SQDC: Montreal will have same-day delivery of legal weed by July

Twitter icon

Montrealers can expect same-day delivery of legal pot by July.

The SQDC has reached an agreement with a delivery company and is in the implementation phase of the plan, which will be tested in Montreal before expanding to the rest of the province during the next six months, according to SQDC president and CEO Jean-François Bergeron.

Current scenarios involve offering customers two cutoff times: for example, order before noon for delivery the same afternoon, or before 5 p.m. for delivery the same evening.

“It will be something like that,” Bergeron said. “We’re willing to adapt our logistics. This is Phase 1, a prototype.”

In doing so, the SQDC hopes to further compete with the black market, which offers delivery times as fast as one hour.

Pricing is another important factor in competing with the black market. The SQDC’s average price point of $7.64 per gram is more than 20 per cent below the national average for the legal market, according to Bergeron.

The company has 40 products below $6 per gram, with prices starting at $4.41 per gram, “which is really competitive,” he said.

The SQDC took in $311.6 million during its 2019-20 financial year, which ended March 28, selling 46,863 kg of legal cannabis products in that time. The company had a net profit of $26.3 million, which is 30 per cent more than its projections. That money will go toward cannabis education and prevention.

“I think the SQDC has reached a good place,” Bergeron said. “To have reached $26 million is a great milestone.”

There are milestones aplenty for the fledgling operation, which has gone from 13 stores a year ago to 42 today. Bergeron expects to hit 70 stores by the end of the current financial year, including another downtown outlet to take some pressure off its busiest location on Ste-Catherine St. W.

“There is something coming,” he said. “We’re still in negotiations, but we’re really far in the discussions. I think it will be feasible this year.”

The SQDC has remained open throughout the COVID-19 lockdown, though it did close on Sundays between March and May. No SQDC employees have tested positive for the virus.

The company has expanded its offering from 80 to 150 products in-store since April 2019, reaching around 180 products online, or 200 if you include different formats available.

“To offer 200 products, you need 500 listed,” Bergeron said. “It’s like wine; sometimes you get a small batch and it takes a while to come back. There are new products and others that are discontinued. It’s a constant flow.”

Edibles and extracts are new since January, but the SQDC is expanding its selection of products gradually. Cannabis-infused sparkling water, tea and malt products are currently available, as is hash. But gummi bears, chocolates and other items that could be tempting to minors are illegal in Quebec.

The provincial pot retailer has grabbed more than 30 per cent of business from the black market in its first year-and-a-half of operations.

Bergeron hopes to see the SQDC reach a 49-per-cent share of Quebec’s pot trade in the next 12 months.

“We have a three-year plan,” he said, which involves reaching a 66-per-cent share of the black market by 2022 and 75 per cent by 2023.

“I think it’s feasible,” he said. “When you look at the (U.S.) states that went through this process, 80 per cent of the black market (is about as high as you can expect). So if we have 75 to 80 per cent, we will be successful.”

e-mail icon Facebook icon Twitter icon LinkedIn icon Reddit icon
Rate this article: 
Regional Marijuana News: