The National RAD (Retail and Dispensary) Expo addresses the needs of cannabis retailers across the nation on Jan. 17-18 at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon.
The event will be free to all qualified retail store owners, investors, prospective licensees and employees. It will be hosted by Marijuana Venture.
For the past few years, the cannabis industry has experienced a glut of conferences, conventions and summits that generally appeal to the same audience of growers and investors, while ignoring the retail sector of businesses.
Not only is The RAD Expo (www.theradexpo.com) geared toward a specific sector of the market, but it brings elements outside the cannabis industry into the fold, such as traditional retail design and fixtures. Marijuana Venture publisher Greg James says he wants to introduce the industry to a new crop of professionals who specialize in retail, as well as longstanding industry icons like Futurola, a gold sponsor of the event.
With California expecting 6,000 retail applications in its first year and likely surpassing 10,000 in the near future, the retail sector of marijuana is poised for explosive growth, Marijuana Venture publisher Greg James says.
“Nobody is focusing on cannabis retail, because it’s relatively new,” James says. “Most retail buyers don’t even attend the major industry trade shows because the exhibitors are mostly lighting, nutrient and extraction manufacturers.”
The focus on retail isn’t the only thing making RAD different from other industry events; the expo is also free to attend for retail store buyers, managers, employees, owners and investors.
“We were tired traveling across the country several times a year just to see the same companies and products at each event,” James says. “And what’s worse is that most trade shows are charging qualified buyers a lot of money to get in the door. This is unheard of a non-cannabis shows like CES and E3.”
In addition to cannabis-specific producers, processors and ancillary products, The RAD Expo also features vendors from fields such as interior design, store lighting, national food vendors, flooring, fixtures, branding and retail supply. The expo will provide a farmer’s market where state-licensed growers looking for homes on new shelves can meet and show their product to qualified retail buyers.