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Non-marijuana businesses finding success in pot

Posted at 5:52 PM, Nov 15, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-15 20:52:03-05

The growing marijuana industry is creating some new opportunities for people who say they would have never dreamed of being in the pot business.

The Marijuana Business Convention and Expo this week is set to welcome 18,000 people ready to explore what's out there.

Brian Hubka is the CEO of Contamination Prevention Technologies, a company based in Las Vegas.

He says his primary business is with pharmaceutical firms, but he discovered almost by accident that his products can solve some of pot growers' biggest problems: tiny insects and molds that can destroy the crop.

"I have never used marijuana and I was not a big fan of marijuana," Hubka said.

It's a similar story for OCO Labs, an Oregon company that makes air compressors.

They worked in paintball and now have pivoted to pot.

"There's definitely an advantage of a small business being open to opportunities, being willing to maybe take a ride that might not be a sure thing," said Chris Lively, the director of operations for OCO Labs. 

As the industry has professionalized, experts say you see more suits and fewer tie-dye shirts.

"You have all these people from the mainstream world kicking the tires and some of them used to probably be against marijuana," said Chris Walsh, the founding editor of Marijuana Business Daily. 

Show organizers say they plan on holding the convention in Las Vegas for years to come.