Lift & Co. Layoffs and a Turbulent Year for Cannabis

The cannabis sector continues to report losses and layoffs as 2019 draws to a close. Canadian technology, media and data analytics company, Lift & Co. is the latest to succumb to these unfortunate circumstances. The Toronto-based company cut 13 jobs from various departments. The Lift & Co. layoffs come just over one month after the company hosted the 2019 Canadian Cannabis Awards in Toronto.

Lift & Co. Chief Revenue Officer, Jon Kamin offered a statement in an e-mail to Puff Puff Post.

“Over the first year of legalization, Lift & Co. invested heavily in new tools that enable the cannabis industry to operate, and laid tracks for our own future success—notably the launch of our data insights platform Cohesion and partnership with Nielsen, and our national retail training program CannSell that includes multi-year exclusive approval for Ontario through the AGCO. Those, and our existing lines of business, including events and the platform remain our focus in 2020. Lift & Co. undertook an important review of our strategic priorities going into the second year of legalization, while keeping a close eye on the overall trajectory of the industry. We made the difficult decision to eliminate 13 roles across the organization to focus on those priorities and move forward efficiently.”

Puff Digital Editor-in-Chief Connor Lovat-Fraser with Lift & Co. CEO Matei Olaru at the Canadian Cannabis Awards in November
Puff Digital Editor-in-Chief Connor Lovat-Fraser with Lift & Co. CEO Matei Olaru at the Canadian Cannabis Awards in November. Photo by Carter Vahrmeyer

Lift & Co. Layoffs Reflect an Unfortunate Trend

Many companies across the cannabis marketplace are being forced to pivot or change course to maintain operations. Some, including cannabis publication, Civilized, have even gone so far as to axe their entire workforce.

Staff cuts have been occurring across all corners of the cannabis sector in 2019. Earlier this year, licensed producer Hexo Corp. laid off 200 employees and shut down facilities. California tech  company, Weedmaps, and Canadian LP CannTrust, also reported mass layoffs. Wayland Group (Maricann Cannabis) filed for bankruptcy just over one week ago.

The Lift & Co. layoffs come at the end of a rocky year for legal cannabis. With the holiday season in full swing and 2020 just around the bend, all eyes are focused on the future.