Cannacurio #87: 2023 year-end rankings for pharmacies and retailers
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Now that 2023 has come to a close, we want to share our annual licensing roundup of which states have issued the most pharmacy/retailer licenses, as well as trends impacting different parts of the value chain. In 2023, 1,695 new pharmacy and retail licenses were issued and 4 states accounted for 60% of these licenses. This is a significant decrease from 2,750 in 2022 and 2,602 in 2021.
- Oklahoma accounted for 347 (20%) of new licenses issued – a decrease from 32% last year.
- Michigan was second with 243 (14%) and New Jersey was third with 224 (12%).
- 4 states issued 60% of newly issued licenses.
- At the end of 2023, there were 11,375 stores with 12,156 licenses.
The Cannabiz Media Intelligence Platform tracks establishments separately from licenses, as some states may require a medical and adult-use license – even for the same business. This can lead to double counting. The chart below shows the relationship between these two measures in 2023. The flattening could be due to the loss of 400 licenses in Oklahoma, where each store only has one license – therefore the number of establishments would also decrease.
As we review the 1,695 new licenses, some well-known companies have opened branches. Based on the Cannabiz Media Intelligence Platform, here are the 10 companies that have added the most licenses. The companies marked with an asterisk were also on the list last year.
Finally, the following table shows Cannabiz Media's final balance of dispensary/retail licenses as of December 31, 2023:
Since January, the total number of pharmacy and retail licenses increased from 11,449 to 12,156 – representing a net addition of 707 (+6%). In 2022, the growth rate was about 15%.
Cannabiz Media expects licenses to increase thanks to new and expanding markets. Oklahoma has extended its license moratorium so they will not participate in the hunt. However, New York is once again seen as the beast in the east with the promise of 1,500 licenses. We'll continue to monitor the leaderboards to see how things develop – and see if any of the New York MSOs want to spend millions to open a few doors.
Ed Keating is co-founder of Cannabiz Media and oversees the company's data research and government relations. Throughout his career, he has worked with and advised information companies in the compliance area. Ed has led product, marketing and sales while overseeing complex, multi-country product lines in securities, corporate, UCC, security, environmental and human resources.
Cannabiz Media customers can stay up to date on these and other new licenses through our newsletter, alerts and reporting modules. Subscribe to our newsletter to receive these weekly reports straight to your inbox. Or you can schedule a demo to get more information about how you can access the Cannabiz Media Market Intelligence Platform yourself and dive deeper into this data.
Cannacurio is a weekly column from Cannabiz Media featuring insights from the most comprehensive licensing data platform. Check out Cannacurio posts and podcasts for the latest updates and information.