While large-scale cannabis related conference events bring mass attention and large groups together to network, they can sometimes lose focus and intention for specific goals. And while there’s a place for smaller, concentrated, sometimes vertical events, their focus can often be too narrow to accommodate enough people to be justify the return on investment to attend. Which leaves a space in the middle to invent something entirely different to create, develop, and host.
Enter MJ Unpacked, the first of its kind event that ties together various concepts such as panels, booths, exhibition halls, meetings, networking, and investors in a simplified format with a highly focused audience.
MJ Unpacked returns to Las Vegas for its second West Coast show and third offering since its well-received conception in 2021. The conference is coming to the MGM Grand Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, September 28th-30th, 2022.
Cannabis owners, executives, and accredited investors from across the country will convene, connect, and conduct business together once again. September’s Unpacked is set to be the biggest show to date both in size and features.
The effort of producers Kim Jage and George Jage, MJ Unpacked is a cannabis conference that, unlike others, is focused on featuring THC brands from all over the country. A carefully curated event, attendance is exclusive to cannabis retail and brand executives with the title manager and above, and family offices, personal or private investment funds, hedge funds, and venture capitalists actively investing in the space. The idea is that every attendee is some form of a decision-maker.
The latter Jage is no stranger to the cannabis industry, or bringing world-class B2B events to the space. Marijuana movers and shakers are still feeling his influence from his three-year stint as president of MJ Biz Daily and his assistance in helping mold its famous MJBizCon conference, recently acquired by tradeshow and media company Emerald X, a subsidiary of Emerald Holding.
After helping the conference series grow to become the industry’s largest, Jage sought to find gaps within the cannabis B2B event space. The Jage Media team spent some time in the lab, talking to CEOs and executives to find what this industry needed in the ever-crowded event sector. The common feedback was brands and retailers wanted to connect with one another. There was a clear need for executives from the two backbones of this industry to connect without unaffiliated onlookers and consumers–they wanted business and networking.
With a specific audience group, Unpacked is able to efficiently tackle multiple angles of industry networking leading with value and purpose. This conference is designed to be a massive room full of individuals who should all know one another, and are brought together to do so.
Unpacking the MJ Unpacked Experience
In the two previous events, attendees could browse the lounge, find a meeting room, sit in on a panel discussion, walk the show floor, browse the brand exhibition hall, or simply approach anyone for a conversation. And the lobby bar-like layout of the main networking area is extremely comfortable and conducive to that type of discussion, featuring cocktail tables, with soft couches and seating.
Unique to the MJ Unpacked experience are features like a brand exhibition hall featuring small footprint glass showcases for brands to feature their products without having to pay for an expensive booth, handing out swag, taking up valuable space. Instead, QR codes are used to provide product and contact information, and connect with retailers, potential license partners, and investors without being tethered to a booth.
Larger booths are available, but uniform and turn-key, used mainly by ancillary companies and larger brands. The event also offers premium 20 x 20 exhibits and executive board rooms for larger MSOs.
Panels include diverse line-ups of creditable speakers from across the country who never pay to stand on stage to present. The organization hand selects speakers based on topics that can genuinely help other colleagues in the industry, not self-serve the company represented by the speaker presenting.
Brands are brought face-to-face not only with potential investors, but with both large and independent retail operators. At MJ Unpacked, it’s not uncommon for them to gain insight into new markets, meet new distributors, and strike new licensing deals. Investors in attendance also include those looking to partner with retailers seeking to expand and buyers looking to acquire.
And Unpacked’s showroom floor also wouldn’t be complete without the gong. Sounds ringing from the gong indicate that a business deal has been done on the show floor.
And lastly, no registration lines. MJ Unpacked mails attendees their badges in a simple, efficient way of alleviating the headache of standing in long, winding lines to pick up a conference badge.
Building upon two successful shows, it’s no surprise that MJ Unpacked is onto something special and has clearly filled a much-needed gap in the industry. The Jage’s goal is to maintain MJ Unpacked as a bicoastal, biannual show in both Las Vegas and New York each year.
Here’s what this year’s conference was like in New York City, and the organization is expecting to see more of the same excitement, with even more attendees in Las Vegas 2022.