In my April 2022 column, I presented a chart of leading cannabis IT service providers.
This month, I’m going to focus on one of the companies featured on that chart: Alvarez Technology Group is a Salinas, California-based managed services provider that has been in business for more than 20 years and serves more than 200 small and medium businesses.
Directed by Luis Alvarez, its early successes include serving the agricultural sector including wineries. That is important to note as there are parallels between the wine industry and cannabis that allowed Alvarez to positively leverage up.
In speaking with Alvarez, I discovered one of his assets is significant knowledge in the compliance area. For example, Alvarez has invested in a range for video technology solutions for its clients, including Deep Sentinel, an AI-based video solution used for security and compliance from seed to sale.
Another area of Alvarez’s expertise is the Internet of Things, drawing from his agricultural background, where IoT solutions help with monitoring crops. For example, IoT sensors can be placed in the fields to monitor soil moisture and increase grow yields. Overall, Alvarez Technology Group has added more than $1 million in top-line revenue with its IoT practice (both cannabis and non-cannabis clients).
Alvarez Technology Group also brings longevity to its clients. Not only is the firm approaching 22 years in business, it was there on day one in late 2016 when California’s adult-use market opened.
When looking for the right services provider in the young and fast-growing cannabis industry, longevity is everything.
Today, cannabis businesses operate very much like any other small or medium business, with a few exceptions like security (physical and cyber), compliance and seed-to-sale tracking. That means a competent MSP will slot right in to a cannabis business with relative ease.
Alvarez Technology Group provides a full menu of services including business continuity, unified communications, cybersecurity, cloud services, etc.
“I believe our success in cannabusiness is due to the same primary factor as the other industries we serve,” Alvarez says. “You need to understand your client’s needs and how best to satisfy them, which means you need to have a deep understanding of the challenges they face. If you can figure out what keeps them up at night and then help them overcome that, you are going to be successful.”
Alvarez is also a speaker and panelist at the upcoming CannaTech Expo (www.cannatechexpo.com) in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on June 22-24, 2022.