How does your machine work?
Our machines cut the inflorescences of cannabis plants. From the flower of the plant it is necessary to separate the leaves from the flower. Growers have two options, either to prune the plants by hand or to buy machines. It is a process similar to hop growing, where all professional growers use automatic harvesters, sorters, dryers and other automated processes.
How much does one machine cost?
Currently, our best-selling Automatic Trimmer L costs about 8,000 euros.
What are your sales?
Last year we had a little over 2 million crowns. We have a target of 6 to 8 million this year and we should achieve it. We expect the same percentage increase for the coming years.
Where do you produce products?
98 percent of production comes from the Czech Republic. We assemble machines in Pardubice.
So far, you have sold over two dozen. Which countries did they travel to?
We sold our automatic cutters to countries such as Switzerland, Austria, Germany, Italy, Spain and even in the Czech Republic there were cannabis growers who were interested in them.
Are you also planning to enter the US and Canadian markets?
We plan to join the United States and Canada, provided we can launch our new business model in Europe. Maybe in the next interview we’ll talk about whether our strategy was successful. I firmly believe that we will succeed, because if we want to be better than others, we must not be afraid to take a new, untrodden path.
Is there a difference between those from home and abroad?
In the Czech Republic, there is more interest in smaller cutters – Baby Trimmer. I think that in the future there will be even more cannabis growers who will need to automate production processes.
This product is not entirely typical and is not a fast-moving product. How do you address your target group? Did you have it clearly defined right away?
I started doing B2B business following the example of other manufacturers in this industry. But now I think something else and we are changing this model. We are preparing videos, a new website and promotional campaigns. In two to three months, everything should be up and running, I can already say that it will be a hit.
How did the idea come about?
Most manufacturers and retailers do this. People (customers) are used to going to a small store and there to receive most of the information from the seller. He again buys what the distributor sells to him. There is already a well-established system on the market, where it is difficult to push a new product such as fertilizers or lighting with heat. Fortunately, in our case, it’s a different story, and with the machine with the price of a new car, we can think of a different approach to the customer than just the classic B2B form. We still plan to keep our distribution network, but we want to go as close as possible to the customer and it should take place mainly on the Internet.
Who is your typical customer?
We are currently focusing on CBD cannabis growers mainly from Italy, Switzerland, Austria and other Western countries.
How big is the world market for your products?
It’s hard to estimate. If I took the numbers from the world’s largest manufacturer about their sales, they have so far sold machines worth over 4 billion crowns. My estimate may be 5 to 20 billion crowns a year for the European and American market in the future.
What impact has the coronavirus had on your business?
It certainly has an impact, and I hope that we will be able to make the most of this situation. The coronavirus crisis made it impossible for us to hold the fairs that we had already paid for and planned. It made me think about a number of things and reconsider some of my views so far. We are preparing a number of innovations and changes in our operation and I believe that it will take effect very soon and will help us to achieve our goals.
What did the quarantine leave in you and how did you manage the team?
Well, it was nothing special, but again it helped me change my thinking and functioning. For example, I’ve found that meetings over Skype and other online platforms can often be more useful and effective than face-to-face meetings.
Less than a year ago, you got an investment for your project. How much was it?
I don’t know if it was as completely an investment as the entry of a new partner into this project, thanks to the Busyman platform. Of course, this was also related to the financial amount for which I left part of the company. I would say that the financial part of our agreement is the less important.
If you looked back a few months before and now after the investment, would you do something different?
Certainly not. In my case, it wasn’t so much about investing as finding the right partner. Today, we have a solid foundation that should allow us to grow rapidly in the future. I expect to see by the end of this year whether our strategy and settings are correct.
Is the investor still participating in the project?
Yes, we are in constant contact with the new partner and we develop the company together.
What are your next plans?
Further development of new machines, change of marketing strategy and especially video production. We have a ready sales representative who will personally promote our brand throughout Europe.