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Global Cannabis Times Wins SIIA Grand Neal Award




Global Cannabis Times has been awarded the 2023 SIIA Grand Neal for our Fall 2022 print and digital issue featuring Cookies founder and CEO Berner on the cover, a “Cannabis Investors Guide” and lots more of the quality content readers have come to expect from GCT.

The Software & Information Industry Association’s (SIIA) Jesse H. Neal Awards are considered to be the most prestigious accolades in business publishing, sometimes referred to as “the Oscars of B2B.” The Grand Neal is awarded to the very best entry across 59 categories in the contest, including single magazine issues, single articles, series, news coverage, industry coverage, opinion pieces, blogs, use of social media and more.

The Neal Awards were established in 1955. Last Friday’s award presentation at the Marriott Marquis in New York City was the 69th edition of the show.

Global Cannabis Times also won its revenue category for “Best Single Issue of a Tabloid/Newspaper/Magazine” in a field that included Landscape Architecture Magazine, Inside Unmanned Systems and HR Magazine. GCT’s sister publication PETS+ was also a finalist in the “Best Overall Art Direction/Design” category.

GCT last year won the Folio Eddie Award for “Best Magazine Launch > B2B.” SmartWork Media, publisher of Global Cannabis Times, has won numerous industry publishing awards–including Folios, Tabpis and Neals–but this was the company’s first Grand Neal Award in its 20+ year history.

Editor-in-Chief Damon Poeter and SmartWork Media Group Design Editor Victor Cantal were credited for the winning entry.


Cantal described his process for creating a visually stunning, purposeful business magazine:

“The idea is to get people’s attention and to make them stop and read this magazine. We have to design something gorgeous, comprehensible and engaging. Having worked for so many years trying to produce the best possible result in everything, I knew SmartWork Media would get a major award like this at some point. But I didn’t know it would be this moment and this magazine. It’s a validation.”

Added Poeter:

“We set out to create an indispensable trade magazine for licensed operators, professionals and investors in the global cannabis industry. Legal cannabis is a very young sector but at the same time cannabis media is a very crowded field, complete with legacy cannabis media brands that are household names. The Grand Neal Award is a tremendous validation of our mission and our team this early in our run. Honestly, I’m floored by this accolade and I think everybody at Global Cannabis Times is as well.”

SIIA’s Ronn Levine described GCT’s winning entry thusly:

“’At first blush, banking and budtending may not strike you as having much in common. But some pioneering dispensary designers believe that bank branch layouts offer security and service advantages that translate extremely well to the cannabis space.’


“Thus begins ‘Bank On It,’ the Tech Spotlight in the Fall 2022 issue of SmartWork Media’s Global Cannabis Times, named the Grand Neal recipient as the most outstanding entry celebrating journalistic excellence across all categories (and the winner for Best Single Issue of a Tabloid/Newspaper/Magazine).

“Banks to buds may not be offices to condos, but it does highlight a similar 2020s trend. ‘The Big Lead’ in the issue was ‘Cannabis: An Investor’s Guide,’ and there was even an interview with Vicente Fox, former president of Mexico and a proponent of a legal cannabis model.”


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