Staff, Author at Green Market Report

StaffStaffJuly 19, 2019
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3min800

Howard Lee is the CEO and co-founder of SōRSE Technology, a Seattle-based food and beverage tech company. Lee’s background spans both the startup and Fortune 500 world. Prior to SōRSE, Lee founded and fund-raised for two successful startups, served as CEO for Photo Works, a NASDAQ listed company, and as Senior Vice President at Disney, where he ran a division with thousands of people and millions of dollars in revenue.

GMR Executive Spotlight Q&A – 

Full birth name: Howard Lee

Title: CEO and Co-founder

Company: SōRSE Technology Corporation

Years at current company: 3+

Education profile: I attended College but didn’t graduate. Instead, I decided to go to Silicon Valley and work on start-ups in the early 80’s.

Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis:

  • I founded two successful companies that were Venture Backed. One was successful for investors and the other wasn’t.

  • I was the CEO of a NASDAQ listed company called Photo Works.

  • I was Senior Vice President of Disney Ecommerce & Catalog.

Company Mission: Our mission is to make working and consuming cannabis safer, easier, and more fun. We aim for our emulsion technology to be the standard for quality and safety in the industry. With the SōRSE emulsion, CBD, other cannabinoids, and terpenes can be added to any food, beverage, or topical product with even distribution, predictable onset, and without the cannabis taste or smell. The emulsion is also easily incorporated into any manufacturing process. These are differentiators that we see strengthening and improving the industry and benefiting producers and consumers in a significant way.

Company’s most successful achievement: Scaling the use of our emulsion to produce 10,000 units every 15 minutes for our customer(s).

Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): Yes.

If so, how much?: $10,000,000 to date.

Any plans on raising capital in the future? We do not have plans to raise additional capital; we are cash positive and profitable.

Most important company 5 year goal: Expanding our emulsion technology world wide and more thoroughly in North America


StaffStaffJuly 17, 2019
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3min1701

Dean Watershas been executing successful media/marketing strategies for a variety of Fortune 500 brands for over 30 years. After founding VIMBY, he forged a substantial alignment with Mark Burnett resulting in various nationally awarded creative campaigns. Last year, Dean founded The Flowertown Platform and The Flowertown Agency as a two-pronged approach designed to educate new consumers entering the marketplace and also to give cannabis brands the proper marketing tools for normalization.

GMR Executive Spotlight Q&A – 

 

Full birth name: Dean Evan Waters

Title: CEO

Company: Flowertown, LLC

Years at current company: 1.5 years

Education profile: Started working in Media at age 18

Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: Worked in the cable industry from 1990-2004, many successes in the massive growth cable industry.  Started my own company that is still operating (2006-current day) called VIMBY.  VIMBY started as a destination website and ended up becoming a very successful brand studio after partnering w Mark Burnett. Many successful campaigns and awards with Mark Burnett as a partner for 9 years.  We were the Mark Burnett Content Studio.  VIMBY is still in existence in Burbank, CA.  

Company Mission: To equip new consumers with the confidence to explore the positive life-changing possibilities of cannabis, free of the existing stigmas. 

Company’s most successful achievement: We’ve secured an executive team comprised of award-winning creatives, producers and strategists along with strategic partnership with CohnReznick that is poised to be the industry leader in reaching new consumers entering the cannabis space.   

Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): Yes

If so, how much?: $2.5M

Any plans on raising capital in the future? Yes

Most important company 5 year goal: To be the trusted household name in cannabis education, content, and product/retail recommendations at the standard of current CPG markets.

 


StaffStaffJuly 16, 2019
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4min1770

With one of the largest cannabis technology fundraises completed to date,  Jane Technologies, Inc., a retail software company that created the first and largest online cannabis marketplace, has announced it has secured $21 million in Series B funding.

The I “Heart” Jane team is the company behind the first cannabis e-commerce marketplace expands to keep up with global demand for retail cannabis products sold online.

This latest round of funding, led by new and returning investors, will allow Jane to expand its online marketplace to international vendors, bolster its data analytics platform, and deliver data to other industries. The funds will also enable Jane to continue to advance its e-commerce platform of more than 150,000 products with real-time integration into point-of-sale systems.

In October 2018 Jane announced $6 million in Series A funding, which enabled the tech company to grow its technological advances and data analytics while providing consumers an optimized shopping experience. The company is currently in partnership with more than 700 stores across 21 states. 

As the cannabis industry continues to rapidly expand, Jane’s internal data has demonstrated people spend double on online purchases than in-person. Today people who purchase CBD spend 50% more than those who do not. Research also shows the online cannabis shopper will spend an average of $206 a month compared to the offline shopper who spends only $122 a month. 

“We’ve seen Jane effectively support some of the largest retail clients in the country and are pleased to partner with the software innovator so they can grow exponentially,” said lead investor Nick Deans of Pakala Jane Partners. “The online retail marketplace allows Jane to promote local businesses and increase sales with larger shopping cart purchases while keeping transaction costs down.”

Ian Dominguez of Delta Emerald Ventures sees significant value creation opportunity in Jane’s consumer-centric data. “Jane’s purpose-built platform will continue to drive operational improvement for the cannabis industry. In addition, the Jane platform translates across many industries, making Jane as a whole, the future of omnichannel data.”

“Within the rapidly evolving cannabis space, Jane’s insights as the largest facilitator of e-commerce in the industry are invaluable to its partners, particularly for brands seeking to establish and position themselves within an increasingly crowded marketplace,” said Jason Adler, Managing Partner of Gotham Green Partners. “This investment provides resources for building additional infrastructure and proprietary interfaces to help cannabis businesses worldwide to maximize their potential.”  

Jane Technologies Founder & CEO, as well as U.S. veteran, Socrates Rosenfeld stated that “in a world dominated by major multi-national online retailers, we’re bringing together innovative technology to support local businesses, and connecting customers to wellness benefits in their region.”  He also explained that “expanding to global markets is key for Jane as we continue to pioneer the industry and grow an industry-leading team. By helping cannabis companies in the U.S. and overseas, we are localizing the online sales process by bringing together dispensaries, brands and consumers through automation.”


StaffStaffJuly 16, 2019
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4min1250

Shea Alderete is a passionate and strategic entrepreneur with over 15 years of experience in the cannabis industry. Shea has focused on revolutionizing cannabis for the past decade to provide clean medicine from its extraction, using his technical background to produce premium cannabis product and employ cutting-edge technology at Gen X. Previously, Shea had a professional career in baseball and recognized that there was a gap in the market for anti-inflammatory medicines for pain relief. Shea has long term experience working with reputable brands in the cannabis industry such as Moxie and HTH, where he set the innovative standard for cannabis extraction and paved the way for their success. He has won numerous cannabis product awards with the Cloud Vapes brand, which today is a $70M USD-a-year profitable business. In addition to this, Shea has won the Chalice Cup of California for the best CBD products as well as the Canada Karma Cup for the best vaporizer and terpenes in 2016.

 

GMR Executive Spotlight Q&A – 

 

Full birth name: Shea Alderete

Title: Founder and CEO

Company: Gen X Biosciences

Years at current company: 4 years

Education profile: Bachelor’s degree in Business Marketing

Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: Played professional Baseball. 

Company Mission: Gen X is consistently on the cutting edge of scalable production and delivers products that far exceed industry standards through its unique understanding of the chemistry and chemical processes involved in distillate extraction, coupled with access to the world’s best machinery and equipment. With the Company’s pending listing on the CSE and capital raise, Gen X is poised to be the leader in high-capacity and high-quality distillate production in California and beyond the Golden State.

Company’s most successful achievement: Gen X was the first ever cannabis brand to sponsor the 2016 X Games, giving Gen X national television exposure on ESPN and ABC as a sponsor of professional supercross star Tyler Bereman.

Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): Yes

If so, how much?: Gen X has raised $3 million to date.

Any plans on raising capital in the future? Yes, we are raising another $2-3 million.

Most important company 5 year goal: Gen X’s strategy to-date has been focused on utilizing cutting edge technology and our proprietary “molecular perfection” distillation process to produce premium cannabis products. The next five years will allow us to spread the platform, not only across the 50 states in the U.S., but internationally as well.


StaffStaffJuly 15, 2019
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5min1480

Thomas came to CannaTrac® with a long list of attributes. His previous business experience includes over 18 years in residential and commercial real estate finance. During this time, he managed a corporate office along with 4 out-of-state offices and was responsible for over 100 employees. 

His professional marketing and advertising experience started in 2005, where he assisted with the development of an improved marketing campaign for 14 publications. He saw a niche and this led him to start T E G Resources, Ltd., in late 2007, where he provided marketing consulting to small-medium sized businesses looking to expand within their market and become more efficient. 

Gavin started as a consultant for CannaTrac Technology in September of 2015, assisting with marketing. After helping retool the layout of the company’s marketing plan, the company hired him as the Director of Marketing in February of 2016 and promoted him to COO in May of 2017. While in his position as COO, he established relationships throughout the industry and beyond. In January of 2019, the Board of Directors appointed him to the position of CEO.

Since he took the chair over CannaTrac has exploded, becoming first to market in multiple industries and making history. Through innovative marketing strategies and the excellent network he has established, Gavin has brought CannaTrac into the limelight and is moving closer and closer to making the company the go-to payment solution for cashless transactions.

GMR Executive Spotlight Q&A – 

Full birth name: Thomas E. Gavin IV

Title: Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer

Company: CannaTrac® Technology, Inc.

Years at current company: 4

Education profile: Gavin holds a Bachelor of Arts in Criminal Justice from Governors State University and is currently certified by the Independent Community Bankers of America as a Business Analysis Professional (CBAP).

Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: Prior to joining the cannabis industry, Gavin gained valuable business and financial experience in his almost two decades in residential and commercial real estate finance, which included the management of over 100 employees. Following his time in the real estate industry, Gavin founded TEG Resources, Ltd. There, he used his business and marketing skills to assist many small to medium companies in enhancing efficiency and expanding into successful businesses. Finally, seeing an opportunity in an industry he is passionate about that merged his finance background with his unique ability to grow small businesses into successful ventures, he joined CannaTrac®.

Company Mission: CannaTrac®’s main mission is promoting safety within the cannabis industry through its cashless payment solution, the CannaCard®. The CannaCard® comes in both a physical card and a mobile app to encourage use through consumer convenience and remove cash from the cannabis industry. The Company also provides the cannabis industry with highly-vetted background checks through its company, FIRST, Inc, to strengthen trust between banks and cannabis companies. CannaTrac® educates both financial institutions and cannabis companies on how to work within the complicated federal regulatory framework to enhance partnerships that result in overall increased industry safety.

Company’s most successful achievement: CannaTrac® has recently announced a few large accomplishments, including placing CannaCard® loading stations in 18,000 locations, integration into the Adilas point-of-sale(POS) system, which serves more than 900 cannabis-related businesses, and a handheld POS system with popular payment service provider, NEXGO. Most notably, the Company has become the first-ever cannabis company to sponsor a red carpet event, including the Grammy Awards®, Oscars®, the Golden Globes® and Los Angeles Metropolitan Fashion Week.

Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): Yes

If so, how much?: $3.1 Million

Any plans on raising capital in the future? Yes

Most important company 5 year goal: CannaTrac’s most important 5 year goals are to expand the brand into multiple countries and be recognized as the cannabis industry’s #1 cashless payment solution.

 


StaffStaffJuly 12, 2019
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8min3720

Jessica Billingsley is a technology pioneer, solutions creator and industry leader, providing proven compliance software solutions to the cannabis market. She is the Chief Executive Officer of Akerna—the first cannabis compliance technology company to be traded on Nasdaq—making her the first CEO from this market space to bring a company to a major U.S. exchange. Jessica is also the CEO of Akerna’s flagship subsidiary—MJ Freeway. She established MJ Freeway in 2010 and it is the leading seed-to-sale regulatory compliance technology provider and developer of the cannabis industry’s first enterprise resource planning (ERP) platform. Akerna also offers Leaf Data Systems as a government resource for public sector compliance. Combined entities tracked more than $15 billion in world-wide, client cannabis sales to date. She is the first woman ever from the cannabis industry to receive the prestigious Fortune’s “Most Promising Women Entrepreneur Award” and is also recognized as one of Inc.’s “Female Founders 100.” Jessica received a degree in Communications and Computer Science from the University of Georgia and lives with her daughter in Denver.

GMR Executive Spotlight Q&A – 

Full birth name: Jessica Billingsley 

Title: Chief Executive Officer, Akerna and Chief Executive Officer, MJ Freeway

Company: Akerna and MJ Freeway

Years at current company:  Akerna launched in June 2019. Nine and a half years at MJ Freeway.

Education profile:  At 16 years old, I received a full academic scholarship to attend the University of Georgia, where I received a degree in Communications and Computer Science.

Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis:  Prior to forming MJ Freeway, I built and managed technology operations with an emphasis on executive management, corporate culture, finance, and strategic relations. I launched my first company at 22, and I’ve been a successful founder, owner, COO and CEO of several companies.

Company Mission: Our technology empowers a compliant cannabis industry to prove outcomes that positively change lives every day.

Company’s most successful achievement: Nine years ago, my co-founder and I invented seed-to-sale tracking upon identifying the need for organic material tracking and compliance SaaS solutions in the growing cannabis industry. We were supporting one of the first cannabis dispensaries and grows in Colorado, and saw that cannabis needed technology built for it not adapted from other industries. And we believed visibility across the entire supply chain from seed-to-sale would be a requirement for the industry’s sustained growth. MJ Freeway was born with the launch of our patent-pending cannabis seed-to-sale technology. Today, seed-to-sale tracking is a requirement of most state’s that regulate legal cannabis. And to date MJ Freeway has tracked more than $13B in legal cannabis sales.

In 2017, in response to what I saw as the maturing of the cannabis market to multi-state enterprise businesses, MJ Freeway launched the cannabis industry’s first ERP. We also led the international expansion in the cannabis technology sector very early on in 2012 in Canada then into Spain. Today, our total international footprint spans 13 countries. Innovation and seeing what opportunities are next on the horizon – and then being ready for them first – is a hallmark of MJ Freeway and now Akerna. 

Most recently, I’m proud of an accomplishment that is a testament to the entire MJ Freeway team. Via a merger between MJ Freeway and MTech, a shell company formed for the purpose of acquiring a cannabis technology company, Akerna is the first software company that serves cannabis businesses to be traded on a major U.S. exchange. Akerna is traded on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol: KERN. It’s an unprecedented milestone signifying a shift in beliefs and generating ripples of opportunity.  

Finally, I’m proud to have broken a couple of glass ceilings by serving as CEO of a technology company and holding a CEO position in a publicly traded company. Unfortunately, both are very rare occurrences. MJ Freeway launched last year the One Woman Challenge campaign to empower women in their careers. I want to reverse the growing decline of women in tech. It’s appalling to learn there’s a smaller percentage of women working in tech today than 25 years ago. Please learn more about the #OneWomanChallenge on our website and social pages and get involved. 

Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): Yes

If so, how much?: $25M in private financing prior to this most recent public transaction.

Any plans on raising capital in the future? Yes. Akerna’s strategy is to consolidate cannabis technology companies to connect data points in the global cannabis supply chain. Raising capital is a piece of our strategy to fully execute on Akerna’s strategy and is a reason for our listing on Nasdaq to be able to access more cost effective capital.

Most important company 5-year goal: To build the world’s most transparent and accountable consumer packaged goods supply chain. There’s an explosion of growth in consumers’ desire for transparency in products, which starts with transparency in the supply chain. With MJ Platform’s technology, I can tell you what farm the cannabis in your gummy was harvested from, what date it was harvested, and what nutrients were added prior to harvest. We can then follow the progression of the exact cannabis in that gummy until the moment it was sold to you. Seed-to-sale technology gives an unprecedented level of transparency across the supply chain. We intend to build on MJ Platform and grow Akerna through acquisitions to connect more data points across the cannabis supply chain and empower businesses, governments, and the public with the information they need to make better decisions. We are excited about the explosive growth of this industry and how compliance technology will underpin it. 


StaffStaffJuly 11, 2019
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10min940

Kelowna, British Columbia – July 11, 2019 /AxisWire/ Lexaria Bioscience Corp. (OTCQX: LXRP) (CSE: LXX) (the “Company” or “Lexaria”), a drug delivery platform innovator, announces  that it has entered a definitive 5-year agreement, via its subsidiary Lexaria Hemp Corp., to provide Lexaria’s patented DehydraTECHTM technology to Universal Hemp LLC, a B2B manufacturing company of high-performing hemp-derived bulk ingredients to the nutraceutical and consumer packaged goods industries, for utilization into many CBD-based food ingredients to be produced and sold across the USA immediately, and in Canada when regulations permit.

Competitive financial details including royalty rates remain confidential and undisclosed although the companies have agreed to disclose minimum payments over the life of the agreement of US$3,750,000. 

“We are very excited about signing this licensing agreement with Lexaria Bioscience to bring to market Lexaria’s highly effective delivery system which makes cannabidiol or hemp-derived CBD readily available in the human body,” said Chad Kahunahana, CEO and Founder of Universal Hemp. “Lexaria’s unique technology was developed over many years for specified applications and is now, for the first time, being applied to CBD at scale and available for general use. We anticipate our SuperBio Infusion line of ingredients will become the industry leader for CBD-infused health and beauty, food and beverage, wellness, athletic and other products where maximum performance is vital. In terms of bioavailability, shelf stability and taste this is the best performing technology in the market, hands down. Our corporate customers cannot wait to put our water-soluble solution into their products!” added Kahunahana.

The DehydraTECH-enabled food ingredients are protected under Lexaria’s many existing US-granted patents and may include forms such as CBD-infused wheat or corn flour, gum Arabic, whey protein, green tea, tapioca starch and many others including forms suitable for beverage and dietary supplement formulation. 

“We are pleased to announce our new licensee Universal Hemp whose well respected presence in the hemp industry will enable our patented technology to have widespread use and distribution in high-performance products providing precision dosing, maximum strength, and rapid uptake,” said Chris Bunka, Lexaria Bioscience CEO.

Universal Hemp plans to make its CBD-infused bulk food ingredients available throughout the USA immediately, and in Canada when regulations permit. 

About the Market

According to industry research, U.S. sales of CBD are expected to grow 10x to an estimated $20 Billion by 2024. Edibles such as food, drinks and nutritional supplements are the largest category for CBD products. With the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill which included the Hemp Farming Act of 2018, all parts of the industrial hemp plant, including CBD and other hemp-derived cannabinoids, can be sold legally across the United States.

About Universal Hemp 

Universal Hemp LLC is a leading manufacturer of hemp-based raw ingredients and CBD derivatives for innovative brands. The company plans to make its CBD-infused bulk food ingredients available across the USA immediately and in Canada when regulations permit. The company has offices in Boulder, Colorado; Brooklyn, New York; and Honolulu, Hawaii. Universal Hemp is currently in discussions with blue-chip investors to raise a significant funding round to build the largest cGMP manufacturing facility in North America for full-spectrum, highly-bioavailable bulk ingestible CBD-based ingredients to supply the rapidly growing needs of its customers. www.universalhemp.co

About Lexaria

Lexaria Bioscience Corp. has developed and out-licenses its disruptive delivery technology that promotes healthier ingestion methods, lower overall dosing and higher effectiveness of lipophilic active molecules. Lexaria has multiple patents pending in over 40 countries around the world and has patents granted in the USA and in Australia for utilization of its DehydraTECH™ delivery technology. Lexaria’s technology provides increases in intestinal absorption rates; more rapid delivery to the bloodstream; and important taste-masking benefits, for orally administered bioactive molecules including cannabinoids, vitamins, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), nicotine and other molecules.

www.lexariabioscience.com

 For regular updates, connect with Lexaria on Twitter https://twitter.com/lexariacorp and on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/lexariabioscience/

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT: 

Lexaria Bioscience Corp. 

Alex Blanchard, Communications Manager

(250)765-6424 Ext 202

Or

NetworkNewsWire (NNW)

www.NetworkNewsWire.com

 

For Universal Hemp Information Contact:

Neshama Abraham, Communications Manager

(303) 413-8252 or neshama@universalhemp.co 

www.UniversalHemp.co

 

FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS

This release includes forward-looking statements. Statements which are not historical facts are forward-looking statements. The Company makes forward-looking public statements concerning its expected future financial position, results of operations, cash flows, financing plans, business strategy, products and services, competitive positions, growth opportunities, plans and objectives of management for future operations, including statements that include words such as “anticipate,” “if,” “believe,” “plan,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intend,” “may,” “could,” “should,” “will,” and other similar expressions are forward-looking statements, including but not limited to: that any additional stock warrants or stock options will be exercised. Such forward-looking statements are estimates reflecting the Company’s best judgment based upon current information and involve a number of risks and uncertainties, and there can be no assurance that other factors will not affect the accuracy of such forward-looking statements. Factors which could cause actual results to differ materially from those estimated by the Company include, but are not limited to, government regulation, managing and maintaining growth, the effect of adverse publicity, litigation, competition, the patent application and approval process and other factors which may be identified from time to time in the Company’s public announcements and filings. There is no assurance that existing capital is sufficient for the Company’s needs or that it will be able to raise additional capital. There is no assurance that Lexaria will successfully complete any other contemplated or existing technology license agreements; or that results from any studies will be favorable or in any way support future business activities of any kind. Scientific R&D is often unpredictable and unanticipated results could emerge from any study and have a material impact. There is no assurance that Universal Hemp Corp. will achieve the goals of its business plan and be capable of fully executing its relationship with the Company. There is no assurance that any planned corporate activity, scientific study, R&D, business venture, or initiative will be pursued, or if pursued, will be successful. There is no assurance that any of Lexaria’s postulated uses, benefits, or advantages for the patented and patent-pending technology will in fact be realized in any manner or in any part. No statement herein has been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).  TurboCBDTM, DehydraTECHTM technology and ViPovaTM products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

 

The CSE has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

 


StaffStaffJuly 11, 2019
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4min3680
Antonio Frazier is the Director of Operations at CannaSafe, the first ISO licensed cannabis lab in the world and the leading marketshare holder in California.
Het met CannaSafe President, Aaron Riley, while playing football together at Furman University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree; he also holds a B.S. in Materials Engineering from Clemson.
Frazier began his career as a Nuclear Quality Engineer for the Tennessee Valley Authority, certifying and verifying final construction of nuclear components. He then moved to aerospace engineering, performing quality assurance for the foundry, testing lab, heat treat, and special finishing departments for SKF USA (Baltimore).
Antonio enjoys using his industrial, public safety focused skillset to forge the standards of a burgeoning industry; cannabis is just a huge bonus. He’s an English Premiere League fanatic (Chelsea), married with two sons, and resides in Los Angeles, California.
GMR Executive Spotlight Q&A –

Full birth name: Antonio Frazier

Title: Director of Operations

Company: CannaSafe (https://csalabs.com/)

Years at current company: 2 years

Education profile: Antonio played football at Furman University with Aaron Riley, current president of CannaSafe. He wanted a degree in engineering, but Furman didn’t have an engineering program, so he ended up driving between both schools for two years and received 2 B.S. degrees – one from Furman University and the other from Clemson University in Materials Engineering.

https://www.furmanpaladins.com/sports/m-footbl/spec-rel/091009aaa.html

Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: Reducing foundry scrap by over 25%, and therefore saved SKF USA over $100,000 per month on material waste. This lead me to win the 2015 SKF Excellence Award, a global recognition within the company. This was done by implementing new SOPs and six sigma practices, which lead to much better on delivery time of final parts and helped increase moral throughout the company.

Company Mission: To set the standard in cannabis science and ensure patients have safe access to medicine.

Company’s most successful achievement: Becoming the first ISO 17025 certified cannabis lab in the world. CannaSafe is now currently the market share leader for California compliance testing.

Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): Yes, but not publicly.

If so, how much?:  N/A

Any plans on raising capital in the future? Our team has not decided on this as of yet.

Most important company 5 year goal: To have multiple locations across the country, and to help establish Federal industrial hemp (CBD) testing requirements.

 


StaffStaffJuly 10, 2019
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6min2990

Jill Ellsworth is founder and CEO of Willow Industries, Inc., which provides state-of-the-art, ozone-based technology for post-harvest microbial decontamination. Upon launching Willow Industries in 2015, Jill’s aim was—and remains—to protect consumers and patients by helping producers put clean, safe product on the market. 

Willow’s technology has proven to reduce yeast, mold, bacteria, mildew, E.Coli, and other dangerous pathogens, all while protecting the medicinal properties of the plant. The introduction of the WillowPureSM system to the market has provided growers a solution to passing newly set state regulation standards. 

Fueled by her passion for innovation and dedication to healthier living, Jill is a vocal advocate for the cannabis industry’s adoption of FDA-like standards and proactive promotion of safety measures.

Jill serves on the Cannabis Health and Safety Advisory Committee for the City of Denver and is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) with a Master’s of Science in Nutrition, Dietetics, and Food Science.

Prior to launching Willow Industries in 2015, Jill founded Vibrant Earth Juices (VEJ), a cold-pressed organic juice company, in 2010 and later parlayed VEJ into a beverage distribution company.

In 2013, Jill was named Female Entrepreneur of the Year in Emerging Business by the Santa Barbara Women’s Economic Ventures group. Most recently, Jill was selected by Marijuana Business Daily as one of their 2019 Women to Watch in Cannabis. She has also been honored by cannabis lifestyle magazine, GreenDorphin, as one of the 20 Most Influential Women in Cannabis and Industry Leaders Magazine as one of the Influential Businesswomen in the Cannabis Industry.

GMR Executive Spotlight Q&A – 

Full birth name: Jill Lynn Ellsworth (Maiden: Latham)

Title: Founder / CEO

Company: Willow Industries, Inc. (https://willowindustries.com/)

Years at current company: 3.5 years

Education profile: 

BS Communications – California State University, Northridge 

MS Nutrition, Dietetics & Food Science – California State University, Northridge 

Dietetic Internship : Registered Dietitian  – Cal Poly San Louis Obispo

Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: I am most proud of the cold-pressed, organic juice business, Vibrant Earth Juices, I founded and launched in Santa Barbara, CA in 2011 and Denver, CO in 2013. Vibrant Earth was one of the first fresh juice companies in Santa Barbara and Denver and quickly became very successful. From this, I was named Female Entrepreneur of the Year – Emerging Business in 2013. This was the start of my vision to develop innovative products and/or solutions for consumers. 

Company Mission: Willow Industries strives to be the cannabis industry’s most reliable and innovative solution for producing clean, safe cannabis that consumers can trust.

Company’s most successful achievement: Willow’s most successful achievement was innovating a solution to a huge problem in the industry – microbial contamination. While we were very ahead of our time when we first launched Willow, we remained focused and patient, knowing the industry needed to catch up to our vision and what was important to the future of the industry. Staying the course and not giving up before the industry understood our value is our most successful achievement. Now with many cultivators adopting our tech, we continue to focus on our vision and goals.

Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): Yes

If so, how much?: We have raised $2 million. 

Any plans on raising capital in the future? Certainly. We have very aggressive and aspirational goals that will lead us to the need for more financing. Right now, we are focused on executing our plans for the most recent funding round. 

Most important company 5 year goal: We look for Willow to become a standard for consumer safety in the cannabis industry (modeling safety standards from the food & beverage industries) and for cultivators to see Willow as the solution for clean cannabis. We are focusing our efforts on cannabis compliance and helping to educate the regulatory sector of the industry as well. We will continue to push the boundaries for clean cannabis innovations, while keeping consumer safety at the focal point of our goals.

 

 


StaffStaffJuly 9, 2019
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3min3330
Shawn “JAY-Z” Carter announced online today that he will enter into a multi-year partnership with Caliva as Chief Brand Strategist. The statement said that he will play a crucial role in driving creative direction, outreach efforts, and strategy for the brand.

Caliva is one of the largest vertically integrated cannabis companies in California and has quickly become a market leader in cannabis consumer products in the state. The company has a best in its class facility in San Jose, that produces top quality flower and cannabis oil.

In this position, Mr. Carter said he will focus on and work to increase the economic participation of citizens returning from incarceration – many of who are not seeing the monetary benefits of legalization – through advocacy, job training, and overall employee and workforce development.
“Anything I do, I want to do correctly and at the highest level. With all the potential in the cannabis industry, Caliva’s expertise and ethos make them the best partner for this endeavor. We want to create something amazing, have fun in the process, do good and bring people along the way.” – Shawn “JAY-Z” Carter.
Carter joins a long line of rappers who have signed up with various cannabis companies. Many like Wiz Khalifa, Snoop Dogg, Kurupt, and Two Chainz have signed deals with companies or begun their own signature brands. While singers like Willie Nelson of Willie’s Reserve don’t seem involved on a daily basis, Khalifa is known to be deeply involved in the creation of his brand Khalifa Kush.
Caliva branded products can be found at their flagship dispensary in San Jose and dispensaries throughout the state of California. Last month the company acquired Zola, the maker of plant-powered beverages, to expand into the cannabis and hemp-based CBD (hCBD) beverage space. Caliva is exploring entering the infused beverage market in several categories, including sparkling water, functional shots, functional powders, teas, cold brew coffee, and sports drinks. Zola’s key relationships with distributors, ranging from regional to national, will enable fast rollout of hCBD beverages to targeted markets.


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