Six years ago, Canopy Growth Corporation was a chocolate factory in Smiths Falls in Ontario, Canada — now, it’s a multibillion-dollar company.
Bruce Linton was the name — the game-changer.
His understanding of hemp and cannabis as “an emerging opportunity for increasingly sophisticated global and national recreational and medical products,” the ex-CEO was able to brand Canopy Growth as a hub of progressive opportunity.
But his big-picture vision had him ousted by shareholders and the board of directors in July of 2019 when the company reported low earnings for the fourth quarter.
According to the Ottawa Business Journal, Linton found the shareholders were more concerned with immediate gain rather than long-term, with a tunnel vision rather than looking at the bigger picture.
“The whole idea of learning how to like corporate keywords like ‘fetch’ and ‘rollover’ – that stuff that you’re supposed to do as a really good CEO – I just didn’t understand it,” he said, openly. “July 2, I had a company which was worth around $20 billion and was about six years old, had about $5 billion in the bank and was trading at about 82% of the 52-week high, and I got fired.”
Moreover, the big picture holds structural pieces that the stock market doesn’t always show — trends that matter even when they don’t have a price tag.
“It’s easy for founders to get seduced by the get-rich-quick mentality that massive rounds of VC funding and billion-dollar IPOs often encourage,” Linton expressed to the journal. “Long-term success comes from giving employees a bigger stake in a company’s future through measures such as generous stock options — recent high-profile IPOs, such as Uber, were “flops” because they overinflated the companies’ value.”
Nonetheless, Linton took the road less traveled by and winded up running new companies that do support his vision and mission — to disrupt the cannabis market “well-beyond medical and recreational cannabis.”
Forbes covered his recent launch of Collective Growth, a special-purpose integration corporation meant to build America’s conversion chain.
“CBD is definitely a powerful cannabinoid,” he told reporters. “The therapeutic effect of high-dosage CBD in specific cases, like reducing spasticity in children affected by refractory epilepsy, has been clinically proven.”
His new blank-check company wants to put fire in the burner of the US hemp industry so it can reach its full potential and people can see beyond the stigma of hemp.
The company has raised $150 million so far, proving Linton’s once again successful charisma in turning a star into the sun.
“Hemp’s ability to be used as an industrial material in countless supply chains in a sustainable way makes it a valuable commodity in the post-COVID world,” Forbes suggested from their interview with Linton, underscoring his view that it’s time the world catches up with hemp’s versatility.
Indeed, Linton wants to tap into the untapped, undiscovered potential of hemp, and show communities how beneficial it can be to consider all sides of the plant.
He may have said goodbye to Canopy, but Collective Growth is set to fulfill the prophecy of its name: grow and grow and grow.
Gina Hong just graduated from Penn State University with a Public Relations degree and Sociology and French minors. She loves Barnes & Noble, art stores, and coffee shops — the best Pinterest pages have to offer. Laura has two dogs and a cat that she loves with all her heart and writing is something she cannot live without — especially when writing about important, relevant topics of today’s social climate.