It’s a local company that has grown with remarkable speed, which is exactly what co-founder and CEO Joe Fox suggested would happen when the formation of the company was announced. I’m not sure he could have imagined how fast. In the less than six months since that announcement was made, the company has established offices in the Southeastern Glass building at 555 West Jackson, Suite 304 and added 30 employees and enlisted nearly as many part-time consultants.
That growth will now accelerate exponentially with the announcement that the hemp company has received a $30.6 million investment from global cannibis company, SOL Global Investments Corp.
Blühen Botanicals, a Knoxville-based hemp company, today announced a multi-million dollar investment from global cannabis company, SOL Global Investments Corp. The move comes as SOL diversifies into “hemp-related businesses through HeavenlyRx Holdings.”
The infusion of cash will allow Blühen to “pursue its product rollout strategy across the United States and around the world,” according to the press release. The CBD industry is estimated to cross the $20 billion mark by 2022. Mr. Fox stated:
This investment from SOL Global, one of the biggest players in the global cannabis and hemp ecosystem, gives us the firepower to accelerate our growth strategy, and take advantage of the significant opportunities we see right now in the United States and around the world. The SOL Global team sees Blühen as a critical element in their aggressive CBD market expansion plans. Their investment in our vision provides us the confidence and capital to empower our success and longevity.
SOL Global’s investment enables us to exponentially scale our existing high-throughput capabilities while maintaining our commitment to providing the highest quality, pharmaceutical grade products on the market. We have the largest network of expert farmers in the state of Tennessee who are growing hemp organically, and now, we’re empowered to scale our existing facilities faster, expand our farming network wider, and implement the highest international regulatory standards across the board.
Blühen will become the “exclusive supplier of bulk extracts to HeavenlyRx,” according to Brady Cobb, CEO of SOL. Blühen positioned itself to enter this relationship by the foundation of supply chain relationships it developed early, particularly those with farmers across the region along with the research and development under the direction of Erich Maelzer, Director of Hortoculture and Co-founder of Blühen.
In addition to the farmers contracted with and growing to the company’s standards, “the company also employs expert entomologists, plant pathologists, agronomists, chemists, and engineers on the 30-person team.” Expect that number to escalate further with the news of the new investment.
Blühen has other plans in mind, as well, planning to open “wellness-focused retail locations throughout the country. The first will be in Knoxville’s Old City, as they plan to open a retail store for the boutique wellness products at 111 East Jackson (next to Dollar and Ewars and across from Pilot Light) starting on May 17. The next retail location will follow later this year in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
The downtown location will have just over 4,000 square feet and will offer the full range of Blühen products. They will also be available via the company’s website starting the same day. The company has also made moves to purchase farmland in multiple states and to expand its partnerships to “hemp farmers throughout the U.S.”
With this news, Blühen becomes the most recent in a chain of Knoxville companies to establish a national and international presence. Watch for the upcoming web sales and downtown retail location and expect further news as this home-grown company establishes a world-wide presence.