Casey Ly worked ten years helping start-ups achieve their goals before becoming Chief Revenue Officer (CRO) in charge of business development, sales, and branding for Bloom—a California company specializing in smoking oils and pre-rolls.
Ly earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology from the University of California, Los Angeles, graduating in 2011.
“I never really expected to pursue a career in anthropology after college,” he shared. “I was very fortunate to study the subject, though, because it taught me a way to look at the world objectively.”
During college he worked at then-start-up Opportunity Green, a facilitator of sustainable business conferences, giving him his first experience in sponsorships and corporate sales.
“My career in sales began before I managed sales people,” he explained. “I understand things by doing, so I find it difficult to instruct people in tasks I haven’t done myself. Starting as a cold-caller was a great way to understand the importance of consistency—which is a cornerstone of management.”
Business Is Blooming
After leaving the extraction company, Capna Intellectual, as CRO, Ly served as the Enterprise Account Director at MaxCDN, a support and web performance resource center, where he developed an outbound sales strategy, landing the company’s largest customer, while managing a significant share of revenue.
“Friends approached me about the start-up Bloom in 2014,” Ly said. “They showed me the first edition of the Bloom vape pen and asked if I could help sell it. I put together a basic go-to market plan and started working on it as a side project, while I was still working at Capna.”
When Capna was sold in 2016, Ly said he then began building the Bloom brand full-time, with the friends becoming partners.
Expanding into markets in other states proved challenging, as Ly said each market is its own microcosm of ordinances and cultural differences, and brand recognition doesn’t always translate as expected.
“You have to work hard to find the right recipe to enter into other markets—and you have to travel non-stop,” he laughed. “We launched Washington State in 2017, New Mexico in 2018, and Nevada in 2019. I found myself doing anything to get the launches off the ground—whether it was delivering orders or securing partnerships. My focus was and is on adapting sales and marketing tactics developed in California to the new markets.”
A Brand Maker’s Stash
The standout in Ly’s stash isn’t necessarily the excellent flower or even the sleek Bloom vape, but a fine Versace porcelain ashtray gifted to him from a friend.
The Italian design house founded by Gianni Versace in 1978, first began designing homewares in 1992. Ly’s Lion ashtray is now considered highly collectible as it’s no longer available for purchase; it once sold for approximately $600.
“The ashtray definitely makes my stash somewhat more sophisticated,” he shared. “But, the most sentimental item in my stash is my Crush grinder. I’ve had this same grinder for eight years now, and it’s an essential part of my rolling routine.”
Grinding is important, as it creates an even burn when smoking. It’s also cost effective and healthier, as the middle of the flower is not wasted, and additional carbon isn’t consumed getting to the center of the bud.
The red box is a Bloom Gift Box, and Ly said it holds everything he needs.
“I usually smoke Northern Emerald’s flower,” he said. “They are pretty reputable cultivators in the industry and have been around since the medical days. I’m always traveling, so I vape a lot. The Dart is a very sleek battery, so I usually have one in my stash box, my car, my desk, and my gym bag to cover my bases in case I forget or misplace it.”
Ly uses eye drops for discretion while medicating by Rohto – the only drops that don’t burn his eyes.
Avoiding products that aren’t natural, Ly said he uses unbleached hemp rolling papers from Raw, explaining that they taste better and always burn evenly.
The headphones are purposeful, as Ly said music sounds better with cannabis.
“Right now I’m listening to a pretty nice Boiler Room set by Jamie XX,” he said. “I listen to a pretty good mix of genres, but I gravitate towards hip hop because that’s what I grew up listening to. The last five artists I’ve listened to before this set are Playboy Carti, 03 Greedo, Washed Out, Sir, and Main Source.”
When he’s traveling he likes to keep a Medtainer on hand, because it’s both a grinder and hold bud – less for him to forget when it’s time to roll.
“I used to add hash to my flower, but now that it’s not as easy to find, I use The Dablicator,” he added. “I almost always have a Bloom Drop on hand because I can pretty much use it in any form I smoke.”
The Dablicator is a fillable dabbing accessory able to handle wax or dabs. Said to be the most efficient and cleanest way to burn a concentrate. It also has the fun option of being able to decorate and label your pen.
“I recreate by smoking joints or vaping,” he said. “I like to roll joints because I find the process therapeutic, and it’s less harsh on my throat. Vaping is my go-to since I’m always on the road for work and don’t always have time to roll joints.”
Ly recreates at different times throughout the day, tending to hit on a sativa for focus and stamina before he hits the gym. He also medicates by smoking or vaping for clarity and productivity at work.
“Smoking before I head to the gym helps me get focused and in the zone to power through my workout,” he shared. “Sometimes I’ll sesh at the end of the day to unwind after work—or I’ll smoke socially with friends, it all depends.
Problem-solving is everything whether you are expanding a line and promoting a brand, and Ly said cannabis plays a large role.
“I like to smoke when I can’t figure out a problem, as it helps me gather my thoughts and carefully create a solution—and that’s the epitome of what’s in my stash—many solutions, mentally and physically.”