Editors’ Note: This is the transcript version of the podcast. Please note that due to time and audio constraints, transcription may not be perfect. We encourage you to listen to the podcast, embedded below if you need any clarification. We hope you enjoy!
How do you create a new experience to excite customers across product categories? As the industry evolves, innovators seek to blend experiences with entertainment to build brand relationships.
This week on The Dime, we host Andreas “Dre” Neumann, Chief Creative Director at Jushi, to discuss the following:
- Creating a new experience each time
- Blending Rock & Roll with Cannabis
- Red Bull lessons
- Pushing innovation to new limits
- and so much more
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[00:00:02]Bryan Fields: up guys? Welcome back to an episode of The Dime. I’m Brian Fields, and with me as always is Kellen Finney. And this week we’ve got a very special guest, Andreas Noman, chief Creative Director of Juicy and Dre, how you doing? Thanks for taking the time.
[00:00:15]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Yes, thank you. Thanks for having me, guys. Like, good to see you guys again.
[00:00:18] Like last time was in Vegas now. Now back here in the trenches over California.
[00:00:23]Bryan Fields: Oh, . That’ll have to get edited out. Ke How are you doing? Huh?
[00:00:27]Kellan Finney : I’m doing really good. Really excited. Excited to talk to Dre. Really excited to learn about the creative process that goes into building these brands are dominating the industry.
[00:00:36] Um, I’m really excited to
[00:00:38]Bryan Fields: have another West
[00:00:38]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Coaster here to, to help
[00:00:40]Kellan Finney : educate the East Coast, you know, how are you Brian? I’m doing well. I’m very excited to talk to Dre. I think we’re gonna get a, a very interesting conversation today about the intersection of cannabis and future entertainment. With your background, Dre.
[00:00:52] So for our listeners on front about you Dre, can you give a little background about
[00:00:54]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: yourself? Yeah, my background is really originally advertising, you know, traditional advertising. I always had [00:01:00] my come from Germany. I always had my, my, uh, very early age. My, my startup specifically film production companies, uh, in advertising.
[00:01:07] And I managed to always merge them into bigger agency, uh, a agency groups like Satchi and Sachi and Gray. And this was my journey through my twenties, like always like being. Kind of in, in real traditional advertising. And then in my thirties I was more, I was, I was kind of taking the, the next, the next step was like branded entertainment.
[00:01:28] So I became kind of , somebody like Ellen. Ellen from Matthew always calls me the, uh, I said the grandfather of, uh, of branded entertainment. But she wants to godfather branded entertainment. She wants to say Godfather. But, and, and then, so then I went to India, entertainment industry. A lot of firms. I, I moved to England and, and from there, um, another that, that as well ended into companies that merged into big agency groups.
[00:01:52] And then I went Silicon Valley, did all the tech, the tech thing we had to do because Facebook was coming out and everybody had to have internet company. So I had. [00:02:00] That was an, I moved to Silicon Valley and uh, that was my basically entry into, into the United States. And from there I went to LA and then, uh, tech from, I really got a Galvan Galvanization of, of tech, like, understood much, much better, which, which kind of I was missing.
[00:02:17] I had the, I had the advertising, I had the entertainment industry and I had the, um, didn’t have the technology industry at like, so I had the, those three together. It is like a rare mixture of e. and specifically I’m, I’m very, uh, very big fan of user experience and customer experience. So UX and CX stuff, which, which, which, which, which I was very into in my companies.
[00:02:39] And then the, the last, the last thing is like, I’m as well, uh, always a creative director and photographer. It’s a movies at, uh, which you can see on American Valhalla is on it. iTunes and on on, yeah, on Apple and on Amazon Prime. It’s a movie about Iggy Pop. It’s like a cool documentary, won many awards. And then as well, I’m a photographer, so, and specifically focusing on rock [00:03:00] music, uh, with the Foo Fighters, Queens of a stone age, Arctic Monkeys, et cetera.
[00:03:05] So, and the last chapter with all of that was, was cannabis. And I entered the, the cannabis industry like four, like the three and a half years ago. Um, Kind of by kind of like being in California and, and seeing what happens in California and seeing like there’s actually brands sold. And I, I thought, okay, and this, the reason was I got into it was really because of, I wanted to find a brand for the Queens of the Stone Age, uh, and, and Josh and I was talking about like, okay, we have to have our own brand.
[00:03:33] That was three years ago. It was kind of okay, everybody needed a brand. So on that quest, I met Juhi, the leadership like Jim Ethiopia and Eric Mouth then, and, and, and kind of. Getting well, dating a little bit with, with my, with my group, with my, my, my, my team. And then we said, this is too good. This is, this is a beautiful opportunity to, to join like a company.
[00:03:54] That earliest early stage then, and then I joined with the team and the rest is history. I really, then we went through Covid. [00:04:00] We, we, we, we were very, we were very lucky with our online, online platform, which we installed my team, and then with all the, all the brands we created and so on. So I could really focus on one thing a hundred percent because there wasn’t much anything else going on in 2020, as we all know, and 21.
[00:04:15] So, and that made me focus. And the focus really paid off in terms of like, this is the first time in my life really I could really focus on one thing. And it’s, it’s really you, you don’t wanna, you don’t wanna miss it. It’s really an, a wonderful industry. I think it’s, it’s very early still. And it, I really always compare it with music.
[00:04:34] Uh, mu music is very similar to, to cannabis. It’s like an, it’s like an art, really, even like that. And, and it has no canvas. It’s just a feeling. You’re selling really a feeling. Uh, or you, you, you’re presenting this if, if it’s recreational, of course, then you have, like, I learned so much about the medical part of it and, and, and how, and we have, because we have so many medical markets and what good it can do to our patients, um, how much this can, this product can really help [00:05:00] people.
[00:05:00] And, uh, I, I don’t wanna miss a minute of, of the last three years. It was one of my most exciting phases of my life, I have to say. When you were having
[00:05:07]Bryan Fields: that early conversation with Josh and you were kind of newer to cannabis, what, what was that first direction? What did, what, what inspired you? What were you looking for when you set out in that conversation?
[00:05:15] Was it a feel? What, specifically? What you looking to feel or define in that journey?
[00:05:20]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Well, then we said, you know, the, the, the band, the band was, uh, the, the, the, the band is basically like invented the genre of, of, uh, um, of desert rock or stoner rock you can call it. Right? So how can you not have your own brand?
[00:05:37] You know, that that was, that was my theory. and um, and, and this what we went after and he was, he was very excited about that. And we just, we just went around and met people and, um, and, and, oh, so sorry for that noise is, I have some notifications you haven’t turned off. Hope they’ve finished now. Is that okay?
[00:05:55] Yeah, yeah. So we were looking and then this led into, I really learned that there wasn’t, there [00:06:00] was no, this was not the time or no, I had any idea what I was doing then. So three and a half years later, we are getting to a point now where I can actually revisit that relationship. Music is coming out again.
[00:06:12] People going back on tour, there’s new albums coming, there’s a new album coming from the Queensland stage for sure at some point, uh, in, in near future. And, um, I think we will collaborate and we have designed some of our brands, like as even col collaboration platforms Now. Some of our new brands have that kind of.
[00:06:31] Have that kind of openness to collaboration. They’re actually designed for collaborations, and they’re not like celebrity brand. They’re just, Hey, there’s something you’re doing in your genre, which is cool, which gets lots of exposure. Or like, will, will, will, will help the other party exposure as well. So basically it’s like a joining together for a, a drop, you call it?
[00:06:50] Mm-hmm. and then everybody goes its own ways. Again. It’s, it’s fun and, and it, it’s, it’s, it’s around a specific event, like the tour start of the tour or the re release of a new [00:07:00] album to both parties. Benefit of that moment of like, uh, interest as well, you know, and, and, and, and launching something together.
[00:07:07] That’s how, how we do it. We, that I don’t think we will ever do like a celebrity brand in Juhi. So from during
[00:07:14]Bryan Fields: the early stages of this journey, were you an active cannabis
[00:07:17]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: user coming into the
[00:07:18]Bryan Fields: industry or is that something you kind of had to get your feet wet? Can you kind of describe
[00:07:22]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: that whole uh, process?
[00:07:24] I love that question. So, so I was basically the, so I smoked one joint with, with some, some friends, uh, when I was 18 in, in Germany. And it was like, it was sick for Morocco. It was some stuff. Nobody knew what it was. So smoke, but really tight wasn’t the right experience for me. I never touched it again until I really just four years ago where I was starting to date Jushi or to date the guys, basically.
[00:07:50] And, and I, I, I never do something when I, I have to be, I’m like a method actor in this, in this in business, you know, like I have to be, I have to become it. When I do a documentary, I become the person. [00:08:00] When I shoot rock and roll, I become part of the band really. I, I become it a look at dress, like everything, like I become it.
[00:08:07] And so the same day I did in, in Cannabis, you know, as I, I, I was from the first day I was involved, said, I have to try every product out there. I have to know what this is about. I have to go to a longer phase of, you know, I, cannot do this during the day, but every night since then, every night I’m consuming.
[00:08:23] and I, I’ve, I’ve learned so much about product because as you guys know, it’s not as easy as you try one time and then you know what it is. It’s, it’s a kind of a journey. You maybe start out with, with vape, then you go to gummies and you come back to to flower Then you enjoy really flower and then you maybe get even into concentrate and then you back into the gummy.
[00:08:43] So it’s like, I think even consuming and having, I have every br I can do ev since I’m in California here, I can literally try everything and have, we have three stores here, so we, we literally, the world is your oyster. So I’ve tried so much things and I have to [00:09:00] say, it’s like I even come back when people hyping up so much to high percentage THC and everybody goes for higher and higher and sometimes you see 40% TC in, in California.
[00:09:09] But I, I enjoy as well. Now after all this journey, I enjoy an 18. free roll, you know, because it’s not only about that as we know, but not people, not many people know that because the, the terpenes more on the steering wheel as we say. And so, so it’s, it’s really like, uh, it, it is a big journey until you understand that product.
[00:09:29] Uh, and, and I, I’m not, I’m not done yet, but I be, I have to, I have to become it. Otherwise I cannot talk to you guys. Even I would be like kind of a, so in Germany you called it dry swimmer, so you, you know how to swim, but, you know, actually cannot do it, you know, technically, you know,
[00:09:46]Bryan Fields: I’d love to stay there.
[00:09:47] So when you’re first getting started in cannabis, was there certain products type you started with? And then take us through how you expanded. Did you do certain activities after? Did you try to correlate your body, say, I ate certain foods, I took it a certain time. Take us through that [00:10:00] experiment when you were getting into the role
[00:10:01]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: preparing.
[00:10:02] Yeah, so, so I started, I started really with edibles and then, and that was like, the first experiences were like, oh, oh my, you know, you cannot, cannot really, you don’t know where you’re, where you, how you. Dosage really. So you could take two, it was like five. You don’t feel anything. I remember, like I did some Kiva gummies.
[00:10:19] Oh, not Kiva, like they’re espresso beans. And I was driving back from San Diego. We were just about to buy a dispensary there, which we never bought. But I took on the way back three of, I took one, another one, and I still don’t feel anything in the third one I took, and then literally like it, it all kicked in.
[00:10:36] Right? So, so that was that example where you can overdo the edibles. You have to really be careful with the edibles. And that I learned then, and then, then of course I tried them in all kinds of situations. It’s, it’s so, it’s, it’s, it’s even like a social experiment. So I did it alone the most of the time, and then I started to interact with people.
[00:10:53] I, it was, that took me a while until I was confident enough to sit on a table for dinner and actually I’m [00:11:00] the only one who took a gummy and. , you always think, uh, do they know? Do they not know? And the so this, this kind of to overcome and enjoy it, it’s a big step and it took me a long, long time to handle that, right?
[00:11:12] This, this little paranoia showing up and not, and you handle that. I think I personally, I’m a person sue cannabis. I, I, I become, it sounds, sounds a little bit like cheesy, but I’ve come the better version of myself because I’m pretty, I’m, I’m too crazy. I’m, I’m, I’m basically like little bit too much, too adventurous maybe.
[00:11:32] Maybe I’m too much risk, risk-taking in, in my, in my daily life. And cannabis takes me to another place. I’m actually looking at myself. And then you overcome all this, this phases you go through while you’re smoking a joint or while you’re taking, uh, gummies or while you’re like, then the concentrate was the last one.
[00:11:49] The concentrate is like a complete was an experience for me. I could smoke a joint before and then you take some concentrate, some life rosin and. , the whole thing resets. So it’s basically [00:12:00] a new high, and it’s completely like the other one is gone in the second and you, you established a complete new thing.
[00:12:06] It’s nearly, you’re sobering up in the second and in into then the new journey starts. So it was very, um, I tried nearly every configuration and gummy is withdrawn and not joy, and two gummy, three gummy. Then the, the, the, the tinctures who sleep tin tinctures with valerian roots, with additional meta melatonin.
[00:12:25] So all that stuff, right. Which can give you a little hangover. And then, but it’s very good for sleep. And so the, I can talk about this forever, but it’s, it’s really, it’s the, you have to do it in order to enjoy it, I think. And it will have everybody, every stone of column stone will, will tell you that this takes a while, right.
[00:12:44] And, and, uh, microdosing during the day. I’ve never, I’m, I’m chided in the weekend and I can get by better now, but it’s not easy for me. Like, it’s not not easy to be with people. Who, who not, and then don’t as well be with people who take it as well because they get paranoid and [00:13:00] they looking at not anymore at you.
[00:13:01] And then they having, dealing with their own emotions. So it’s, it’s a fascinating, it’s a fascinating, uh, product, cannabis, right. And, and specifically, I mean, when you wanna focus on one thing, of course I’m, sometimes I’m too chill. I do some photos sessions, and then I’m basically grading the photos. It helps me very much focus on one thing, like amazingly and, and go places creatively more than I would normally go.
[00:13:25] And sometimes it’s not working out, but sometimes it’s amazing. So, so it’s, it’s, uh, it’s an endless journey, I think, and it’s always different. And that’s why people want in, in our stores, it’s always like, do you have something new? Do you have something new? Do you have something new? They always wanted to try the new thing.
[00:13:40] They, and then sometimes they wanna come back to this old memory. Right? But then the old memory is never the same because you have eaten something or you were in a certain mental state at that point. You were like in the desert with your friends or like the. Cannot work out with the same when you’re walking on New York on the street and the wind blows from the Hudson River and it’s the snowstorm and it’s just a different, [00:14:00] it’s always different.
[00:14:01] Right? It’s always different. And that’s why I compare it with music. Music is, music is a feeling as well. And, and it’s just, it’s just wherever you listen to it as well, it’s received differently and puts you in a different places. Yeah. It’s, it’s very, it’s, it’s a fascinating product, I think. Have you,
[00:14:18]Bryan Fields: have you found a certain product that helps kind of unlock like a different level of creativity or takes you to like a whole nother place when you’re in that creative state?
[00:14:25] Or, or you’re still looking for that?
[00:14:27]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Yeah. No, I think, I think the, I’m a, I’m a sativa guy more than an indica guy. Uh, then we know everything is hybrid, but it’s all happens in your head as well, right? So, so, so I’m more sativa guy and when I have a sativa I can, I’m not, I’m, I’m as well the type of guy who can drink an espresso before I can go to sleep.
[00:14:43] I, I can sleep after drinking espresso at night, so, It doesn’t matter to me. I can put myself to sleep, but if I focus on something with a good sativa, it’s like, it’s very good for focusing on one thing, which very hard for me because I always have 15 things going on, [00:15:00] as you can imagine.
[00:15:01]Bryan Fields: Like, did, did that surprise you when you first got into it and realizing that cannabis can help you, like focus, creativity, and lot really lock in?
[00:15:09]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Yeah, totally. But this was, this sounds again so cheesy. It can help you. It’s like it’s all about how you, how much, how much, how much force you can apply to the situation in order to enjoy it. Right. It it, in the beginning when you’re starting, you just, it takes over. It takes over. It’s if you cannot do much anymore, but if you, if you, if you overcome it, right.
[00:15:31] I coach myself. I, I think a lot when, when, when I smokers think a lot about death, which I never think. , what happens if I die? What happens then? What happens to the family? But I, all the stupid things, which I never think about. So it makes me actually more sensible. You could say about like my family, how, how I’m, how conservative I prepare everything.
[00:15:52] And it’s like how, how, how I respect my life more that I’m alive. And so that, that all comes, and this is really overwhelming, right? [00:16:00] You can get paranoid from that. Like, you, like, oh my god, bad debt, I’m gonna die. But now I can handle, I’m used to it. I’m, the thought comes, what happens if I’m gonna die now and I can handle it, actually enjoy it now.
[00:16:10] So, but it’s, it’s, I’m sure other people have the same thing, you know, it, it’s kind of the, the classics. It does something in your brain, which you have never tapped into, so you gotta get comfortable with it. And, and it’s only . It’s like with everything you have to go, you have to, if you wanna be a good runner, you have to go running every day.
[00:16:27] So you have to do this every day really to, to get to that place. I think, uh, which sounds a little bit, um, crazy, but. If you do it at night, I mean, there’s no, I’ve never had a hangover. I’ve never had any effect. When I wake up in the morning, five o’clock fresh, um, it’s, it’s, you know, people have always that stereotype about the stoner, it doesn’t get up, it doesn’t lives in a mess.
[00:16:47] And that’s what I know from Germany. You know, I say lazy and lives in a mess, and everything is over the place with me. It’s the opposite. I get so anal about like everything, I put everything into place. My, my studio looks like every, every little [00:17:00] pencil is like in a, in a certain angle. Like, it’s like I get super specific about stuff.
[00:17:05] Right. So is there specific food that you like to enjoy? Yeah, I mean, that’s is cla I mean, you always want, I, I’m a big in Germany, Noella was the, my, I grew up on Nutella, so they always wanted Nutella bread, , that’s plaque great bread, but, uh, the sweets, you know, like, you, you enjoy that and, and you get, of course we get, get a little bit hungry and, and uh, and stuff, but I think it’s.
[00:17:31] It’s very, it’s very healthy. If you dose it right, you cannot overdo it, of course, but then you cannot really overdo it because all it’s gonna happen is like you’re gonna pass out, right? And, and sleep. So it’s very safe in, in, in what I, in my opinion. But of course there’s, you cannot, we are not allowed to say that it’s safe because what?
[00:17:48] But what if a metro, metro hits you when you walk out down on the street? It wasn’t safe.
[00:17:53]Bryan Fields: So the the reason I ask that is because I, I think sometimes people get surprised when they hear about the creativity aspects that unlocks. And for me, [00:18:00] specifically cannabis has, has helped me unlock a different level of creativity and that focus that you talked about.
[00:18:05] And for some who are, who are newer to this, like, I encourage ’em to try and find that spot. Because once you do die opening for me and someone like yourself drag, who’s done a ton of creative projects, I can only imagine that first time when you felt that creative boost and locked in and go, wow, this is a whole nother level.
[00:18:20]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Ah, totally. And you can enjoy stuff stuff, uh, more intensely, right? So when I look at my movie at the American Valla, when I would rewatch that, uh, on, uh, with under the Influence. . It’s, it’s so, I mean, it, it’s, it opens just another level. Like I understand my own movie better than, than, than when we were editing it.
[00:18:38] just, you know how it works. You have something and then people comment on it and I, oh, it’s so great how you put this person in the background and it’s like a method for, for this and that. And it’s like, well, there was just accidentally running through. Really. It was not my great creative plan to do that, but it just happened.
[00:18:55] But, um, I can see that stuff like that, you know, more, more intensely and, [00:19:00] uh, it’s super, it’s super, super exciting to, it’s basically like a re rebirth, right? Reborn. How
[00:19:07]Bryan Fields: do you take all of this stuff and make it a tangible like direction for building
[00:19:12]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: brands? . Exactly. No, that’s why, that’s why I’m doing it.
[00:19:15] This is like, this is one of the other things. So, so when we started in, in shi, so the, the creative team, we don’t have a marketing team. We call it the creative team for on a, i I knew this from the beginning, it doesn’t fit marketing to cannabis. So we
[00:19:28]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: called ourselves a creative team. So, so I had to learn how to consume and out of all this learning, so the first brands we did, we had no idea, but the good news was that there was some legacy brands we bought.
[00:19:40] We, we we bought with jui like bank and the labs, which already had a story, so we could write on that story. I personally think always, and this is not No, no, no, um, no, um, um, no, no fence or anything, but they, they are older brands, right? They were there in, in color. They’re more like a packaging concept than a [00:20:00] brand, but they’re turned into a brand because people like the stuff and then they like the packaging and then that’s what’s then called a brand.
[00:20:07] But it wasn’t really a brand, a brand. In my opinion. You have, you have to wanna be it. Yeah. And I don’t want to be the bank really. Like maybe , maybe in Vegas. Right? But, but you know, like you have to identify with something, so you have to come. That’s what we learned. Like we already, we, we are big in, we are big in marketing research, right?
[00:20:27] So we researched everything and like we researched the names we know to concept. So, but driving that research in the right direction was as well important to know the product and, and all the other products which are out there and, and why, and why are they successful? Why they’re not successful. Why is, why it so successful?
[00:20:41] This was then like the big thing. I hold this in my hand. I wasn’t really getting it to be honest. I mean, and I, I know outside looks nice, but then you end up with this little weird, like little white, um, plastic thingy, plastic box at that. I, I, I didn’t understand why it’s so successful. But the gummies were fantastic.
[00:20:57] And the gummies are still, they’re so, they’re consistent. [00:21:00] and they taste gr great and they have a great effect. And, and, and that’s why they’re selling so well. I think it’s not necessarily the power of the brand and like it turns into that maybe. So I think, you know, when we develop stuff now and the latest stuff we develop, it’s like a brand called Hijinks.
[00:21:15] It’s not Audi Hijinks is coming out and this brand will be very, very much, uh, all the learning we had over the years, what people power flower brand, a commodity should be sold, uh, compared it with water. I mean, and, and it’s, it’s just a com a commodity is that not really, should not be really like it depending on its packaging.
[00:21:39] It shouldn’t be depend on it in the golden jar. And then people say, why do I, I want great flour. I know the packaging is great, but I want great flour. And if having this golden jar, no quality, It’s not, we never gonna build anything. So our, our new our new concepts are very much like, uh, are completely not taking yourself [00:22:00] serious, not pretending to be something, be very inclusive, be diverse, you know, in the, in the designs we have more des than one design coming out like for, for, for, for one product.
[00:22:10] So it’s like, and it, there’s not even rules for the, for the GP or the factories to put this into a certain cost packaging concept. It could be anything. It could just take whatever they want and people always will experience something new. And I’ll present that obvious obviously, like to the world, like maybe we, we will launch it in the next months in some of our markets and it’s will completely be effortless and.
[00:22:32] and not pretending to be this cool little thing. It’s just all Mylar backs. Of course. Even if it’s high end, it’s gotta be Mylar, it’s gonna be colorful and it’s gonna be as we’re all leaning to celebrate the, our local grows for the future. We have grows in Scranton, we have grows in Virginia. So we want to grown, grown locally, grow like a craft beer, right?
[00:22:53] It’s locally grown. Make people be proud of it. They’re proud of it. Like in Scranton, we have like over, I think we have with the [00:23:00] stores, over 300 people working in Scranton, Pennsylvania, which is a very distressed place, you know, like in a, we’re very proud of like growing there and having stores there, which do very well in Pennsylvania.
[00:23:12] And these stores will as well celebrate the local grown stuff, you know, and not only like, okay, the next great thing and stuff. So it’s all in that concept. It’s all learnings from, from what we had there. People want every day, they want something new, you know? And even, even if it’s the same strain, if it’s in a different packaging, if it’s red and, and, and not blue, then we say, mm, that could be different.
[00:23:32] You know, maybe it’s the same stuff, but it, it could, it feels different. even if it’s in a different bag, you know, like it feels different. So there’s all this plays into it. So it’s not, as you said before, it depends what you’ve eaten before and what environment you are. in Are you with great friends? Are you with some people you don’t know?
[00:23:48] Are you in a restaurant? Are you doing it illegally on a plane it’s always something different? Different experience, right? So, so this new brand is ready for that and most important thing, it doesn’t take itself so serious like [00:24:00] the, like the others. It’s just, Liberating and, and uh, in, all aspects of it as well.
[00:24:05] And this, it’s a lifestyle brand really. Um, but it’s all about what’s into the bag and not what’s on to the bag
[00:24:12]Bryan Fields: Basically. I, I like the simplicity of that and I like the variability of that, cuz you’re right, if you see it in a certain case and then you come back and it’s in different style box, you might be more intrigued to try it because it feels different and it kind of plays directly into the variability of the plan.
[00:24:23]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Oh, it goes into your brand? No, like, it’s like it’s red,
[00:24:26]Bryan Fields: but how, how do you build the brand, right? How, how do you get that sort of established understanding? Because what works in Pennsylvania might not work what’s in California and certainly might not work what’s in Arizona. So how do you build that brand and that trust so different consumers feel that same experience?
[00:24:43]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: it’s really tailored to the locations. You know, like people always forget, uh, forget that. Uh, we, with our stores and we always make a, uh, we have a national campaign and this, it’s not the national, it’s, it’s very, very local. Every store we have in Vegas, we have got, we’ve got only in Vegas, we have three [00:25:00] stores in Vegas, so more in Nevada, but three in Vegas.
[00:25:03] So two of those are new Leaf stores, which we, which we acquired. They are com. They have a completely D by only by location. They have a completely different, uh, uh, customer profile than the five miles away Suburban, uh, beyond Hello Store in Vegas, which is, most of customers are, they’re retired entertainment people.
[00:25:24] They don’t wanna smoke anymore. You know, they’re standing in, they were in a casino their whole life. So they, the most selling item, most wanted item there is gummies. And I’ve never seen this in any, any other markets. Everybody wants gummies there. They’re all, the customers are above 45, 50. They go for the, and they can spend money as well, so they have more money.
[00:25:43] They want high end, higher end stuff. And, uh, in, in, uh, in, I call it Twain Street and New Live in Twain Street, which close to the wind hotels, close to the convention center is a place where it’s, it’s really like a little Trader Joe’s, you know, it’s like you have mainly house brand and it’s [00:26:00] new Leaf, and you have it presented in a certain way.
[00:26:02] You have like go in and there’s like this glass, glass displays and you have the, the, the flower sitting there with their names and their strains. And then you say, oh, I want some, some of that baba kush, that sound, that looks good. And then the guy goes and takes the, the bag with Baba Cushing gives it to you.
[00:26:17] So doesn’t matter what brand it is, he wants Papa Kush. Right. It’s like Caesar bsh great strain. Give, give it to me. So that’s all our house, house brands basically. But it’s not even, it’s called New Leaf, like the store. . Then we have all the, maybe we have a certain, uh, certain, uh, inventory of, of course the classics, the, the wilds, the Caminos, and, but of course we have our own gummy brand as well.
[00:26:40] So, so, and that’s competing with those, of course, because it’s, it’s, it’s more inexpensive and, and, uh, I think, I think you have to really look at the, the local, the local stores, what they want. And you have to, then that’s the challenge now with the brand. What are those people like? So like with my new brand approach, with our new brand approach is like that.
[00:26:59] You have to be [00:27:00] very flexible with those things. So even the packaging, if I have an incline, uh, just give an example. So the desert packaging of, of our new brands, they will have desert packaging and they will have like the Incline village in Lake Tahoe or dispensary, they. have like Maybe mountains on lit and, and, and draw like all drawings or creative collaboration with some local artists on the packaging to make it, to make it like, feel like it’s from here, you know?
[00:27:25] And not from some big corporation, just they drop their, their flowers just industrialized. like all the same stuff. So we will, we’ll be very, very flexible with, with that by location. Imagine. And that’s possible because we have, we have worked a long time and then we have like over 20 package designs and, uh, which are all approved by, so, you know, in the medical states, the DOH has to approve all that stuff, the department of health.
[00:27:49] And so we want also through that stuff. Why are you having 20 20 different designs, right? You have to explain, but you have to as well think about the, the [00:28:00] seasonal stuff. You have like, uh, uh, pride months, you know, you need, you need to react to that. I think. So we will have like the, the, the, the rainbow, the rainbow all the way through.
[00:28:09] Our flower will be rainbow colors. All the all pride months. So, so, and this is, I think you have to react, be able to react on the fast right on, on the local demands. And see this is a local play, not a national play really, if you wanna be successful with it.
[00:28:26]Bryan Fields: Are you taking any of your expertise in your skillset from a creative size and leading it back to the product formulation to try to marry the two products going forward?
[00:28:33] Saying you’re looking for more of like a tropical flavor with this type of brand? How does
[00:28:37]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: that work? Oh, no, this is all exactly, this is all market research. We have like, focus groups, we have like, send around to like hundreds of people. We have like people trying stuff. Uh, specifically impact, uh, my, my, my team has in into the gummy, uh, the gummy.
[00:28:50] This was our latest latest. Uh, we had a, we had a great gummy created with a, we have a, we have our own chef, uh, employed in, in Massachusetts. Chef Matt, who was [00:29:00] like in the finalist of, uh, of, of, of, uh, nearly said American Idol. The big, uh, American super chef or whatever it’s called, the he, he was a finalist and he’s a pastry chef.
[00:29:13] So with him together, we, we, we are developing now a lot of great stuff with him. And it’s all gluten free and vegan. Uh, this is all research and sometimes you have to as well, like research, like two years said people don’t care about vegan and gluten free. It has changed already a little bit. And, and now I’m thinking not, don’t include, don’t exclude it because nobody really does it.
[00:29:34] All the, the, they, they all like, not, not vegan and gluten free, the, the, the wilds and stuff. But imagine I have to take more and more gummies and now I’m not taking the, some of those markets have limitations, right? In Massachusetts, you’re gonna only have maximum five milligram in one gummy. So I personally now my, I would have to take like four or five and have 10 milligram.
[00:29:56] That’s gets now okay, five calories and thing. And [00:30:00] it’s not healthy. So I’d rather have like a vegan. Made with fresh fruit from south of France. We buy this in this beautiful, like sustainable farm there, and all the kinds of stuff. There’s all kinds of stories around it and, and, and the chef and everything.
[00:30:12] So we have big impact in that and, and we try and to really come up with some stuff which is special. So you can see that in our, in Massachusetts, a brand is called Testology and it’s selling amazing since we launched it. So like, it’s only launched like, I think 4, 3, 4 months now. Um, sleep gummy is coming and there’s of course the classic formulations.
[00:30:32] 10 milligram thc, 10 milligram cbn. There’s those, you know, what, what best selling sleep Gummy of wild. Of course we, we copying all that as well. What works will be copied and, uh, like, like, like , that’s what you do in, in every genre in as well, in music, in advertising, everywhere. So we, we see it, what, what others are doing and, and trying to even make it a little bit.
[00:30:56]Bryan Fields: are, are you concerned at all, Dre, that you are [00:31:00] pushing the line of inspiration past where the current consumer is? For example, there are some consumers here in New York that are still a little more novice in understanding what’s going on, and, and from your understanding and your experience, you’re pushing the level to a whole, whole nother spot.
[00:31:12] Are you concerned at all about the educational gap or the experience gap between, you know, where you’re trying to take and where the current educational level of the consumer is today?
[00:31:20]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: That’s interesting. As I say this, with New York, I mean, they throwing it around all kinds of Californian stuff. They’re like left, right, and center, right.
[00:31:26] You don’t know if it’s real, if it’s not real, but it’s like they, so the consumer gets what the, what, what they have to take, what’s in front of them. So we just trying to make sure that what’s in front of them is, is, is safe, is tested, is is, is tastes good. We, we’ve talked about edibles and it’s really of the highest quality of ingredients, right?
[00:31:45] You can, there’s so, so many mistakes you can make. I think the consumer. Our responsibility is to give the consumer the, the best product it can be at in that market. Because, you know, there’s diff, there’s sometimes problems with, with, with [00:32:00] Tesla. There’s all kinds of, there’s all kinds of problems, uh, or regulations and stuff.
[00:32:04] So you cannot do the perfect thing, but we try always to do, make the perfect thing. So, and assuming that is then for the, the best for the consumer, you know, like it’s not like, um, you have to present them something great. Uh, which you would use yourself, I think in this is like, give you a nice one here.
[00:32:20] Name drop. Uh, I I had my last startup, uh, with, uh, they Bono was on the advisory board and, and I had this meeting with Bono and I had this dinner with him. And then he said basically if I, at some point he stopped asking other people’s opinions about his music. He said if he likes. , it then that’s enough for him and for the band
[00:32:44] So, so, and he said, and statistically, if he likes it, there’s millions of people in the out there
[00:32:50]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: will like it as well. But there’s will be millions as well who don’t connect to it. But it’s enough, his opinion. But of course it’s Bono. But I said like, when it’s good, when it, it’s [00:33:00] good for me, it’s like for our, for the team and good for the, the consumers we testing it with, then it, it’s good for everybody.
[00:33:07] And, and this, this is our responsibility because it’s really something. If you put something in your, in, in your system, if you eat it, you, you really have to trust the company. And we, we, we really like taking that very serious. This is, this is something you keep forgetting. You get all this stuff when there’s like drinkables, edibles and you never, this chocolate things, you never know where they come from really.
[00:33:27] You just, but because cannabis is in it, you just take it. Right. And then, okay, whatever. I don’t know where this really comes from, but that’s it. , it’s in now. So what are your thoughts on beverages, Dre? . I really like beverage. I think it’s kind of, it, it sounds funny, but I think it’s kind of the could, could be the future, you know?
[00:33:46] Right. If it’s done right, you think if it’s done right. But it’s not the time yet. But I think now is the time to, it’s probably the time to think about going to the next level in terms of, uh, drinks and, and and, and, and, and take your time. When, when the, [00:34:00] when the, when the whole industry is, is really like a little bit depressed, I would call it.
[00:34:04] Take that time and slowly develop some good stuff there in this category because it’s gonna come at some point and it’s not gonna be smoking. Really. Nobody wants really, I mean, we love smoking, but people, even if, if it goes the, the whole of the United States Go, go, go. Recreational. Um, I think smoking will be not the favorite thing of, of, of, of the regulators will be even stricter, you know, like that you cannot do it.
[00:34:31] So vaping, we know already there’s a big story audit, so vaping and smoking will be, Difficult even when it’s fed federal legal. So the other category is much more, much more, uh, uh, promising than the, the, the edibles and the drinks. And the drinks. Of course we are drink cultures. Think about it. I mean, go to a bar.
[00:34:48] There’s how many different brands you see on this bar, should there not be sometime in the future? Uh, like a whole selection of of of can Canada, this Canada that. And you just have I mojito canna and not [00:35:00] mojito and, and it’s, it’s exactly regular, it is 5% or you want a 5% or 10% mojito. I take the 10 and start with that and then have another 10 and then, and and so on.
[00:35:10] So, so I think this is where it’s going. So you have to, but there’s a lot of research we have to do here to, to, to figure out what is the right, what is the right category, otherwise you, you can burn your, burn your fingers a lot on that. I think because it’s, as you know, not the, the biggest selling category at the moment.
[00:35:27] Are there any,
[00:35:28]Bryan Fields: are there any companies that you’re drawing inspiration from outside of the cannabis industry that you’re looking, looking to apply to? Juicy. .
[00:35:36]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Yeah, I think, I think we are always looking, looking at, uh, uh, I always, always, we, we always looking at Red Bull. Red Bull is a, is a, is a, is a super interesting company.
[00:35:45] How they, how they built themselves, how they have kind of, they, they were the first ones who had basically the, the creative team as well in-house and not like working with tons of agencies who make them then great. They’re more gRED from inside. From [00:36:00] inside. And this is what I’m doing with my group in Dushi, right?
[00:36:02] So we have our own creative team. We make our own movies, we make our own films, we make our own photographies, we make our own, uh, product photography, all in-house. Everything has comes from in-house. We never hired an agency. Um, inside PR with, with the, the glorious met, which we look, but um, not ever creative creatively.
[00:36:21] Right. So, so I think that’s important and we, I, I’ve always compare us with that and we, we are learning from them. And they did a lot of, you know, they, they, the, the creator in the, in the early stage of, of, of Red Bull, there was a phase, I dunno if you know that, but there was, they, they were, the product was found in Thailand and it was an old people’s refresh, like old people drank it and they got more energy and then they brought it to Germany.
[00:36:45] And the German guys, they really found us, they wanted to distribute it to pharmacies. So very close to, to our, to our world here, like in cannabis, because they want to do market to old people. But they decided to, to start a new [00:37:00] category of, of drinks, which is the end first energy drink, right? And then, This took a whole, completely started really a movement, right?
[00:37:08] With the, with the involvement and the, the great brand entertainment with the, with the extreme sports and stuff. And that’s very close to how cannabis advertising will be in the future. You know, you cannot advertise cannabis, but you, you can become part of a movement and, and use that movement for your purposes, right?
[00:37:24] You don’t ever have to probably have the, the name of the, the idealist. You don’t put the name of the brand ever anyway. You just know, ah, this is that. Oh, that’s that you. So that’s branded entertainment again, where I come from. So you, you have to basically, uh, look at the brand values of what you communicate, and then you find intellectual properties which communicate the same thing.
[00:37:42] Could be a brand, could be a film, could be a a, a theater play, whatever, like, but you, you promote that instead of the brand. And through that, the brand is promoted and somehow we boven into it. So that’s kind of, I think what’s gonna come and we can learn from that. Uh, from Red Bull specifically, I mean, they’re the [00:38:00] masters of this, this game.
[00:38:01] And they have their own record company. They have their own tv. They, there’s for a reason, they don’t, don’t wanna make money with music. They, they just want to be close to the artists and then actually own, let’s say own, I could say that, but music, we own the artist. And not having to knock on the door of an artist and then say, Hey, can you promote my thing?
[00:38:17] How much? And then I’d rather have them part of the family and then help, then they can help me promote my stuff because they, they’re in the family and we support them with the music. So this is all stuff I’ve done before and, and, and, and will happen, you know, like, so, so, so great . We’re not gonna talk about Juy records yet, but, but, um, that , but, but maybe it’s not exactly.
[00:38:42] Oh, yeah. Juy tv. We already running some pilots. You know, we, we, we, we are creating some episodes with our chef and stuff, so we, we’ve call that Juhi tv, but that is really, we trying to find the spot for that, you know, at some point it’s gonna go bigger and then Juhi tv and as well, our involvement with the, or our, like collaboration [00:39:00] with the music industry will be great, but we never gonna do celebrity stuff.
[00:39:04] I mean, this is, this is like a big no-no, I think it’s like, do you never wanna depend on somebody, on an individual for that stuff? It’s, it’s more like a collaboration and it’s probably like, has its time and then it’s gone because nobody wants to, wants to smoke Justin Bieber the whole year. He wants to smoke it maybe like a week.
[00:39:22] And then, okay, can we have something else now? So, I think it’s important to say that lots of people burn themselves with that stuff and, uh, hiring as well, like agencies from the outside world and, and they then satchi and say, if Satchi and Satchi comes up with the weed brand, they, they’re gonna charge you like a bunch of million dollars.
[00:39:41] And then they come up with monogram, uh, or something like that, you know, like, which is looks very cool and, and I, I’ll keep the packaging, but you only buy it once really. Then you have it and it’s just, it’s just, we know it’s like third party anyway. So like I put my own pre-rolls in the packaging and look cool, uh, at the, at the bar, but, uh, [00:40:00] that’s it, you know, so, so you have to be honest about it.
[00:40:03] So you have to know, really dive deep in order to be creative in this genre. And, and I, I, I, I could never pretend that this three years ago when we started, we had no idea what we were doing. We just basically like copying others to, to, to bridge that time where we learned. The genre, right? You have to do that.
[00:40:23] So we did, that’s what we did, and it was pretty successful. So, but you can do that, right? We don’t know really any, what the others doing. Okay. Let’s do the same. One thing I wanted to say, we had a great innovation already. Uh, is is our brand sachet. It’s this kind of, it’s the fine grind stuff. You know, nobody really made a big deal.
[00:40:40] All this stuff got thrown away for distillation and we said, Hey, let’s make a brand out of it. This is like a, this is not high testing. This is whatever it is, it’s totally effortless. Again, it’s, it’s called Sache. We do pre-rolls. We do big like, even like ounces, jars with pre grind stuff, and you can buy it for an affordable price.
[00:40:59] And you, [00:41:00] and it’s a, you never know what it is really. It’s all mixed together with stuff. So it’s always an adventure and nobody ever complained about it because you don’t pretend to be all, it’s the greatest flow. It’s just, Hey guys, this is just the stuff with falls on the floor. We grind it up and you can roll fast with it.
[00:41:13] And sometimes it’s great. Sometimes it’s maybe not so good, but it’s, it’s what is, it’s, it’s not expensive. So it sells a lot and it’s created this new, new category for us, which now most kind of a, a little but light of, of cannabis, I would say a brand. So it’s kind of cons. It’s not consistent, but it’s consistent.
[00:41:35] It’s cheap, so that’s good. But it’s, most of the time it’s good as well because you know that stuff which you grow up, there’s stems, they have great, they’re still great. So not
[00:41:44]Bryan Fields: if you had unlimited capital, what initiatives would you take on that you aren’t currently able to? Um,
[00:41:53]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: unlimited capital. I think I wouldn’t, I I wouldn’t do much.
[00:41:58] I wouldn’t do much different. I mean, if I, you [00:42:00] talk about juhi, if I had unlimited capital, I would go, I, I would really go into m and a mode now and, and, and acquire, acquire, acquire. And I would wait a little bit longer. , which we do, you know, which we, which we do. But
[00:42:12]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: I’ve unlimited capital, I would buy everything because I could buy probably for 3 million billion dollars or $4 billion, I could become the biggest cannabis co company in the world in the second.
[00:42:22] Um, and I think they’re super undervalued because look at the, look at the performances. If you look at Tru Leaf, look, look at, uh, pure Leaf, uh, curly and or GTI and, and, and their earnings. It’s, it’s pretty impressive. And it’s just starting. I mean, they’re crossing billion dollars revenues and, and, and, and, and look at the stock price.
[00:42:43] That’s completely nuts. Really. Like this has never anywhere this has happened. So underneath Capital would buy them all that would probably buy, buy, um, um, a bunch of those and put them together into one
[00:42:55]Bryan Fields: and make a monopoly, right? Strict
[00:42:57]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: monopoly [00:43:00] as Rockefeller, right? In the end, you have to un, un, un monopoly.
[00:43:03] They got a square named after
[00:43:05]Bryan Fields: him though, in New York, right?
[00:43:11] Can we expect any collaborations based on your musical experience and your relationships with some of the bigger names with Jusi in the potential future?
[00:43:18]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Yeah, so, so one collaboration I always like, want to do is like, do the Queens of the Stone Age, which is, uh, my, my good friends and I’m collaborating with Josh Homey, the lead singer, and, and, and, and kind of boss of the band since, since 10 years.
[00:43:30] So we are gonna do it at some point. Um, it’s, it’s more this collaboration are really more fun. Business. It’s really for both sides. It’s a fun thing. As I said before, something happens, there’s a new album coming out, and this is always the problem with those things. Uh, you, you with, with always, when you collaborate with the, the music industry or something, they always have their own focus.
[00:43:51] So if they don’t have a new album, why would they even do it? You know? It has to be all the timing as right. That’s why this is happening. Not often. Um, if there’s a new album out or if [00:44:00] the tour now the big tour coming, then you can basically use that momentum of the band and attach it. But then the, we have as well have to have a reason from, uh, in brand land to, to launch something specific.
[00:44:11] So if you can align those two things, that will be the perfect storm. It, it’s very hard to achieve and that’s why it’s not done often. But we think maybe this year we could, we could land one of those. So Josh, if he, Josh comes out with a new album and we are ready at the same time, then we are gonna do definitely a queen of his stone age edition of, of, of our new brand Hygienes.
[00:44:31] Let’s, let’s
[00:44:31]Bryan Fields: do it Josh. . Are there any, are there any areas of the cannabis industry that you are extremely bullish on for the future, but others are not as so
[00:44:42]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: bullish in terms of I’m super, I’m, I’m believe, super in the, in the brand. So, so that’s, that’s, that’s really our focus. The brands, you know, like, and, and making our organization, um, more lean because we were growing a lot and we have a lot of, from that time, we have a lot of, a lot of, call it fat.
[00:44:59] We have to, we have [00:45:00] to streamline the machine, uh, and, um, and really focused, I, I’m really excited about brands because brands can go, can go, can go beyond borders. Brands can be everywhere. It’s like, and brands, it’s like, Nobody has really created their lifestyle brand. Somebody has to crack that nut. Right?
[00:45:16] So I’m, I’m really wanna focus on that. And this is one of our, that, that what we are launching now, that could be as close as it’s as so far anyone gotten, hopefully. Um, but this is our focus. I think brands are super important now in this times especially, we have time now to develop stuff. You know, we have the stores going, everything is going.
[00:45:32] There’s a machine going, you, you, you make the machine more leaner and then you can focus on the stuff which basically the, the stores are the, the theaters or the cinemas. And then we have to get beautiful movies, the brands into the cinema. So that’s, I think that’s what we’ve gotta focus a lot. We call it bullish.
[00:45:50] Bullish. Focusing
[00:45:51]Bryan Fields: on when you got started in the cannabis journey, what did you get? Right? And most importantly, what did you get wrong?
[00:45:57]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: So, I think, right, we got, um, we [00:46:00] were lucky that we, we were in a place where just digital was in, AHI was just starting. So we were, had a, had the server was great. We had a, had a wide like glitchy.
[00:46:11] Fresh canvas there. And we created the, the digital, uh, the digital, uh, angle or the digital wing of Gucci, which was got very powerful. And it’s a big lead generator for the stores, right? That was the, that was the, the, the, the, it was lucky as well. A hundred percent lucky. It’s always started in Covid, you know, uh, I always say everybody’s a great marketer in Covid or was a great
[00:46:34] Everything kind of worked, right? Like it don’t even have to take too much credit of it, but, but the credit is the, you’re at the right time and right place. So that’s we that then it’s stuff works. So that was for us, the case and all digital and our brands. We were lucky that we had some heritage brands.
[00:46:49] We could launch those first and we bought make some acquisition where we just replaced their categories. We looked at the data they have, what’s their most selling categories, we most selling strains. We just replaced it with our stuff and then [00:47:00] basically for the consumer didn’t change much. So this was, it was a, was a very, um, I feel we, we, we brought our best.
[00:47:08] What we learned over the years in any industry, and put it into this because you always at your best at the now, right? So if you, if you’re not sick or something, and I mean, the experience of all this stuff I did for like, nearly 25, 30 years, I started my first company with 21. So like 30 years goes into Duchey.
[00:47:23] So they get the best of the best at that moment. So that was the good thing. What we uh, what was the now most, most important? What is, what is not so good? What was not so good? I think we could have, we could have, um, what was not so good? I, I, I wish we would’ve launched in more stores because it’s, it’s, first of all, it’s, it’s so much fun.
[00:47:45] It’s, it’s, it’s, it makes you, it makes you more invincible, right? Uh, the more stores you have, then you’re not have to worry about like one falling off and then it is not performing. So, but we only have like, uh, 37 stores. And so when one doesn’t perform [00:48:00] anymore or some, something happens, like in. in certain markets where the revenue goes down, sometimes it hits you more than, than if you have like 184 stores or something and then one doesn’t perform.
[00:48:10] It’s okay. So that, I think that’s, I would’ve loved, we have would’ve done more stores, but we, we are, we are on it. So we, we will have more stores, but, um, it would’ve love to be, have more. But I think looking at the history of Duci and what was achieved in that short amount of time, I mean, we have like over like 1350 to 1400 employees now.
[00:48:30] And when I joined was like, there was like 15 guys with a, with a PowerPoint presentation just about to buy, um, ante lo in Pennsylvania. So, um, that show is, that’s a pretty, this was a, that was probably, we couldn’t have done anymore. And again, COVID helped us because everybody worked like pun a to times more than normal because we don’t have a, what else are you gonna do?
[00:48:56] You sit in your studio and you just do that. So we, we did an amazing [00:49:00] progress in, in this, those three years I think. And. , I can be proud of it. I mean, we’ve got over 164 SKUs in six states of brands, all brands and anything super, super proud. After, after to say what, what was achieved? Can you achieve more?
[00:49:16] Always, of course, they can you, can you look run after different states and you, you learn hard have to, should gun after that state more like, yeah. But we did what we did. I think we’re very proud of Virginia as well. Virginia was one of our wonderful acquisitions that was from ground up. There was like, there was nothing there.
[00:49:32] And we, we, Jim, Jim and and team had the balls to jump in there. Hundreds of millions of dollars was spent to build this humongous facilities there. And it’s a great market, Virginia, right? It’s like a, this is like, this is like in, in our, uh, health sector. We are the only ones. We have six stores there and they, they build to like kind of pretty machines.
[00:49:54] These, so they’re built for recreational market, right? If that switches at some point, it’s, it’s gonna be [00:50:00] fantastic. So it’s my favorite. And then second, I really like Nevada. I like Massachusetts a lot. Uh, we have a great store there, like on the, on the border to New Hampshire. Um, amazing performance and, and, and, and, and of course Pennsylvania where we have 18 stores and this is medical and the, these stores are, are ready for recreational as well.
[00:50:18] They always were. They have, this can be rebranded as well as you might know, like, uh, beyond Hello to a more like recreational logo as well, like mid-century Stein now. And more fun. So that’s getting ready for specifically Pennsylvania, getting recreational hopefully at some point. And that’s gonna be a big, big deal for us cuz that’s where we have our most stores.
[00:50:36] So yeah, that’s kind of, kind of the juy, the Juy overview. But it’s an interesting question, you know, like you. , I think you can always think back what you have done better, but if you do every, every day the best you can do, that’s, that’s kind of it. You know, like you, and then you have to be lucky. Uh, very lucky.
[00:50:53] Always with timing. Specifically
[00:50:55]Bryan Fields: ex, especially here in cannabis. Right? There’s so much to learn. So before we do predictions, we ask [00:51:00] all of our guests, if you could sum up your experience in a main takeaway or lesson learned to pass onto the next generation, what would it be?
[00:51:07]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Uh, sorry, can you repeat that one more?
[00:51:09] There was my, I have this thing here running in my office, like this little, uh, train station thing. Changing the numbers in the, in the hour one, one more time. Sure.
[00:51:16]Bryan Fields: If you could sum up your experience in a main takeaway or lesson, learn to pass onto the next generation, what would it be?
[00:51:24]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: The next generation of cannabis people, or is there anything else than cannabis?
[00:51:28]Bryan Fields: could be, it could be life-based, it could be life-based advice. Something that you think would be insurmountable for someone who’s graduating college, who’s looking to get involved professionally to, yeah, that’s,
[00:51:37]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: that’s, I love that. So, so first of all, I think today’s, today’s, uh, people who enter anything, they have to be multi-taskers.
[00:51:46] It, it’s, it’s easy set. Like, okay, you, you have to be, you have to focusing on one thing and only to do that one thing. But I think in a, in companies today, you cannot sit around only be good at one thing. You have to, you have to have skills more than [00:52:00] one skill. Uh, you, this is, this is, this is for, I think this is not on only for cannabis.
[00:52:06] This is in every company. It’s goes to from tech to cannabis, to car, to, you have to be able to,
[00:52:11]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: not only because you have to, um, it is, it’s really not because you have to do all those things, but you have to understand them so you can make decisions, which is what you do, which is good for the company.
[00:52:23] And if you don’t do, if you just, uh, if you just a, a, a, a coder and you just code and somebody tells you a code disc code, that, and you never understands the big vision or like the. The thing he’s doing, where that fits and where they can take, he will discover so many if, if you tell him exactly, or he knows already the companies who are, but I could do this, and then if I could do this, then I could do that.
[00:52:45] And that will help the whole organization save 10 million a year because of that, which the other person would’ve not seen. Because you, sometimes you deepen the detail, wow, if I just do this different, then you would save that. I didn’t. But if I didn’t even know, or where the, [00:53:00] where, where the company’s going, what’s, what’s the company’s goals?
[00:53:02] Or have a business understanding on the whole, then you’re just gonna be a little ant doing some stuff and then you go home at night and then you come back and then you, and around a little bit the next day and you get paid for it. And it’s not like, I, I don’t feel that’s fulfilling for anyone in long term.
[00:53:19] Right? So, so have your eyes open, try to learn everything. If you work for a company, try to understand, listen to the earnings course, try to understand the industry ev all that stuff is important, even if you like just. Just doing a small part of the whole organization. But this will be important to, to understand.
[00:53:37] It will create culture and will move the company in the right direction. And if everybody does it in the company, it’s gonna start this momentum. And then we have those companies that really like taking off on a hot people align. The culture is great. People working together, people understand each other, people compliment each other, all that stuff.
[00:53:54] So this, this, this is, this is things I think when you, when you go over like a [00:54:00] thousand people, it’s very, very, very hard. And you have to push, push, push on that. So, uh, that’s, that’s one advice to be, be good at more than one thing. And don’t hesitate to risk if there’s some opportunity. Just forget everything you have and just you can, if you feel it, jump on it.
[00:54:17] I, I, I jumped on this cannabis thing for all of, lot of being, okay, I’m a rock and roll photographer, I’m doing movies, it’s great. Whatever. Like, good. Okay. Why would I do the people from outside was like, why would I do that? Is now, now I’m working in, in cannabis. I’m kind of a corporate guy here. Like, is it not much more fun to do the Foo Fighters album?
[00:54:36] But you can, you can do this both, you can boast at the same time and, and the Foo Fighters benefiting of it because you have an understanding now of, of, of something, which I can bring into the others genre as well. You know, I can bring more to the table and when I do an album cover for somebody now than I did three years ago, because I understand so much how business, how retail works, how else people like, what people don’t like [00:55:00] colors, all kinds of brands.
[00:55:01] So I’m really fresh in my, have a huge team who’s giving me all this information. Imagine. So now I’m bringing this to the photography again, and then it makes me a better photographer. This is, I think something don’t be scared of, of of, of trying new things. If you feel it, just jump into it. And, and it’s not it today you have, you have YouTube University as well.
[00:55:22] Don’t forget that it’s not only college and your college degree. It’s like something you can, everybody can learn everything if he wants to or he or she wants to, you know, it’s, it’s, it’s, it’s, it’s not as difficult as used to be when there was, when I, I grew up, I had no tv, you know, and then I go to black and white TV and then I go, and then I have 3D programs, but the channel’s closing down in Germany at eight o’clock at night and you see just a, just a test picture for all night.
[00:55:48] So imagine what you have today.
[00:55:53] You want to fix, uh, fix my dishwasher. I’m watching a YouTube fix, fix my dishwasher, and not paying the guy. He was like [00:56:00] circling around and trying to find a reason to charge me like $400 for. Unplug, unplugging
[00:56:05]Bryan Fields: it to plug it back in.
[00:56:08]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: another part. Reset, right? , let’s,
[00:56:11]Bryan Fields: uh, on, it’s, it’s off Dre. We gotta put it on
[00:56:15]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Alright. But this is, this is really good. Uh, uh, and what, if you really like, the last thing I wanna say watch my movie, not because I wanna plug it, but American Vala, uh, the story of like Josh Hami producing Iggy Pop’s last album, uh, is a great, is a great, uh, uh, piece to watch for people who I always was in this q and a and some people told me like I changed my, my path, uh, after I watched this movie because it’s just really preaches.
[00:56:44] Do really what Follow your dreams. If you have a dream, just follow it. You know, don’t give a shit about what everybody says and like all this, this stuff, and everybody has an opinion. Don’t listen to it. Just do it. And if it do it as best as you can, if it fails it’s great experience, then you can try something else.[00:57:00]
[00:57:00] So this movie, if you watch it on, on Amazon or on Apple, it’s uh, it’s, it’s pretty cool in this respect. It, it’s, it, it tells that story of, of, of, of a creative, creative, creative journey of two people coming together, then making something great and, uh, uh, without any compromise, right? And, and not thinking about mindness.
[00:57:21] It’s World on Art project. So, so it’s, it’s a, it’s a really good, good thing to watch for any young, young person who wants to start anything creative or not creative or business. That’s well
[00:57:33]Bryan Fields: said. All right, let’s do prediction. Dre, do you see cannabis being a C P G product? If so, what creative ways can cannabis companies compete with other C P G products?
[00:57:47]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: So when you, uh, first of all, yeah, C ppg, it’s, it depends on the, it depends really on the, uh, on the genre. Like, let’s say it’s with flour, flour itself, I think. It’s, it’s, it’s [00:58:00] questionable. Flower even should be branded, right? They can be extremely saying, like, even if I’m talk, talked about not launching a new flower brand, but I could even say it probably doesn’t need a brand or anything.
[00:58:12] Like it’s just a commodity. And you should go into a store and just like, like get amazing jar. You want that, you want that, okay. Take amazing job. Put in and give it to you and like then smoke and come back next time and get something else. So as soon as it’s processed, like, like vape or like gummies and like, then it turns into the, the, the strawberry turns into Strawberry Jam, right?
[00:58:35] And Strawberry Jam actually has now, like the potential of having a story comes from somewhere, some of my grandmother’s recipe. And then you have, you touch all that stuff, which makes the c. Product. Right? Like, like, okay, that’s a whole, this this’s gonna be a brand. This is, people only buy that because it’s kind of all the myth and legend around it.
[00:58:53] What’s the story about? Right? And, and, and this is where it starts, I think as soon as it’s processed. Pre-rolls as [00:59:00] well. Could be, could be, could be, could be that. And uh, and of course the drinks, uh, and any edible chocolate. This is all like stuff which, which I think you can, you can create real brands out of it.
[00:59:13] Flour, I’m still doubting. Um, really, if we should go back, just sell it as like,
[00:59:20]Bryan Fields: just, just like Colorado style, deli style, right? Deli
[00:59:22]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: style. Yeah, like, like exec deli style, like bakery, you know, like some bread and then everybody has some different bread, you know, like there’s like some bakeries have better ones, but I would say so.
[00:59:34] So then you go to the best one and it’s not about the brand, you know, and then so many brands are, imagine how weird is that? Like you have brands like, and we do the same thing in, for example, in California, but you could talk about it. It’s. It’s you, you wide label stuff. I mean, you have to make sure you get good stuff and then you make some pre-rolls with somebody and then you are selling them.
[00:59:54] And then how much, I mean this, this comes from a grow and it’s, it’s my brand, but [01:00:00] it’s with flour. What is it? I mean, what am I buying? I’m buying like a, like a pretty box. And then there’s some flour from somebody in there. Like you have to really build on the, the credibility that’s always good in what’s, what’s out in that box always great.
[01:00:18] And then you will probably make the shift of like, okay, I always buy Binky Binky for example. I think a big fan of Binky, they white label, but they have, they all I smoke so far was great and there’s some, some guys on the top who like this. They’re just choosing the right partners it seems, and this is great.
[01:00:34] So I’m trusting now bins that they actually have good stuff. They might be in different markets. We might not have so good stuff because always market by market. But California is great and. Death has a chance to get, to get to that. They really trying it, you know, that Pinski is a good example of a brand who like, wants to be that like brand, like it’s a lifestyle brand as well.
[01:00:55] Could be like, could be like, uh, clothing and, uh, [01:01:00] apparel and garment or garment stuff. And so it’s, it’s bigger than just cannabis, so you have to play it like that. But I’m, I’m not sure this is like
[01:01:07]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: doing with the flour, with flour really. Like, but the other stuff a hundred percent. You know, like you can feel like if I, I can tell you the tale about my, my, so my, my, my lemons coming from south of France sustainably grown in this, in the, in the hills of the Champaign Valley and
[01:01:24] Like where are the gummies, man? I mean,
[01:01:29] So, so, so with a flower, it’s like, you can do it same, but it, you cannot really believe if I have the whatever like brand, like I just had here, Malibu gold for example. I just, it’s great. It looks beautiful. It’s in, in this golden jar. But then I forget about it. Like I have the golden jar, it still have the golden jar.
[01:01:47] Use it for other stuff. I think I have some pins in it or something, but not even weed, you know, but I kept the packaging, but I’m never gonna buy it again. Um, because it’s just, if you get a, if you get into it, [01:02:00] you, you don’t, this is as well get expensive, right? I mean, like, you have this little thing and it’s like too little buds in it, and it’s like super expensive.
[01:02:07] And I rather, and I smoke a lot now because my, my, my, um, tolerance went up. So I, I cannot even, that’s, that rest lasts me like a day or whatever, like on the weekend. So, so I have. To think about ounces now and um, then all this unsustainable packaging, right? This is a nightmare that transport the carbon footprint or that’s why we all go to Myla.
[01:02:30] It makes no sense to have anything else than Mylar bags really like, they like, they’re like made all sustainable, like recycled materials. You can, you can store it better when you send it to the dispensaries. It don’t have so much, so much, uh, weight to, to carry, right? With all that stuff. Storage and costs, all costs, all money.
[01:02:49] And that stuff comes from China. I prefer like the, the, the, the, the, the, the, the vendors come from America, to be honest. It’s faster and, and I can look at that stuff and it’s more creative because [01:03:00] they can switch out faster. So that’s all like things to consider, like, but to answer your question, I think flower is questionable.
[01:03:06] And then the rest is like, there will be, there will be great brands in all categories and I think. Uh, I agree with Dre and I think that a really good comparison is the wine industry, right? Like we don’t go out and buy grapes in packages, right? Um, but you’re gonna pay extra for a bottle of wine with that story and
[01:03:27]Bryan Fields: everything that’s
[01:03:28]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: attached.
[01:03:29] So, yeah, and the whole process, you can leave. There’s something gone into it. This has grown somewhere, or somebody looked at it, put it in the thing, and then they have just stamped with their field and they filtered it and they . Totally. It’s gonna cost more. 15, 15 years old and the, this was a great harvest.
[01:03:44] Of course you can make this now, like pay a lot of money for it because somebody did something for the money as well. But just putting flour and uh, the nice packaging, ah, it’s great now, right? Isn’t it? I was like, no. Where I love the packaging. Can I have some good flour ? [01:04:00] That’s what we get on. You know, I get this on Reddit sometimes I was, they’re asking that I have great package.
[01:04:06] If there was a b a bunch of flour, which is not that they didn’t like, they say, great packaging, but can I have some weed please? . .
[01:04:16]Bryan Fields: What do you think, Brian? I I think it’s gonna take creative teams like what Dre’s doing with having different variable of, of different style products of the boxes. I think that’s a very creative, innovative way in order to draw attention and eyeballs to the situation.
[01:04:29] I, I was thinking about that, that that would definitely draw me in and I would be intrigued by the mystery of it and I’d wanna try the product. And I think when you’re seeing a thousand different products on a shelf, all of them look and feel the same and you see one slightly different. It’s intriguing.
[01:04:43] And if your team continues to deliver on that style quality product, I think it’ll help separate from its peers and allow it to, to really push it to the new level. And it wouldn’t shock me if other. Brands try to copy that because that’s the establishment of what is expected. Your team is really pushing the [01:05:00] barrier for what’s next, and it’s expected that the other peers meet that level because the consumer now is expecting a different style experience.
[01:05:06] And I think that could make cannabis, uh, an opportunity to compete with the other C B G products. Yeah. So Dre for our listeners, they want get in touch, they wanna watch Juicy TV and they wanna learn more. Where can they find ya?
[01:05:19]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Yeah, so Jessica do, uh, uh, jui core.com. So jui like c.com, that’s our main website.
[01:05:27] From there, you can go to all the brands, to all the retail, retail brands. We have all the stores from there. And, and as well, jui TV has our own, has own, uh, how do you say, like a menu menu to click on. Um, we have as well, what I wanted to say as well, like we, we are very proud of as Jui is one of our, my, I think the greatest thing.
[01:05:46] One of the greatest things we’ve done is, uh, we have a collaboration with a, with a charity called Drop for Drop. and we have built last year, we’ve built, uh, over at 11 wells in Africa and India, where, [01:06:00] which gives water to, to people who have no access to water. So we are basically building those, those wells and they last for 10 years and so on.
[01:06:07] And, and this is what we’re very proud of. This is our, we call this go beyond. It comes from our beyond a little bit, this go beyond initiative. So we wanna, uh, do good as well. And water is something very close to our hearts because we, we, we are wasting so much water, you know, like, uh, uh, us in our lives and as well in, in, in these, in these facilities we build.
[01:06:27] So we’ll be very, very, uh, conscious about like how to, how to make those facilities not waste anything and energy, water and all that. So that’s why water is such a, it’s, it’s an important thing. I think water and cannabis goes good together. So we did that. So we have. Very proud of this, what we did there in Africa, and we keep doing more this this year.
[01:06:47] And our new brand as well would be very close, close with, with drop for drop, uh, the, the foundation, it’s, it’s only costs like three and a half thousand dollars to build one. Well imagine, and, and this lasts for years, [01:07:00] so you’re giving hundreds of people access to water education. This has a chain reaction of changing, changing a little bit their lives, right.
[01:07:08] In these places. And I think we, very important, it gives us good energy. And I think if, if this just is, that’s the only thing we’ve achieved. It’s already something because that’s now 11 wells and thousands of people get water and that results into. Into people getting better education. They don’t have to run around all over, all over to get water can wash themselves and it’s amazing what this stuff does.
[01:07:30] So whoever wants to chime in and whoever watches this and wants to find out about it. So go to juy code.com and then go beyond. And there’s links as well to drop for drop. Drop for drop. It’s a a cool thing. Everybody can donate and um, yeah, that’s, and, and, and my stuff is on Noman vision on Instagram. You can follow me Noman with one and in this case Noman vision on Instagram and I post only rock and roll stuff.
[01:07:56] No cannabis stuff. Alright,
[01:07:58]Bryan Fields: we’ll link it off on the show notes.
[01:07:59]Andreas “Dre” Neumann: Thanks for taking [01:08:00] the time. This was fun. Yeah. Awesome.