Victoria Flores has actually made a profession of burglarizing the boys’ club. On Wall Street as a Morgan Stanley associate and later, as chief of staff for Katz Capital, a private equity fund. Then, as one of a handful of Latina business owners in the U.S. ever to do so, Flores raised $750,000 in equity capital financing in 2017 for Lux Beauty Club, the e-commerce charm startup she co-founded that sold natural hair extensions to beauty salons and direct to consumers.
However in spite of her fundraising success, navigating global supply chains and quality control ended up being increasingly difficult for the start-up. She and her service partner, signed up nurse Leslie Namad, finally made the gut-wrenching choice to pivot. They were so stressed out trying to handle overseas contractors in disparate time zones that Flores states she and Namad had started try out CBD tinctures to assist them sleep and to manage their tension. That’s when an originality was born. They began eyeing chances to enter into the male-dominated hemp and CBD industry and started researching the space. CBD is the acronym for cannabidiol, the non-intoxicating sis compound of THC, and abundant in hemp ranges of cannabis sativa. In 2018, they decided to invest in a joint endeavor with providers they could manage much closer to home.
” We mourned for the old business however then we selected ourselves back and up and said, ‘This is a big 25- billion dollar opportunity and we desire some of that,” discussed Flores of their choice to transition from hair to CBD.
It ended up, the timing couldn’t have been better. In late 2018, Congress passed the Agricultural Improvement Act, likewise referred to as The Farm Costs which took industrial hemp off of the federal government’s list of a lot of hazardous controlled substances and tossed open the door for an enormous customer items market. It occurred so swiftly, the FDA is still formulating consumer safety standards to catch up to the surge of items and health claims landing in mainstream sellers.
The two entrepreneurs initially decided to focus on a female market and began pitching charm and health items to gift shops and little retailers in2019 In a brand-new licensing deal with Perry Ellis International, the renowned black and white image of the legendary PGA champ Ben Hogan will be emblazoned on new CBD items made by Lux Beauty Club and expected to be sold in at least 500 pro-shops around the United States by the end of the year.
” Offers like this generally go to a lot of white guys. It was really exciting to be able to close this offer with them (Perry Ellis). And more to come,” enthused Flores in a telephone interview. She believes the line represents the first major top quality CBD products for golfers to strike the marketplace.
The Ben Hogan items sign up with a variety of other new CBD items capitalizing on the possible pain-relieving applications of the phytochemical that they hope will attract weekend warriors and amateur professional athletes. Over the last 18 months, a variety of CBD business have announced partnerships with pros consisting of, Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ tight-end Ron “Gronk” Gronkowski and U.S. National Soccer Team super star Megan Rapinoe, who began a CBD company with her twin sibling.
” It is kind of cool and interesting for us as brown creators that they saw that as a win for them. It is a testimony to them since it is Latina founded,” the New York-based executive described.
The hemp-derived items consist of a pain-relief roller, salve and cooling cream that will be offered in packaging that looks like a sleeve of golf balls. The possibility came about when Namad’s partner Richard, a CPG branding expert and consultant to the business came on board as the 3rd founder and together, they brought the concept to Perry Ellis, where Namad served as sales director for more than a decade.
Flores, a mother of a young daughter, says building business has been an exercise in perseverance, especially as the Covid-19 pandemic struck quickly after the company secured the Perry Ellis deal which slowed down the roll-out of the items. What helps, she states, is that as a small family-run service, all hands are on deck.
” We weren’t the founders that got $5-million dollars pre-seed to find something that might have a product market fit. We weren’t able to simply blow through money and test and see what worked and what didn’t work We didn’t have an alternative but to be scrappy and to be successful. We have our entire lives invested,” she said.