[gallery size="full" ids="167938,167936,167937"]

The rapid expansion in cannabis-related businesses throughout 2019 shows no sign of slowing in 2020. The 2019 Marijuana Business Factbook projects that by 2023, retail marijuana sales will reach between $25 billion and $30 billion annually — more than three times the level in 2018. And that's not all: U.S. retail sales of CBD (cannabidiol, a cannabinoid), which were expected to surpass $1 billion in 2019 (a 133% increase over 2018 sales) might eclipse $10 billion by 2024, according to projections from the 2019 Hemp & CBD Industry Factbook.

Upcoming regulatory developments in the United States and Canada are set to accelerate the growth of the legal cannabis industry and create significant opportunities for insurers. Speaking at Clyde & Co's annual Financial Institutions, Directors and Officers Conference in London in October, Prachi Shah, a senior counsel at the global law firm, noted that "everyone involved in production, distribution and sales in the cannabis industry will need to comply with the regulatory requirements. Failure to do so would present risks to these businesses and their boards and management. This presents huge underwriting opportunities for insurers to provide D&O [directors and officers] coverage as well as other insurance classes including property, fidelity/crime and product liability."

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free PropertyCasualty360 Digital Reader

  • All PropertyCasualty360.com news coverage, best practices, and in-depth analysis.
  • Educational webcasts, resources from industry leaders, and informative newsletters.
  • Other award-winning websites including BenefitsPRO.com and ThinkAdvisor.com.