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How two cannabis entrepreneurs launched a successful Las Vegas dispensary - Inyo Fine Cannabis

Two finance and insurance professionals from Nevada, David Goldwater and Chris Olsen, dreamed of getting into the cannabis industry and opening a top-notch dispensary. The stars aligned and their local regulators in unincorporated Clark County opened up a limited number of cannabis licenses in the summer of 2014.

The duo jumped on the opportunity, armed with passion for cannabis and strong entrepreneurial spirit.

But they quickly learned what many new cannabis entrepreneurs learn.

“When you apply for a license to operate in the cannabis industry, you put your whole life on the line,” said David. “It’s not only a significant financial commitment, but a significant personal commitment as well.”

And applying for cannabis licenses is far more complicated than just filling out a form – there are business plans to present, a maze of regulations to consider, and stiff competition to beat.

Find out what you don’t know

To win the competitive application process, David and Chris had to demonstrate both traditional business expertise and a firm grasp of the challenges cannabis presents to daily business operation.

“There is no one I would trust more with that kind of commitment than the professionals at Highroad,” David said.

Competitive cannabis application processes result when a jurisdiction opens a limited number of licenses, sometimes even restricted by land zones. This type of application process is a top initial challenge for cannabis entrepreneurs.

David and Chris knew they had a good plan and that they love cannabis, but it turned out they needed more than just a good idea and financial backing.

“We were attracted to Highroad’s record of success in licensing,” David said. “But the attention to detail and efficient use of resources was what made the difference in the end.”

Highroad Founder Greta Carter, national cannabis leader Steve DeAngelo, and Inyo co-principal owner David Goldwater
Highroad Founder Greta Carter, national cannabis leader and author Steve DeAngelo, and Inyo co-principal owner David Goldwater

David vs. Goliath

“Clark County was a really competitive licensing process, and Inyo Fine Cannabis Dispensary had a unique challenge – they probably had the least amount of funding of all the applicants,” Highroad founder Greta Carter said. “And a lot of the competition came into that application process with big money. After the $25,000 application fee, these licenses would immediately be worth millions, and the big guys knew it.”

But the owners, David and Chris, knew they had set themselves up for success after taking a Test Drive with Highroad’s team, Greta Carter and Ryan Fingerhut.

Greta and Ryan reviewed Inyo’s business plan, helped its owners to fill gaps in their knowledge, and eventually offered to take them all the way through the application process.

Score that coveted license with Highroad

“Making the decision to operate a business in the cannabis industry should not be taken lightly. Choosing Highroad was one of the best decisions we made,” David said. “Their assessment of our plans and help getting all our documents together gave us the confidence to go up against stiff competition. Highroad believed in us as much we believed in ourselves, and we won.”

Highroad helped Inyo prepare a winning application that went above and beyond to stand out over the competition – and ultimately won. Two hundred applicants submitted proposals during the process, but only 79 businesses turned in a complete application. Out of those, Inyo won one of just 18 dispensary licenses for unincorporated Clark County and the state of Nevada. The state approved just 55 of 199 applications for Nevada licenses.

And the Inyo Fine Cannabis Dispensary success story continues today. The store currently sees up to 600 clients a day and has expanded twice.

Visit or call us at (760) 671-5647 to get started on your journey to success in the cannabis industry.


Inyo Fine Cannabis Dispensary took advantage of these Highroad services:

  • Readiness assessment

  • State and local license applications

  • Strategic planning

  • Operations management


Clark County Application Data

  • 200 applicants

  • 79 applications deemed complete

  • 18 dispensary licenses awarded

Nevada State Application Data

  • 55 out of 199 applications were approved


Note: Inyo Fine Cannabis Dispensary is also connected to the business names Sweet Goldy Productions LLC and Sweet Goldy LLC.

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