Kadenwood CEO Shares Behind-the-Scenes Sales Growth


The hemp-based cannabidiol (CBD) industry is exploding at a breakneck pace — CBD is expected to grow into a $7.8 billion industry in 2022. One illustration of this explosive growth is CBD manufacturer Kadenwood Inc., who recently announced a retail distribution milestone of CBD products available in over 22,000 stores, including Kroger, Publix, Vons, Albertsons, Wegmans, Food Lion, Pavilions, and pharmacies such as CVS and Walgreens. 

Kadenwood Inc. provides plant-based wellness solutions to retailers and consumers alike. By owning the cannabinoid ingredient supply chain via their EcoGen business, each product is carefully formulated with safety and efficacy at the forefront. Kadenwood’s best-in-class brands span critical category segments such as wellness, immune support, recovery, sleep, mobility, and pet health. 

Bringing Professionalism to the Industry

One of the reasons Kadenwood Inc. has been so successful is because CEO and Co-Founder, Erick Dickens, saw a gaping hole in the industry and dove right in to fill the spot. Before the company was founded, there was an immense lack of professionalism in the marketplace in terms of companies bringing CBD brands to the market. Bringing expertise to an aspiring category allowed Kadenwood Inc. to stand out from the competition and be the first of their kind. 

Attaining Financial Support & Guidance

“We have been fortunate to recruit very capable people that we have actually worked with for a decade or more, as well as having incredible support from our investors — both financial support and guidance and networking support — to help us overcome challenges not only the industry has faced, but also challenges that everyone in business has faced over the years with COVID, lockdowns, and supply chain issues. We have very supportive investors,” Dickens said. 

It is important for brands to understand that they do not have to do everything alone. There is so much support that can be found through investors, business advisors, lawyers, and more to help ensure things run smoothly and effectively. 

The Difference Between Success & Failure is the Execution

CBD has been around for a long time, and is no longer a secret remedy. When bringing such a tried and true formula to the market, it can be difficult to execute your plan properly and effectively. Supported by national advertising, Kadenwood Inc.’s ability to execute successfully and deliver quality products to both retailers and consumers is what helps them continue to grow. The company also controls their entire supply chain, which is unique to others in the industry. 

“Controlling our own supply chain became critical, and also offered a competitive advantage for us when it came to lowering consumer prices, so there is now a cost savings advantage there over our competitors. It also helps us with the current challenges going on in the supply chain,” Dickens said. 

Overcoming the Challenge of Predicting Inventory

One of the biggest challenges that Kadenwood Inc. faces is predicting inventory for retailers. Since the company just recently started offering wholesale, they are still finding it difficult to forecast and make products on time for retail orders. Sometimes the orders can come in on short notice, and since they do not want to overbuild their inventory, Kadenwood continues to rely on experience with employees within the company to help overcome this challenge. 

Even for retailers selling direct to consumers, the challenge of over-ordering and having excess inventory taking up space in your back room or warehouse is ongoing. Especially for indie sellers who do not have extra stores to stock an abundance of merchandise, it is important to think ahead on what may sell the best or not as much, what will be in style, and how many sizes are necessary for an item of clothing. 

Tips for Success

“Do not underestimate the level of funding you will need to succeed, and especially now as the category is starting to stabilize, creating a point of difference is even more challenging,” Dickens advises. “The real success is making sure whatever proposition you have is appealing to consumers so that you can differentiate yourself.”