Man Previously Imprisoned for Selling Marijuana Owns Fastest-Growing CBD Franchise in Kansas City
Man Previously Imprisoned for Selling Marijuana Owns Fastest-Growing CBD Franchise in Kansas City

Vince Sanders, the CEO of CBD American Shaman, took advantage of Cannabidiol’s soaring popularity in the current market and became a pioneer in the CBD franchise industry.

In a story reported by KCUR, CBD American Shaman CEO Vince Sanders spoke about going to prison 19 years ago for organizing and financing a marijuana scheme valued at $2.5 million. Sanders doesn’t want his criminal record to define his career, but as an entrepreneur in the Cannabidiol industry, it is clear how Sanders’ comeback story is just one piece of a growing trend of decriminalization, legalization and regulation of cannabis and cannabis-derived products. 

The rise of CBD has not been without controversy, and many users are still unclear on how the non-psychoactive cannabinoid marketed as a cure-all for everything from anxiety to back pain actually works. Regardless, according to Forbes, the CDB industry could reach a valuation of $20 billion by 2024, and entrepreneurs like Sanders are getting in on the ground floor of what could prove to be an extremely lucrative franchise market. 

CBD American Shaman was founded four years ago and has surged because of the 2018 Farm Bill that allowed farmers to grow hemp in the United States, according to KCUR. Sanders was pivotal in pushing for that change and sits on the U.S. Hemp Roundtable as one of eight board members. 

Sanders’ criminal record, which he has mostly kept under wraps, has had little effect on his success within the industry. Jonathan Miller, the U.S. Hemp Roundtable’s general counsel told KCUR that, “personally, and for the industry, we’re big believers in second chances,” and praised Sanders for “turning his life around, [and] building a very legitimate and legal business model.”

While the legal marijuana and CBD industries are booming, many Americans have not been as lucky as Sanders. The U.S. has the highest incarceration rate in the world, and “third strike laws” are often responsible for the imprisonment of repeat offenders on low-level drug offenses. The Sentencing Project reported that 30 percent of the federal prison population were serving life sentences for nonviolent drug offenses. In fact, according to Forbes, marijuana arrests have increased in spite of legalization. 

Read the full story on Sanders’ growing franchise here