Online health business backed by Freddie Flintoff hits sales of more than £11 million in 2022

A Stockport-based CBD health business backed by ex-England cricketer Freddie Flintoff has hit sales of more than £11 million in 2022.

Naturecan, which has 50 staff and is based in Stockport, has enjoyed rapid growth since starting in 2019 and revenue for 2023 is projected to be more than £18 million.

Ex-England cricketer and Top Gear host Flintoff is one of several high profile investors.

Co-founder and CEO Andy Duckworth said: “We had a really strong year and thankfully some of the supply chain issues which have been hitting business such as the increase in freight costs have not hit us as hard.

“We are really excited about 2023 and are projecting sales to nearly double again thanks to the global demand for CBD and wellness products, the loyalty of our valued customers, and hard work and talents of our staff.”

Naturecan was one of the fastest growing health and beauty ecommerce brand in the UK, with sales rising by 220% in 2021, and came sixth on Brightpearl’s Lightning 50 listing the UK’s top 25 online brands.

A key element behind its success has been introducing retail operations specialists Brightpearl, who improved efficiency and helped with monitoring of stock

Naturecan was set up by Duckworth, the former CEO of supplements brand Myprotein, with entrepreneur Paul Finnegan because they both felt there was huge potential for an ecommerce brand selling quality CBD products globally, and offering transparency of the CBD supply chain to customers.

Naturecan’s range includes oils, snacks, protein supplements and balms, all of which are created using natural hemp plant sourced from Oregon, USA.

Duckworth said: “Customers have really switched on to the benefits of CBD, whether that is through taking oils, capsules, gummies, snacks or in their beauty regime to support their physical and emotional well-being.”

Duckworth said they were thrilled to be included in Brightpearl’s Lightning 50 list of the UK’s most successful online brands.

He said: “That is recognition of our employees and means we are looking after our customers well and doing something right.

“What we are particularly proud of is our repeat business – and that is down to great customer service and a relentless focus on the quality of our products.

“All our CBD oil is sourced from the world’s very best producers in Oregon in the west coast of the United States.”

Naturecan is an international success with a large percentage of its sales in Asia, throughout Europe and in the United States.

With orders coming from multiple platforms globally, they needed a back office software system to improve efficiency and closely monitor stock.

Brightpearl was introduced earlier this year to run its multi-channel retail operation in warehouses all over the world.

Duckworth explained: “We use Brightpearl to professionalise the way we look after our stock, and the way we level that up into our financial numbers.

“It has really helped to improve efficiency in our whole supply chain.”

Duckworth has already played his part in building up one hugely successful health brand with Myprotein and he is using the lessons he learned there to make Naturecan a success.

He said: “There is no big secret. We invest in planning and preparation early to make sure we have the right stock in the right place”.

“A big part of our success is word-of-mouth recommendation – that is the best form of marketing you can get. Customers telling their friends, ‘You have got to try this.’

“I know the products work because I use them myself. I am pretty wired generally and take our CBD supplements to help me sleep.”