HuffPo: Marijuana Market Poised To Grow Faster Than Smartphones

The Huffington Post reports that the legal cannabis market is expected to grow 64%, to $2.34 billion in 2014. From the article:

By comparison, recent figures show the smartphone market expanded by 46 percent from 2012 to 2013.

“Cannabis is one of the fastest-growing industries,” said Steve Berg, a former managing director of Wells Fargo Bank and editor of the report, the second edition of the State of Legal Marijuana Markets. “Domestically, we weren’t able to find any market that is growing as quickly.”

While it’s important to note that smartphones surged in popularity long before medical marijuana became a viable industry, and global sales numbers for 2012-2013 don’t offer a direct comparison to 2013-2014 domestic estimates, Berg said his goal was to illustrate just how rapidly the cannabis market is expanding by offering familiar data points. The U.S. smartphone market, according to research group IDC, is growing at an annual rate of 7.3 percent.

The increased market activity appears to correspond to shifts in public opinion and the likelihood that the 20 states in which cannabis is legalized and/or decriminalized for medical or recreational purposes will be joined by many other states. If this happens, medical marijuana states will be a new majority. From the article:

The report predicts that 14 more states will legalize marijuana for recreational adult use in the next five years, creating a potential $10.2 billion cannabis market by 2018.

Berg added that his research only examined the sale of cannabis itself, whether wholesale to retailers or directly to consumers. He said that the market for ancillary products, such as security equipment, grow tools, apps and paraphernalia, has the potential to drive growth still further.

Read the full article at the Huffington Post.