SLANG Worldwide CEO Chris Driessen: Industry Growth Will Continue, With Or Without Federal Regulations

CEO Chris Driessen of SLANG Worldwide (CSE: SLNG, OTC: SLGWF) caught up with The Dales Report late last week for an exclusive interview about the company’s recent growth.

The CPG cannabis company with products and partnerships throughout North America recently released its Q2 numbers showing record revenue for the quarter, with Driessen noting a year-over-year increase of 145 percent and a quarter-over-quarter increase of 14 percent.

“What I was a lot more proud of was that we improved our EBITDA by almost 30 percent, so a pretty big reduction in our losses,” he said. “We keep chipping away and I’m looking forward to the day we [can] say, ‘look, we’re just profitable,’ without all the caveats, but we’re getting close.”

‘Disconnect’ Between SLANG Share Price and Revenue

Based on the health of the industry and the company’s recently posted revenue of $11.3 million, Driessen said that despite the disconnect between the company’s stock price and its recent quarterly report, he thinks its safe to assume SLANG will see even further growth of revenue in the quarters ahead.

“Right now, the share prices for a lot of the companies like SLANG are not where anybody really wants them to be, but yet you see companies that continue to improve, continue to grow, and continue to become more successful, so there’s a bit of a disconnect there between what’s happening on the street and what’s happening within the four walls of this company in particular,” he said.

Factors that will contribute to the company’s continued growth, Driessen said, include its recent expansion into the state of Massachusetts with Trulieve, “a big opportunity” given its infrastructure and operational prowess in the market. SLANG is also prepared to enter the recreational market in Vermont by 2022. Driessen also noted that the company’s products have been doing well on the west coast, and that opportunity was cropping up for the company in some unlikely places.

“In Washington, every month that we’ve been in the market, our sales have increased 100 percent,” he said. “California is off to a good start, and Oklahoma of all places—we’ve got some really exciting things happening down there too.” The company is in several conversations to continue expanding its emerging market presence, said Driessen, and overall, the team is happy with the company’s place in the industry.

SLANG in the New England Region

Commenting on the company’s recent success in Massachusetts, the CEO said that its products have done well thanks to brand recognition from sales people and marketers who might have been exposed to their brands (like O.Pen or District Edibles) previously in other states, like Oregon or Colorado.

Looking at the company’s current success in the New England region including in Massachusetts and Maine, Driessen said he’s hopeful that Vermont will “have its day in the sun” when it comes to cannabis, thanks to external factors like tourism.

“The other big thing you see in Vermont, [while] Maine is a predominantly summer tourism spot, if you ski on the east coast, you ski in Vermont. So much like Colorado, albeit much smaller, you really have two major tourism seasons,” he added.

Investor Fatigue a Result of Stalled Legislation, says SLANG CEO

Driessen credited feelings of fatigue among cannabis companies and investors alike to frustration with lack of follow-through from federal lawmakers on cannabis legislation, but suggested that companies could still be successful in the absence of federal cannabis regulations.

“What about SAFE banking, the MORE act, legalization, Chuck Schumer’s bill? And then you just don’t hear anything,” he said. “If you look to these businesses that are built to sustain regardless of federal regulation or lack thereof, and you see that healthy growth continues.”

Watch the interview in its entirety in the video above.

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