A lot happened last November at the MJ Business Daily annual conference at the Rio Las Vegas Hotel & Casino.
CBE Press introduced the CBE 100, the CBE Political 50 and CBE’s 20 Most Influential Women in the Cannabis Industry, plus thousands of business executives, activists, entrepreneurs, investors and consumers attended the event generating a well-deserved windfall for its hosts, and, a small little start-up won the pitch slam competition.
I was fortunate enough to see the pitch slam presentation and was very impressed with GreenBroz, Inc.’s plan to the degree that I told their Founder and CEO, Cullen Raichart, that I would love to write their company story once they reached $1 million in annual revenues. Since they blew past that number in 2015 revenues this past summer, and are on their way to generating well in excess of $3 million in revenue this year, it is time to share how GreenBroz got to where they are today and where they are headed next!
With money in the bank for the first time since starting the company in 2012, GreenBroz has set its sights on defining the future of finishing the cultivation process on a commercial basis. Although their current product mix serves the needs of the cannabis producing community, Cullen and his team is working diligently on manufacturing processes and product quality standards that yet to exist in the cannabis space that they rightly anticipate will govern their business in the not too distant future.
After spending time in the Navy, Cullen, a self-described lifelong inventor and problem-solver, spent 10 years in the IT world where his security clearance gave him access to some interesting work. When California passed proposition 215 back in the mid 1990’s it opened the door for a new career tract for Cullen and he eventually found his way into the compassionate caregiver ranks.
With prodding from his Dad, who had set up a collective grow in Northern California, he set up a collective in the San Diego area. Not blessed with a green thumb, he eventually began playing with ways to better process the flowers and came up with a dry screen sifter which he received a patent for this year.
Cullen found a retailer in Northern California that purchased 20 machines and proceeded to go to trade shows to sell it, although with less than stellar results. He began working on a prototype for a cannabis dry trimmer that wouldn’t damage the flower and found a buyer in Northern California that was impressed enough to buy 10 machines and to pay up front to allow Cullen to build a production line.
He delivered the first products in December of 2013, but at a loss, so he began thinking about scaling the company and set out looking for capital to do so. His girlfriend applied to ArcView in Boston for a pitch deal and they scraped together the $450 application fee and the presentation deck as well as another $1000 in expenses to present to investors at the February 2014 Las Vegas event. He was unsuccessful but was invited to the ArcView June Colorado pitch event where he met his silent partner who invested $150,000 for a 10 percent stake in GreenBroz.This influx of capital has finally allowed Cullen to leave behind his day job and to focus on step 2 in the process to bring the current product mix to market.
Cullen and his team are currently shipping about 20 units a month of the commercial dry trimmer and the standard dry trimmer. Their goal in the next 18 months is to add a turn key machine that will take the machine trimmed finished product and bag it, tag it, and test it to go with food-safe precision. He expects to capture a significant part of the market for this new equipment which will be by far the largest ticket item that GreenBroz offers (think in the $500k arena).
Cullen sees GreenBroz as a long-term player in the cannabis space and his vision for the company includes bringing in a team of dedicated professionals committed to building a $50 million company that saves growers money but with state of the art food and product safety ratings. He has recently brought in new blood to build out sales and marketing and the production capabilities required to get there.
So less than a year after the big Las Vegas event, GreenBroz has gone from a struggling, bootstrapping company to a $3 million plus in revenue company serving cannabis growers in the States, and eventually, abroad. Now we get to see if Cullen and his team move the company to the next stage of developing equipment that he believes one day may give John Deere tractors a run for their money!
Company Name: GreenBroz, Inc.
Year Founded: 2012
Ownership Structure: S Corp, registered in Nevada
Management Team/CEO: Cullen Raichart, CEO, inventor and founder; Lise Bernard, National Sales Manager/Director; John Mazula, Production manager.
Headquarters: National City (San Diego County), California
Industry Segment/Category: Cultivation Products and Services – Trimmers
Current Markets/States Served: U.S. and Canada
Current Number of employees: 15
Market Strategy/Goal: Be the worldwide leader in cannabis harvesting equipment
2014 Revenues: $310,000
2015 Projected Revenues: $3 million plus
Current Product Mix: Dry Trimmers, Standard and Commercial, Kief Tumbler.
Expansion Plans: GreenBroz, Inc. is not just a product manufacturing company they see themselves as a product development company. They have an aggressive product release cycle that they say “will keep us firmly ahead of our competition.”
Financing strategy: GreenBroz, Inc. is currently pre paring a series A round. The details of which are still in work.