In 2013, Americans purchased $1.43 billion of legal marijuana. In 2014, that number will rise to $2.34 billion–an increase of a massive 64%. According to a report by The Huffington Post, that’s a far sharper increase in growth than the smartphone market which”recent figures show expanded by 46 percent from 2012 to 2013.”
While the numbers are estimates and come from interviews with “cannabis retailers, processors, dispensary owners and industry leaders,” there’s truth to them. And they might even be conservative, considering the tourism markets in Colorado and Washington should be gold mines and a windfall for industry mavens.
Additionally, when you consider the price of weed in both these soon-to-be-legal states will rapidly rise, that $2.34 number could push closer to $3 billion. Colorado alone will see an estimated increase of $359 million according to the report, and with ancillary markets set to explode all over the country, the United States is about to go full green:
“Cannabis is one of the fastest-growing industries,” said Steve Berg, a former managing director of Wells Fargo Bank and editor of the report, the second edition of the State of Legal Marijuana Markets. “Domestically, we weren’t able to find any market that is growing as quickly.”
While it’s important to note that smartphones surged in popularity long before medical marijuana became a viable industry, and global sales numbers for 2012-2013 don’t offer a direct comparison to 2013-2014 domestic estimates, Berg said his goal was to illustrate just how rapidly the cannabis market is expanding by offering familiar data points. The U.S. smartphone market, according to research group IDC, is growing at an annual rate of 7.3 percent.
“Entrepreneurs and private investors are flocking to cannabis markets,” Berg said. “Those who really understand market dynamics will reap large rewards.” [Huffington Post]
Money really does grow on trees. Just make sure you’re climbing the right ones (investments)–or you’re probably going to get burned.