THE CBD world is set with a massive shake-up this week as Thought Leaders, the US cannabis & CBD investment company, announces a $13.25m acquisition of mellow, the UK’s top CBD and wellness marketplace.
The acquisition will include:
-mellow. store, the highly trusted and curated multi-brand marketplace for global CBD wellness brands;
-Grow by mellow, the end-to-end e-Commerce services business that is powering and growing direct to consumer brands in the CBD and cannabis space;
-50% of the recently announced mellow Asia.
Thought Leaders’ plans include launching mellow into the U.S., which remains the world’s largest market for CBD products. The move establishes Thought Leaders firmly into the markets of the UK, Europe, and Asia.
Co-founder and director at mellow, James Storie-Pugh says, “We are excited to make today’s announcement and proud of our new partnership with Thought Leaders in the US. It’s such an exhilarating time for CBD and these developments put mellow in the pole position to steer success for our e-tail platform and our end-to-end e-Commerce services as well as mellow Asia. As a result, mellow as a company will be at the forefront of rapid market growth globally.”
Neil Tunbridge, mellow director and co-founder notes further: “The cannabis industry is here to stay and more and more people are starting to embrace what is likely to be the single biggest driver of the health and wellness market over the next few years. The World Health Organization has recognised that CBD may have the potential to help with health issues such as sleep, insomnia to anxiety and pain.,,, A paper published in the Journal of Cannabis Research, outlined the key reasons why people are turning to CBD. Anxiety (43%), sleep problems (43%), stress (38%), pain and health and wellbeing (37%) came out as the most common reasons. Even the sporting world can see the advantages of CBD. The world Anti-Doping Agency removed CBD from its list of banned substances in 2017, and the Tokyo Olympics allowed athletes to use CBD during the competition. Sports stars and athletes are often drawn to CBD for anxiety, pain relief and healing.”
James Storie-Pugh adds; “While the U.S. remains the biggest single market for CBD products, the UK is now the 2nd biggest market for CBD products, with the market valued in the year up to end of April 2021 at £690 million. The rest of Europe is following suit and Asia Pacific is predicted to see an enormous and rapid surge but there is a delay on the regulatory side.
However, consumer interest has been piqued and growth is guaranteed. In 2020, the global CBD market was valued USD 2.8 billion and is set to continue this impressive trajectory at a compound annual growth rate of 20.1% until 2028. Some estimates show even larger CAGR projections of 40.4% CAGR between 2020 and 2025 and project the value of the global CBD market to reach USD 5.3 billion by 2025. It is expected that the value of the global CBD market may reach USD 5.3 billion by 2025.”
mellow co-founders, Neil Tunbridge and James Storie-Pugh will remain at mellow as company heads, continuing to drive mellow growth and global expansion, while also looking at new investment opportunities for the group.
Mark Singleton, Thought Leader’s CEO, commented; “mellow is a key component of Thought Leaders global growth strategy. Its’ well curated assortment of industry leading CBD brands and products, consumer focused education and industry leading technology are an exciting addition to our portfolio. The anticipated launch of the mellow US marketplace will bring a world class CBD assortment to US consumers, providing variety and quality with accelerated revenues. James and Neil’s experience and leadership in CBD and direct-to-consumer strategies are a welcome and valuable addition to the growing Thought Leaders team.
mellow was born out of the desire to give people a one stop shop for quality CBD products: a single online destination they could trust. Every single brand on the site is handpicked, selected on the basis of credibility, trustworthiness, and traceability of the product. mellow was founded by Neil Tunbridge and James Storie-Pugh, creating a management and stakeholder team with over 20 years of marketplace and 40 years of eCommerce experience. The mellow family has now been joined by industry leaders from across banking, health and wellness innovation, customer experience and digital marketing. Neil Tunbridge, co-founder of mellow explains “We are confident that we understand what it takes to make mellow the best place to buy and sell CBD products – that’s the best place for our customers and for our brand partners. We work closely with each and every brand in our marketplace from day one, supporting them with a suite of professional services where needed.”
About Thought Leaders, Inc.
Thought Leaders develops and commercializes disruptive brands and medical devices that provide superior consumer experiences in the CBD and, when permissible under U.S. federal law, cannabis sectors, amongst others. Our leadership and advisory teams bring unparalleled experience and skill to capitalize on opportunities in fragmented categories that we expect to be heavily regulated. We have secured seed to shelf brands that are well curated and authentic and are poised to drive sales through the exciting mellow global eCommerce platform as well as conventional brick and mortar distribution outlets. Our R&D proficiency positions us to develop and commercialize new products that will transform their categories. Through our unique combination of products, global distribution potential and innovation capabilities, Thought Leaders is poised to disrupt burgeoning cannabis related product categories and deliver outstanding shareholder returns.
 Moltke, J., Hindocha, C. Reasons for cannabidiol use: a cross-sectional study of CBD users, focusing on self-perceived stress, anxiety, and sleep problems. J Cannabis Res 3, 5 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1186/s42238-021-00061-5