A convention that strives to show aspiring cannabusiness owners the ins and outs of the growing industry is coming to New Jersey.
Scheduled for Oct. 5 and 6 at the DoubleTree Hotel in Newark, the Real Cannabis Entrepreneur Conference aims to provide business owners, investors and opportunity seekers with information about breaking into the legalized cannabis industry.
Organized by husband-wife team Gary and Marie George, the event is touted as “practical how-to instruction delivered by cannabis professionals who’ve been there and done that.” Presentations and topics that will be covered span dispensary operations, cultivation, delivery, green zone real estate, how to raise capital, inventory/cash management, product line development, security & compliance, digital marketing and edibles & infusions.
This year’s event will also recognize numerous players in New Jersey’s cannabis industry, such as Edmund DeVeaux, former president of the New Jersey CannaBusiness Association; Jessica Gonzalez, an attorney helping to develop and launch New Jersey Business Action Center’s new cannabis workforce development program; Hugh Giordano, director of UFCW Local 360; and well-known cannabis advocates Stanley Okoro and Brendon Robinson, the founders of Mudd Brothers Cannabis Co. and Minority Cannabis Academy.
Among the special guests are New Jersey Cannabis Trade Association Executive Director Todd Johnson, former New York Giants football player Amani Toomer, and former New York Jets player and Athletes for Care Director Marvin Washington.
Additionally, the two-day event will feature a manufacturers row, giving cannabis product creators an opportunity to pair up with licensed canna manufacturers.
It will offer an array of interactive activities, like a VIP mixer on Thursday evening and an experiential after party the following night at an off-site speakeasy with infused cuisine, masseuse stations, flying aerial performers and caricature drawers.
Also on tap are contest giveaways, trivia events and prizes, including a $150 goody box filled with $150 worth of CBD products and cannabis swag for VIP and Platinum ticketholders.
The Real Cannabis Entrepreneur Conference has also partnered with crowdfunding platform Mainvest to back entrepreneurs who will compete in this year’s SparkTank business pitch contest, which is scheduled for Oct. 5.
In announcing the collaboration, the Georges noted that “most banks will not finance a cannabis-related business, given the high risk that it’s not federally legally,” which makes the tie-up with Mainvest especially noteworthy.
“Starting a business in the cannabis industry is extremely expensive and cost-prohibitive for the average person. With funding all but drying up this past year in the cannabis industry, most entrepreneurs don’t have the means to finance a business,” they said in a joint statement. “The SparkTank Competition will feature live crowdfunding through the Mainvest app, allowing the audience to invest on the spot during the entrepreneur’s pitch session.”
For more information about The Real Cannabis Entrepreneur Conference, including how to purchase tickets, click here.
Founded in 2018, the convention brought together nearly two dozen cannabis pioneers from around the world for its first event in 2019, attracting a sold-out crowd of 500 attendees and more than 28 sponsors. In 2021, the conference returned with a vengeance, hosting over 1,000 people, which prompted an upgrade to the largest ballroom in New Jersey for last year’s event.
The owners of a 21-year-old digital marketing agency, the Georges are self-described “serial entrepreneurs” who said their mission is to “help level the playing field and the empower the underserved by providing information and guidance needed to tap into one of the biggest and fasting growing industries on the planet.”