New Initiative Aims to Provide Small Black Owned Businesses the Resources Needed to Grow within the Cannabis Industry
LOS ANGELES, Oct. 13, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Viola, a nationwide leader in the production and sale of premium quality cannabis products founded by NBA veteran Al Harrington, today announced the official launch of its cannabis incubator program. Under the new initiative, Viola will extend critical resources within its network to accepted brands within its program. Al Harrington and Viola’s executive team have designed a program that will provide operational support including sales, marketing and fundraising resources to these select companies. The ultimate goal of the incubator program will be to create 100 Black millionaires within cannabis, successfully propelling these small businesses forward within the ultra-competitive space.
As a leading Multi-State Operator (MSO), Viola’s first strategic alliance within its incubator program kicks off with Gold Standard Farms, a Black family-owned farm with a rich history dating back to the 1940s. Founded over 80 years ago by Fred and Eller Wease Polk, the farm has remained steadfast in its mission to transform African American dreams into reality through agriculture now with two locations in Tennessee. Similar to Viola, the company has a rich family heritage story that aligns perfectly with Al’s company that is inspired by his grandmother Viola.
“We’re honored to be working side-by-side with Viola to kick off this program. The partnership we’ve forged through this incubator program serves as a catalyst in all the progress the world is so desperate to see in the space” says Jarrel Howard, Founder and CEO of Gold Standard Farms. “Together we’re continuing to create space for the Black community within an industry we’ve been lacking in representation for so long.”
The incubator program falls on the heels of the brand’s steady stream of social equity advocacy, hallmarked by its lead initiative, Viola Cares which debuted earlier this year. Through education, equitable offerings, expungement, and incubation programs, the initiative poised to generate more than 10,000 jobs and hundreds of new business owners is now underscored with today’s launch of Viola’s incubator program.
“The disproportionate amount of obstacles people of color face is no secret,” said Al Harrington, Founder of Viola. “Basic access to capital and entrepreneurial knowledge are some of the most prominent barriers to entry within the cannabis space. These obstacles are felt most by minority communities and the launch of this incubator program is our response to actively combat this issue.”
Viola’s kick off with Gold Standard Farms marks one of many businesses within the cannabis space forecasted to generate exponential growth as a result of the incubator program. The program’s debut is held in celebration of Viola’s official expansion into the Missouri market.
About Viola Brands
Founded in 2011 by NBA veteran Al Harrington, Viola is one of the nation’s leading producers and licensed wholesalers of premium quality cannabis products. The brand is named after and inspired by Al’s grandmother who suffers from glaucoma and diabetes, finding solace in cannabis remedies. Viola has integrated the latest cutting-edge technology with its own proprietary procedures designed for every stage of the cultivation, extraction and production process. The company is known for its wide variety of product offerings including a high-quality flower to premier butane extracts.
About Gold Standard Farms
Located in Martin, Tennessee, Gold Standard Farms is a Premium Boutique Hemp Farm specializing in organic hemp cultivation, seed genetic research and development, as well as eco friendly hemp based building materials. Founded 80 years ago, Gold Standard Farms has remained steadfast in its mission to help advance and propel African American dreams into reality through agriculture, with a mission to provide a unique experience from seed to sale through all Gold Standard Farms products.