Cannabis Industry Spotlight: RĒL Director of Sales & Marketing Sabrena Peterson
February 23, 2018 | Magnetic Magazine
Last year, we reviewed RĒL’s Goliath CO2 oil vape pen—”Pulling on it is basically effortless, quality is so on point it just as well passes for an orgasm, and above all else, device functionality is remarkably masterful.” Ever since, we’ve been dying to get to know more about the woman who helped design the mighty Goliath, RĒL Director of Sales & Marketing Sabrena Peterson. For those new to the brand, RĒL offers Oregonians a sophisticated line of stylish, sleek and discreet personal vaping products.
Ms. Peterson was kind enough to take time out of her busy schedule to sit down with MAGNETIC and share insight into her professional experiences, as well as reveal what’s in store for RĒL this year.
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When did you get involved in the cannabis industry?
I’ve been medicating and consuming for over 20 years, but I got involved professionally about two and a half years ago. A friend needed help bringing a vape pen to market and asked my partners and I to consult on multi-state expansion plans. Unfortunately, the product needed a lot of improvements before it could go to market and be competitive, so we ended up passing on the opportunity. That was my first experience working in the cannabis industry, and it created a spark that eventually led me and my partners to creating RĒL and launching our own line of products.
What experience are you bringing to RĒL? What industry were you in before? What’s your role now?
I was in commercial real estate development previously, for over 10 years. It was an awesome and authentic journey that allowed me to experience many facets of running a business. A lot of that experience carries over, from the ability to prioritize and delegate to having a professional and strategic mindset when I come to work every day. My partners and I are used to dealing with human resources, regulations and accounting, so being serious about compliance wasn’t a hard transition to make.
How is RĒL changing the vape game?
RĒL is all about innovation and sustainability. We launched our recycling rewards program a few months ago, and we’re generating awareness to make sure that consumers take advantage of it. Last year we were so focused on controlled growth, as we worked through the challenges of engineering and incorporating new device technologies. I’m proud to say we’re at a point where we have a solid lineup of reliable products. We’re super excited to be rolling out our latest generation of refinements, plus we’re introducing several new products and services over the next couple of months. In addition to ramping up the bulk processing for our B2B wholesale customers, RĒL will be releasing a new ceramic cell cartridge, a reusable dablicator with precise dosing, cannabis-derived terpenes and a slick-looking credit card sized device that hits like a beast, called the EDGE.
We’re launching distillates and CBD oils too. Right now we’re dialing in the menu of core flavors we’ll have available, which will range from cannabis-derived terpene infusions (my personal favorite) to organic food-derived terpene blends for those who prefer non-cannabis flavors. One of my partners, our extraction artist, is a French trained chef and he’s currently obsessed with adding a limited collection of flavor profiles that embody his experiences at different landmarks and cities throughout Oregon. He’s putting together some amazing things that we can’t wait to share!
What’s your favorite thing about the Oregon cannabis industry?
I love that the industry in Oregon is so talented and diverse. It’s a mature enough market to get incredible feedback from experienced consumers and patients, and that feedback helps us make our products better. It’s also exciting to see how many people are empowered to be creative and find positive ways to collaborate and support each other. I’m thankful to be a part of this incredible community.
The Goliath is such a great concept for a vape pen. Who came up with that and what strains are you featuring right now?
During R&D with our earlier generations of vape pens, we kept hearing dabbers talk about vape pens and cartridges not being powerful enough to bother with. They were looking for a device that was hard hitting and intense, capable of massive clouds and effective for medical users. It was a team decision to bring something to market that could satisfy them. It took several months working with a few different factories to come up with the Goliath, and then several more months to get the engineering dialed in.
It all came together as the hardest hitting device in our lineup, and a budtender favorite. Stay tuned though, because we just redesigned it for 2018 to offer even bigger, smoother draws! The latest generation should be out mid-February. We try to rotate a nice variety of strains, so it’s always changing. We added Yeager, T4, White Water, Blue City Diesel and Primo Stout to the menu this week.
Do you have any events coming up?
We just participated in the Fore Twenty Sports CannaBowl event on February 6th. Later this month, we’re launching version 2.0 of all products and bringing new devices, distillates and CBD oils to market. Our team is going to be popping up at a lot of in-store events this year.
What are RĒL’s goals for 2018?
We’re focused on being good humans, running our business with integrity, continuous product development and adding value to the community whenever possible. It’s going to be an interesting year as the market continues to stabilize and consolidate.