Big Name Celebrities Back E-Commerce Company Dutchie
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The cannabis e-commerce platform Dutchie celebrated its third birthday in July 2020. That may be young for a company, but not for some investors who see dollar signs in the cannabis e-commerce company.
In a $35 million Series B round of funding in August, Dutchie saw investments from the likes of former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, rapper and television star Snoop Dogg’s Casa Verde Capital, and basketball star Kevin Durant’s Thirty-Five Ventures. Both Snoop Dogg and Durant also invested in the company in 2019.
Casa Verde Capital “quickly gravitated toward Ross’ energy,” the firm’s managing partner Karan Wadhera told Crunchbase News, speaking about Dutchie co-founder and CEO Ross Lipson. He added, “We are confident in their ability to be a leader in this space.”
It’s a big investment in a tech startup that shows enourmous promise, not to mention a 700 percent increase in order volume after the coronavirus pandemic began.
“We are a young company, but things are moving really fast,” Lipson told Cheddar. “We’ve really set some lofty goals for ourselves and shared with investors and have been able to execute.”
Dutchie is in the right business at the right time.
As the coronavirus disrupts life across the U.S. and Canada, more people have turned to e-commerce to make their cannabis purchases. Dutchie, which handles online transactions for 1,300 dispensaries (25 percent of North American dispensaries), saw an increase order volume and reported that about 650 new dispensaries have signed onto the platform.
Annualized sales have also jumped, according to financial documents cited by Cheddar. The annualized sales processed by Dutchie are now $2.4 billion, a huge increase from the $350 million in early 2020, or the $140 million figure used in September 2019 when Dutchie closed Series A funding.
Given those figures, it’s easy to see why the recent funding round drew Schultz and brought back Snoop and Durant.
It all started with a desire to create a better customer experience.
As with most successful entrepreneurs, the people who started Dutchie did so because they saw a customer need that was going unmet.
The genesis of the company came in something that happened to Lipson, who formed the company with his brother, Zach. Lipson, writing for Green Entrepreneur, said the idea began after he visited a busy dispensary, waited for a long time in line, and then got rushed to make his purchase decision. He called it “a terrible customer experience.”
“Then it hit me,” he wrote. “What if I could just go online, educate myself about the products available at each dispensary, determine which was right for me, click a button, and have them delivered straight to my home?”
In addition to famous investors, the brothers run a company with 100 employees and expectations that the number will double in the next 12 to 18 months.