On Saturday, the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) announced that it had authorized the 250th cannabis retail store to open in Ontario. By Wednesday, at least eleven more had been issued, bringing the number up to 261 stores authorized to open in the province.
According to the AGCO website, there are 59 retailers currently in the public notice period, and a further 734 applications still in process. Since the AGCO started accepting applications from public retailers, applications have been flooding in, however, the organization has committed to issue 40 Retail Store Authorizations (RSAs) per month, doubling it from 20 in September.
At this rate, the province could easily break 300 stores by the end of the year. Analysts have predicted that Ontario could support as many as 1,000 retailers or more, and with many retailers anxiously waiting in the wings to open their stores, the AGCO is trying to get as many approved as possible while still sticking to the rules.
If the AGCO can keep up the pace, it’s entirely possible that they could hit 1,000 stores by this time next year.