Canada’s cannabis industry is growing, there’s no denying that. Whether it’s the creation of innovative new products or the unexpected COVID-19 boom—it’s here to stay.
With Cannabis 2.0 in full swing, more and more people are experimenting with something—that only a few years ago—was still taboo and stigmatized.
As new retail cannabis businesses pop up around the country, people are looking for that special customer experience where they feel comfortable asking questions about the assortment of cannabis products.
That’s why we created the 13th Floor to help Albertans see past the stigma and experience something that makes a positive impact in people’s lives.
Welcome to the 13th Floor. As Alberta’s premier cannabis retailer, we’re dedicated to providing an amazing selection of top-quality cannabis products matched with an unparalleled customer experience. Our mission is to demystify the cannabis industry once and for all.
We often get asked about the inspiration behind our name, who our team is, and where we’re headed. Well, you asked, and we listened. Read on to learn everything about 13th Floor.
Why the 13th Floor?
It started with a passion for innovation and a desire to do something original in the cannabis retail market. We wanted our name to resonate with the mystique, discovery, and excitement around cannabis use.
There’s that superstition around the 13th Floor, and the aura around cannabis prohibition and now legalization. We felt the name was perfect to appeal to a broad demographic and help us create a 1920’s speakeasy in-store experience—that cool hotel lobby vibe with a vintage elevator theme and colorful art deco accents.
Who are these cannabis entrepreneurs? We’re Craig, Bob, and Stephanie. Allow us to introduce ourselves.
Meet Craig Kolochuk
With over 20 years in the oil and gas industry, Founder & CEO Craig Kolochuk pivoted to cannabis in early 2018. Having always had an enthusiasm for what he saw as a budding industry, he used some oil and gas cash flow, and over eight million dollars of fundraising to jumpstart a new company called SugarBud Craft Growers.
After acquiring a parcel of land in Stavely, Alberta with a Health Canada application in progress, Craig turned his attention to licensing, building, and establishing a world-class vertical grow facility.
Any bumps on the road to retail were tackled head-on with the help of Vice President Bob Richardson and his expertise dealing with the AGLC.
Meet Bob Richardson
Bob is no stranger to the nuances and inner workings of the retail industry. He understands AGLC regulations, having opened and managed 25+ Crowfoot Wine and Spirits locations in Alberta alone. He was—and still is—the perfect partner to navigate the rapidly-expanding cannabis industry.
In the fall of 2019, with a firm grip on retail operations, Craig and Bob parted ways with SugarBud to begin what would become 13th Floor Cannabis. That’s when they met Stephanie Rombough.
Meet Stephanie Rombough
Through her experience as a retail specialist at Pandora Jewelry, Stephanie brought unmatched customer service expertise in a premium, lock-and-key retail space. She understood the importance of providing an outstanding customer experience with a talented, cannabis savvy team providing value and a superior selection of product and prices to meet everyone’s needs.
Together, Craig, Bob, and Stephanie have led 13th Floor Cannabis to the finish line. Our extensive expertise in business, compliance, and customer service has given us a deadly competitive edge. We’ve gone ahead and added locations in both Calgary and Airdrie with plans for further operational expansion in 2021.
Adapting to a fast-moving industry
The early days of legalization saw up-and-coming cannabis companies experience their fair share of growing pains. Retailers were often undersupplied, prices were high, and quality was inferior compared to the black market.
But things were changing—and quickly. First-hand experience on the grow side taught us everything we needed to know about the inner workings of the cannabis market in Alberta.
As a regulated industry, we finally got the opportunity to bring in black market genetics, which became a game changer to overall quality and selection. The significant advantage of the black market was gone. All it took was a year for our producers to grow beautiful, high THC buds that were ready for retail.
More demand also led to more diversity, including cannabis products such as edibles, drinks, vape cartridges, extracts, and pre-rolls. At the 13th Floor, we offer something for every taste, including more than 50 types of chocolates, gummies, candies, and 10 different cannabis drinks.
We also provide therapeutic cannabis products, including CBD creams and oils. Across our products and locations, our focus will always be honest pricing, top-shelf quality and an unforgettable customer experience.
Overcoming roadblocks and challenges
Every emerging industry has its obstacles. While legalization was a leap in the right direction, the journey was by no means over.
For an up-and-coming cannabis company, securing adequate funding can be a challenge. Although cannabis ventures are often wildly successful, a remaining sliver of uncertainty tends to elicit pause, especially from more established financial institutions.
At the 13th Floor, our ability to fast-track negotiations with regulatory agencies like the AGLC was one of the keys to our early success. We were able to secure equity funding and debt, expedite construction of two locations and see a quick return on our investment.
The cannabis industry itself is constantly on the move. Innovation and creativity have led to powder products, oil infusers, tea bags, and luxury edibles—all products that we offer.
More cannabis producers are highlighting the terpene profiles available in their products. We continue to wait for mass adoption but this will be the tipping point for customers to really customize their experience and elevate the full potential of individual cannabis use.
Our end goal is to break the stigma that continues to cling to the cannabis industry. In this new era of legalization, we want people to go home and think “Am I going to have a glass of wine tonight or am I going to smoke a little or have an edible tonight” How do we plan to do that?
We want our customers to make informed and confident decisions based on the right information, exceptional products, and an in-store experience like no other.
Welcome to the 13th Floor
At the 13th Floor, we take the time to understand your preferences and past experiences to recommend the best cannabis product for you. We’ve designed our stores and trained our staff to create a warm and inviting shopping environment.
Walking into one of our stores is a transformative experience. Don’t believe us? Stop by and see for yourself. We’d love to meet you. Or visit our website to browse our huge selection of unique cannabis products.