Cannabis Becomes Bright Spot In Pandemic World

It seems most businesses are reporting dismal outlooks during the pandemic. Event organizers, airlines, bars, restaurants, theatres – you name it everyone is suffering. Everyone except cannabis.

Business intelligence from Akerna (Nasdaq: KERN) said that cannabis sales are thriving during the COVID-19 pandemic. The company provided the following statistics:

The numbers March 11 – March 18:

  • Medical cannabis sales: Up 20.8%
  • Recreational cannabis sales: Up 11.6%
  • Flower sales: Up 22.6%
  • Vape sales: Up 9.7%
  • Edible sales: Up 12.4%

“Cannabis operators are running an essential business,” said Ostap Rapeyko, business intelligence analyst, Akerna. “On March 11, when major news of the potential impact of COVID-19 indicated changes in lifestyle, buying patterns were at normal rates. However, a week later, on March 18, sales increased by 19.2% overall.”

Columbia Care Sets Weekly Record

Columbia Care Inc. (OTCQX: CCHWF) reported preliminary revenue for the week ending March 14th, as well as preliminary year-to-date revenue for January 1 – March 14, 2020.

Preliminary Results (vs. same prior-year period)

  • Revenue for the week ended March 14, 2020 increased 156% to a weekly record $2.8 million
  • Year-to-date revenue through March 14, 2020 increased 131% to $23.6 million
  • Results include only a partial benefit of the Company’s six dispensaries opened during the first quarter of FY 2020

The results were repeated across the board with the following State Level Operational Highlights (week ended March 14, 2020):

  • MA: record weekly revenue
  • OH: record weekly revenue, including single day revenue record in Dayton
  • CA: record weekly revenue, including single day revenue record in De Soto
  • DE: record weekly revenue, including single day revenue records in Rehoboth and Wilmington
  • PA: single day revenue records in Allentown and Wilkes-Barre
  • IL: record weekly revenue, including single day revenue record in Chicago
  • FL: record weekly revenue
  • MD: record weekly revenue
  • PR: record weekly revenue

In a sign of support for the company, members of the Columbia Care management team and board of directors will be able to purchase shares in the open market, beginning March 19, 2020.

HardCar Keeps Delivering

Cannabis delivery and security business HARDCAR will continue to distribute cannabis while other distributors scramble with the shut down of California.  That’s because ‘Essential Services Sector’ companies may continue to operate while others MUST shut down. HARDCAR has been ESS certified for nearly 4 years. Emergency Services Sector companies may continue operations legally in the state of California when other companies must shut down operations.

“We saw this one 3  years ago when the first quakes were hitting in California so we made sure all vehicles were ready for events like this. We installed air purifiers as trials and had fantastic results. Then we added satellite phones and generators to some rigs so we are very prepared.” Todd Kleperis of HardCar.
Sal Moccia CEO of HardCar said, “Right now it’s not about profit – it’s about sustainability and moving through very treacherous roads. Who better than the US military veterans we have to make our way in a time of crisis. I’m proud of our team for never wavering and never faltering to make this industry secure.”

Debra Borchardt

Debra Borchardt is the Co-Founder, and Executive Editor of GMR. She has covered the cannabis industry for several years at Forbes, Seeking Alpha and TheStreet. Prior to becoming a financial journalist, Debra was a Vice President at Bear Stearns where she held a Series 7 and Registered Investment Advisor license. Debra has a Master's degree in Business Journalism from New York University.

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