According to recent analyses, the marijuana business is big and getting bigger fast. Various sources cite reports from Cowen, New Frontier Data, Arcview Market Research, and BDS Analytics that offer the some impressive numbers.
In North America in 2017, the value of the legal cannabis market has been estimated to be worth between roughly $8 and $10 billion. This represents a sharp increase over 2016, and 2018 is expected to be significantly higher than 2017. According to the New Frontier Data report, the legal cannabis market is expected to grow to almost $25 billion by 2025. The firm estimates a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 14.7 percent for recreational marijuana and an 11.8 percent CAGR for medical marijuana. According to Giadha Aguirre De Carcer, the firm’s CEO and founder, “a number of states” are “expected to advance cannabis legalization measures in the next twenty-four months,” allowing more Americans “to access legal cannabis” in the near future. Forbes estimates that Vermont, New Jersey, and Michigan may have some type of legalization in 2018 alone. (Oklahoma, Texas, and Virginia are contenders as well.) And on July 1, recreational marijuana sales will be legal in Canada.
Legalization around the globe
Marijuana legalization is also happening outside North America. Around the world, countries that have relaxed their marijuana laws—some to the point of complete legality—include the South American nations of Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Paraguay, and Uruguay; the European nations of the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Germany, Greece, Italy, Norway, Russia, and Switzerland; and Australia.
The bullish news does not stop there. According to Cowen, cannabis sales will amount to about $50 billion by 2026 and $75 billion by 2030. Cowen also holds that as marijuana use rises, binge drinking drops, meaning less money for some liquor producers (although beer may hold steady). The Motely Fool offers an investment overview that lists two possible bears: oversupply and Jeff Sessions.
The Arcview Group study, made in conjunction with BDS, is as bullish as the Cowen study, estimating legal cannabis sales of $24.5 billion by 2021. According to Arcview’s CEO, “Aside from cryptocurrency, there is simply no other industry changing as rapidly…as the cannabis sector.” Another highlight from the Arcview/BDS study: “Nevada retailers were allowed to open sales to all adults earlier than expected, and generated more than $27 million the first month of adult-use sales, according to the Nevada Department of Taxation.” Along with tens of thousands of jobs, the burgeoning marijuana industry is also already generating hundreds of millions in tax revenue. The report also claims that illicit marijuana markets are experiencing a downturn as legal markets open.
What do you think: Will the marijuana continue to grow rapidly? Will oversupply put small growers out of business? Leave a comment below.