Tell us your name and a little about yourself.
Samantha Czubiak. I am a serial cannabis entrepreneur and a former fashion stylist for celebrities and film in Los Angeles, CA.
What exactly does your company do?
I have two companies. I am the CFO for Punch Edibles & Extracts, a California cannabis company that specializes in chocolates and concentrates and CEO of Hora Skin Care, a CBD skincare line.
Punch is an award-winning cannabis chocolate manufacturer hand-crafted in Los Angeles. We use only the highest quality of concentrates for a high dose, but sensible-sized edible of 90mg. Each bar contains 9 bite-size pieces and is perfect for easy dosing and only half the calories compared to leading competitors. We supply licensed dispensaries from San Diego to San Francisco.
I introduced CBD to Hora’s list of ingredients and vitamins to create a Super Serum because of it’s powerful antioxidant abilities that are stronger than Vitamin C, E A or omega 3 fatty acids. Cannabinoid receptors are located throughout our skin, which allows CBD to act as a therapy to counteract dry skin and irritation, leaving a youthful and radiant glow. This month I also released an overnight exfoliating mask with CBD.
What were the biggest challenges you have faced and how did you overcome them?
The list is endless. The hardest was growing a business in a space where it is not recognized as a legitimate business. It was hard to run normal payroll, health insurance and get a bank account like any other business. Normal everyday business tasks are harder to deal with when you can’t bank normally. We are still working to overcome these challenges. Hopefully this year with legalization we are able to start operating like any other business.
What piece of advice do you wish someone had given you at the start of your career?
Hold on tight, it’s going to be a bumpy road! Starting a business, let alone two, is risky and I knew it was going to be challenging. However, no one can fully prepare you for the trials and tribulations that lay ahead. It is important to maintain a positive attitude and not jump to conclusions/the worst-case scenario. I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason and it is important to have an adaptable mindset and work through any challenges. It makes the process of owning and starting a company that much more rewarding when you see your hard work pay off…especially in an industry as new as cannabis. At the end of the day, if you put in the time early on, it will pay off. There is a light at the end of the tunnel and it’s brighter than you could have imagined.
Who are your biggest influences and people you admire and why?
My business partner and fiancé, Andrew, is my biggest influencer. We make a good match both personally and professionally. Some may think this is a conflict of interest but we are each other’s biggest support systems and the relationship we have is special and a major driver of our success thus far. When it comes to finances, I am very cautious about allocating our spending. However, he has taught me when and where to spend it to grow the company best. His passion and vision for our company is also very admirable and influences me to work just as hard to really make an impact as a pioneer in the industry and to challenge myself as a businesswoman.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are?
My parents. They let Andrew and I live with them for free while starting our business knowing that we had to put everything we have into the startup. They have been supportive the whole time and always saw our vision and believed in us. We would not be where we are today if it wasn’t for their constant love and encouragement. (Thank you mom and dad!) I would also like to mention our friends/employees. Everyone believed in Punch from the beginning. Some of our friends quit their jobs to join the team and took a big pay cut. I appreciate their dedication to making the brand a success.
What do you see as your greatest success in life?
I’m grateful to be where I am now. If you asked me if I would be a serial cannabis entrepreneur a few years ago, I would say you’re crazy! I have always loved fashion and it was a goal of mine to become a stylist in the entertainment industry since I was a child. When I accomplished that, I never thought I would want to change my career path. However, life has its surprises and what was just a light-hearted living-room idea eventually turned into two successful businesses. It’s amazing to watch an idea to grow into what it is now. We are able to employee 20 people and allow people to do what they love in a fun environment.
How can people contact you?