It is a sign of a nimble and seeking start-up culture that a company developing product X sees that its competitive advantage is actually in process Y or engineering widget Z. They follow the advantage and unicorns are born.
It strikes me that the pivot of FSD Pharma from cannabis LP to COVID-19 vaccine developer highlights a different type of pivot – of the quick win variety of which many cannabis investors and developers have been accused.
Rather than a commitment to build out a unique selling point (USP) and a world leadership position in a nascent industry, cannabis attracted a lot of people who saw a gold rush opportunity or a pump and dump scenario.
They followed, and scooped up, the easy and quick money. Which, when the market turned and investors wanted a return on their investment, evaporated.
We have seen a few insolvencies and bankruptcies; even a few Health Canada licences returned. The market and the producers have been squeezed. There are fewer ways out. Let’s pivot!
This Much We Know.