AACE INTERVIEW: Vincent Ning of GetNabis.com
Vincent Ning the founder of GetNabis.com has created an online portal to facilitate and to streamline cannabis distribution in California. Nabis has a wide slate of services for the community and industry from logistics, distribution, sales, marketing, software and education. The superiority of their services has them teamed up with Canndescent, Jetty, Caligold and a host of other top cannabis brands.
Vincent graduated from the University of Virginia with a degree in Computer Science & Economics from while Vincent’s partner Jun S. Lee is a Harvard grad. He and Vincent are not only opening the path for more of their generation to enter the industry, but they are also forging the path for other Asian Americans. One day we will hear from more proud parents, “My kid went to a top tier college and is in cannabis!”. Other notable Harvard alumni include Adrian Sedlin of Canndescent.
From Forbes: Vincent Ning, 25, and Jun S. Lee, 25, observed this unmet need in this newly legalized and booming industry and founded Nabis to address the issue. Nabis is a software-enabled licensed cannabis distributor based in Oakland, CA, providing cannabis brands and cultivators with a full suite of distribution services around logistics, sales, and software.
Ning, previously an engineer at Microsoft and founder of Scaphold (YC W17, acquired by Amazon), and Lee, a former Facebook engineer, have raised $1.25 million from Babel Ventures, CannaAngels, Jeremy Gardner, Scott Robinson, and Y Combinator alumni. “ - Frederick Daso / Forbes
We caught up with Vincent and asked him a few questions about cannabis, family and being an Asian American in the industry:
Cannabis is a taboo subject in Asian American families, especially those who have immigrant parents with first generation children, how did the two of you approach the subject with your families?
I never really told my parents until very recently. I started smoking back in college, but only until after a year of running Nabis with Jun did I end up telling my parents explicitly. For me, my parents found out through our company PR. My dad saw our Forbes article and called me about it. To my surprise, he actually wasn't super opposed.
As an instructor at Art Center College of Design, I found my Asian American students open to cannabis, some were medicating. Most of them hid their use from their parents and lived two lives, one with friends and the other the good child at home. What was your experiences with cannabis in college and with your peers now?
Your recount of your students' experiences mirrors my experiences growing up. Ever since college, at home, my parents never suspected a thing, but outwardly with my friends it was completely public knowledge. Truthfully, many of the best experiences I've had with my friends were when we smoked together.
In the last election, Prop 64 passed with at 56% majority of APIs voting yes. What do you think was the turning point for APIs about cannabis?
As far as Prop 64 goes, I don't actually think there was a major catalyst or turning point. Constituents had built up the desire to pass the policy over decades in California, and finally when the proposition hit the ballot, people were able to voice their opinions. California had been medicinally legal since the mid-90's, and the fact that it didn't drastically hike up crime rates, made it a logical next step to legalize marijuana recreationally. It did take a while though, and I think the Cole Memorandum during the Obama presidency helped shift the tide in state legalization in California.
What Asian product would you like to see be offered in the cannabis industry?
I would love to see a brand called High-Chew as a rebranding of Hi-Chew with THC/CBD in it!
What is your favorite way of ingesting cannabis?
My favorite way of ingesting cannabis would still be smoking a joint. I've recently started dabbing a bit, but smoking a classic joint is a ritual to me as that's how I smoked it growing up.