Growers interested in selling medical marijuana in Connecticut, Massachusetts, Nevada and Oregon may find that the cost of obtaining a business license in those communities is a lot higher than they expected. These states are ground zero for a veritable “green rush”, as new growers enter the fray in what is shaping up to be one of the most lucrative industries in the 21st century.
But startup growers with limited capital may balk at the licensing fees, as well as the costs of services offered by law firms and independent consultants, who charge thousands of dollars for assisting applicants with the licensing process. In Nevada, for example, applicants have to pay as much as $100,000 in order to get a medical marijuana business up and running. The paperwork alone can cost approximately $5,000, and the license itself can cost as much as $30,000. On top of that, aspiring dispensary owners will have to spend several thousands of dollars more to get the business off the ground.
With consultation fees ranging from $15,000 to $50,000, would-be dispensary owners will have to determine just how much assistance they need to start up a marijuana business, and how much these services are worth. This is especially important given the emergence of consultancies that have offered their services to inexperienced entrepreneurs who are interested in starting up medical marijuana dispensaries.
The head of one such consulting firm admits that there are certain organizations known to basically take advantage of upstart medical marijuana entrepreneurs. Kris Krane of 4Front Advisors based in Arizona says that some companies (he declined to name them) sell template manuals to their customers at $35,000 apiece. Krane said that these manuals were “useless” and “based on no operational knowledge”, but that they were designed to look professional and impressive enough to convince the inexperienced to buy them.
4Front Advisors, the company that Krane represents, also provides consulting services to those eager to enter the medical marijuana industry, but he is quick to make the distinction between 4Front and the sellers of these template manuals that basically try to sell as many copies as they can and disappear once the applications are due to be handed in. Krane said that many of his clients from the Massachusetts area were initially lured into these schemes, only to work with 4Front after realizing that the manuals that they had purchased were worthless.
But some of the companies that offer would-be marijuana entrepreneurs application assistance defend the high cost of their services. One such company is Denver Relief Consulting, which is co-owned by Kayvan Khalatbari. Claiming that his company is one of the very few that can provide such a comprehensive range of application assistance services from one convenient location, Khalatbari also justified the $100,000 that is typically charged for application assistance. According to Khalatbari, this amount isn’t unreasonable for a business that will eventually be earning $10 to $20 million in revenue every year.
If you would like to get more information about the medical marijuana industry and the cost of entry into the industry, call us today and we will be glad to help you out!