Steve Gutterman considers himself “such a lightweight” as a cannabis user, but the president of Harvest Health and Recreation has heavyweight ambitions to turn his company into the next “Monsanto or Diageo” of legal marijuana. In a wide-ranging conversation with Cannabis Professional, Mr. Gutterman addressed the challenges of operating in 15 different American states as “separate fiefdoms” and how new federal laws might dramatically alter that structure. He boasted of a “massive cash war chest” approaching US$1-billion, an MA pipeline “that is quite full” and said Harvest would “always evaluate the opportunity” to move its public listing from the Canadian Securities Exchange if U.S. law allows. The full conversation, lightly edited for length and clarity, is reproduced below.
Cannabis Professional: You come from the Ivy League, degrees in law and business from Columbia and a background in finance. What was your path to legal pot?
Steve Gutterman: I actually