As we reflect on the past year, we are proud to share the innovations made by BLAZE® Solutions. 2023 was a year of substantial growth, technological advancements, and industry recognition.
We Invested in E-commerce
To begin with, one of our most significant milestones this year was the acquisition of Tymber, which led to the creation of BLAZE® ECOM. This move has broadened our product offering and has allowed us to provide a comprehensive e-commerce solution for cannabis retailers.
We were able to expound on our SEO-friendly website e-commerce by introducing BLAZE APPS™. Providing native mobile applications enabled dispensaries to connect and engage with their customers in new ways.
To round out the year we introduced our revolutionary In-Store Shopping solution that offers a more independent and self-guided shopping and checkout experience. It allows in-store shoppers to scan product QR codes with their smartphones to learn more about the products, discover recommended related products, add them to their cart, and pay for their order directly from their phone. This solution reduces wait times for customers, allows customers to shop at their own pace, and increases average order value.
We Expanded our Territories
In terms of geographical expansion, we entered seven new states – Washington, Illinois, Vermont, New York, New Jersey, Montana, and Washington D.C. Establishing our presence in these markets has allowed us to extend our reach and serve a greater number of cannabis retailers.
We Refined our Product and Features
Our product development team was particularly busy this year, implementing various updates and launching new features aimed at saving retailers time and improving platform scale and performance. Key updates included auto-matching Metrc items to BLAZE products on intake, delivery ledger enhancements, new insights reports, scan to transfer feature, and promotion enhancements.
We also made significant efforts to squash bugs, increase stability, and focus on scale in both transaction and location count. We’re pleased to report that we experienced no major issues on cannabis sales holidays like 4/20 or Green Wednesday, and our Metrc v2 integration has further shored up data transmissions.
Watch our 4/20 experience with Mary Alice in Corona, CA as they soft launch their flagship dispensary.
We Received Recognition
On the recognition front, we are honored to be ranked number 916 in the Inc. 5000 Fastest Growing Private Companies, we were nominated for an EMJAY Award, and Greenline, a BLAZE® company, received The Kind Award for the Best POS Retail Solution in the Canadian cannabis space.
We Integrated with New Partners
BLAZE has always bolstered some of the deepest and strongest integrations with software vendors in the cannabis industry. This year we added to our ever expanding ecosystem of integrators with a some of the industry’s leading providers in HR, accounting, compliance, and digital signage.
We announced our integration with Kayapush, a leading software service to help manage human resources and payroll at your dispensary. This integration sends live and historical sales data from BLAZE to Kayapush so cannabis retailers can compare sales to labor costs. This will enable dispensaries and delivery services to effectively and efficiently schedule their employees.
We strengthened our compliance by integrating with Metrc Connect. Integrating with Metrc Connect allows BLAZE-powered dispensaries with a more stable and robust API-environment that offers more control and transparency for cannabis retailers. Dispensaries can easily exchange data between their POS and the state’s track-and-trace system by reducing the amount of manual data inputs and task uploads.
We completed another highly requested integration with Budsense. BudSense offers digital, printed, and web-based cannabis menus that improve the customer shopping experience. This integration enables cannabis dispensaries to build better, more flexible digital menus than ever before. It seamlessly syncs your menu with your inventory so your menu is always up-to-date.
We expanded our accounting integrations with our BLAZE-to-Xero Connector powered by Alembic. The BLAZE-to-Xero Connector quickly creates summarized daily transactions for Sales, Cost of Goods Sold, and Bills for Inventory Receipts. Whether you import once a day or once a month, it’s simple, easy, and fast!
We Hosted and Attended Events
This year brought with it a slew of cannabis events from coast to coast that connected us with new operators in newly legal states. We attended more than a dozen industry trade shows, meetups, and seminars, in addition to hosting some of the most talked about events of the year. Let’s take a look back at some of the hallmark events from 2023.
We kicked off our year at On The Revel Revelry 14 speaking to New York cannabis entrepreneurs on the best way to find a reliable technology partner for sustained growth.
Who could forget our Happy Hour at Fenway Park during NECann Boston! This was the first time ever that Fenway Park allowed a cannabis industry event at their historic State Street Pavilion. It was an outstanding event that was hosted by BLAZE, Trym, Xylem, Springbig, Temeka, New Dia, and The Flower Expo. Checkout the video recap below!
We continued our East Coast events by exhibiting at the Flower Expo in Greenfield, MA. It was great to see the fledgling B2B event bring together New England’s leading cannabis brands and retailers to facilitate business. We were able to connect with several dispensaries who expressed their interest in a more consolidated and seamless software suite.
We headed back to New York to co-host an inclusive Happy Hour for CAURD licensees on a rooftop overlooking the New York City skyline. It was great partnering with Alpharoot and Stronghold to meet with both current operators and applicants alike to connect on how we could help them reach their business goals.
The following months, we attended several events including the Exchange events in Oregon, MIG member meetup in Colorado, the Scottsdale Buyers Club, the Maryland Dispensary Association Mixer, and the Metrc Michigan User Exchange. We hosted another Happy Hour event in St. Louis with our friends from Distru and Springbig at a swanky cigar bar that brought out a who’s who from Missouri’s cannabis industry.
We finished our year at MJBizCon with a bang! We saw some of our current retail partners and a lot of new entrepreneurs entering the space. We made an appearance at all the big afterparties and were honored to be nominated for Best Retail POS at the Emjay Awards. It was an exhilarating but exhausting week at the biggest trade show of the year. We left feeling inspired at how far our industry has come and hopeful that we could help retailers overcome the challenges ahead.
We are Preparing for a Great 2024
Looking back, we are immensely proud of what we’ve achieved in 2023. But we’re not resting on our laurels – we’re already looking forward to what 2024 will bring. As always, our mission is to provide cannabis retailers with the tools they need to run their businesses efficiently and effectively.
Thank you for being part of our journey.