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Crunchbase vs The Global Cannabis 50

Let’s tally up the top-ranked cannabis companies for 2022 in Crunchbase’s database and compare them with our own end-of-year rankings.




IN ADDITION TO doing the Global Cannabis 50 rankings to close out 2022, the GCT team has been tracking Crunchbase’s rolling rankings of cannabis companies in its database for the past year. Crunchbase tracks 1.5 million-plus public and private global enterprises, ranking them all in the rolling Crunchbase (CB) Rank.

GCT has taken a snapshot of the CB Rank for cannabis companies once per quarter for the past year. We call each quarter’s Top 20 list by CB Rank our Global Cannabis Power Players (GCPP). You can see the Q4 GCPP list on p15 of this issue.

What we’ve discovered in this exercise is that the Crunchbase ranking of cannabis companies is very volatile, even mercurial. Companies pop in and out of the Top 20 from quarter-to-quarter and might even go from Top 10 one quarter to out of the Top 50 the next.

We don’t know exactly how Crunchbase derives its CB Rank for cannabis companies, but the formula seems to favor tech-focused companies and especially likes recent investor activity such as series rounds for private companies. A private cannabis company like Cookies, which isn’t looking for outside investment, doesn’t rate highly in the CB Rank, probably because Crunchbase doesn’t have the data to rate it.

There are definitely big flaws with the Crunchbase picture of the cannabis marketplace. But in a way, the accuracy of the model isn’t as important to us as its impact. Many investors use tools like Crunchbase for their research, so we should care about the picture of the cannabis industry such sites present.

Despite the volatility of the CB Rank from quarter to quarter, over the course of a full year, the top cannabis companies did tend to win out in our CGPP rankings. Among the public cannabis companies in our year-long GCPP ranking, there is strong correlation with the Global Cannabis 50 rankings.


Damon Poeter is the editor-in-chief of Global Cannabis Times, produced by SmartWork Media. Damon has had a decades-long career in journalism and publishing, including stints at, Venture Beat, Extreme Tech, Ziff Davis, United Business Media, The Nation, the San Francisco Chronicle, Japan Times and the Gilroy Dispatch.



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