To mark the recent legalization of recreational marijuana, we check in with some of the key players in the B.C. cannabis world. From pot growers to government officials to medical professionals, meet the people helping move the industry forward and keep British Columbians safe. Today’s subject is Dan Kriznic, founder, chairman and CEO of Invictus MD Strategies Corp.
In the words of its founder, Invictus MD Strategies is one of the leading licensed producers in Canada. And it’s hard to argue with Kriznic. His company has raised over $105 million, with the majority going toward building indoor facilities for production in Alberta, Hamilton and Kelowna.
Why and how did you get into the cannabis industry?
I started Invictus [in Vancouver] back in 2014 with a real passion on the medical side of things, and looking at where Health Canada was going from a regulatory standpoint. I watched that weed documentary with Dr. [Sanjay] Gupta—this young girl having epileptic seizures, and using CBD [cannabidiol] to mitigate the seizures was a real eye-opener for me. I’m a chartered accountant by trade, and I took a leap of faith from a very solid job to get into the space and go all in.
How is Invictus positioned?
We’ve obviously been working on the medical side of things, but now with the more recent regulation being positive, we’re moving forward with recreational brands. We’ve become one of the top licensed producers in Canada, but now we’re focused on launching our four recreational brands [Dukes, Sinister, Sterling & Hunt and Zooey].
How crowded is the marketplace?
There definitely isn’t any crowd on the product side of things. Every producer probably has the same comment, in that other producers are calling them, everybody’s looking for product. There’s been an influx of news out there, with various companies getting supply agreements and commitments across the country, and what we’re finding is a lot of them are scrambling to meet the commitment.
Are you finding it difficult to meet provincial requirements?
Alberta was the big one for us. It’s one of the most progressive of all provinces to be ready for [legalization], and we were able to get the house in order on time. So we made our first large shipment, the largest in our history, to Alberta, and we’re going to continue to supply them.
This interview has been edited for clarity and length
Check out the November issue of BCBusiness for more profiles of B.C.’s pot players