Hi, my name is Langston Peoples and I am the co-founder of Duos CBD, a hemp product E-commerce website. In this article, I will be sharing with you the story of how my friend Kevin Lin and I started Duos CBD, the challenges and opportunities we have faced in the hemp industry, and some advice for those who are interested in starting a business.
Founder’s/Owner’s story and what motivated them to start the business
Kevin and I started Duos CBD in the midst of the COVID-19 quarantine, while we were discussing the stock market sitting outside of his house in lawn chairs. We thought that there was an opportunity to make a difference in people’s lives by offering high-quality, locally sourced hemp products at affordable prices. We had each used CBD to help with stress and anxiety and really and knew that other people could have these benefits too. As we delved deeper into the industry, we realized the potential it had to help people with various other ailments, such as anxiety, depression, and chronic pain.
I am currently a sophomore at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, majoring in Management and Society with a minor in Spanish for the Business Professions while running Duos CBD. We started Duos CBD when we were seniors in high school a few years ago and starting a business at a young age has been a great learning experience, allowing me to apply the theoretical knowledge I have learned in school to real-life situations.
Our mission is to provide high-quality hemp products, including CBD, Delta-9 THC, and Delta-8 THC, to help people live a healthier, more natural lifestyle. We believe that everyone should have access to the benefits of hemp and CBD, and we are committed to making that a reality.
Challenges the business/market is facing
The hemp industry is relatively new and faces several unique challenges. One of the biggest challenges is the lack of regulations, which makes it easy for companies to pop up and sell low-quality products that may not be what they are advertised as. This is a significant problem for consumers and retailers, who may have a difficult time finding quality products at a reasonable price point.
Another issue is the price point for hemp products. Due to a large surplus of hemp flower and concentrate, the prices for Delta-8 carts, gummies, and other products are cheap. This can make it challenging for companies to compete, especially those who source quality materials and are transparent with their tests and process.
The cannabis and hemp industry also butt heads since they are competing markets. The cannabis industry does not want to see the hemp industry succeed, as it takes up their market share. This can have a more significant impact as more states legalize cannabis and this conflict influences regulations and which companies are able to grow.
Opportunities the business/market is facing
Despite the challenges, there are massive opportunities in the hemp industry for companies that do the right thing. Companies that source quality materials and are transparent with their tests and process will succeed while ones who do the opposite will be weeded out. This market is huge, and there are lots of manufacturing competitors who would be weeded out if regulations were created. I believe that this intrinsic system of the industry will end up rewarding the companies that truly care about their product and consumers and can execute efficiently on these principles.
The hemp industry has also been exploring the medicinal side of hemp more, and I think that companies that are in that space have a lot of opportunities to profit as well as help so many people.
We focus on small batch, locally sourced products that are of the highest quality. We believe that this sets us apart from other companies in the industry, and it is something that our customers appreciate. But beyond that we are extremely picky with what products we sell and this also contributes to having a smaller product variety than other websites. We also believe that being transparent with our tests and process is essential, as it allows our customers to trust us and the products we offer.
Advice to others about business
As someone who started a business at a young age, I have learned a lot about what it takes to be successful.
Here are some pieces of advice that I would like to share:
Start reading: Pick a topic in business that interests you, whether you are interested in a specific person, company, business mentality book, or a more technical book. Books are a valuable source of knowledge, and they can provide you with valuable insights and lessons. Some of my recommendations include “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill and “Rich Dad Poor Dad” by Robert Kiyosaki.
Find your passion: It can take time to discover what you truly want to do in life, and that’s okay. It took me a while to decide on commercial real estate, but now that I enjoy what I am doing, it doesn’t even feel like work. Keep searching until you find a career that you’re truly passionate about.
Network: Talking to people and building relationships is crucial in business. However, it’s important to focus on listening and understanding others. Learn about them and how they could potentially help you. Remember, their connections could be your connections, so build bridges and cultivate those relationships.
Stay positive: Starting a business can be challenging, and there will inevitably be obstacles and setbacks along the way. However, it’s important to maintain a positive attitude and focus on the opportunities and potential for growth.
Be adaptable: The business landscape is constantly changing, and it’s important to be able to adapt and pivot when necessary. Don’t be afraid to try new things and take calculated risks
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