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Cann, a Los Angeles-based startup that has gone viral for its alcohol-free cannabis-infused social tonics, has announced that it has secured investment from a star-studded list of celebrities, among them Rebel Wilson, Gwyneth Paltrow, Darren Criss and Tove Lo. Described by Paltrow as riding on two major trending movements – “sober curious” and “cannabis curious” – the brand hopes to continue expanding its better-for-you beverage offerings into new markets.
The group of famous actors, musicians and athletes backing Cann include Gwyneth Paltrow, Rebel Wilson, Ruby Rose, Darren Criss, Baron Davis, Tove Lo, Casey Neistat, and Bre-Z, revealed Cann last Friday (October 29). For all of Cann’s latest celebrity backers, their investment marks the first major venture into the cannabis space, said the company.
The Los Angeles-based startup, who have made headlines for its vegan cannabis-infused beverages, has sold over 2 million cans since its inception in 2019 and says that quarter-on-quarter sales growth has continuously doubled in 2020. Cann’s drinks, formulated with a controlled microdose of 2-milligrams of THC and 4-milligrams of CBD, are designed to deliver the same buzz that traditional alcohol offers but without its associated health impacts.
For Paltrow, actress and founder of cult favourite wellness and lifestyle platform Goop, Cann’s rise is unsurprising given changing consumer tastes.
“Cann sits at the intersection of two powerful trends we’ve been monitoring at goop for some time: the ‘sober curious’ and ‘cannabis curious’ movements,” she said. “There’s no reason why alcohol should be so much easier to purchase than Cann, and I’m confident the founders will lead the charge in finding ways to integrate it into the same purchasing channels and drinking environments.”
The news comes on the heels of Cann’s earlier US$5 million seed funding round, which enabled the brand to accelerate its growth even amid the coronavirus pandemic. It has recently expanded into the U.S. state of Nevada, with additional launches in more state markets planned for the next six months to add to its existing presence in California and Rhode Island.
But beyond tapping into the major CBD wellness trend driven by consumer demand for natural therapies to boost overall well-being or combat more chronic illnesses such as insomnia and anxiety, Cann’s success can also be traced to its value-led reputation, which recent research has shown is a major priority for shoppers in the wake of the pandemic.
Cann sits at the intersection of two powerful trends we’ve been monitoring at goop for some time: the ‘sober curious’ and ‘cannabis curious’ movements. There’s no reason why alcohol should be so much easier to purchase than Cann, and I’m confident the founders will lead the charge in finding ways to integrate it into the same purchasing channels and drinking environments.Gwyneth Paltrow
“When making an investment decision, you have to invest in two things – the product and the people,” commented Ruby Rose of Batwoman and Maybelline fame. “The team behind it is smart and have grown the brand quickly without compromising value or bending to what the traditional cannabis market is ready for right now. Added to that is the fact that this company is queer-founded and diverse. They are building a team currently made up of 50%+ women and 33%+ people of colour. So for me, it was an easy decision to invest.”
Cann’s co-founders Luke Anderson and Jake Bullock believe that this latest round of investment from celebrities represents a milestone in the normalisation of cannabis products and mainstreaming of healthier alcohol-free lifestyles, a trend that has already taken off with millennials and Gen Zs.
Added to that is the fact that this company is queer-founded and diverse. They are building a team currently made up of 50%+ women and 33%+ people of colour. So for me, it was an easy decision to invest.Ruby Rose
“To have taste-making celebrities who don’t have a ‘stoner’ identity attached to their personal brands wanting to help us spread this message to a mass consumer base is a game-changer for Cann, and a sign for how this industry will evolve in the coming years,” said Anderson.
“With our range of products, we strive to change the way people socialise by giving them social beverage options that are better for them, mentally and physically,” added Bullock. “We’ll introduce a new wave of consumers to an alcohol alternative that delivers an uplifted, social feeling but with none of the harmful effects and actually tastes delicious”.
All images courtesy of Cann.