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This article was published 21/4/2019 (407 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Delta 9 CEO John Arbuthnot said the company has been "encouraged" by the first few weeks of sales at the new cannabis superstore at Shoppers Mall, after announcing the company saw massive growth in the period after legalization last October.
"I think it takes a few months to actually generate the proper following for a store, but we’re very encouraged by the early numbers we’re seeing out of that Brandon location."
In a press release, the company announced its net operating revenue grew more than seven times on the back of recreational sales. The company previously brought in $944,114 from medical cannabis sales in 2017, but after legalization in late 2018 that figure rose to $7.57 million.
Despite the huge growth, Delta 9 still saw a net loss of around $8.5 million.
Arbuthnot said the year was in line with expectations and gives a snapshot of what the company can expect during a full year of legal sales.
"We’re very encouraged by the overall results, and I think it’s again a good picture for investors to take looking forward at what the growth pattern can be for this company over the next few years."
The company, based in Winnipeg, currently operates three stores in Manitoba: two in Winnipeg and one in Brandon.
"I think we’ve seen a great reception from that Brandon store, what we tend to be seeing from our openings post-legalization is we generate a good amount of notoriety around the opening and then from there we really start to build awareness with the consumer."
While the Delta 9 store that opened at the beginning of April was the city’s fourth cannabis store, Arbuthnot said the demand is still there to justify its status as the largest in the province.
"We have a lot more that we can do in terms of our product offering in the Brandon area. That includes making full use of that education centre, whether it be Cannabis 101, or vaping, or edibles, and really drawing people out to the store, getting them that full education piece as well."
Given that the store came into the Westman market later than other brands, it will take a few weeks to let people know exactly what to expect, but he said Delta 9 will come to stand apart from other cannabis brands based on pricing.
"I think Manitobans, in general, are very cost-conscious, they want to see value and we know that as a Manitoba company, so we’re looking to deliver that."
The federal government is currently planning to legalize edible forms of cannabis by Oct. 17, 2019, and this will also drive sales, but not as quickly as when recreational cannabis first became available.
"This really takes the experience we can provide to consumers in terms of the breadth of product selection and really blows it wide open. Now we’re not just offering people smokable options — there’s edible, there’s drinkables and there’s vaporizable platforms."
Arbuthnot said he believes the market will very soon be at a place where it can support more store openings. Delta 9 is also planning on opening a store in Thompson in June.
"I’m excited at the prospect of seeing the market open up in Manitoba even further. Obviously we’ve made our ambitions clear that we would love to have a large chain of a few dozen stores operating across the province over the coming years."
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