Photo courtesy of Marijuana Venture

Learn | 01.21.2022

Trail Blazers: Interview With A Cannabis CEO

We spoke with the brothers behind Hitoki about their journey with cannabis and the inspiration behind the revolutionary Trident. This is their story.

Brothers Jack and Joe have a long history with cannabis and a simple yet daring dream: to transcend the idea that cannabis only works to get high and mix in the love for lasers to create the most innovative and healthy device out there.

With their motivation and passion, they aim to reinvent the conception around healthy herbal use, and the Trident might just be the answer to the long tradition of combusting flower. 

Both Joe and Jack have an incredible origin story. Coming from Vietnamese refugee parents, they have learned and grown from this journey and the journey of others with a similar background.

Georgia-born Hitoki has produced the Trident, the first of its kind, laser-powered, dry herb vaporizer, which aims to take wellness and innovation to the next level. 

The device looks like something out of this world. It is brand new and aims to revolutionize the whole cannabis industry by producing vapor with lasers instead of combustion or an oven-like chamber.

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After five years of ideas and inspiration, we get the result of ingenuity, inspiration, engineering, and flawless design. 

We spoke with Hitoki’s cofounding brothers, Joe and Jack, about their path and inspiration in the cannabis industry.

We hope you find inspiration in their journey to creating a healthier and more innovative device that will transform your cannabis user experience into a cutting-edge, technological, and clean solution.

Photo courtesy of Hitoki

Tell us about yourself and your journey with cannabis?

We are Joe and Jack, brothers and Co-founders of Hitoki. We have had a relationship with cannabis for about 15 years.

In our younger years, we enjoyed cannabis for the laughing effects. I would not say we were depressed but we were not exactly overwhelmed with joy so being able to laugh was refreshing.

As we got older we started to learn more about how helpful cannabis can be for people and started to think that cannabis is a lot more than just getting high.

We are very family-oriented and mostly everything we do leads back to the family or is influenced by family.

The idea for a laser smoking device came to us about 5 years ago. I think it happened naturally since we enjoy cannabis and also we have had a fascination with lasers since elementary school.

We would buy them from a dollar store and they would come with different caps that would display different animals and objects. I would also sell them to my classmates.

So I think it was just the blessing of life experience that helped make the Trident a reality.

Photo courtesy of Hitoki

What makes you passionate about being a CEO/Founder in the cannabis industry?

We just love cannabis for what it has done for us mentally and physically. Our dad is pretty ill with many conditions.

Cannabis is able to help him with his pain naturally and probably other things but it’s scary to get him to try cannabis due to being in Georgia dealing with laws and insurance companies.

Because of this, we know that many people probably have the same problem.

Our photographer’s mom passed away and he tells us that he wishes he would have tried cannabis with his mom as a treatment instead of being scared so we know other people can relate.

If we could be a big or small part of pushing to normalize cannabis that would be amazing. It does not make sense to us that a plant that you can not overdose on is illegal for people with conditions to have to jump through hoops to get something that can help them naturally.

When we first started designing the Trident we designed with features we appreciate but also keeping in mind that we wanted something sleek and minimalist so that the Trident would never look out of place.

We wanted it to feel more sophisticated and elegant like popping a bottle of wine.

We wanted it to be a conversation piece that people could have normal conversations about so that we can help further normalize the conversation in our own way and for now that is what we are doing until we can do more.

We think lasers are a good symbol for advancement.

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What is your all-time favorite cannabis product that you have tried?

I may be biased but I think the Trident is the coolest cannabis product. It uses a laser to give you a clean tasty smoking experience.

Other than that, nothing really beats good old flower or dabs.

What does your day look like as a CEO in the cannabis industry?

Being that we are pretty focused on just family and work right now we are just spending time with family or working.

Our whole life the fear of dad turning for the worst has always been a thing so as we got older we realize that spending time with loved ones is one of the most important things you can do in life.

Our days mostly consist of emails, social media, planning and executing sales and marketing strategies, connecting and learning from other industry professionals, going to the store with our parents, sharing our thoughts and journey with them, and fulfilling orders.

Photo courtesy of Hitoki

Where do you see the industry going in the next few years especially with the potential federal decriminalization?

I think there will be a lot of good that comes with federal decriminalization. It would make us very happy that people are able to access cannabis for whatever reason they want or need.

We are not sure where the industry will head but I think with it being less stigmatized, and legal consumers will have better access to the plant but also be able to get better educated on the products they use.

Which will help them decide what is right for them. I think as a society this is happening in many industries where consumers want quality and the best experience.

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What made you decide to join the industry, especially with such an innovative product?

I have loved smoking since my teen years. After learning more about the many uses of the plant from medical to food to commercial and how it can help not just people but the planet I knew that this was something I could be passionate about.

What I’m really passionate about is helping people and I believe this is a good place for us to start so that we can learn from this experience and grow.

So getting into this industry made all the sense in the world. Having the idea for the laser smoking device seems to happen by chance of how life happened.

Our dad had a heart attack a few months back and we finally said screw it, let’s try some tinctures for the pain since he was at the limit of how many painkillers he could take and it worked! Which reinforced the mission.

Photo courtesy of Hitoki

What lessons have you learned from working in the industry thus far?

Our experience has mostly been positive. We have learned that there are a lot of good people in the space that are caring and open to help.

I don’t know where we would be if it was not for the blessing of meeting so many good mentors.

You might be surprised how willing people that have “made it” are to share wisdom.

Who inspired you to become the founder that you are now?

The biggest inspiration has to be our parents. They came from humble beginnings being refugees from Vietnam.

The stories of how they got here are the stories you see in movies and that is the reality for a lot of people. Seeing our people suffer and knowing many cultures have a similar story, how can you not feel something?

I believe that business is my way of being able to eventually make a massive impact. It takes money to fix things. Akon is someone that also really inspires me.

One man with a vision with of course a team behind him brought light to millions.

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