EARLIER this year U.K. company Sativa Group said it would re-focus on its domestic market and this shift is moving ahead at pace after announcing plans to open 100 CBD stores.
Speaking to the Press Association (PA) company founder Geremy Thomas said it aims to reach 100 Goodbody Wellness shops, across the U.K. within two years. It opened its first store in Bath in June, this year, later adding a second in Cirencester with a third due to open in Bristol in the next few weeks.
Start of A Major Journey
He told PA it marks the start of a ‘major journey’ for the company and will provide a massive boost to the struggling High Street as CBD products take the U.K. by storm. He said: “I feel very confident that you will see this as a feature of the high street.”
Sativa says it hope to employ 400 staff in its stores, and one of its recent key executive appointments has been that of former Phones 4U executive Chris Jones as managing director.
Mr Thomas has ambitions for the stores to become a respected ‘national brand’, complementing the likes of health retailer Holland & Barrett by offering a range of specialist products with fully-trained staff, he told PA.
Barista in Every Store
Each store will feature a barista trained in CBD in a café providing infused tea, coffee and water, whilst stocking CBD products ranging from bath bombs and vape oils to skincare and balms. It will stock products from other CBD firms, as well as from its own manufacturing arm George Botanicals, which sells online and in stores.
Sativa Group became the U.K.’s first publicly-listed medical cannabis company in March, last year, after being initially established as an investment vehicle with the aim of investing primarily in Canadian cannabis companies.
Research Project Launched
However, it changed its strategy to focus on its domestic market after the faster-than-expected legalization of medical cannabis in the U.K. last November. Sativa told PA is currently looking to secure a licence to grow medical cannabis in Somerset, for a research project with King’s College, London.
Mr Thomas said he does not plan to grow cannabis more widely for use in CBD products at this stage, instead it is bought on the spot market and tested through in its own laboratory, PhytoVista, reports PA.
He went on to say he sees the main prize for the future being the medical cannabis market and is hopeful Britain will follow the lead of Canada and legalize recreational use, too.