Women in the marijuana industry are making great impacts and changes. But most importantly, they’re lifting each other with full support. These women are making the real dream happen and changing the market every day. Let’s see how things roll with these wonderful ladies!
“It’s no secret that cannabis is a male-dominated industry,” says Erin Gore, founder of Garden Society. Therefore, women supporting women is becoming a great pillar for many female business owners in this industry. “We have to ensure that women are at the table at every level of the ecosystem. And we know the more women succeed, the more women give back to their communities. It’s a no-brainer.”
- Gore said. Back in 2010, not only Gore found the potential of the marijuana industry, but also realized the struggle of women like her in their life. She understood that the potential to connect through cannabis went beyond her circle, and could go straight to a community. “There were fifty women in my house, and they were all there because they were inspired by cannabis. Two weeks later I quit my job and started Garden Society.”.
Gore describes Garden Society’s consumer base as “cannaconfident”. But what excites us is the fact that the company offers educational events called Garden Parties for the canna-curious. They give the public great chances to learn about the plant and explore the benefits of many different marijuana products.
When the pandemic hit, Gore’s and Garden Society encountered difficulty in fundraising. Until then she can witness the full scope of the challenges female entrepreneurs face in the financial sector.
Though Garden Society was able to overcome such obstacles, Gore knew other women-led brands weren’t so lucky. In order to work in a more equitable business, she felt that putting herself to work is necessary. And that’s when all the changes happen! Gore then began to connect with other female-based businesses in the cannabis industry.
Although they are technically competitors in the market, they just don’t look at it that way. As long as each of their businesses grows, they’ll always give back to the community. Gore’s group has done a lot of things to support each other, from sharing fundraising decks, hosting accountability groups. Pitch session practice, investors socializing meetings, or helping other female start-ups figure out their journey, all those activities are meant to lift each other. In other words, they’re supporting new business owners, and even themself checking all the critical parts to own marijuana business.
In Wendy Berger’s opinion, “Women don’t have access to the same networks of capital–we’re just not where the conversations are happening. Only 2% of venture capital dollars go to women.”In the meantime, Berger is on the board of directors at cannabis giant Green Thumb Industries and is an enthusiastic participant in the peer mentoring group.
Like Gore, Berger is dedicated to connecting female cannabis entrepreneurs to the capital they need for their businesses to take off. And this whole journey started with herself. “I created an entity called Women Backing Women, and I make all my investments through that entity,” she says. “I’m now spending 50% of my time helping women cannabis businesses advance, focusing particularly on women of color.” Berger got her start in the marijuana industry when these products helped her with a debilitating vestibular disorder. Only by then, she sees that the power of female networking is way beyond better investment opportunities.
Women like Gore and Berger show that networks are built on mutual understanding, support and admiration. In order to help the industry, and other women to grow, they’ve put aside the competition, and focus on lifting each other altogether. “These women are unbelievable,” says Berger. We’re craving to see even greater performance of female-owned businesses in the industry, as well as sending our help.