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Green Flower's CEO On Building A Cannabis Education Company: 'I Got Through The First Couple Years With Pure Resilience'

June 4, 2019 7:40 am
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Green Flower's CEO On Building A Cannabis Education Company: 'I Got Through The First Couple Years With Pure Resilience'

Green Flower has been a great friend of Benzinga’s, often sharing some of its premium video with our readers for free.

We’ve had big figures in the cannabis industry like Hoban Law Group’s Bob Hoban look into the hemp industry, Mazakali’s Sumit Mehta share investment advice, Canndescent's Adrian Sedlin teach how to grow pot indoors and Hypur's Tyler Beuerlein explain cannabis industry banking and tax issues.

Interested in learning more about this company, we sat down with Max Simon, CEO and co-founder of Green Flower.

“I’m a passionate believer in cannabis and the positive impact it will make on the world, because I’m a lifelong medical cannabis user for my ADHD,” Simon said. “It’s been my medicine for a long time.”

Prior to Green Flower, Simon worked in digital media, helping build New Age medicine advocate Deepak Chopra’s online business and products division, allowing millions to learn about the value and benefits of meditation and mind-body medicine.

“After Chopra, I built my own very successful digital marketing agency and worked with thousands of bestselling authors, experts, and entrepreneurs in order to help them reach the masses online,” he told Benzinga.

Need more cannabis news? Check out all of our coverage here.

Meet Green Flower

Green Flower is an online cannabis education platform. They’ve produced more than 2,000 hours of cannabis content featuring more than 700 of the world’s leading experts, doctors, scientists, researchers, entrepreneurs and investors.

The Green Flower site covers everything from how to use cannabis as medicine; to the science and research around the plant; to tips on growing your own cannabis and hemp; to how to enter and succeed in the booming cannabis industry.

The newly launched Green Flower Academy is also becoming one of the top training and certification bodies in the industry.

Yet it was not always all rosy in Green Flower’s garden. In the early days, raising funds for a cannabis education and media company was tough, Simon said.

“I spent years trying to raise capital, and got turned down hundreds of times by investors who just didn’t see how big and important cannabis education would be to the industry,” he said.

“I got through the first couple of years with pure resilience and the unwavering faith that we were building something that would become increasingly more valuable and important. Now we’re growing like crazy, forming some very exciting strategic partnerships— and our opportunities for scale are immense and global." 

The Cannabis Education Environment

Simon said consumers are often confused or holding onto negative beliefs and outdated stigmas about cannabis.

Another area of need is training people to work in the evolving field, he said.

"A recent report projected that cannabis jobs would grow from 211,000 now to over 500,000 jobs within just the next few years. While that’s very exciting, it also means that a ton of people will be entering the space with no formal training, background or experience," the CEO said.

"That can be both expensive and dangerous. That’s why we developed our Green Flower Certificate Programs to give people the specialized knowledge and training they need to succeed within various sectors of the industry.”

Thousands of students have already completed the certificate programs and have gone on to land jobs, start companies and build out the industry, Simon said.

"Plus many companies like GTI and Kiva are using our Certificate Programs internally to train incoming staff and help their employees grow and develop.”

We asked for some advice for people looking to enter the industry.

“The cannabis industry needs everything right now. From legal, to accounting, to finance, to marketing, R&D and on and on. Meaning: if you’re looking for something new, different and exciting, my advice is not to be timid and to start learning about the cannabis industry right now."

Need more cannabis news? Check out all of our coverage here.

Photo courtesy of Green Flower.

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