Jamie Feaster is employee #1 at Eaze, the “Uber of Marijuana”, hired by CEO and founder Keith McCarty two years ago and heading up marketing for the company since then. He spoke about the company’s history and outlook at Innovate Pasadena on March 25th (video posted below). Eaze initially started as a delivery platform and now also offers a telehealth app, EazeMD, which launched last July.
The company has raised over $12mm in funding and is in conversations for a Series B round. Eaze is focused on California, but it thinks Nevada could be its next market. It hopes to grow faster than the 40% compound growth for the overall legal cannabis market expected over the next few years.
Feaster thinks that the data-driven approach at Eaze sets it apart from peers. He discussed some of the common challenges to marketing, including no access to Google AdWords and Facebook and the loss of Instagram accounts. The company has built a referral program, “Buds for Buds”, which is an ambassador program that is the primary driver of growth. There are also on-the-ground ambassadors educating the public. Feaster notes that some media is becoming more receptive, like SnapChat. Eaze also sponsors the 420 Games and is working on more outreach and advocacy.
Feaster described three pillars of a successful on demand service, including high frequency of use, the ability to be agile on the supply side and naturally social. Eaze sees an order cycle of typically 9-14 days. The company is focused on safe access as its primary mission.
Eaze doesn’t accept payment and is paid by the dispensary as a lead generator. The driver is responsible for cash collection from the customer and disbursement to the dispensary. The drivers come from a variety of sources, including reaching out to customers, using Craigslist and accepting referrals from friends and families of dispensaries. Finding the right dispensary partners has been the biggest challenge for the company.