Opening a cannabis dispensary is a rewarding and potentially very lucrative path to take, but there are many things to consider in terms of financing. You may have the rental fees for your space covered, but have you considered just how much inventory you'll need to stand up to demand? Your business will also need fixtures like cases, shelving, tables, and so on— and these things aren't cheap.
Working capital is not something many people consider as much as they should when opening a business, but cannabusiness has its own set of unique needs. Let's look at whether or not you're prepared with enough capital, and how best to secure more if necessary.
There's more to a dispensary than just having a well-stocked supply room and a storefront. Everything from the layout of the retail space to the storage of your product may require some additional attention and cost you may not have taken into account previously.
You will need exceptionally good quality displays that are well-lit. This is because you need your cameras to be able to see everything that's going on in great detail, but also because your displays need to be highly secure.
From HD cameras to the literal presence of security staff, creating a safe and a highly secure backroom for the product is vital for your dispensary's protection. You should expect to spend thousands of dollars equipping and maintaining your security safeguards.
While it's true that your product practically sells itself, nothing actually sells itself. You will need a digital presence at minimum to ensure people are aware of your services. In addition to marketing, you'll also need proper signage and possibly secure parking in your area. Be sure to check your local ordinances to see if there's anything extra you need for storefront parking.
You might start by offering flour and some edibles, but eventually you're going to want to expand your selection, and probably more quickly than you imagine. Having a great variety as well as quality products that appeal to a broad customer base will require a lot of cannabis working capital.
When you get your initial business loans, it's important that you really work out what it's going to cost you beyond your storefront and basic inventory. Go into your loan meeting with a very clear path forward, showing exact models of fixtures, predicted income and necessary inventory, and so on. The more prepared you are, the more confident the investor will be in giving your business additional capital. Some other considerations are:
Longer credit history and a score of 700+ is a great way to instill confidence in your lender. If they feel you're less of a risk, they're going to be more inclined to give you more working capital. Conversely, if you don't have good credit (or much at all), you can get a co-signer who does and this will be roughly the same benefit to your business.
If you have a plan for where and how you want to do your business and with what supplies, the lender will be far more open to listening to your requests for a larger credit line. Almost as important, however, are comparables—sure, you want that storefront on 15th street, but if there's one on 12th with less initial cost and the same potential, why not consider that? Showing you've done your homework is crucial in gaining the trust of your lender.
Securing cannabis working capital loans is thankfully not as difficult as it once was. Still, you are requesting a loan for a business and you still need to be as prepared and clear as any other business. Go into your lending meeting by confidently laying out a well-researched plan and show that you've considered all the angles. If you've done your homework, you can find yourself the owner of a brand new cannabis dispensary.
Posted by Canna Business TeamFacebook
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