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LEAFLINK FLASH

Top takeaways from the wholesale cannabis industry’s data engine

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August 2021

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ABOUT THE FLASH

Each month, LeafLink will share data-driven insights into key topics like category sales, state by state performance, and pricing analysis. These takeaways, from our suite of real-time data and analytics tools, are meant to help you better understand where the industry is headed and capitalize on the most effective opportunities to accelerate your business growth.

For a deep dive into our customizable, single-source analytics products, please request a demo.

AUGUST 2021 FLASH

Highlights

National View: The wholesale cannabis industry, as measured by LeafLink’s GMV (Gross Merchandise Value), grew 43% in July 2021 year-over-year (YoY).* 

When analyzing brands on LeafLink starting prior to January 1, 2020, GMV fell 4% YoY in July 2021. The top-performing brands for each of our six key states in July were:

  • Item 9 Labs (AZ)

  • Jeeter (CA)

  • Spectra (CO)

  • Platinum Vape (MI)

  • CannaPunch (NV)

  • LTRMN (OR)

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State View: Nevada grew the fastest at 25% compared with the same period a year ago. 

Categories: Flower saw the largest drop in platform market share (-0.7 percentage points) from June 2021 to July 2021.

Buyers and Sellers: During July 2021, average sales per seller grew 1% YoY, and average spend per buyer grew 6% YoY. 

KEY STATE FOCUS

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CA

-26%

MI

-10%

NV

25%

CO

-14%

OR

-26%

AZ

2%

Nevada continues strong year-over-year growth

For July 2021, wholesale cannabis sales measured by transactions on LeafLink’s marketplace  (GMV) increased by 43% YoY. 

To help clients better understand state-level trends, we disclose market-specific information for six key states each month. Out of those disclosed this month, only Arizona and Nevada saw positive year-over-year growth, with the latter seeing 25% growth over these periods. Growth rates in this chart represent YoY growth of brands on the platform since January 2020.

CATEGORY ANALYSIS

Flower sales dip

Flower kept its number 1 spot this month with close to 36% of GMV during July 2021, despite a 6% dip in sales and a 0.74 percentage point dip in market share, the latter being the largest drop in share since the start of the year.

Conversely, Pre-Rolls saw the largest increase this month, gaining 0.84 percentage points month over month, the first time the category led in share growth since 2020. The 9.4% overall market share marks a 2 percentage point increase over the same period last year.

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RETAILER SEGMENTATION VIEW

Comparing Buyer Audiences in Nevada vs. Alaska

Using the same states highlighted in the competition section also gives us a good view into how a more holistic understanding of a brand’s retailers can impact their business. Looking at either metric individually would give you the sense that each state presents the greatest opportunity, but it’s only when viewing both that we get a better picture. For example, although NV retailers in the 2nd quintile spend 27% more than those in the same quintile in AK, the difference in order frequency ends up making this group of retailers worth 171% more on a monthly basis in Alaska.

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MARKET SATURATION

Opportunity-seeking producers should look at Edibles & Ingestibles in Nevada

Each month, we visualize the relative competitiveness (as measured by the distance from the trendline in the charts to the left) of 7 categories in key states to help clients best position themselves for the future and take advantage of opportunities to capture market share.

July 2021 marked the first time a single state had both the most competitive and least competitive categories, with Edibles & Ingestibles in Nevada making up 14% of sales while being sold by 54% of brands in the state. Within the same state, Flower makes up 36% of sales while only being sold by 26% of brands.
 

Looking outside of Nevada presented another first, with what would be the first non-negative over-indexing. Cartridges in Alaska made up 25.8% of sales while being sold by 26.1% of brands. In fact, all categories in Alaska were highly competitive over the month of July.
 

BRAND PERFORMANCE

Transaction volume is up by over 1% YoY

In July, we saw a 40/60 split between brands seeing an increase in sales. Median brand growth was approximately 18% month-over-month (MoM), while those that declined saw a median reduction of 21%. Overall average transaction volume per brand decreased by 4% MoM during this month and increased 1% compared to the same period last year.

The top brands in terms of same-store sales growth in each core state were Item 9 Labs (AZ), Jeeter (CA), Spectra (CO), Platinum Vape (MI), CannaPunch (NV), and LTRMN (OR). 

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BUYER PERFORMANCE

Retailers spent 6% more in July 2021 vs. July 2020

Buyer spend had a similarly balanced ratio when looking at increase/decrease in spend. 45% of buyers increased spend at this time, with a median drop of 4% in MoM spending. Those buyers who did reduce their spend decreased it by 24%. Average transaction volume per buyer decreased by 4% MoM and 6% compared to the same period last year.

PRICING ANALYSIS

Concentrate prices reach new high 

Average listed Flower prices***  remained steady during July, averaging a 0.2% increase each week to end the month at $1,193, 0.73% below where it ended in June.  Arizona saw the largest increase during this period, ending the monthly 5% higher than June.

Average listed Concentrates prices** saw a more pronounced increase this month, averaging a 6% increase each week. This growth erased dips seen in previous months, and with the average price ending 2% higher than the previous high.

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*In each of 2019 and 2020, we lock the number of brands on January 1st of each year and measure GMV for these brands only.

**Same store sales refers to the comparison of GMV for the same brands in the 2019 period to GMV for the same brands in the 2020 period.

***Flower pricing is in lbs and concentrates is in grams.

Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) is defined as unit price times quantity sold. This is a barometer for overall volume of activity on our marketplace.  

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About LeafLink

LeafLink is the unified B2B cannabis platform, connecting thousands of leading brands and retailers for streamlined cannabis commerce. Our suite of real-time data and analytics tools empower cannabis businesses to stay ahead of the competition and grow with speed. To learn how our customizable analytics products can help your business optimize sales performance, request a demo.