Vangst, a Denver-based leading hiring platform for the cannabis industry, announced last week the completion of its $19 million Series B financing, according to a PR Newswire release.
The round was led by Level One Fund, alongside participation from previous investors like Lerer Hippeau, Colle Capital, Casa Verde Capital and Phyto Partners, with new investors including L2 Ventures, Althea, Delta Emerald Ventures and Achari VC.
Vangst’s latest round of financing coincides with the company’s growth over the last three years, along with the overall growth of the cannabis industry. The release notes the sector’s 25 percent reported increase in full-time employees, and the current employee count of more than 400,000 people over the past 12 months.
The company was first founded in 2016 and became one of the fastest growing companies in the cannabis industry, recognized as one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies and more recently, one of the Top Cannabis Companies To Work For by MG Magazine.
Vangst currently works with 1,200 leading cannabis businesses, like Green Thumb Industries, Dutchie and Holistic Industries. The company’s platform works to streamline the hiring process within the cannabis industry by matching full-time employees, along with vetted, credentialed, W2, on-demand gig workers, working with cannabis businesses. Vangst is the first and only gig platform for cannabis and has filed more than 150,000 part-time gigs since their product launch in 2018.
James Stewart, managing partner at Level One Fund, said cannabis is undeniably a large and fast-growing market, calling Vangst the only company offering scalable recruitment solutions that fit the needs of the unique industry.
“Few, if any industries, share the constant state of flux and unpredictability that cannabis has, and consequently, there are only a handful of founders equipped to handle the challenges that come with it,” Stewart said. “Vangst is not only an extremely effective solution to these challenges, but its founder is a true force of nature. We are proud to lead this round and support Vangst as it continues to be a crucial utility to the entire industry.”
With the cannabis industry expected to grow more than 100 percent by 2025, Vangst plans to use this new funding to expand its platform into new markets and help support the influx of jobs. Vangst also plans to use this infusion of capital to launch products supporting both cannabis businesses and employees, including training and payment solutions.
“The cannabis industry is one of the fastest growing industries and job creators in the world, and Vangst is defining how cannabis businesses attract and hire talent in a brand new industry,” said Karson Humiston, founder and CEO of Vangst. “We are incredibly excited for the opportunity to help thousands of people land their dream job in the cannabis industry.”
With a number of states looking to potentially legalize cannabis in 2022, it’s a safe bet that Vangst and other, comparable platforms will only have more regions to work with in the coming years.
There are three campaigns working to give voters in Arkansas a say on whether or not cannabis should be legal for adult use in the state. Delaware’s Representative Edward Osienski (D) has recently filed a new version of a bill that died in the 2021 session that would legalize cannabis for adult use in the state. A Hawaii bill to do the same also cleared the Senate last year and is still alive for the 2022 session.
Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma and South Dakota are all additional states that could potentially legalize adult-use cannabis, via vote or through legislation.
Recreational cannabis isn’t the only boom we can expect this year, as lawmakers and advocates states like Idaho, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, Nebraska, North Carolina, South Carolina and Wyoming look to introduce medical cannabis to the states.
Even if a fraction of these states end up seeing reform through in some form, the future is looking green.