In November of 2019 WeedMD and Starseed, a medically focused, federally licensed cannabis company providing cannabis to insured patients with coverage under their benefit plans, joined forces. In addition to merging with Starseed, WeedMD announced that seasoned cannabis industry leader George Scorsis was appointed as Executive Chair of its board of directors.
Prior to the announcement, George Scorsis served as executive advisor to the WeedMD board and leadership team and is widely recognized in the cannabis and beverage industries for building, leading and managing high-performing management teams.
“We officially welcome the Starseed team to the WeedMD family which together will kick-off 2020 as a very compelling, vertically-integrated cannabis company that will execute across the entire value chain,” said George Scorsis, Executive Chairman of WeedMD. “Starseed’s unique medical distribution platform complements WeedMD’s high-quality cultivation and processing platform. This partnership, along with the $25 million strategic equity investment by LPF, positions WeedMD and its shareholders with a fortified balance sheet and one of the most captive medical cannabis businesses in the country as we enter the new year.”
Before transitioning into becoming a leading executive in the cannabis industry, George Scorsis was considered to be a leading pioneer in the global Red Bull business, hiring a Head of Red Bull Media and Media Sales Manager Canada to develop a Media Department to conceive and sell media content to broadcasters as a revenue generating business unit.
Scorsis played a key leadership role in approaching and securing a deal to participate and sponsor the Air Red Bull content in exchange for revenue. Scorsis deployed a radical restructure to eradicate inefficiencies, shifting the Vancouver finance team to Toronto, creating an amicable transition plan and employee commitment to workflow with minimal disruption.
Scorsis also fortified the tracking and measuring of business data stemming from the field, researching and purchasing a CRM system to facilitate information gathering and dissemination. Scorsis also implemented the national CRM tool with all employees and distributors, providing end-user training on how to maximize the application, eliminating all manual processes and centralizing local and regional critical business information to track daily performance, volume and execution.
Scorsis smoothed over the perception that the US Division of Red Bull and the Canadian business was disjointed and helped Canada maintain a high global profile. George Scorsis convinced the Austrian-based company Founder to be appointed as a key member of the US leadership team, elevating collaboration on product innovation and strategic planning with shared customers, culminating in optimum synergies and cost savings. Scorsis also built and solidified productive relationships with key decision makers at Health Canada as the products changed from NHP classification to the Food Directorate.
Scorsis created a new role hiring a Red Bull Regulatory Manager to partner with Health Canada for collaboration and open dialogue. He utilized the new designation for energy drinks to market Red Bull through billboards and consumer sampling, contributing to a brand uplift with Top of Mind growing by 5 percent.
He found efficiencies across Canadian operations and extract costs as profitability eroded and led the review process of all facets of the operation, devised and deployed a fundamental restructure decreasing headcount by 10 percent, created a cell-based structure in three separate business units.
George Scorsis philanthropy
Toronto resident George Scorsis, Executive Chairman of WeedMD, spearheaded a massive food drive to help The Agincourt Food Bank in Scarborough. Agincourt was feeling the summer slump with donations significantly down, and the requests for food sky rocketing. Traditionally, fall is low season for food banks across the country. They usually see a surge in demand during the summer months, which depletes their stocks.
Heeding the call for help, Scorsis rallied local business executives who grew up in and around Scarborough to organize truckloads of food to be dropped off at the Agincourt Food Bank and raise awareness for more people to donate to this worthy cause.
Many of the executive donors are stepping forward with fond memories of the days playing in Scarborough and how thankful they are for growing up in such a diverse neighborhood that created a place of belonging for a family of new Canadians.
“Scarborough was our safe haven and a place that we’re proud to be part of but also at the core of who we are today,” said donor George Scorsis. “Although many of us have moved away, and times have changed, Scarborough still has a special place in my heart and it was shocking for me to see the challenges that the ACSA Food Bank is facing in supporting the local community. Agincourt Food Bank is in dire need of our support and I am encouraging the community to pitch in and do as much as they can to fill the pantry with much needed food and supplies.”