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LEAFLINK FLASH

Top takeaways from the cannabis industry's wholesale data engine

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May 2022

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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.

Highlights

National View: The wholesale cannabis industry, as measured by LeafLink’s GMV (Gross Merchandise Value), grew 4% in April 2022 year-over-year (YoY).* 

The fastest growing brands in each of our seven key states in April were:

  • 22 Red (AZ) 

  • Jeeter (CA)

  • Spherex (CO) 

  • STIIIZY (MI)

  • City Trees (NV)

  • Higher Cultures (OR)

  • Cultivate (MA)

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State View: Massachusetts grew the fastest at 80% compared with the same period a year ago. 

Categories: Flower saw the largest drop in platform market share (-0.76 percentage points) from March to April 2022.

Buyers and Sellers: During April 2022, average sales per seller fell 20% YoY and average spend per buyer fell 7% YoY. 

KEY STATE FOCUS

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CA

-17%

MA

80%

NV

11%

CO

-26%

OR

-17%

AZ

29%

MI

34%

Michigan and Mass. continue strong growth in May

For April 2022, wholesale cannabis sales measured by transactions on LeafLink’s marketplace (GMV) increased by 4% YoY. 

To help clients better understand state-level trends, we disclose market-specific information for seven key states each month. Arizona, Michigan, and Massachusetts saw positive year-over-year growth in April, with the latter seeing an 80% increase in GMV.

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CATEGORY ANALYSIS

Flower sales dip

Flower retained the number one spot this month with 31.9% of GMV, despite a 13% dip in sales and a 0.76 percentage point dip in market share, the latter being the largest drop in share since November 2021.

Conversely, Accessories saw the largest increase this month, gaining 28 percent market share month over month. The 1.8% overall market share is the second lowest market share, just above Topicals.
 

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RETAILER SEGMENTATION VIEW

Comparing buyer audiences in Massachusetts vs. Alaska

Comparing states by their average order value quintile provides a more holistic understanding of a brand’s wholesale purchasers.

When combined with Average Orders per Month, we obtain an even stronger view of competitive trends across states. 

For example, although MA retailers in the 4th quintile spend 23% more than those in the same quintile in AK, the difference in order frequency ends up making this group of retailers worth 31% more on a monthly basis in Alaska.

MARKET SATURATION

Opportunity-seeking producers should look at Flower in Missouri & Massachusetts

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

Pre-Rolls in Alaska were sold by 61% of brands but only accounted for 10% of sales, making this the most competitive category for the first time since February. In fact, every category in Alaska was competitive for the third month in a row.

While the least competitive category was Flower in Missouri (the 8th month in a row), the second least competitive was Flower in Massachusetts. Flower was sold by 23% of brands but accounted for 29% of sales. In the same state, Accessories were also not competitive, sold by 17% of categories and making up 22% of sales.
 

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BRAND PERFORMANCE

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Transaction volume is down by 19% YoY

In April, we saw a 33/67 split between brands seeing an increase/decrease in sales. Median brand growth was approximately 24% month-over-month (MoM), while those that declined saw a median reduction of 23%. Overall average transaction volume per brand decreased by 12% MoM and 19% compared to the same period last year.

The fastest growing brands in each core state were 22 Red (AZ), Jeeter (CA), Spherex (CO), STIIZY (MI), City Trees (NV), Higher Cultures (OR), and Cultivate (MA). 

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BUYER PERFORMANCE

Retailers spent 7% less in April 2022 vs. April 2021

Buyer spend had a similarly balanced ratio when looking at increase/decrease in spend, and 40% of buyers increased spend at this time. Buyers who reduced their spend decreased it by 25%. Average transaction volume per buyer decreased by 12% MoM and 7% compared to the same period last year.

PRICING ANALYSIS

Concentrate prices continue to rise

Average listed Flower prices***  remained steady during April, averaging a 0.8% decrease each week to end the month at $1,050, 3% below the end of March.  Massachusetts saw the largest increase during this period, ending the month 6% higher than March.

Average listed Concentrate prices** saw a significant increase in April, rising 4.5% each week. 
 

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*In each of 2020, and 2021, we lock the number of brands on January 1st of each year and measure GMV for these brands only.

***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.