The latest census data release states that there are 3.12 million Black-owned businesses in the United States. Other data confirms that Black women are the fastest growing demographic of business owners in the United States, with almost 2.7 million businesses. In the cannabis industry, the numbers show that Black people account for less than 2% of legal businesses.
The truth is, in an industry that was built off of the backs of Black and Brown people in America, we need help, access, support, and money.
Meet BIPOC & Women-Owned HerBloCO.
HerBloCO. is a Black women-owned lifestyle brand and cannabis company, based in Oklahoma, founded and owned by: Taronda Ransom and Marne Madison, both Missouri natives with impressive business and cannabis backgrounds. The company started as an idea that the very people being strategically kept out of the cannabis industry could have an opportunity to be in the industry.
Taronda says: “I sat back and thought, this is for us, this for those who sacrificed buying cannabis from our local plug and those who sacrificed being the actual plug. HerBloCO. was founded on the perspective, statement, and mission: ‘for us by us’.”
The initiation of the partnership between Taronda and Marne is described by Taronda: “I knew I wanted Marne Madison on my team as she has been a person who resonated perfectly with the brand and its vision, plus she is a bulldog. I first met Marne in the Missouri market as we both were applying for dispensary licenses in our city, St. Louis, MO. After being snubbed a couple times in rigged lottery application processes, I knew I needed a different approach. I knew she was someone I wanted to add to my team. I added her to my winning transportation license in Illinois, from there decided to bring her on as my COO to make this thing a reality, and the rest is history. Now two years later, post COVID, we are opening our first dispensary with one in the pipeline.”
Get to Know the Founders & Owners of HerBloCO.
Taronda Ransom fell in love with cannabis at the age of 14 . She says: “I smoked my first blunt while hotboxing in a NOVA in the back of my aunt’s house.”
While she stopped smoking for a few years while playing sports in high school, soon after graduating, she and cannabis were one again reunited. “While in college, I always told myself I would have a legal cannabis business — but my dream job was to become a corporate lawyer,” she remembers.
Owning a cannabis business became a reality when Taronda moved to California, at the age of 25. “After my first visit to a dispensary in Los Angeles, I knew I could make my cannabis dreams a reality. I have been on a mission ever since,” she said.
Marne was introduced to the smell of cannabis one day while sitting in class next to an upperclassman. Curiosity enticed me to ask my classmate about the perfume she was wearing, I wanted to try it and know more. She says: “At 14 I decided to smoke my first blunt with my peers after school. And since then I have explored my relationship with cannabis and the intricate parts of cannabis sativa L species.”
The strain ‘Blue Dream’ was Marne’s reason to go to Google, to ask why cannabis changed her emotions. She found a lecture that was being delivered by Dr. Sue Sisley at Washington University just a train stop away from her college dorm. That’s where she heard about the endocannabinoid system.
Since that day, Marne says: “I have consumed my life with education and advocating for the plant and representation of the people that were hurt by this controlled substance.” Both women want to see “more of us” in the ownership sector of the industry. Marne and Taronda say: “We can do this! And this is why we started this investment campaign for it to be a realistic investment opportunity for our families and others across the country that want to support a woman owned, black woman owned, LGBTQ-owned company.”
The HerBloCO. Medical Dispensary
The dispensary will offer on-site experiences to HerBloCo. branded products and fashion. HerBloCo. is dedicated to their consumers having unique experiences that form long lasting consumer relationships and brand loyalty. Their core values include inclusivity, education, and opportunity with a key focus on supporting those who never thought they had a chance of entering the industry.
The dispensary is just outside of Oklahoma City’s largest county, Edmund, in a roughly 1,500 sq ft. facility located in a shopping center. Grand opening is scheduled for March 2023 and HerBloCO. is seeking investors.
Invest in HerBloCO. and Become a Part of the Cannabis Industry
Not having a seat at the table created the opportunity for these business owners to build their table and offer seats.
Taronda says, “we are coming for what belongs to us and creating fair shots at success. Many of the people in corporate cannabis racking up millions were part of the creation of the system that frowned upon us consuming it, ultimately driving it to become a Schedule1 drug.”
I asked Marne, what a $100 investment in HerBloCO. looks like for an investor. She responded:
“The investor will receive a ROI by using our investor tools. However, and most importantly we are able to have a reasonable cannabis raise that allows the community to support us and become a part of a grassroots company. Herblo’s core values are instilled in the community and being able to offer an opportunity for family and friends to support us and start to create generational wealth as the company grows is amazing!”
HerBloCO. is raising $50,000 towards the start up costs of the medical cannabis dispensary. The money will go toward security, inventory, and salaries. Using Mainvest, those wanting to invest in and support HerBloCO. can do so by visiting: https://mainvest.com/b/herbloco?inNetwork=true.
There are just under 30 days left to invest. Support comes in all kinds of ways, shapes, and sizes; sharing this article and/or the HerBloCO. Maininvest link is also support.
Veronica Castillo is a writer from Miami, with a pre-cannabis and psychedelics background in insurance and human resources. Currently, she is a resident of the road covering cannabis, psychedelics, and plant-based lifestyles all over the U.S and soon abroad.
Follow her journey on IG: www.instagram.com/vee_travelingvegcannawriter and LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/vee-traveling-veg-canna-writer/
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