Photo report: Cannabis Business Europe 2023

Now that we've all had some time to rest over the weekend, it's time to take a look back at the two days of Cannabis Business Europe. What was discussed on Friday, the second day of the event? Overall, what is the status of the European cannabis market? Also, we have some photos ready for a visual impression of the event.

Click here for our photo report of the event

Jaime Ahumada Espinoza of Delphy  

How to succeed 
Alessandro Radici, CEO of Key Leaves, a medical cannabis cultivator in Portugal, discussed the key success factors for a cannabis company. First of all, it's important to define your customer. When entering the cannabis industry, Alessandro was surprised to see that many business fundamentals were not there. You need to know where you are going to sell your product. "That is why we decided to grow fully indoors. We wanted a standardized, top-quality production for the pharmaceutical market." 

After also defining your products (what are the compounds, what genetics will you be using, and are they exclusive?), you need to create your core team. When it comes to cannabis, you have to match opposites, Alessandro says. You need to match people with cultivation skills with pharmaceutical quality. Next up, location. This is an important step as you need to consider the costs of different locations, as well as the regulatory framework.

Alessandro Radici of Key Leaves and Carlos Alberto Martinez Delgado of Natuera  

Alessandro sees a trend of trying to do everything in cannabis: companies that are vertically integrated. Yet he advises to choose a focus and define your position in the value chain. "You cannot be specialized in everything. It can be valuable to choose a focus, make that your specialty, and make that how you stand out from your competitors."

Yet after all that planning is done, it is still the cannabis market we're talking about. Things continue to change in such a nascent market. So, Alessandro advises to be like a chameleon. Keep your eyes open and be ready to adapt.

Amir Abbas Khan of J. Huete  

Investing in Europe? 
Overall, many speakers at the event seem to have a similar thought about the European cannabis industry: there is lots of potential, but there are still many challenges in the way and it is all going to take time. Yet Steve Malloy, CEO of PharmaRolly (a grower in North Macedonia), shared that now is the time to get into the market.

He shared the well-known challenges in the North American cannabis market and that he does not expect these to change any time soon. While things might develop slowly in Europe, big moves are being made here, such as Germany's legalization plan. The fact that cannabis is federally legal in some European countries gives this market a great advantage over the North American market, Steve says, as investors don't want to take risks. Even if things take time, conversations are occurring with European regulators and companies. Also, there are testing regulations in place in Europe that can't be circumvented. This provides clean and safe products, which is a big difference from what is happening in other markets. 

Jorg Meyer-Brenken of Fluence, Maria Francesca Giuliana of Hapa Pharm, and Adrian Pohl of Quality Services International  

Overall, Steve says that the European market provides benefits to investors looking for more straightforward, less risky opportunities to invest in cannabis.

Click here for our photo report of the event

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