booming sector.”
Groundbreaking Speakers & Forward-Thinking Education
Highlighting a comprehensive educational agenda, #CannaBizSummit featured two high-profile keynotes focusing on the future of cannabis and essential issues.
- Leading a new generation of c-suite innovators, Chief Executive Officer Troy Datcher, together with Chief Visionary Officer Shawn “JAY-Z” Carter, helms a cannabis business for the post-prohibition era at The Parent Company. Combining best-in-class operations with leading voices in popular culture and social impact, The Parent Company focuses on building brands that will pave a new path forward for a legacy rooted in equity, access, and justice. In a candid conversation with MARY Magazine founder Adrian Farquharson, Troy Datcher shared his personal stories and enlightened attendees on his work to make an impact in cannabis.
- Professional athletes Calvin Johnson, Jr., Rachael Rapinoe, Anna Symonds and Marvin Washington presented the second keynote, with entrepreneur Jim McAlpine moderating. The panel, representing former players in the NFL, Women’s Premier League Rugby, NCAA, and European Professional Soccer, discussed the headline-making question, “What is the role of cannabis in professional sports?” Rapinoe shared how athlete-advocates can have an impact on a key issue in our nation today:
“High school athletes are 50 percent more likely to abuse and misuse opioids,” said Rachael Rapinoe, former professional soccer player and Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Mendi. “We need to discuss this massive issue and look to cannabis and hemp as alternatives. My hope [is to] spark those conversations across the industry and help these high school or collegiate athletes, who are just so susceptible to opioid abuse, to look to this space for solutions.”
Mayor London Breed Praises Progress
San Francisco was selected for this year’s #CannaBizSummit for its landmark significance in the industry as the epicenter of the reform movement. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the 1991 Proposition P ballot initiative that legalized medical cannabis in San Francisco, as well as the 25th Anniversary of California’s landmark Proposition 215 which extended medical legalization statewide. San Francisco Mayor London Breed delivered a welcome address on Thursday, December 16, highlighting the progress made in the city’s cannabis market and emphasizing her mission to facilitate industry growth and expand access to consumers.
“I’m thrilled to see the industry return to San Francisco, where the movement for medicinal cannabis use began. We will continue to implement policies that make this industry thrive, so people have access to the medicine they need,” says San Francisco Mayor, London Breed. “I’d like to thank NCIA for welcoming me to the stage and for hosting their annual Summit here in San Francisco. Their events help advance our industry in a myriad of ways across social equity, policy, and other important issues while helping connect industry leaders from across the globe.”
“It was an honor to host Mayor London Breed today at Cannabis Business Summit & Expo,” says Aaron Smith, Co-Founder and CEO of NCIA. “Her welcome address inspired this industry leader to redouble my efforts on behalf of businesses across the country in 2022.”
BLOOM Previews Best-Sellers, Brands-on-the-Rise
The event marked the debut of BLOOM: A Brands Experience, showcasing an exciting, visually stunning neighborhood in which attendees were able to see, touch and smell cannabis products for the very first time at #CannaBizSummit. BLOOM spotlighted a curated selection of brands specializing in flower, pre-roll, oil, edibles and more, presenting their premium products for visitors within an immersive sensory enclave on the expo floor. BLOOM created a key resource for retailers seeking the most exciting brands-on-the-rise and next year’s best-sellers.
“The debut of BLOOM: A Brands Experience was quite an experience, indeed! As I walked from one booth to another, I saw retailers, manufacturers, and distributors from across the country interacting with brands like never before, with the ability to see, touch, and smell real cannabis products for the first time at Cannabis Business Summit & Expo,” says Shawn Pierce, President, Events at NCIA event partner, MCI USA. “Through BLOOM, we’ve introduced yet another unique and exciting element to the industry’s most influential event.”
CannaVest West & International Cannabis Bar Association
The 3rd Annual CannaVest West Institutional Capital Forum, the only national trade association-sponsored investment forum connecting cannabis companies looking to access capital and accredited investors, offered hundreds of attendees intriguing and highly-educational sessions. Panel topics covered brand-building, finding “unicorns,” global investment opportunities, the future of cannabis and Wall Street, and more.
In addition, the International Cannabis Bar Association Program (INCBA) presented five hours of education, with five CLE credits available for attorneys across the two days. Education centered on the latest intelligence from the world of cannabis business attorneys and law.
Expo Hall Creates Cannabis Connections
An interactive #CannaBizSummit Expo Hall included exhibitors from the entire cannabis ecosystem. Hundreds of booths allowed attendees to explore the latest technology, products, and services from seed-to-sale, as well as education sessions at the Knowledge Bar and Elevation Lounge. This welcoming environment encouraged exploration while renewing in-person relationships and creating new connections to grow cannabis businesses across the country in the coming year.
Save The Date:
8th Annual Cannabis Business Summit & Expo
July 20-22, 2022 | Moscone Center| San Francisco
For more information about the 7th Annual Cannabis Business Summit & Expo, visit the website and join NCIA today.
For hi-res images, please visit this link. (All photos courtesy of Todd Rullman)
About The National Cannabis Industry Association
Founded in 2010, NCIA is the oldest, largest and most effective trade association representing legal cannabis businesses. We are committed to promoting the growth of a responsible, sustainable, and inclusive cannabis industry and work for a favorable social, economic, and regulatory environment for that industry throughout the United States.
Our membership comprises hundreds of forward-thinking businesses and tens-of-thousands of cannabis professionals from coast to coast. NCIA is leading the charge to protect the legal cannabis industry, defend our state laws and advance federal policy reforms. Successful businesses are joining NCIA every day to become stronger, smarter, and more prosperous by working together to defend and expand the responsible cannabis industry.