Colorado to Subsidize Up to $5000 in Business Services for Social Equity Cannabis Licensees

The Colorado governor’s office has announced the new Access to Experts pilot program — offered in collaboration with the Cannabis Business Office — to support the state’s social equity licensed cannabis operators.

Full story after the jump.

Colorado Governor Jared Polis (D), in collaboration with the Cannabis Business Office (CBO) within the Colorado Office of Economic Development & International Trade (OEDIT), has announced the launch of the Access to Experts pilot program, according to an official press release. This initiative is designed to support Colorado’s social equity licensed cannabis businesses, offering them access to subject matter experts in compliance, marketing, and financial consulting at minimal or no cost.

The program was announced at the Minority Cannabis Business Association (MCBA) Equity Workshop Tour, emphasizing the significance of diversity within Colorado’s cannabis industry. Later, the governor addressed the National Cannabis Industry Association (NCIA) Colorado Stakeholder Summit, which included discussions on policy updates and community stories.

Access to Experts allows participating businesses to engage with experts on projects like compliance audits, brand identity creation, or investor pitch decks. These experts are chosen based on their specialized knowledge and experience, offering businesses a wide range of choices.

“Creating a website or getting started on social media can make a big difference in a cannabis business’ ability to connect with customers, just as a compliance audit can bring peace of mind and improve operational excellence. This program removes the financial barriers to getting critical business guidance.” – Eve Lieberman, OEDIT Executive Director

Eligible businesses, specifically social equity licensees, must submit a project proposal to be considered. The process includes a complimentary 30-minute introductory meeting to outline the project scope. Depending on the project, the CBO may cover up to $5,000 in fees.

This initiative is part of a broader suite of CBO programs, including the Cannabis Business Grant, offering $20,000-$25,000 for early-stage startups and $50,000 Growth Grants for existing businesses. There’s also a Cannabis Business Loan Program for larger, more established companies. These programs underscore OEDIT’s commitment to fostering a conducive business climate in Colorado, supporting diverse economic development and job growth across the state.

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