Kindly give our readers an introduction to your business. Please include what your business is all about, in which city you are located and if you have offices in multiple locations/ cities.
SOMNUS is an all-natural, mind calming formulation paired with our CBN hemp blend, designed to promote a night of healthy, restful sleep without creating that morning hangover feeling. We’ve made it our mission to no longer take NO-SLEEP for an answer while respecting the importance of a healthy mind and body! All of our products currently contain hemp-derived CBN and zero THC, which makes them legal in all 50 states according to the 2018 Farm Bill. I think we can all agree that the key to a successful business model is providing a clean viable solution to a problem. Sleep deprivation is a serious reality and clean healthy solutions available are slim to none. That is why we created SOMNUS. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 80 million American adults are chronically sleep deprived, meaning they sleep less than the recommended minimum of seven hours a night. We currently operate out of Mission Kansas and Denver Colorado.
Kindly give us a brief description about yourself (it should include your brief educational or entrepreneurial background and list some of your major achievements).
I am originally from Canada, the second nation to legalize hemp and marijuana. I have a bachelor’s degree in international business, post-graduate project management certifications from Villanova University, and most importantly a solid 15 years at the business school of life. Eight of those years were spent in management for UPS in the industrial engineering department and the rest building on my entrepreneurial legacy.
What inspired you to (start a new business venture) or (to make significant changes in an existing business)? How did the idea for your business come about?
I come from a family of entrepreneurs, who have a background in business and logistics, and throughout my journey, I came across our business group, Biokanetics. I don’t know how else to say it but… we just clicked! I first connected with them while operating my own company in Vail, Colorado. Roughly four years ago, Biokanetics was seeking fresh business opportunities, and being based out of Colorado the “Green Rush” just made sense.
What three pieces of advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
Do your research – Make sure you get a solid grasp of your target market/industry prior to materializing a venture.
Plan, plan, plan – Make sure to have a platform and processes in place where you can identify, map out and sequence your milestones that will bring your vision to life.
Aim for perfection – Use a benchmarking approach to defining perfection for your industry and don’t rest until you attain it
What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?
Having a solid 360 degree understanding of standard business processes
The ability to budget and forecast financial hurtles using a risk/reward mentality
The ability to adapt and overcome adversity on a regular basis and to grow from your shortfalls as a result
How many hours do you work a day on average?
I work until the job is done
To what do you most attribute your success?
For me, it was my grandfather. He was not a tech mogul, an investment genius, or an inventor, he was simply a family man who created a small construction empire. It started out with my grandfather mixing concrete out of a wheel barrel and eventually owning a fleet of cement trucks. As early as I can remember, with my yellow hard hat, I used to walk hospital and school construction sites by his side. He was respected as a family man and businessman, worked smart, provided a necessary service, and delivered a quality product. His ideology lives through me and that is why I chose to follow the entrepreneur route.
How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?
We use a cross-marketing approach which mainly includes a combination of targeted press releases, digital advertising, subscriber email lists, word of mouth, and social media campaigns.
Where did your organizations funding/capital come from and how did you go about getting it? How did you obtain investors for your venture?
Needless to say… the green rush is called the green rush for a reason. It is an exciting emerging industry with phenomenal ground-level opportunities for investors. In our case, our startup was funded by private investors that are passionate about the hemp space, and simply want to be part of the #1 CBN supplement brand on the market.
What is the best way to achieve long-term success?
Consistency combined with sustainable growth – very few small businesses are equipped to grow 10-fold overnight. It is important to understand your output capabilities and to grow accordingly.
Where you see yourself and your business in 5 – 10 years?
The goal is to become a nationally branded product line. In 5 to10 years, I’d like to be retired on a beach somewhere sipping on umbrella drinks knowing that Somnus is still the leader in the CBN world helping folks sleep better. In terms of reaching our branding goal, the desired timeline is 1 to 2 years. We are currently concentrating our efforts on growing sales by increasing our online exposure, developing relationships with the right distributors, and expending/refining our product line.
Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?
Without going too deep on the pros and cons of why, I have to go with Tesla – They are an innovator and are pushing the limits of common knowledge to pave the way in an emerging industry.