I need $190k to start a full service gardening company that delivers a custom designed, secure greenhouse and all the materials needed to grow a legally permissible amount of cannabis at private homes in states where it’s legal to cultivate for personal use. Our gardeners then consult the customer every step of the way till harvest. Each customer will have access to their own growing schedule and gardener through their online portal. I have designs for manufacture of a custom, secured greenhouse to comply with security requirements and comply with local laws and provisions. The initial proof of concept will be performed in the three hour driving radius of California between the San Francisco Bay area, East bay Area, Silicon Valley region, Santa Cruz County and Monterey County coastal regions.
Cannabis retail sales reached nearly $20 billion in 2020, up 38% from 2019. One estimate for the devices and equipment for home growing was at $7 billion a couple years ago. A more recent figure would be much higher. The wave of legalization has stoked interest on every level. Many consumers want to grow their own just like many beer enthusiasts who enjoy brewing their own beer.
Currently, all but 3 states have some form of legal cannabis laws on the books. Federally legal status is anticipated within a few short years. Several states and regions now allow residents to cultivate their own legally permitted number of cannabis plants for personal use in their own yards or gardens. As laws expand those area with personal cultivation provisions will blanket the nation allowing for massive expansion of the market. Many of those residents are cannabis consumers who would like to grow their own plants at home.
Conservative statistics estimate that one in four adults use cannabis. Our initial market identifies California professionals living in the central coast and bay area, typically 30 years old and over, who are earning middle to upper middle-class income. County population figures as of 2019 show there are nearly 5 million adult residents in our initial market area from the San Francisco to Monterey counties. This means our market is estimated at 1.25 million potential customers. Based on profits estimates below, just one percent of the market is 12,500 customers or $7.5 million in profits.
For those enthusiasts that want to plant and grow their own cannabis there is a lot of information to sort out. Many people don't know how to grow cannabis. There is tons of information available online but the time and expense of getting started is a burden for most busy consumers.
For one low cost GuidedGro solves the problem by supplying all necessary equipment, information, and guidance directly to the customers at their homes. Experienced and personable gardeners will deliver, install, and setup our custom designed greenhouse including all the supplies. (We will include free starter plants where legally permissible to gift seedling cannabis plants.) We then guide customers from start to finish, teaching them everything needed to know about planting, watering, fertilizing, transplanting, pruning, and harvesting. Our clients will have direct access to professional growers through a customized online customer portal. There they can access their own personal gardener, ask questions, upload photos, consult their customized schedule, and even request home garden visits.
We sell to the customers all the equipment, installation, service, and support in packages. There are several packages, service plans, and upgrades to meet the needs of a variety of levels of enthusiast. The basic package sells for $1420.00. Costs are generously projected at $820 per package. In short, the costs include our custom greenhouse, manufactured at factory with which we already have a relationship ($300), materials and equipment ($250), installation ($200), and service ($70). Profit is expected to be $600 per basic unit sold. The packages and upgrades with increased pricing that adds value but is low cost to provide.
GuidedGro is a unique business model. So far, we have not identified any other businesses devoted to a similar function or focus. Competition includes existing gardeners and gardening companies who may begin to specialize in back yard cannabis gardening services. There are also numerous websites that explain how to start your own garden, including good information and instructions, but no services. There is one guy named Ron, The Cannabis Gardener, in southern California who teaches people how to grow in their yards for free but provides no equipment or installation. Some home growers grow their own with expensive grow kits that can be bought online or greenhouses from gardening or hardware supply stores. The home grow equipment, usually for indoor growing, is expensive and doesn't include installation, guidance, or support services.
Usually, consumers spend billions of dollars annually purchasing highly taxed retail products at dispensaries products in overly secure and bulky packaging. Others make shady deals with members of the enduring black market which contributes to crime and risky behavior in our communities.
I, however, don't believe retail sales or other purchases are our direct competition. GuidedGro will appeal to consumers who will grow as a hobby in addition to purchasing products available at dispensaries. The enthusiast will buy our products and services for a personal experience. They will want to grow to be more involved with something they love and enjoy. They will grow with GuidedGro to learn, to get personal satisfaction, to be part of a community, to brag to their friends. We will give them an experience many never had before.
Where We Are
I am well positioned to move forward immediately. The GuidedGro website is published with additions being completed now for customer portal and commerce. The plans are drafted for industrial designs for manufacturing of the custom greenhouse. Our manufacturer in China is a trusted associate and reliable source for quality goods. I have staff for startup and candidates for positions in branding, marketing, and design. The vision is complete. Funding will make it real.
Our team is made up of business professionals with years of hands-on experience in the cannabis industry.
Michelle Zavarella: As the founder, I have over ten years of experience in the cannabis industry including management, cultivation, and operations. I've worked in dozens of gardens from modest garages to large-scale licensed facilities, indoor and outdoor. I also have decades of experience in production, experience running a startup, and degrees in science and law.
Colin Young: The minority partner with a long career in business and real estate that began while he was still in high school nearly fifty years ago. He excels in business startups providing knowledgeable financial and marketing expertise. He also supplies an invaluable low-cost manufacturing relationship which affords us a notable cost advantage.
Mason Hansen and Justin George: The cultivation team is headed up by two of the most talented cannabis master cultivators working in the central coast. They are longtime friends with decades of cannabis plant knowledge between the two of them. They have spent their lives understanding the myriad factors that contribute to successful cannabis gardening and have turned their findings into reproducible techniques which can be taught. They excel at organic farming and outdoor and greenhouse planting.
Our team understands the key elements to success in this market space: plant knowledge, quality equipment, and excellent customer service. We also have the integrity, imagination, ability, and desire to build something new and exciting.
GuidedGro is a great idea and a great opportunity. Modest funding is necessary to build it properly to ensure a setup for success and growth. The initial funding investment creates the opportunity for GuidedGro to design and carefully produce the anchor product for our installations, the secure greenhouse and build a solid foundation.
Initially, we expect to spend $27,000 in startup costs (website, branding, marketing, prototyping,) and $20,000 for the initial manufacturing (50 units.) Additionally, over the first three months about $18,000 in fixed costs (office, storage, truck, labor, ongoing marketing). This allows for a proof of concept period. Once sold, profits from the first 50 packages will pay for added staffing and services. bills, and unexpected miscellaneous.
The next level of funding pays for the subsequent larger manufacturing order of 300 units in addition to some added staff and marketing. With the right exposure GuidedGro could get a lot of attention very quickly since it is unique and timely. It is also important to note here that the operational break even point for the the initial startup costs of $27,000 and the first 6 months of fixed costs estimated at $36,000 is just 105 units sold.
Lean Start Up Costs for Proof of Concept: $65,000
Initial Web, Branding, Marketing: $15,000
Engineer, Industrial Designs, and Prototypes: $12,000
Initial Manufacturing and shipping: 50 units: $20,000
3 months Fixed Costs (office, storage, truck, labor): $18,000
Future Investment: $125,000
Next Manufacturing order and shipping: 300 units: $100,000
Marketing, Staff: $25,000
Thank you for reading!!