On the 26th of September, the first Cannabis Capital Convention will take place in Amsterdam. The first of its kind in the original ‘cannabis capital of the world’, even though there have been events in neighboring countries (ICBC in Berlin, Cannabis Europa in London).
According to the Cannabis Capital Convention website:
‘The goal of the Cannabis Capital Convention is to inform about the investment opportunities in the cannabis industry. Speakers range from product specialists and companies to analysts from leading investment banks in cannabis. The day is filled with instructive speeches aspired to give you insights into these investment opportunities and to network with cannabis investors and influencers during lunch and drinks.’
DB: Can you explain what Prohibition Partners does, when the company
started and what your role is in the company?
Stephen Murphy: Prohibition Partners is an intelligence and insights company that delivers bespoke consultancy to investors, entrepreneurs and regulators on the European and international cannabis industry.
My role as co-founder and Managing Director is to support our mission of moving the industry forward by providing the best source of information for the industry through The European Cannabis Report ™ and working with partners to help identify and execute on opportunities.
DB: Would you say the Cannabis Capital Convention is the first conference of its kind in the Netherlands?
Stephen Murphy: There have been a growing number of conferences in Europe over the past number of years including Cannabis Europa that took place this year in May in London, but this is the first event that I’ve seen that looks to bring the professional and financial industries in Europe to Amsterdam to highlight the size of the opportunity at one of Europe’s cannabis epicenters.
DB: What speaker(s) do you look forward to the most?
Stephen Murphy: There is an excellent and diverse programme of speakers form the different parts of the industry but I always enjoy listening to Tjalling Erkelens of Bedrocan who has grown a Dutch company into a global leader in the cannabis industry and has a very strong vision for the future of the company and the industry in general.
DB: If you would make a top 3 of European countries most likely to legalize cannabis in the near future, the front runners so to speak, what would it look like?
Europe will be a medical market first and it important to separate out the debate for each as they both have different but equally valid objectives
Stephen Murphy: From your question, it feels like you are talking about recreational use or adult use. Europe will be a medical market first and it important to separate out the debate for each as they both have different but equally valid objectives.
The countries in Europe that will look to legalise in the short term are those that are naturally tolerant to cannabis, have a high domestic prevalence and have some history in recreational cannabis reform.
To be put on a spot I would say Netherlands, Spain, and Portugal.
DB: Some people compare the rapid growth of the legal cannabis industry to the internet bubble; do you agree? Why (not)?
Stephen Murphy: This is often a shared perception based on the similar rate of growth shares between the two, but the fact that the number of applications for cannabis is growing every day the bubble is looking unlikely. With less than 2% of the plant truly know, the versatility of the plant allows for continuous exploration. The growth rate will of course ultimately slow down, but the demand will prevent a bubble from occurring.
The growth rate will of course ultimately slow down, but the demand will prevent a bubble from occurring
DB: It seems likely that a part of the attendants of the Convention will want to visit a coffeeshop in Amsterdam. Which one(s) would you recommend to them?
Stephen Murphy: Amsterdam is a fantastic city with great variety for every type of visitor. It is a very tricky question as I personally like to walk from shop to shop and experience a few of them.
But in particular, I really like Tweede Kamer and Boerejongens for their contrasting styles.
DB: What’s your single best advice/tip for people who want to work or invest in the legal cannabis industry?
Stephen Murphy: Investing in cannabis can be a little complicated with so many options and scarcity of information. I would recommend speaking to a cannabis industry expert or group who can help provide some education and insights on what the opportunities look like and how best to proceed with confidence.
Tickets are still available for the Cannabis Capital Convention for 439 euros a piece.