Why does it take so long to get things done in this California green rush? It’s a phenomenon that deserves some attention – an inherent oxymoron of intense urgency coupled with a gauntlet of delays that looks a lot like rush hour traffic in Los Angeles on a Friday afternoon.

Getting deals done in any business can be challenging, after all, we are dealing with the human condition in any deal. But getting deals done in Cannabis is a whole new level of Dante’s Hell, and despite the mad frenzy and hurry of all stakeholders to get it closed, the phenomenon of ‘Divine Cannabis Time’ just seems to have other plans.

So, what is this ‘Divine Cannabis Time’ concept? It is that things take way longer than they should for no justifiable reason other than a myriad of circumstances, unexpected obstacles and other random factors that all seem to occur well, pretty much all the time. So be patient, be persistent, but understand that the green rush is anything but fast.

Top Reasons Why things take so long in the regulated cannabis market

  1. The regulated marketplace in CA is new. The regulations are new. Everyone is figuring it out as they go. The State, cities, insurers, operators, lawyers, consultants and CPA’s…all of them (and don’t let anyone tell you they have everything all figured out. If they do, see #2. And run.
  2. The BS Factor– unraveling the mountain of stink before you can get at the facts and the real data. People who BS cause delays and kill deals.
  3. Unprepared Sellers. While pitch sheets and spread sheets look good, real documentation that

supports the story (or numbers) is rare. Sellers are often prepping their financials while in the midst of an M&A. Almost assuredly, we then have a #2 issue.

  1. Navigating prior work arounds without creating a fatal event. Think about a bad electrical job that needs to be unwound and redone without turning off the breaker. Not knowing what you have is dangerous and takes time to unravel. Often #2 is present at the heart of the mess.
  2. Where there is smoke there is fire and there is a lot of smoke. Chasing smoke takes time. Many deals burn up in the end. If you smell something, it’s probably #2.
  3. Whack-a-Moll. An unchartered and newly created territory means unexpected molls are popping up along your route to closure. Molls are obstacles that cause delay and if not dealt with they will kill a deal. Cannabis Moles – All the time, everywhere.
  4. Festivals and Cannabis Events. People like to party and enjoy the culture. Whatever it is, sometimes it will just have to wait. Problem is, there are a lot of cannabis events.
  5. The undocumented entrepreneur understanding how to operate in the regulated environment. Big lift. Takes time.
  6. Caution and Nervousness. Everyone knows if something goes wrong, it could mean a federal case. Skittish participants (like landlords) take time to make comfortable.
  7. Cuz everyone is smoking the indica yo! (‘Indica’ for in the couch) Not really, a lot of Sativa gets smoked too.