OrganiGram: Navigating the Cannabis Industry with "Grey Knowledge"
(6 pages of text)
OrganiGram Holdings Inc. (OrganiGram), a New Brunswick-based company, was a licensed producer of medical cannabis in Canada. On April 20, 2016, the Canadian government announced that legislation to legalize recreational cannabis would be introduced in the spring of 2017 with the intention of having it become law in the spring of 2018. The announcement triggered expansion activities at all of Canada’s largest licensed producers of cannabis. However, there were many unknowns in terms of how the legalization of recreational cannabis would happen. What would the timeline be? Who would be allowed to grow cannabis? In anticipation of regulatory changes, OrganiGram needed to analyze the Canadian cannabis industry and engage in a scenario-planning exercise. How could OrganiGram move through this time of uncertainty, while both creating a strategy for the anticipated recreational cannabis market and continuing to work on its medical cannabis sales?
The purpose of this case is to give students experience in making decisions in an uncertain, growing, and dynamic industry. The case can be used in strategic management courses at both the undergraduate and MBA levels. It can also be taught in executive MBA courses that include a strategic planning module. For undergraduate courses, the focus would be on applying strategic management models to perform internal and external analyses. More advanced courses could use this course as a scenario-planning exercise. After completion of the case, students will be able to
- highlight the complexity of decision-making during a time of an anticipated regulatory change;
- apply strategic management frameworks to analyze the Canadian cannabis industry; and
- engage in a scenario-planning activity.
Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting
Canada, Small, 2016
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