Garyn Angel, CEO and Founder of Magical, got his entrepreneurial start as a young kid selling gum and soda out of his duffel bag in the seventh grade. He sold his first company, Angel Computers, at the age of 18. After graduating from university two years later, Angel spent 15 years in money management becoming one of the top money managers in the country. When a friend who suffered from Crohn’s Disease was unable to find a safe and effective way to relieve his symptoms, Angel jumped at the opportunity to help his friend. By default, he helped others by bringing a revolutionary product to the market.
“Patients needed a safe and easy way to ingest cannabis instead of inhaling it,” Angel said. “In most cases, oral consumption of cannabis is the best option. Unfortunately, most governments and people are slow to adopt the use of edibles. What I created was a device capable of extracting the beneficial compounds from herbs and infusing them into butter, oils, and other substances. Cannabis is a dietary essential. Infused foods, beverages, and lotions provide the relief patients seek. After some trial and error, I discovered a way to automate the process making extractions consistent and foolproof.”
Since launching Magical in 2012, Angel has experienced your typical startup challenges and more industry-focused obstacles. For one, until very recently, the mainstream adoption of edibles and CBD products as a viable holistic alternative to treat medical conditions has been relatively slow. Cities and states have been reluctant to decriminalize possession and, when they do, they’re often at odds with the federal government. Nevertheless, Angel doesn’t focus on the challenges. In fact, in his mind, problems don’t exist.
“There are no challenges, only opportunities,” he said. “I focus on opportunities. If there’s a hurdle, I’m trying to go under that hurdle and become one with it. Most companies in our industry have advertising restrictions. Instead of seeing this as a hurdle, we partner with the best. For example, Gary Vaynerchuk is a strategic advisor. Magical’s brand strength permits us to go straight to the top brass at Google and Amazon for collaborative ad campaigns. Success is simple – deliver more value to the customer than the cost of your products. We have a tremendous competitive advantage because we invented the shelf space, and Magical owns the majority of that space.”
Angel continued, “Where you see a challenge is a place for innovation, and that’s what creates wealth. People too often are afraid to unpack problems and look them in the eye.”
Identifying a Unique Opportunity
Two years before launching Magical, Angel began investing in the legal cannabis industry. He, along with a host of other forward-thinking entrepreneurs, saw the potential of shaping the industry. With the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, Cannabidiol (CBD) became legal to distribute and acquire. CBD is extracted from cannabis and used to treat anxiety, pain, insomnia, and many other conditions. Public support and awareness of plant-derived compounds are on the rise. The ease and convenience of Angel’s Magical machine mean the company is well-positioned to maintain its grip on domestic and international markets.
“We provide people the tools to make dispensary quality edibles at home, many customers have never experienced a quality edible product,” Angel said. “People typically start with brownies, cookies, and other desserts before discovering healthier ways to incorporate edibles into their diet like soups, sauces, and salad dressings. We teach the public through videos distributed on social media how easy it is to make healthy infused oils and salad dressings combined with proteins and vegetables. Magical customers become thought-leaders in their peer groups and invite friends over for dinner parties to introduce them to the possibilities. Dinners become a social gathering, their friends get interested, and they start buying our products. That’s the secret to growth. Empower your customers to be thought-leaders and advocates in their peer groups.”
In addition to empowering his customers, Garyn Angel is equally as focused on empowering his employees and creating a culture of cohesion, acceptance, and happiness. With operations in Pasco County, Washington State, Australia, Canada, and China, Magical focuses on the best attributes of culture. That identity creates a beautiful synergy where employees are happy at home and work. Employees also possess a strong sense of ownership and vision, something Angel emphasizes is required for meaningful growth and a positive culture.
When it comes to community involvement and philanthropic activities, Magical sets the bar pretty high. As Angel shared, helping communities and those in need is their entire purpose. “Our company gives back while improving a patient’s quality of life,” he said. “Last year, after Puerto Rico continued to suffer from the devastation caused by Hurricane Maria in 2017, we wanted to provide a reason for patients to smile. We gave away 420 Magical units to those most affected by the hurricane. The year before, we made a significant donation to a triple-amputee veteran who was involved in a car accident. We also pay relocation expenses for families of pediatric cannabis patients. On a broader level, we routinely lobby politicians on policy reform. Living and working in a small city like Port Richey highlights the needs of regular people. I had dinner with Newt Gingrich to figure out how to best approach Trump. We love people, passion, activism, and support patients – that’s how we operate.”
What it Means to be a Florida Companies to Watch Honoree
“It means everything,” he said. “Companies are always looking to highlight their business. This type of advertising is invaluable because prestigious awards like this are from a third party. As the only company selected from Pasco County, it is a true honor. Awards are a direct reflection of our team’s tremendous dedication and our loving, loyal customers. We need these spotlights to grow Magical and our county. Team Magical values this award as much as the recognition we’ve received from Fox, Forbes, CNBC, and others.”
Angel continued, “Aside from building a great company, we’re also doing our part to curb the use of deadly opioids. I’ve had friends die from an overdose. Throughout the process of building the business, it’s been my civic duty to expand the knowledge base about plant-derived compounds and how beneficial they are to public health policy. Put patients first and help politicians embrace medical cannabis.”
Garyn’s leadership extends beyond business. He founded the Magical Creative Center. It is an educational program for engineers and entrepreneurs in collaboration with the Department of Education in China, and he writes for Entrepreneur.
Advice for Aspiring Entrepreneurs
“Be authentic, build a brand” he said. “As an entrepreneur, you’re sometimes faced with having to make decisions that might be financially devastating short term but right long term. The leaders who ultimately fail are the ones who don’t make authentic decisions because they’re too worried about cash flow. Also, move past the ‘world is so big’ mentality. People from small towns often think this way. You can reach anyone in seven days or less if you build your network. Success boils down to being connected, offering exceptional value, and helping others.”