Sentia Wellness of Portland Oregon didn’t release an exact number as they laid off between 30 and 40 of their workforce. With 150 employees to begin with, this is a huge hit for a company that just opened its doors five months ago.
Sentia Wellness raised $91 million before commencing operations in September. The company managed such a large round of funding due in part to their deal with Authentic Brands Group, which owns Sports Illustrated. Their deal was to put out a line of CBD infused creams focused on helping athletes recover. The topical line is reported to contain 500 mg of CBD per container and is planned to be launched by the end of 2020.
The layoff reportedly due to the company under-performing, but due to the regulatory environment set up by the FDA. The ambiguity and lack of a solid foundation for hemp legislation in consumable products are causing the company to react.
“The FDA’s decision around Thanksgiving to not provide regulatory clarity to the CBD industry has real-world consequences. This layoff is one of them,” Sentia’s Elana Weiss reported to the press.
“Parting with some of these incredible colleagues was hard,” said Weiss, “and we look forward to welcoming them back as the regulatory landscape improves.”
The company is a spin-off of Cura Cannabis. Their parent company made the news after paying a $110,000 fine for falsely claiming that their vaping products contained 100% marijuana, neglecting to disclose the additives they used as well. This partly led to Cura Cannabis being sold to a Massachusetts company called Curaleaf in an all-stock deal valued at almost $1 billion.