I intended to move to California and start a dispensary for years, but the idea didn’t come to fruition until years after I finished college out east.
I had a close friend who was slowly turning into a venture capitalist and he had another friend who was a fantastic marijuana grower.
Three of us came together and started drafting ideas for a marijuana business. At the time, California only had access to medical marijuana. There were attempts to legalize cannabis for recreational use, but they failed to garner enough votes in the end. When California finally legalized marijuana for recreational use in 2016. By the end of the following year, the state had issued licenses to existing cannabis businesses to offer recreational sales in addition to medical ones. Since my friend’s family lives in Encino, we all made the executive decision to start a business closer to the San Fernando Valley instead of Los Angeles proper. Thousand Oaks had real estate that was affordable for our marijuana business. We decided to go seed to sale and opened a grow facility on the outskirts of town by Moorpark before starting our very first dispensary store in the Conejo Valley. Now we have three separate cannabis dispensaries in southern California and we’re considering heading north next. I can’t see myself leaving the Santa Monica mountains now that I get to see them out my kitchen window everyday when I’m cooking or drinking my morning coffee. It’s not the cheapest place to live, but it beats being in Laurel Canyon or West Hollywood with their exorbitant rent rates.