At the Green Market Report New York Cannabis Business Summit in New York City on Sept. 13, we recognized some of the stellar industry players with the GMR New York Cannabis Awards.
The winner of Best Dispensary was Housing Works Cannabis Co., which made history last December as the first legal recreational marijuana store to open in the Empire State.
Dispensary Manager Sasha Nutgent accepted the award on behalf of the nonprofit, which has a lengthy history of helping the underprivileged in New York. Nutgent manages a staff of more than 50 and oversees all retail operations for Housing Works, including its delivery services.
Nutgent previously sat down with Green Market Report to discuss how the Manhattan shop reached $12 million in sales within its first six months of operations, which she said exceeded internal business expectations. By July, the shop was carrying more than 500 cannabis products from more than 30 brands, Nutgent said, and the dispensary is solidly in the black.
“We’ve been profitable since Day One, because we … took the risk of not having some grandiose buildout. And that risk was beneficial to us,” Nutgent told Green Market Report in July.
Nutgent said at the time that she’s heard of other new conditional adult use retail dispensaries that have opened have had a rougher time, but she chalked that up to Housing Works’ lengthy expertise in retail, which Nutgent said probably gave the nonprofit a bit of an edge.
The nonprofit also has a vocational training program in the works, set to launch this fall, to help ex-convicts successfully rejoin society through paid internships and retail experience.
Nutgent, a Black woman, “represents not just cannabis retail, but also people of color carving out their place in legal cannabis,” according to the award nomination for Housing Works.