Lift & Co 2019 Conference, Vancouver, BC
For another year, Vancouver hosted the annual Lift & Co. cannabis expo over the weekend, and we were there to cover it! The
beautiful snow peaked mountains and sundrenched shores provided the perfect backdrop for one of the year’s most anticipated events. From January 11 – 13, all eyes were on the first major cannabis conference post legalization.
The Lift expo kicked off with industry day. The industry-only event offered a full day of talks from a bevy of thought leaders and innovators. The day offered cannabis professionals invaluable opportunities to converse and deal with colleagues and fellow entrepreneurs. This exclusive
professional environment was a hotbed of networking and learning. As soon as you entered the convention centre, you could feel the energy of the hundreds of attendants.
As you walked onto the convention floor, you stepped into an ocean of exhibitors. From Licensed Producers to ancillary lighting and filtration systems, the full breadth of the industry was represented. There was a constant flow of attendees wanting to both explore the booths
and listen to the talks.
On Day 1, the standout talk was “The International Market”. The panel gave a great glimpse into how Canada has positioned itself to be the global cannabis leader. Additionally, we heard about up and coming markets including Africa, Columbia, and Southeast Asia. The main takeaway was the importance of education and the importance of international entities, like the UN and the World Health Organization, in establishing global regulations.
The day culminated in the Lift & Co. x Leaf Forward Pitch Competition. The five finalists included: Hybrid Pharm – Rahim Dhalla, Infer.Green – Varun Madhok, Greenline POS – Albert Kim, Blade Filters – Giancarlo Sessa, and Greenlight Analytical – James Wylde
Like Shark Tank, the finalists pitched to a panel of renowned judges for a chance to win the perfect start up prize that included:
● 5 hours of startup consulting from the Leaf Forward team
● $3,000 worth of advertising from Lift & Co. to promote their company
● 10 x 10 booth at the Toronto 2019 Lift & Co. Expo & 2-year membership to the Leaf Club
● Potential financial investment or advisory from the judges
While the pitches were all strong, there was much less drama than Shark Tank as the judges were supportive of each and every one of the contestants. Ultimately, the judges concluded that Blade Filters deserved to win.
Day 2 was just as festive as the convention floor opened to the public. The positivity was palpable as the room was abuzz with excited consumers. Some of the standout displays were from High Street, Futurola, Spinach Farms, and Ryot.
One of the more popular talks was “Cannabis Investing”. While the allure of the potential growth of the market remains attractive, the panel stressed its volatility. The main takeaway was for investors to do their due diligence and to keep in mind how a cannabis investment would fit into one’s overall portfolio.
Day 3 was a more subdued atmosphere. The crowd had thinned but the excitement remained. The final talks of the expo best summed up the the Lift experience. The “Cannabis and Entertainment” talk was a joyous affair in the sense that there was a surprise marriage proposal
on stage. This was indicative of the sense of community and happiness that permeated the weekend’s events. The last talk, “Expanding Consumer Product Selection”, showcased an all female panel that spoke to the the inclusivity and diversity of the cannabis industry.
All in all, the weekend was a great showcase for the cannabis industry and one couldn’t help but get inspired over what the future may hold.Bookmark Me