The Estate of Bob Marley is looking to give it’s blessings and expand into on of the late singer’s favorite topics: cannabis.
This week saw the launch of Marley’s Naturals, which is the first brand of commercially available weed. The introduction, backed by Seattle based private equity firm Privateer Holdings, is geared to appeal of a much wider customer base than would be seen with even with the Cookies line of products. Already produced with the likeness of Bob Marley are lines of body care products like lotions and washes made from hemp, as well as a plethora of accessories like lighters and rolling papers.
Marley Natural will begin it’s availability in Los Angeles this Saturday, with expansion throughout the rest of California, Colorado, Washington, Nevada, and Oregon later in 2016.
“We are fortunate to be living during a promising time of positive change, especially with regard to cannabis and how people understand it,” Cedella Marley, the singer’s daughter, said in a statement. “My dad would be so happy to see so many people appreciating the natural, healing power of the herb.”
Bob Marley’s Estate has built a formidable brand, and has grown Bob’s popularity even larger since his untimely passing in 1981, at age 36. Currently Bob Marley ranks fourth in Forbes’ list of top earning deceased celebrities, which is attributed to continued album sales, branded beverages, and lifestyle product lines. Last year, Marley’s likeness garnered $21 million.
With the inclusion of legal cannabis in the explosively growing industry, Marley is poised to move up that list, especially due to the fact that Bob is an icon known around the world for his devotion to cannabis as a foundation for his religious experience on this Earth. Take that combined with the same marketing-based minds that helped bring Starbucks to the big top, and you have a perfect storm set for dispensary shelves this year.
Cannabis sales grew from $4.6 to $5.4 billion dollars year over year in 2015 according to the ArcView Group. They are predicting that 2016 sales will total approximately $6.7 billion.
“The strong growth in demand for legal cannabis over the past two years is expected to continue in the years ahead,” ArcView says in the report, which was released Feb 1. “With nearly a dozen states debating changes to their cannabis laws in the coming year, 2016 will be the tipping point in which a majority of U.S. states transition from cannabis prohibition to some form of regulated legal markets.”
“It is extremely important to us and to the family that Marley Natural operates with integrity and a strong social conscience,” Marley Natural general manager Tahira Rehmatullah said in a statement. “We source our products in an environmentally and socially responsible way, as we believe Bob Marley would have wanted.”