About Us


To continuously blend beauty and technology through innovation and design to craft the most advanced alternatives for the most sophisticated smokers.


Paul Pierce

Co-Founder & CEO  
Born in Oakland and raised in Inglewood, California, Paul Pierce has worked his way through trials and tribulations from a standout high school athlete to one of the NBA’s most prolific superstars. From a young age, Paul, has relied on his mental fortitude, hard work, drive and endless determination to achieve greatness in every journey he has embarked on. Retiring from the NBA after 19 years as a Top 50 player of all time in 2017, Paul, took no breaks and immediately set his sights on business. Beyond his leadership experience of captaining his teams to two NBA Finals appearances and one championship (that earned him Finals MVP honors), Paul has spent ten plus years as a high-level member of the NBA Players Association, taught countless seminars on personal finance for professional athletes, founded and operated a non-profit bringing health education and services to low income neighborhoods, all while developing countless real estate projects and restaurants. Beyond his wealth of knowledge, Paul, brings to the Vesper team a unique vision accompanied by limitless experience in execution, communication, management and deal making.

Elliot Mermel

Co-Founder & COO
Raised outside of Providence, Rhode Island, Elliot Mermel started his first company selling customized trucker hats in the seventh grade. After graduating Colby College with a Bachelor of Science in the Business of Medicine, Elliot dropped his enrollment in medical school instead choosing to pursue a Master’s degree in Bioentrepreneurship from the prestigious Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, Sweden. While in Sweden, Elliot built a web-crawling, natural language processor with sentiment analysis and started a technology company that leveraged these technologies to track stock price and sentiment for publicly traded, highly volatile, low market cap, biotechnology companies. After completing his studies and returning to the United States, Elliot, moved west to Southern California to start-up his third company, Coalo Valley Farms, a closed-loop indoor farm that became California’s first edible insect farm. It was during his time at Coalo Valley Farms that Elliot began studying the use of beetles and other insects as high quality organic fertilizer. This lead him to found his fourth start-up, Titan Biologics, which researches, develops and distributes organic biostimulants, soil amendments and fertilizers to the agriculture industry. From Titan Biologics, Elliot became increasingly involved in this market. Elliot brings his innovative perspective, unique entrepreneurial experiences and outlook to the Vesper team.