Donald Biedrzycki – Co-Founder and Co-CEO
Donald Biedrzycki is the co-founder of Global Widget, LLC. Biedrzycki founded Global Widget in 2016 alongside co-founder Kevin Collins. The two previously worked together in the automotive industry, where they jointly operated multiple dealerships for more than five years. Biedrzycki currently serves as the co-CEO of Global Widget.
An experienced entrepreneur, Biedrzycki brings his previous financial and business experience to Global Widget. Working directly with the manufacturing and distribution teams, Biedrzycki has overseen the scalability of his company to include three product lines. He implemented a distribution model unique in the industry that allows for Global Widget to ship its products to distributors, such as convenience stores and brick-and-mortar stores, and direct to consumers. Over the past three years, Global Widget has introduced premium CBD gummies in addition to CBD edibles, CBD oils, and CBD topicals under its three product lines: Hemp Bombs, Nature’s Script, and Perfect Paws Hemp for pets. Biedrzycki and Collins led the launch of each product line, from the first two-pack of Hemp Bombs capsules in 2016 to a full line of pet CBD products earlier in 2019. In total, over 1,000 SKUs are offered to consumers across the three product lines.
With a commitment to quality and compliance, Biedrzycki works with the manufacturing and distribution teams to ensure that all processes, equipment, technology, and extraction methods are setting the standards in an industry that currently lacks federal regulation or guidance.
By establishing, maintaining, and enhancing relationships with U.S.-based farmers and additional business partners, Biedrzycki ensures that sourcing methods practiced by Global Widget position it as an industry leader.
In 2019, Biedrzycki oversaw the expansion of Global Widget’s manufacturing and distribution capabilities with the addition of two new facilities, which now provide for over 100,000 square feet of manufacturing and distribution space. In addition, with previous experience in scaling businesses and processes, he has been behind the initiatives to bring additional processes, extraction methods, and technologies in-house, in accordance with current Good Manufacturing Processes (cGMP).
As Global Widget continues to expand its operations, distribution, and manufacturing capabilities, new products continue to be researched, developed, manufactured, and distributed in-house. Biedrzycki works in collaboration with Collins to provide leadership, experience, and industry-leading knowledge to ensure that all Global Widget products meet and surpass not only to the highest standards in the industry, but also the quality and compliance standards set in place by local, state, and federal statutes.
Kevin Collins – Co-Founder and Co-CEO
Kevin Collins is the co-founder of Global Widget, LLC. Collins founded Global Widget in 2016 alongside co-founder Donald Biedrzycki. Currently, Collins serves as the company’s co-CEO with Biedrzycki and this is not the first time that both experienced entrepreneurs have worked together. The two worked in the automotive industry and jointly operated multiple dealerships for more than five years.
Prior to founding Global Widget, Collins was a successful real estate professional specializing in buying, rehabilitating, and selling rental portfolios.
Since 2016, Collins has used his leadership expertise and experience in managing various teams to lead Global Widget’s sales, marketing, design, and product marketing development teams as the business has scaled to include three premium hemp-derived CBD brands: Hemp Bombs, Nature’s Script, and Perfect Paws Hemp for pets. Global Widget’s product lines consist of CBD gummies, an industry best-seller with over 50 million units sold, in addition to CBD edibles, CBD oils, and CBD topicals.
As product lines continue to expand to offer consumers the highest quality and purest product on the market, Collins and Biedrzycki have formed strategic partnerships to ensure a quality and compliant process of manufacturing, distributing, and selling Global Widget’s products to distributors and directly to consumers worldwide in accordance with all local, state, and federal statutes.
As the company has expanded to include three facilities with over 100,000 square feet of manufacturing and distribution space, it has also grown its workforce to more than 200 employees. Collins attributes the success of Global Widget’s brands in the emerging CBD industry to its commitment to quality and compliance through its in-house sales, marketing, manufacturing, distribution, and compliance teams. It is that business model with its focus on the distribution of its product lines that has led to Global Widget’s products being available in more than 25,000 convenience and brick-and-mortar stores across the country, in addition to online.
In an industry currently lacking federal regulation or guidance, Collins and Biedrzycki share a vision of creating and setting industry standards to position Global Widget as the leader and innovator in the industry and the brand all other competitors are measured against.
Salim Baltagi – Chief Operating Officer
Salim Baltagi has over 25 years of experience in manufacturing, operations and supply chain in the food and beverage industry. He has held multiple senior executive positions over the years with Dean Foods, Brambles/IFCO Systems and Polymer Logistics.
With core competencies in the CPG, food and beverage, reusable transport packaging and retail industries, Baltagi demonstrates a focus on total cost of ownership and process management. Through his solid experience in planning, implementing and executing strategies resulting in greater customer confidence and strengthened business results, Baltagi adds value for Global Widget’s shareholders. In addition to embracing diverse environments, Baltagi is committed to promoting creativity, effective problem solving and breakthrough results.
Baltagi’s affiliations and memberships include: United Fresh Supply Chain Management Council, Reusable Packaging Association Operations and Logistics committee, Coleman Research Group executive forum, Alpha Sights Consulting (advisory board), Kurt Salmon Consulting (advisory board) and Gerson Lehrman Group Inc. (advisory board).
John King – Chief Technology Officer
John King serves as the chief technology officer for Global Widget, LLC. He joined the team in February 2019, bringing over 25 years of experience to the role. He previously served as vice president of product engineering at HPS and Chief Architect at BMC. King is a scientist-leader, people-person who excels in strategy, but emphasizes daily continuous improvement of technology, process, teams, and projects. He possesses vast product, project, program, organizational, and technical experience, and has pioneered several technology and methodology advancements. King leads our E-Commerce, engineering, technology, process, and data analytics teams, providing technical vision and direction for cohesive high-quality solutions to meet the needs of our customers, business partners, and team members. In addition to contributing on improving the lives of our customers through use of our hemp-derived CBD product lines, King also works with his team to create a great place to work that attracts top candidates.
King holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of South Florida and a master’s degree in computer science from Nova Southern University.
Leanna von Merveldt – Vice President, Human Resources
Leanna von Merveldt serves as the vice president, human resources for Global Widget, LLC, bringing more than 15 years of experience to her role. Previously, she served as human resource director, North America for Polymer Logistics in Tampa, FL, where she implemented a new HRIS system, improved payroll and HR processes, and developed effective recruitment strategies.
At Global Widget, von Merveldt oversees a team of HR professionals leading in talent acquisition, retention, employee relations and management. Working with the leadership team, she plans and executes the implementation of new processes, programs, and HR initiatives.
Additionally, she strategizes with third-party vendors for payroll and benefits solutions, and communicates with all team members on human resources-related matters, keeping an open and transparent line of communication to Global Widget’s workforce. She also ensures the regulatory compliance of all HR processes for each team member and works to provide resources, training and education of team members to meet all job-related requirements.
Leanna holds a bachelor’s degree in business/human resources management from Florida State University and a master’s degree in human resources management from Florida International University.
Gina Bongiovanni – Vice President, Marketing
Gina Bongiovanni is the vice president, marketing, for the Global Widget brands. An expert in direct, digital and brand marketing, Bongiovanni brings over 20 years of experience managing marketing strategy and demand generation for brands like Omaha Steaks and Thompson Cigar to her role.
At Global Widget, Bongiovanni leads a team of channel experts, creative practitioners, content leaders and public relations professionals in developing and amplifying the marketing footprint of over 15 distinctive brands in the CBD and health and wellness spaces.
Leveraging both digital and traditional media, she plans and executes advertising campaigns to drive B2B, DTC and private-label brand awareness and revenue growth. Bongiovanni brings a positive leadership style to Global Widget and emphasizes collaboration, communication and shared accountability as the pillars of her team’s success. She holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing from the University of South Florida.
Vincent S. Gillen – Vice President, Sales
Vincent S. Gillen is the vice president, sales for Global Widget. With more than 10 years of sales experience, Gillen joined the Global Widget team in July 2017. In his role, Gillen established a national sales distribution network with countless business partnerships. He leads a world-class sales team to promote Global Widget’s brands – Hemp Bombs, Nature’s Script and Perfect Paws Hemp. Global Widget’s sales strategy focuses on education for prospective business partners on topics such as best practices for CBD sales, industry insights and current compliance standards.
Prior to joining Global Widget, Gillen was a sales manager for DEX imaging, where he sold copiers and related supplies throughout Florida. He graduated from the University of South Florida in 2008 with a degree in interpersonal communications.