69 | Peter Vogel, CEO, Leafwire

“The states are going to be hurting like crazy and what makes sense, the easiest way for them to get tax revenue coming in immediately, is to legalize cannabis, allow the sales come up with a way to get started quickly and start replacing tax revenue.”

— Peter Vogel

Linkedin delivers the value of a Rolodex, plus the Yellow Pages, on steroids. What if you could do that for the exploding cannabis / hemp business?  That’s the idea behind Leafwire, an online meeting place for people and companies focused on cannabis. CEO Peter Vogel joins us to share his vision, and explain how:

  • Leafwire has grown to nearly 40,000 members in under two years.
  • People reticent to show an interest in cannabis on LinkedIn and other places online can feel comfortable at Leafwire.
  • Current federal law makes it so hard for big brands to go national with cannabis products.
  • More states could soon be making cannabis legal in order to drive much-needed tax revenues.
  • Leafwire facilitates connections among hemp and cannabis professionals and businesses.

Ready to connect with others interested in cannabis? Check out Leafwire.

Transcript of Podcast with Peter Vogel of Leafwire

Kannaboom © 2020

Kannaboom 0:00

I'm old enough to remember when meeting your cannabis sources involved back alleys or out of the way places. Now there's a place online, the LinkedIn of cannabis and hemp. It's called Leafwire. 40,000 people are there already making connections and asking and answering questions. Leafwire founder and CEO Peter Vogel is our guest this week. If you're an entrepreneur or a job seeker or just curious about cannabis you'll find a lot of value in this episode. Whether you're a subscriber or first time listener, please stop by and see us at Kannaboom with a k.com. We're focused on how cannabinoids and CBD can help you achieve better wellness and how to find CBD that's trusted and reliable. If you like the podcast, please subscribe and please leave a review so other people can find the show. You can also ask your smart speaker to play the Kannaboom podcast but I can't guarantee what results you get. Thanks to a producer Danny in Milwaukee and here's my interview with Peter Vogel.

Cannabis is booming, and Kannaboom is on it. Welcome to the Kannaboom podcast, where we interview experts on the changing story of humans, health snf hemp. From San Diego, here's your host, Tom Stacey.

It's Tom. Welcome back to the Kannaboom podcast today we have Peter Vogel of Leafwire. Hey, Peter.

Peter Vogel 1:05

Hey, Tom, how are you? Good.

Kannaboom 1:07

How are you doing?

Peter Vogel 1:08

Well. Excited to be on the podcast.

Kannaboom 1:10

All right. Tell us about Leafwire.

Peter Vogel 1:12

Sure. So about two years ago, we were looking at the cannabis industry and saw that there wasn't really a great place online for the cannabis business community to get together to post news to promote events to find partners, find employees, look for investors and just simply network. So that's why we built Leafwire to be a LinkedIn like business community, but 100%, specifically for the cannabis and hemp community. And we've definitely seen a rise in the hemp part of the business over the last year and a half for sure.

Kannaboom 1:52

As a mental construct. Everyone knows what LinkedIn is, How are you different other than the exclusive focus on cannabis and hemp?

Peter Vogel 2:00

So I'll say, first tell you a little more about Leafwire. It is similar to a LinkedIn where members can join for free, you know, you create a free free profile with your location and jobs and you can put some information down about your experience etc. And then people can also add profiles to their company, they want to promote their company. And so we've had close to about almost 37,000 people join from the industry have gone and created profiles. And they've that represents they've created about 15,000 companies. So there's their 15,000 companies and kind of the cannabis and hemp space. And our members are everything from, it's about plant-touching and non-plant touching. So it's everything from from growers, to people working in dispensaries, to people making CBD brands, to packaging companies, shipping companies, lighting, lawyers, to investors. So if you think about any part of the cannabis industry or any companies that service the cannabis industry, that too, you know, our members would be. And some of the other things that you'll find on Leafwire, we have a section for events, that's 100%, cannabis-specific events. We have a section on training. So we have a partnership with Green Flower Media, where all of our members can click through and get 10% off all of the classes and certifications that they offer. And I'm not sure, have you spoken with some folks over there at Green Flower?

Kannaboom 3:41

You know, I'm going to have Max Simon on the podcast very soon. I am familiar with him. And I know they do provide some great training resources.

Peter Vogel 3:48

Yeah, you know, they're really good. I think you'll find him really interesting and knowledgeable that he's been in the space for a while. And they've been selected by a bunch of the top universities and colleges in the entire United States to provide the you know, the cannabis training and all sorts of ranging from, you know, the cultivation to the business side to getting licenses etc. So there's a lot to it. And that's one of the sections we have that's 100% cannabis-focused. We recently added a cannabis job board that is 100% cannabis and hemp jobs. That is about 1,100 open jobs right now. So that's completely free for people to go on and use. You can search by city, you can search by type of cannabis job, and we've seen a ton of traction there so far. So that's a little more about what Leafwire is. And like you said it is 100% focused on cannabis and hemp and the main kind of distinction between us and like a LinkedIn that that basically shows why we've had you know, almost 40,000 people join and create profiles. Because there is a need for this sort of thing for this sort of platform, and the reasons are one, because LinkedIn is just so big. LinkedIn has 660 million people on its platform. So that's twice the population, the United States, representing every single industry in the entire world. And the problem with that is, almost all of us have been in other industries, we've worked for other types of jobs. Depending how, how earlier right in your career, it may have been just for a couple years, it may have been for 20, 30, 40 years. So you're gonna have a ton of connections that have a ton of, you know, posts, the news and stuff that are non-cannabis related. So if what you're really looking for is cannabis news, you know, cannabis science, cannabis jobs, cannabis events, it's really hard to get any focus on that when you have such a massive platform. And I still, I still use LinkedIn. So I use LinkedIn every day. I've been using it for, you know, almost 15 years. And I use it to go look people up and find people. And then I come back to Leafwire when I'm looking for content, or I will learn about events, or I want to share some news that's very cannabis specific. So the sheer size and scale is one reason why people like Leafwire. And the second is the, you know, still existing stigma. You know, a lot of us in the industry kind of forget that it's still cannabis is still recreationally illegal in, you know, 65, 70% of states out there. You know, even though we just, you know, took this long to get five more states to legalize. And a couple of those are medical, and a couple of them are recreational. But a lot of people, when we actually did a survey on Leafwire, even people who use LinkedIn every week, I think 68% of them said that they typically don't put up very detailed thorough descriptions of their cannabis jobs and experience on LinkedIn. And we think that's because they know that they have potentially family members who don't really approve, or they may have ex-colleagues in other industries that don't necessarily approve, or they just have friends or acquaintances in states where cannabis is just not legal, and it's not accepted yet. So for a lot of people who may not know if cannabis is going to be your last industry you'll ever work in, you may not want to be branded as the cannabis guy or the cannabis woman by posting tons of news and information. If you want to go back into the financial world if you want to go back and work for a more conservative Fortune 500 company. So just to have a place like Leafwire where it's 100%, devoted to it, and safe. And you're never going to have your account shut down or censored. And that's [inaudible] LinkedIn. But some of the other — the Facebooks, the YouTubes, things like that are notorious for shutting down people's accounts. Completely canceling. YouTube has done that by cancelling peoples channels that have been there for years, just because they use the word 'cannabis' or do something slightly different that what one of those social media outlets doesn't approve of. So those are two main reasons for this sheer scale. And the stigma that does still exist.

Kannaboom 8:36

You've got, as you said, almost 40,000 signups in the first two years, is that kind of in line with your expectations for the uptake?

Peter Vogel 8:45

Yeah, it's been growing pretty consistently. In the beginning we were growing by about 1,000 users a month, we started doing a little more marketing, and that's gotten closer to usually between 1,500 to 2,000 a month. So it's continuing, the pace is pretty consistent. We have scaled back some marketing over the last six months during the pandemic, we definitely did slow down the marketing a bit just to be careful and conserve some cash. Since we didn't know kind of what was happening with the market. We didn't know, you know, we'd be able to continue selling advertising or not. So, it's been steady, and we're continuing to grow. So we're happy with it.

Kannaboom 9:27

Yeah. And as you referenced several, you know, there's packaging. There's intellectual property, there's software. I mean, there are a lot of different sectors to this, you know, segment of the economy. I mean, in American history or world history. I don't know if there's ever been an industry that was so underground in transferring this fast to something legit.

Peter Vogel 9:52

Hmm, that's an interesting point. Yeah, I wonder if the only thing I could think about is some forms of gambling, you know, that were very illegal in a lot of places and then kind of became above ground to be legalized. But even that was mostly only in very specific cities and states like Vegas or Reno places like that. Yeah, that maybe, and that didn't really translate nationwide like cannabis. So I would say you're probably right. I mean, I think Canada has probably had the biggest transition from a completely underground illegal business to what is becoming, you know, a massive multi billion dollar industry and growing faster over the years.

Kannaboom 10:42

Hemp, which is sort of the cousin to you know, THC-based cannabis, which really shouldn't have been as low as it was. But there's a whole side to that. I mean, I see people on Twitter saying, you know, everything plastic can be made from hemp, it's useful as food as a textile, you can make paper, there's all sorts of things you can do with that, from agriculture to clothing. So there's a lot of growth there too.

Peter Vogel 11:09

100% and that, it is crazy. I mean, it's crazy. One, how demonized cannabis was back in the 20s and 30s. And all of the propaganda against it, which a lot of it was just cultural bias against Mexicans and black people, for no reason at all. And all it did was demonize and keep illegal. A medicine that's actually significantly safer than alcohol or tobacco or other things that people use. And in hemp, for some reason, got lumped in with that way back then, and has taken this long, literally 100 years practically to like, separate itself from cannabis. And it is amazing when you look at all of the things they're doing with hemp. They're making, you know, vehicle parts out of him hempcrete for you know, concrete replacement, using tons of hemp and clothing and foods and the most people believe that it was a lot of the other industries, other the agricultural industries, whether there was cotton or other fabrics that fought so hard to keep hemp illegal, so that they could thrive, even though they're there, it was an inferior product, it was more expensive to manufacture and grow and not not as environmentally friendly, or strong. I mean, it's pretty crazy that it's taken this long for people to actually make hemp legal.

Kannaboom 12:53

I think in some of my research, I saw reference to William Randolph Hearst, who was, of course, a huge newspaper publisher, and he wanted to be vertically integrated. So and he wanted paper. So he had the political clout to, you know, restrict the use of hemp. That's history. I'm not sure if it's 100% accurate, but I've heard that story.

Peter Vogel 13:11

Yeah, I think I think that happened across multiple industries, that people who had control over industries that were challenged by hemp, you know, helped lead the political charge. And, you know, they donated money to the political parties that I mean, much like this corruption happens today. They, you know, use their money to safeguard their industries and stifle, you know, the industrial hemp industry and actually make it illegal. So knowing how to use it for 100 years, which is crazy.

Kannaboom 13:43

Yeah. Well, and you know, we're just out of an election, I think you referenced I think maybe five more states came on medicinal. But I saw you had a post the other day that 68% of Americans now believe that cannabis should be federally legal, we're nearly at a tipping point where the lawmakers really need to catch up with the culture, right.

Peter Vogel 14:02

100% and that was that was a Gallup poll. 68% said they approve of legalizing cannabis. Versus last year, it was another 64, 66%. So it's inching up every single year. And the very first year they did it 1968 when they asked that same question, it was I think it was 12% of people that were approved. So it's that that's, that's that shift is just, you know, huge.

Kannaboom 14:30

Right. Another place where that manifests is in the entrepreneurship itself. I mean, you see a lot of startups who are bootstrapping it, from your perspective, what do we see, you know, Procter and Gamble or Coca Cola being to wade into this market.

Peter Vogel 14:45

I mean, I think we're starting to see that with a bunch of right now we're seeing more with the alcohol, big alcohol brands, I think there may be a little more comfortable with with the concept of a, call it a drug. Since alcohol has been so regulated, I think they're comfortable with the regulation of cannabis. But you know, they, Constellation Brands, obviously is the most famous one who's put in four or $5 billion into the industry into Canopy Growth. Molson Coors, just put in a bunch of money. I know there's been some other alcohol brands as well, that have started pouring in money. I think you're gonna see the other huge CPG companies. And in some of them, I think I have gotten into the CBD side. That, depending on the state is, is still not as regulated. But I think, you know, the legalization is gonna have a huge part because I think some of the big problems for these, like Procter and Gamble's, the fragmentation where everything is done state by state is really tough. They're used to having, you know, nationwide or global products, that they can have huge advertising campaigns for, they can ship to, you know, thousand supermarkets all over the U.S. It's much harder to create products that you have to create in one state and ship in that state and sell in that state. And then you have to, if you want to have that same product line in another state, you actually have to literally have your own factory in that state, created in that state, grown in that state packaged in that state, and then sell in that state. So the infrastructure to do all that is just complicated and expensive, and it doesn't fit with their normal model is to be able to create a brand that they can promote across TV, radio, internet, you know, all over the world. And then ship it all over the world, and put all their marketing money behind it. And with the fragmentation of everything in the U.S. being state by state. And even the marketing, I mean, every state, even the ones that are illegal, have different laws about what can be advertised, where it can be advertised, you know, words, you can use packaging, Canada is kind of notorious for requiring this really plain packaging, versus, you know, a lot of the brands in the U.S. have more colorful, more, you know, brand-appropriate packaging. So it's just, I think, really hard for these big companies to put all of their normal muscle and might behind products that they can't promote, like they can't promote and sell like they do everything else. So I think like complete legalization is just going to be one of the steps that I think it takes to get a lot of these big guys.

Kannaboom 18:00

Sure. Much less risk. And then as you say, some of the logistical things, or just if you have to have 50 different sets of labels, or you have to literally have factories in different states. I mean, that's a big disincentive.

Peter Vogel 18:05

Yeah, it's gonna be kind of a nightmare. If you think about the logistics of running all that.

Kannaboom 18:09

Well, once some of those obstacles are removed, how big do you think this industry can get? Especially at a time when we're going to be coming out of a pandemic, there's gonna be people looking for sort of a bright spot in the economy, then you talk about hemp and cannabis together, it's a juggernaut of an industry, I would think.

Peter Vogel 18:27

Yeah, I mean, I think everyone agrees. I think there's a couple things. I mean, one, I mean, people are ready, the data coming out from I think it's New Frontier Data, is suggesting that we're going to hit almost $20 billion this year, and in market size, up to $34 billion by 2023. If you look at and that's not necessarily taking into account all of the new states that may be coming on board as well. I mean, that's a lot of it is just those specific states just continuing to grow that we already have now. Jobs-wise. Actually, I want to add one other thing. I think one thing that's really interesting is with the pandemic right now, a lot of the states are really suffering in terms of tax revenue, because there's tons of unemployment, they're paying out a ton of money and they're not getting taxes in. So come 2021 we're gonna have a period and this is an imagined another six months of this, you know, at least with the states are going to be hurting like crazy and what makes sense, the easiest way for them to get tax revenue coming in immediately is to legalize cannabis, allow the sales come up with a way to get started quickly and start replacing tax revenue. In Massachusetts, this just came out in the news as well, I think, this week, Massachusetts just announced a surpassed a billion dollars in cannabis sales, generating $200 million in tax revenue. So imagine, you know, they've been able to replace $200 million in missing money just by allowing this industry to exist.

Kannaboom 20:17

That could be a huge thing. And it needs to be done smartly, though. I mean, in California, there's still an enormous issue. If you go to the dispensary, you can tack on 35, 40% sometimes in tax, right. And so the legacy market is still thriving, but yet go to the legacy market, you're not sure if there's pesticides on there or solvents? It's not, it's not regulated. So there's room I mean, there's a big gap between 40% bogey there where there's room in between to make it safe for the consumer and let the state really realize some much needed revenue.

Peter Vogel 20:52

100 percent. And you know, a lot of people have been very critical of how California did this. You know, I think Colorado took a more moderate approach. In Colorado, Colorado has not had the same issues with, you know, the I'm sure there's still a black market, but it's not anywhere the size of California's. I think Colorado has been faster to approve licenses, the regulations have been a little less loose, the taxes haven't been quite as high. So it's been much more business-friendly. And you know, that's in California, you I think the last numbers that came out was where the black market is three times the size of the legal market. I mean, that's a huge problem and a huge opportunity for California, you know, they would step back and adjust some of the taxes and make it easier for companies to get approved and licensed and speed up the process. You know, there. There were always I don't know where it is right now. But I know historically, there's been hundreds of dispensaries that are essentially illegal dispensaries that are just open. And they're just open selling. And they've just never gotten their license yet. It's I mean, that's been a huge problem for California too.

Kannaboom 22:09

I think they have started to crack down but for a while, yeah, you could go on Weedmaps, and just find all kinds of, you know, underground stuff. So that should get resolved. I think we've talked about this on the podcast before where it's not really a binary state where you're illegal or illegal, there's often some things that need to be kind of settled. And, boy, our politics aren't always conducive to that. So it takes time.

Peter Vogel 22:33

Yeah, it is. It's there's, I think there's weird gray areas where people who are attempting to completely operate in a legal fashion. And they've even applied to get the license and maybe getting one but they may not be getting it for a year. And the problem is they have to rent a space and show where the location is going to be prior to submitting a license. So they're stuck with a space and they have to operate or else they're just paying rent for nothing. So it's this weird, regulatory kind of traffic jam, where the small businesses get cut, get stuck. I mean, they have their places of business, they have to run or else they go out of business. But they can't legally operate because they don't have a license. So it's complicated. And, you know, you mentioned Weedmaps it, I've always been really confused why. Like Weedmaps, has promoted, you know, all the illegal dispensaries for so long. And, and no one ever. No, no, you know, state agencies are wouldn't be government, I guess, would be state agencies. No one ever essentially made them stop doing that, really. I think they voluntarily came to your decision. And I think they took most of them down by like, January of this year, or at least they were supposed to, I'm not sure if you followed that.

Kannaboom 24:00

I am not sure what the exact timing of it is. It does seem like it's dissipated somewhat, but they were making so much money. I mean, I knew people who had to buy advertising and they couldn't believe how expensive it was. But yeah, I mean, if you are essentially advertising a criminal enterprise, you would think there would be some liability for that. Right?

Peter Vogel 24:18

I would think so. And, you know, I wish no ill will on Weedmaps. I liked them as a company. I just, I was just always surprised that you know, I don't use the term 'got away with it.' But it didn't seem like there were any negative repercussions for doing that. So it's almost like why not do it? If there's no negative repercussions, and you're not really hurting anyone and no agency stops you. They, like you said they're making a ton of money. They're, they're just trying to, you know, if anything, they're really providing a service these people want. So it's, it's not that I'm trying to, you know, say negative things about it. I just, I've just never never understood how that was able. They're able to I like that. Because it doesn't seem like in most other states, that sort of thing would fly.

Kannaboom 25:05

As the whole sector evolves, we'll get more clarity on what's legal and not but yeah, they saw an opportunity and filled that need and profited. And that's what you do in a big new market, right?

Peter Vogel 25:17

Yep.

Kannaboom 25:18

What do you make of what's happening in Oregon? Last week, they essentially decriminalized almost all drugs, right?

Peter Vogel 25:26

Yeah, I think they decriminalized some psychedelics. Like a while back, I think like six months or a year ago or something. And it seems like they decriminalized everything, I think that just to more aggressively ended the war on drugs and realize that putting someone and they I think the description was they're trying to treat drug use, even harder drug use is more of a health problem than as a crime and take the approach of rehabilitation and helping those people, rather than just putting them in jail, which obviously has not helped society has not helped anyone, any part of society really over the last couple of decades. You know, whether it's the people in jail, whether it's the people outside jail, who are supporting those people in jail, and running the, you know, running the jails. And, and, and there was no real focus on rehabilitation, helping those people. So the recidivism rates were amazingly high. So it cost a ton of money, took away people's freedoms, and didn't help anyone. So I think they're finally just made the more aggressive decision to say, hey, let's just just stop this 100% right now. And it'll, I think it could be a model for the rest of the country to look at and see, you know, hey, maybe maybe they can actually demonstrate the crime goes down, maybe they can demonstrate that, you know, addiction to the harder, dangerous drugs goes down, you know, maybe they can show that the recidivism rates go down. And there the jails are costing less money to run. I mean, it could be, you know, win win win for all a lot of different parties.

Kannaboom 27:15

In 2020, we all sort of woke up to the social equity aspect of a lot of things. And certainly in cannabis, there've been a lot of people of color incarcerated, and now you have businessmen in suits coming in into positions of power and privilege and authority. What do you see happening on the social equity front? And how can people help support those kinds of actions?

Peter Vogel 27:38

Yeah, I mean, a lot of states have had a lot of issues, figured out how to implement social equity programs, and almost all of them have done it slightly differently. I don't know which ones would claim success so that they really did a great job. So I'm not sure what model is actually even the best. I think, you know, people can support, you know, initiatives. Like the Last Prisoner Project is great. Leafwire has actually done a bunch of emails and advertisements for them, when they hold events or doing fundraisers, we try and pitch in and help out. support that cause. The Marijuana Policy Project is another one, obviously, that's done a ton to try and help minorities in cannabis. And it also passed laws that, you know, help all aspects of the industry. So those two organizations, I think, are great to, you know, help support, whether it's just financially or, you know, by attending events, or anything else you can do to pitch in. It's tough. You know, all the programs are state by state. So, I mean, I guess one thing you can do is educate yourself about what's happening in your state. And, you know, add your voice to whatever initiatives are happening, whether it's, you know, communicating with your, your representative, you know, whether it's local or statewide. But you can promote those organizations on a national basis, but everything else is done either locally or by state. So it's kind of different state by state, but educating yourself on what social equity programs are even out there. And if there is any involvement you can have, or any advocacy that there might be local advocacy, advocacy groups in your city or state that are pushing for change, or, you know, trying to get the vote out on some aspect of that social equity. It's a very localized initiative at this point.

Kannaboom 29:48

That's a sort of a broader social question, but I guess a good question to ask you too, in terms of individual opportunity is essentially Leafwire is the LinkedIn of the cannabis industry. Do you have any best practices or suggestions for people in terms of the presence there, what can they do to say help themselves position for a job in the industry?

Peter Vogel 30:10

Yeah, I mean, just like any other network, being an active participant connecting with people. So on Leafwire, we've had a little over 700,000 connection requests that have been sent across the network from the, that's from one member to another. And so it's a large number, and you can see people very engaged so that people want to get connected, and share information and, you know, find business partners. And actually an even more interesting number there is of the 700,000 connection requests that have been set 40% have been accepted. So almost half of those people who received a connection request, accepted it. And then those two people can communicate and you know, share information, etc. So one, I would say, just coming on the site on a somewhat regular basis, posting industry news that you find interesting, or you think other people will find interesting, if you learn about an event, you know, post that event, to share and share it with people. If you have, you know, a political movement, you're part of, you know, you've come on and tell people about it. And people do also come on, and they post things about their, their company and their products. We, of course, encourage people not to do that repetitively, because we don't want it to be just a newsfeed page full of ads. But you know, it's perfectly fine to come on and, you know, announce the new product you have or, you know, tell people about your company. But we also want people to contribute content. So it can be a blog post you euro, or it can just be news that you saw, you know, in your local newspaper and Wall Street Journal, New York Times, or you know, anything, you see that you think, Hey, this, this is interesting for the industry, I want to share this. And every time you share, you know your name. And if you're part of a company, your name and company, are both listed, so people are seeing your name and your company repetitively. And then you can also comment on other people's and answer questions. People post things on Leafwire asking about getting licenses in certain states, or how to get involved in the hemp industry, or does anyone know what type of extraction equipment would be best to wreck XYZ. So it, you can definitely get very specialized and focused and you know, one example I like to use. And this is another good example, Leafwire is different than, like a LinkedIn, it's just the laser focus. And this was kind of shown, this was kind of a funny post, but there was a jockey who got suspended for giving his horse CBD as a treatment for recovery. So someone posted that article. It was one the first time ever anyone ever posted something from is like, horse, something mag forces writers magazine, which was unique in its own right. But after someone posted that article about CBD for the horse, there was a string of about 40 comments of everyone arguing on the exact amount of milligrams a racehorse should get for recovery. People were, you know, guessing weight, suggesting different products, different types of CBD, etc. But you would not see something that so specific and passionate, you know, on LinkedIn. So it's just a very kind of laser focus that people feel comfortable advocating for, you know, 2,500 milligrams of CBD versus 2,250. Based on their their industry knowledge,

Kannaboom 33:57

Right. There's such an explosion in research and in sharing information. So there's a lot of value, as you say to that, whether you're just showing up and contributing value or going there to learn things. It's a great resource in that respect. And again, like you said earlier, without the fear of being exposed on LinkedIn and being right, you know, tarred forever, as as a cannabis person.

Peter Vogel 34:22

Right? Exactly. Yeah, so the participation really is key. I mean, you like you can use anything like Facebook, LinkedIn. And if all you do is just go look and never communicate with anyone, you know, no one sees your name in it or your company. And you don't develop any connections. So, you know, we encourage as much as we can for people to connect, then you can send personal messages on the platform. You can comment, you can like things. There's also other opportunities where you can advertise your company. We have something called a marketplace on Leafwire which is kind of like a Yellow Pages type directory listing. So for people that want a little extra promotion they can pay to post an ad in our market marketplace. We also do have, you know, like I mentioned earlier, full job boards. So if you're looking to get into the industry, there's about 1,100 jobs on there, a lot of them are from the biggest multi state operators around the country. We have jobs, I think, Canada, us, I think that's I think we only just have two countries right now. But, you know, there's 1,100. And they're, they really range from people, for people working in the science lab, to a dispensary to working, you know, in the field helping with cultivation. So it's a huge variation of and level from, you know, there's more hourly, part time work, and there's more kind of executive VP type work. So it's, it's, it's the whole realm of the industry.

Kannaboom 36:01

I've been there every week posting, when I have a new podcast or blog posts to put up and I've definitely seen it grow. And as you said, with that 40% or more engagement, people definitely have reasons to get involved and participate. So that's a great service that you're offering.

Peter Vogel 36:18

Yeah, it's been, it's, we were kind of convinced now that it was needed. And, you know, just kind of the proof is in the pudding, you know, you can talk to blue in the face and say why something's a great service for the industry. But we feel validated that we've had 40,000 people join, you know, create 15,000 companies, we've had 700,000 connection requests sent, you know, on a daily basis, we usually are getting between 1,000 to 2,000 people a day on the site. So it's a well, it's an active engaged member base that, you know, that is very devoted and passionate to, you know, the cannabis industry.

Kannaboom 36:58

You stepped in at the right time, I think, and I predict it's gonna be a bigger and better thing as you go. I mean, more and more people are going to gravitate towards this as more states come on. And as the stigma recedes over time, and it becomes a major part of our economy. So I think you're well positioned.

Peter Vogel 37:16

Yeah, we're excited to see the growth. You know, we were psyched to see these states become, you know, legal record with these five states to become legal, whether it's recreationally or medically. And you know, like I said earlier, I think 2020 year 2021 is going to be a massive year just because so many states are going to need to replace so much tax revenue, that legalization is just going to be a natural step for a lot of states probably a lot faster than what happened without the pandemic. So that's, I think, going to lead to a record breaking year for cannabis next year in terms of the number of states that are legalizing.

Kannaboom 38:01

Peter, is there anything we haven't covered that we should?

Peter Vogel 38:05

I mean, I would just invite anyone who's not a member to just come check us out, come to Leafwire.com it's completely free to join, create a profile, you know, start connecting with people, start posting. And I'm also happy to chat with anyone who wants to learn a little bit more about leaf fire. You can reach me at Peter at Leafwire.com. I'm also on Leafwire many times a day so you can send me a message on Leafwire, connect me and be happy to chat with anyone there and answer any questions you may have.

Kannaboom 38:40

Okay, well that sounds good. Thank you so much for sharing your vision and all the news about what Leafwire is doing. It's very exciting, and we'll definitely be keeping an eye on it and in 2021 and on after that.

Peter Vogel 38:51

Yeah. Thanks so much for having me on.

Kannaboom 38:53

Tom. You've been listening to the Kannaboom podcast with host Tom Stacey. If you like the show and want to know more, please check us out at Kannaboom with a k.com. And please leave us a review on Apple podcasts or wherever you listen. See you next week.

Transcribed by https://otter.ai