Podcast Episode: Suits and Boots: PharmaCann Execs Get Dirty to Learn How to Grow

Brett Novey was recruited in 2016 by two pals from his accounting days to join them at a small startup called PharmaCann, which had just won medical marijuana business licenses in Illinois and New York.

The company was comprised of accountants, financial specialists and lawyers who were trying to learn to grow cannabis at scale.

“There was a big learning curve,” recalled Novey, who did everything from development and sales to cultivation and manufacturing before becoming CEO in 2019.

Today, PharmaCann has more than 50 stores and 10 cultivation and processing facilities in eight states, mainly in the Midwest and Northeast.

In this episode, listen to the tactics Novey and his team used to create a canna-empire, including:

  • Focusing on limited license states with big populations.
  • Participating in day-to-day operations to learn about the plant and building and running cannabis facilities.
  • Finding the right acquisition to take your company to the next level.
  • Building trust with patients and regulators.
  • Understanding how to reduce production costs.
  • Communicating with employees
Who is Brett Novey?

Brett Novey is the CEO of Illinois-based PharmaCann, a multistate operator present in eight states, primarily in the Midwest and Northeast. In early 2016, Novey started with PharmaCann  wearing two hats – chief financial officer and chief operating office – before becoming CEO in 2019. Novey joined PharmaCann from KCG Holdings (a New York Stock Exchange-listed corporation), where, as global head of financial planning and analysis, he was responsible for capital management, forecasting and budgeting, among other things. Before that, he worked in the restructuring practices of accounting firms KPMG and Arthur Andersen.

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