One of the challenges faced by the psychedelics industry is that trauma and mental illness are tied to income, yet off-label ketamine treatment is not yet covered by insurance, Klee Irwin, founder, CEO, & chairman of Irwin Naturals IWINF told the inaugural Benzinga Psychedelics Capital Conference on Tuesday.
Is there a solution? The Power Of Brand
According to Irwin, “The solution is to use the power of brand to drive down patient costs.”
Irwin Naturals is considered the world’s largest seller of CBD in the mass market, and this year it is extending its brand to psychedelics and THC. Irwin Natural’s nutraceutical products are sold in large outlets across America, including Costco COST, Walmart WMT, and Whole Foods. The brand seeks to make itself familiar to 80% of U.S. households.
“We intend to be the world's first truly household name brand, with a national and then international footprint in clinics,” added Irwin, explaining that 28-year run rate of profitability is enabling the company to have the “rare Coca-Cola KO first-mover advantage.”
Brands are important because consumers are not buying products or services, they are buying brands.
Two Brand Classes
There will be two brand classes in this disruptive industry of psychedelic mental health, according to Irwin. First – major drug brands, and second - major national clinic chain brands that employ doctors the pharmaceutical companies must go through to get their drugs into the hands of patients.
“Building a household name brand is very expensive and it takes decades of presence in the market. But once a household name brand is established, operating costs can go down precipitously,” he noted, pointing out that lower operating expenses automatically are passed onto patients and third-party payers, so accessibility increases.
The Potential Of The Psychedelics Industry
How big is this opportunity?
It seems that some 25% of adults have a diagnosable mental illness like insomnia, anxiety, subclinical PTSD, depression – all of whom could benefit from psychedelics treatment. This means that we need “a heck of a lot more than the 600 ketamine clinics.”
Doing Good Above All
For Irwin, doing good should come first. He called the mental health crisis scarier than the chance of nuclear holocaust.
“We need to take care of the people in our society who are suffering the most, and leveraging brand is the way to do it,” Irwin concluded.
© 2023 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
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