MSO roundup: Canopy and MedMen shake up leadership

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Bethan Rose Jenkins, Cannabis News Writer/Editorial

Canopy Growth and Medmen Enterprises are renowned for being two of the highest-performing cannabis companies in the U.S. and beyond. However, the future of these pioneer industry players seemingly hangs in the balance, as they each prepare to adopt new leadership strategies.

Based on the latest reports from each cannabis multistate operator (MSO) – both of which specialize in the production, distribution and retail sale of medical and recreational cannabis – it’s high time to rethink leadership roles for improved market domination.

Canopy announces changes to management team after poor cannabis sales report

After months of enduring public struggles, Canadian cannabis powerhouse Canopy Growth has announced that it will be making some serious changes to its senior management team

The announcement comes just weeks after Canopy admitted that 2021 is unlikely to generate any significant profits for shareholders.

Based on the  announcement from the cannabis MSO, which is headquartered in Smiths Falls, Ontario, Chief Financial Officer Mike Lee and Chief Product Officer Rade Kovacevic will officially depart from their roles on December 31.

Interestingly, there were no underlying reasons why either Lee or Kovacevic abandoned the leading North American cannabis company. External search has since been conducted to fill both roles.

“These decisions reflect management and the board’s vision for building a best-in-class organization that is well-positioned to deliver long-term growth and shareholder value,” CEO David Klein said in a statement. “We appreciate Mike and Rade’s contributions to advancing Canopy Growth to our position as a cannabis industry leader.”

Just weeks before Lee and Kovacevic left the company, Canopy’s chief legal officer Phil Shaer also stepped down. Considering the fact that Canopy has suffered a major blow to market share over the past two years, it makes sense that the company would want to restructure in terms of leadership.

Cannabis MSO MedMen employs third CEO in two years

Another well-known cannabis MSO that is transforming its leadership team is MedMen Enterprises. Based in California, MedMen recently welcomed CEO number three in less than two years Michael Serruya has been selected as interim CEO and board chair of the cannabis giant.

Tom Lynch served as Medmen’s CEO since March 2020. He was appointed for the role in an effort to revitalize the company’s image after CEO Adam Bierman and co-founder Andrew Modlin were expelled from their roles in January 2020.

An official news release published by the company has confirmed that Lynch, despite being replaced by the new CEO, will continue to serve as manager of MME Newton Retail and MedMen Boston. 

According to Lynch, MedMen is currently “in growth mode” and he anticipates that that Serruya will be capable of accomplishing “company-wide profitability in 2022.” 

The release goes on to describe MedMen’s new CEO as a “seasoned cannabis investor with extensive retail experience.” His former experience includes serving as the CEO of non-cannabis companies Coolbrands and Kahala Brands.

Serruya initially joined MedMen’s board of directors in August of this year following a $100 million cash injection by Serruya Private Equity.