NEW YORK, May 15, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- With the recent boom in the cannabis industry, companies are actively seeking employees to fill various and numerous positions. As cannabis legalization continues to spread, more entrepreneurs are diving into the industry, causing a spur of job openings. And according to Glassdoor's database, there were 1,512 cannabis job openings in the U.S. in December 2018, a 76% increase from the same period a year prior. Moreover, 53% of the cannabis job openings are for professional and technical workers as service, retail and labor or more physical job openings made up a significantly smaller portion of the market. Nonetheless, positions such as Brand Ambassadors, Sales Associates, Store Managers, Wellness Coordinators, Delivery Drivers, and Lab Technicians were among the most demanded jobs. While there is also a demand for positions such as budtenders or retailers, many companies are looking for candidates with backgrounds in marketing, plant sciences, and accounting. For example, San Francisco and Los Angeles combined account for a quarter of the job openings in the U.S. And while cannabis is still considered federally illegal, the industry's salary is marginally more than the U.S. median salary. Cannabis-based workers, on average, are compensated roughly USD 58,511 per year, compared to the U.S. median salary of USD 52,863. Due to the diverse nature of the industry, pay can reach upwards of USD 215,384 for positions like medical and legal professionals. Overall, the increasing job market highlights the rapid growth that cannabis has witnessed within recent years. Furthermore, as the industry continues to expand, more positions are to be required in order to comply with state law and safety requirements. As a result, the growing job market adds credibility and legitimacy to the overall cannabis industry, further developing aiding in its development. According to data compiled by Verified Market Research, the global marijuana market was valued at USD 42.2 Billion in 2017 and is projected to reach USD 466.81 Billion by 2025. Additionally, the market is expected to accelerate at a CAGR of 35.3% from 2018 to 2025. Canopy Rivers Inc. (OTC: CNPOF) (TSX-V: RIV), Canopy Growth Corporation (NYSE: CGC) (TSX: WEED), Altria Group, Inc. (NYSE: MO), Pyxus International Inc. (NYSE: PYX), The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (NYSE: SMG)
Similarly, Canada witnessed a surge in job openings related to the cannabis industry following its legalization. Canada moved to legalize cannabis entirely in late 2018, allowing for both medical and recreational use. However, even prior to legalization, the job market was booming once Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced his plan to legalize cannabis. According to Statistics Canada, there were nearly 2,400 employed within the cannabis industry by the end of 2017. Indeed.ca reported that in July 2018, cannabis-related searches were four times more than the same period in 2017. The cannabis industry hiring spiked up in March of 2018 when the Senate provisionally accepted Bill C-45, which enacted the Cannabis Act in order to provide legal access to cannabis. Notably, Canopy Growth Corporation was responsible for a large influx of jobs within the market as the company created nearly 800 jobs in its headquarters city, Smith Falls, Ontario. The city only had a population of approximately 9,000 people as of 2016. "People see the end of cannabis prohibition and the industry that's going to emerge out of it as a green rush and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," said Alison McMahon, Founder and Chief Executive of Cannabis at Work. "It's a chance to be part of history."
Canopy Rivers Inc. (OTC: CNPOF) (TSX-V: RIV) is also listed on the TSX Venture Exchange under the ticker (TSX-V: RIV). Just earlier today, the company announced breaking cannabis news that, Canopy Rivers Inc. and BioLumic Ltd. announced, "a strategic investment from Canopy Rivers. BioLumic extended the Finistere Ventures-led Series A financing round to include Canopy Rivers' strategic investment of US$1.5 million, closing the oversubscribed round at US$6.7 million. The financing was comprised of a tier-one investor roster that also included Rabo Food & Agri Innovation Fund and Radicle Growth acceleration fund.
This marks Canopy Rivers' first investment in agri-technologies, specifically focused on the promising fields of plant physiology and UV photobiology. With extensive global trials in traditional and high-value produce crops already underway, BioLumic will use the added investment to grow its team to support the acceleration and expansion of its UV light treatment initiatives, including applications in the medical cannabis market.
'Canopy Rivers' mission is to build and support a thriving global cannabis economy, and we are dedicated to identifying and investing in strategic technology players throughout the legal cannabis value chain,' stated Mary Dimou, Director, Business Development, Canopy Rivers. 'Led by an exceptional management team, BioLumic's groundbreaking, proprietary UV technology has the potential to significantly improve cannabis growth, vigor and yield – promising an environmentally friendly, GM-free cannabis crop through the power of light.'
Already demonstrating game-changing results in produce-crop trials around the globe, BioLumic's UV light treatments deliver long-term crop benefits such as improved crop consistency, increased yield, drought tolerance, and disease and pest resistance. With the global legal cannabis market expected to top $146 billion by the end of 2025 and increasing legalization of cannabis usage and farming around the globe, BioLumic aims to help commercial producers cultivate stronger, healthier plants to meet the rising demand for cannabis and cannabis-derived products in the regulated medical cannabis market.
'Growers need more sustainable ways to meet global crop demands, and precision UV light treatments can safely activate important characteristics in seeds and seedlings that make them more productive as they mature,' said BioLumic CEO Warren Bebb. 'Canopy Rivers' extensive network in the cannabis industry and its ecosystem of companies will open a new, strategic market for BioLumic. Given our results with other flowering crops, the cannabis plant is a natural fit for our technology.'
Building out its data science and machine learning teams, BioLumic will use the funding to accelerate the research and commercialization of its UV light crop yield enhancement system – with a focus on developing cannabis-specific UV treatments to improve yield and increase the concentration of cannabinoids, such as cannabidiol (CBD). It will continue to focus on traditionally grown produce such as lettuce, broccoli, strawberries and tomatoes, and increase its focus on seed treatments for row crops. The company plans to explore indoor farming and protected-environment, high-value crops in the future.
Canopy Rivers is proud to collaborate with BioLumic and its leading agtech venture partners to extend BioLumic's commercial and propriety agri-technologies for potential application in the medical cannabis sector. Finistere Ventures, focused on agtech and supported by industry leaders like Bayer and Nutrien, works closely with its extensive network in the ag and food space to help commercialize innovations at a global scale. Rabo Food & Agri Innovation Fund was launched by Rabobank, a global leader in food and agriculture financing, and invests in high-potential, early-stage food and agriculture companies.
Dr. Adrian Percy, newly appointed CTO of Finistere Ventures and the former head of R&D for the Crop Science Division of Bayer, has joined the Board as Chairman, while Finistere's Arama Kukutai will stay on as a Board Observer. As part of the investment, Canopy Rivers' Mary Dimou will join the BioLumic Board as an Observer. Dean Tilyard, CEO of The Factory in Palmerston North, New Zealand, will also join the Board.
'It is exciting to consider the broad range of benefits that BioLumic technology can offer to both seed producers and growers across a range of crops – from improved yield and consistency to reduction, and potentially replacement, of certain chemical and biological inputs,' noted Percy.
About BioLumic: BioLumic harnesses the power of ultraviolet (UV) light to empower growers and seed producers around the globe. Clean, green and GM-free, BioLumic's pioneering technology activates natural mechanisms in seeds and seedlings that increase plant growth, vigor, and natural defense mechanisms — resulting in increased yields at harvest. Backed by top Ag investors, BioLumic is headquartered in New Zealand and is actively growing its presence in North America. To learn more, visit www.biolumic.com.
About Canopy Rivers: Canopy Rivers is a unique investment and operating platform structured to pursue investment opportunities in the emerging global cannabis sector. Canopy Rivers works collaboratively with Canopy Growth (TSX: WEED, NYSE: CGC) to identify strategic counterparties seeking financial and/or operating support. Canopy Rivers has developed an investment ecosystem of complementary cannabis operating companies that represent various segments of the value chain across the emerging cannabis sector. As the portfolio continues to develop, constituents will be provided with opportunities to work with Canopy Growth and collaborate among themselves, which Canopy Rivers believes will maximize value for its shareholders and foster an environment of innovation, synergy and value creation for the entire ecosystem. For more information, visit www.canopyrivers.com."
For our latest "Buzz on the Street" Show featuring Canopy Rivers Inc. recent corporate news, please head over to: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ioQbqzGwbxA
Canopy Growth Corporation (NYSE: CGC) (TSX: WEED) is a world-leading diversified cannabis and hemp company, offering distinct brands and curated cannabis varieties in dried, oil and Softgel capsule forms. Canopy Growth Corporation recently announced it had acquired AgriNextUSA, a hemp enterprise led by Chief Executive Officer Geoff Whaling, that has been at the forefront of hemp advocacy and building a vibrant hemp sector in the USA. The acquisition will accelerate Canopy Growth's entry into key American jurisdictions as regulations surrounding the full use of hemp as a crop begin to be implemented, thanks in part to the recently enacted 2018 US Farm Bill. The vision proposed by AgriNextUSA and supported by Canopy Growth would involve creating Hemp Industrial Parks such as the one previously announced in New York State, where this super crop could be fast-tracked through a production cycle that would result in commercial applications for all parts of the plant, from root to tip. American farmers will benefit from a model that provides a single, regional destination for their hemp crops and connects them with the researchers, entrepreneurs and innovators whose ideas will turn their crops into new products and industries. "The United States is the next stop on Canopy Growth's desired path to becoming a leading, revenue-generating company focused on all aspects of cannabinoids and their potential," said Bruce Linton, co-Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Canopy Growth. "Our significant investments, acquisitions and compilation of talented leaders such as Geoff will position us for swift expansion throughout the United States. By collaborating with a pioneer like Geoff, who has been involved with our team since our earliest days in 2013, we will aim to turn hemp supplied by American farmers into a wide range of products."
Altria Group, Inc. (NYSE: MO) wholly-owned subsidiaries include Philip Morris USA Inc. (PM USA), U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company LLC (USSTC), John Middleton Co. (Middleton), Sherman Group Holdings, LLC. Altria Group, Inc. recently announced that it had entered into an agreement to acquire newly issued shares in Cronos Group Inc. (NASDAQ: CRON), a leading global cannabinoid company, headquartered in Toronto, Canada. The transaction represents a 45% equity stake in Cronos Group, at a price of CAD 16.25 per share, for an aggregate investment by Altria of approximately USD 1.8 Billion. This investment positions Altria to participate in the emerging global cannabis sector, which it believes is poised for rapid growth over the next decade. It also creates a new growth opportunity in an adjacent category that is complementary to Altria's core tobacco businesses. Altria expects its investment to help Cronos Group accelerate its growth strategies and its R&D and intellectual property development. Additionally, Altria will provide expertise to help Cronos Group thrive in the growing global cannabis market. These services may include regulatory affairs, regulatory science, compliance, government affairs and brand management. "Investing in Cronos Group as our exclusive partner in the emerging global cannabis category represents an exciting new growth opportunity for Altria," said Howard Willard, Altria's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. "We believe that Cronos Group's excellent management team has built capabilities necessary to compete globally, and we look forward to helping Cronos Group realize its significant growth potential."
Pyxus International Inc. (NYSE: PYX) is a global agricultural company with 145 years' experience delivering value-added products and services to businesses and customers. Pyxus International, Inc. recently announced the opening of its affiliate, Criticality, LLC's, industrial hemp extraction and purification facility located in Wilson, North Carolina. The 55,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art facility was unveiled during a ribbon cutting ceremony and grand opening event on March 12. The facility is designed to follow good manufacturing practices and operate in compliance with dietary supplement standards. The hemp processed at the facility will be used to expertly craft and responsibly produce "Korent," Criticality's line of cannabidiol oil (CBD) products, as well as develop new products in its innovation pipeline. "Through our investment in Criticality—a North Carolina-based hemp processor—our goal is to become a leader in the production of CBD and related consumer products," said Pyxus President, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman Pieter Sikkel. "The opening of the facility is a critical step in achieving that goal and is a glimpse of what's to come in the future."
The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company (NYSE: SMG), with approximately USD 2.6 Billion in sales, is one of the world's largest marketers of branded consumer products for lawn and garden care. Hawthorne Canada Limited, a subsidiary of Hawthorne Gardening Company which provides an array of tools for a multitude of gardening needs and is a subsidiary of The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company, and The Flowr Corporation (TSXV: FLWR) recently celebrated the ground breaking for the construction of North America's first research and development facility dedicated to advancing cannabis cultivation techniques and systems. The 50,000 sq. ft. facility is located on the cultivation campus Flowr is constructing in Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada. The facility will include laboratories, indoor and greenhouse grow suites, training areas and genetics breeding areas in a single building. Flowr expects to develop and test Hawthorne cultivation systems such as lights and fertilization and irrigation systems in the facility. Flowr also intends to research genetics and cultivation data analytic systems in the facility. Hawthorne is funding the construction of the facility which is expected to be completed in the summer of 2019. The facility is the centerpiece of an exclusive strategic R&D alliance Flowr and Hawthorne created in March 2018. Hawthorne selected Flowr for this alliance based on the technical expertise of Flowr's design, build and cultivation team under the direction of Flowr Co-Founder Tom Flow. Flow is widely recognized for his cannabis thought leadership and expertise building and operating cannabis cultivation facilities. He also co-founded MedReleaf which recently was acquired by Aurora for CAD 3.2 Billion. "We chose work with Flowr due to their ability to grow quality, consistent plants," said Chris Hagedorn, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Hawthorne Gardening Company. "Dedicated to innovation, this first-of-its kind research facility will help to optimize our entire array of products, from lighting to nutrients and environmental controls, and put us in the unique position to help our customers, no matter their size and scale, get the result they seek with even more precision."
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