Why did Canada's medical marijuana company Tilray lay off 61 employees?

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Tilray, one of Vancouver Islands largest medical marijuana growing companies, has decided to lay off 61 employees. Once thought of as a rapidly growing...

Tilray, one of Vancouver Island’s largest medical marijuana growing companies, has decided to lay off 61 employees. Once thought of as a rapidly growing industry, it’s important to analyze these cut backs to see if trouble is circling the pot business. Specifically, why is this action taking place and are more issues on the horizon?

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Originally reported by CBC News and our sister brand Business Review Canada, Tilray has decided to make a little change in their business model—a change that could negatively impact many.

It was just back in 2014 that Tilray opened up its Nanaimo facility. Then, the company employed nearly 200 workers, making it a high profile business in the region. However, all of that is now in the past.

“Tilray is making changes to our operating model to more efficiently serve patients and the MMPR market as it exists today,” CEO Greg Engel stated.

This is quite a change for the company. In fact, Tilray has traded one side of the spectrum for the other. Last year, numerous jobs fairs were held, as well as detailed information sessions to try and get qualified workers to fill positions.

In March, the Nanaimo Economic Development Corporation revealed that Tilray had generated more than $48 million for the local economy last year. Furthermore, 395 jobs had been created during the company’s construction and operation phases.

So what happened? Is the pot business going up in flames?

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Surprisingly, Ted Smith, the founder of the Cannabis Buyer’s Clubs in Victoria, Canada isn’t shocked by this recent announcement of the downsizing of operations.

In a statement, Smith said, “A number of companies that have been authorized by Health Canada have been very aggressive and I believe overestimated the profits that they’ll be able to make off patients in this short amount of time.”

He continued with, “I think we’d be doing a lot better by having dozens of smaller companies than having one large company controlling the market.

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While the medical marijuana industry doesn’t seem to be suffering, as there are still plenty of patients who rely on weed to aid certain illnesses and conditions, the business is changing. Tilray is downsizing, most likely in an attempt to increase their profits and ensure that the company is an overall success. Perhaps others in this line of work should follow suit, too?

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