Canadian cannabis producers have been working tirelessly in order to be ready for the opening of the recreational cannabis market.
The recreational market will open tomorrow, and this is an exciting time for the cannabis industry. Today, we have highlighted 5 Canadian cannabis producers that are levered to this exciting opportunity and believe that these companies are worth watching.
Canopy Growth Announces a $400+ Million Acquisition
Canopy Growth Corporation (WEED.TO) (CGC) jumped higher after announcing an agreement to acquire ebbu, Inc., a Colorado-based hemp research leader, for more than $400 million (CAD). The Canadian cananbis producer believes that this transaction will complement and accelerate multiple core verticals operating under Canopy Growth’s group of companies.
Intellectual Property (IP) and R&D advancements achieved by ebbu’s team apply directly to Canopy Growth’s hemp and THC-rich cannabis genetic breeding program and its cannabis-infused beverage capabilities. In addition, ebbu’s IP portfolio will contribute to the clinical formulations program being executed by Canopy Health Innovations, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company. Canopy Growth operates a rapidly emerging, field-scale hemp operation based in Saskatchewan and by applying ebbu’s IP, the company has the potential to vastly reduce the cost of CBD production, a sought-after cannabinoid in both the wellness and medical spaces.
Staying with Canopy Growth’s long-held position surrounding business operations in the United States, this transaction would not have been pursued were it not in clear accordance with current US federal law. Canopy Growth, through a newly formed subsidiary, will employ ebbu’s assets and personnel to conduct R&D. There will be no production or sale of products resulting from such R&D in the United States unless and until it would be federally legal to do so.
Canopy Growth is leading the global cannabis market and we will monitor how the team executes on this. After receiving a $5 billion (CAD) investment from Constellation Brands (STZ), Canopy has significant capital to put to work and we are watching this opportunity closely.
RavenQuest Continues to be an Execution Story
RavenQuest BioMed Inc. (RQB.CN) (RVVQF) traded lower after introducing two distinct flagship brands, both of which will be available to the consuming public under Canada’s legalized adult recreational framework which begins October 17th.
RavenQuest’s cannabis offerings will lead our clients through the entire wholistic cannabis Experience. Each Experience begins with an informed selection of a suitable cultivar (strain). The journey then extends through the enjoyment of inspired packaging and finally delivers a high quality, predictable and repeatable Experience that can only come from the science-based grow methodologies for which RavenQuest has become so well-known.
The first flagship brand, Lore Cannabis, is a luxury offering aimed at a discerning female audience in the 30+ demographic. The Lore cannabis concept is rooted in our innate desire as humans to “Tell Your Story”, to create new stories, and to connect with those around us through the sharing of our stories.
The second flagship brand, Bloomera, is a clean, simple and accessible offering aimed largely at males aged 30+ who seek out products in their lives that do what they’re supposed to do and brands that deliver on their promise. These gentlemen (or women) are not averse to treating themselves to a product that is excellent and take pride in sticking to a good thing when they find something that works. The quintessential Bloomera consumer “Wants What S/He Wants.”
Both Lore and Bloomera cannabis will become available to the adult recreational market, initially through our supply MOU with the British Columbia Liquor Distribution Branch (BCLDB) and across Canada shortly thereafter.
The Canadian cannabis producer has been a strong performer and we have been favorable on this one. The valuation is attractive when compared to its peers and this is a stock that investors need to be monitoring.
Aphria is Capitalizing on a Global Cannabis Market
Aphria Inc. (APH.TO) (APHQF) traded higher with the market and this comes after the Canadian cannabis producer completed its first shipment of cannabis oil to its Argentina-based subsidiary ABP, S.A., a pharmaceutical import and distribution company. Aphria acquired ABP last month when it closed its acquisition of LATAM Holdings Inc., expanding the company’s global footprint to include a leading presence in Latin America and the Caribbean.
In accordance with a previously announced supply agreement, the company delivered 1,500 bottles of Rideau CBD oil, which were provided to Hospital de Pediatria Garrahan, a leading pediatric hospital located in Buenos Aires, for use in a clinical study focused on treating refractory epilepsy in children.
Aphria also completed its first shipment of cannabis oil to its Malta-based subsidiary ASG Pharma Ltd. The majority-owned subsidiary received the first import certificate for medical cannabis issued by the Government of Malta’s Ministry of Health and will use this first delivery of Aphria’s renowned Rideau CBD oil to perform analytical testing and research.
ASG’s facilities, which are undergoing a multi-million-euro upgrade of its processing and manufacturing capabilities, will serve as Aphria’s hub for importing cannabis resin and dried flower for processing, packaging and distribution of EU-GMP certified cannabis products throughout large parts of Europe.
Aphria has been nothing short of an execution story and has significantly advanced its fundamental story in 2018. The company is set up to record massive growth in 2019 and this is a stock we are watching.
Tilray Announces Recreational Portfolio
Tilray’s (TLRY) subsidiary, High Park Holdings, unveiled a broad-based portfolio of cannabis brands including three new, original brands exclusive to the Canadian adult-use market: Canaca, Dubon and Yukon Rove. High Park’s comprehensive brand portfolio reflects the breadth of consumer preferences and includes a diverse range of quality and innovative products.
- Canaca proudly builds on its homegrown heritage with cannabis whole flower, pre-roll and oil products handcrafted by and for Canadian cannabis enthusiasts.
- Dubon is a vibrantly Québécois cannabis brand and champion of inspired, creative living. Dubon offers master-crafted cannabis strains as whole flower and pre-rolls, exclusively available through the Société québécoise du cannabis in Québec (SQDC).
- Yukon Rove is a cannabis brand born “wild and free” with the unique spirit of Northern-Canada. An assortment of local favorite strains will be available from Yukon Rove in whole flower and pre-rolls, exclusively in the Yukon territory.
In addition to the brands listed above (and as previously announced), High Park has secured the exclusive rights to produce and distribute a broad-based portfolio of adult-use cannabis brands and products in Canada, subject to applicable laws and regulations. These brands include:
- Irisa is a women’s wellness brand created with modern health and wellness seekers in mind. Irisa products include cannabis pre-rolls and oil drops designed to naturally integrate with consumers’ self-care rituals.
- Grail is a super-premium cannabis brand that offers discerning connoisseurs a collection of sought-after strains and top-shelf products.
- Marley Natural is crafted with deep respect for natural wellbeing and the positive potential of the herb. Marley Natural products include whole flower, pre-rolls, vape oil cartridges and cannabis-infused edibles.
- Dutchy is a popular brand of choice for more frequent consumers. Dutchy’s social and community-minded products include whole-flower, pre-rolls and vape oil cartridges. Headlight offers experienced consumers best-in-class quality focusing on cannabis concentrates, waxes and high potency vape oil cartridges.
- Goodship makes award-winning cannabis edibles. The Goodship brand is known for its delectable cannabis-infused baked goods, chocolates and confections.Wallops are creators of high-intensity chews and confections. Wallops products satisfy daring cannabis consumers with a stunningly bold flavor experience.
High Park anticipates fulfilling adult-use supply agreements and purchase orders in Quebec, Ontario, British Columbia, Manitoba, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, Northwest Territories, Saskatchewan and the Yukon this year as adult-use legalization takes effect. Irisa, Grail, Canaca, Dubon and Yukon Rove will be available in select jurisdictions across Canada for the launch of the adult-use market on October 17th. Marley Natural is anticipated to launch later in 2018, and the remaining brands in the High Park portfolio will launch as laws and regulations permit.
Cronos Continues to be a Top Performer
Cronos Group Inc. (CRON) (CRON.TO) surged higher after announcing a sponsored research agreement with the Technion Research and Development Foundation of the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology to explore the use of cannabinoids and their role in regulating skin health and skin disorders. The preclinical studies will be conducted by Technion over a three-year period and will focus on three skin conditions: acne, psoriasis and skin repair.
Research will be led by Technion faculty members Dr. David “Dedi” Meiri, Head, Laboratory of Cancer Biology and Cannabinoid Research and Dr. Yaron Fuchs, Head, Laboratory of Cancer Biology and Cannabinoid Research, two of the world’s leading researchers in cannabis and skin stem cell research, respectively. Dr. Meiri heads the Laboratory of Cannabis and Cancer Research with vast experience in cannabis and endocannabinoid research. Dr. Fuchs heads the Laboratory of Stem Cell Biology and Regenerative Medicine with years of experience in the biology of the skin and its pathologies. Development and implementation of the research will be conducted at Technion’s Laboratory of Cancer Biology and Cannabis Research and the Lorry I. Lokey Interdisciplinary Center of Life Sciences and Engineering in Haifa, Israel.
The endocannabinoid system and the cannabinoids that modulate its activity are believed to have an important role in regulating skin health and skin disorders. The research will utilize Dr. Meiri’s cannabis strain database of over 80 cultivars and Cronos Group’s strain specific cannabis oils to isolate and investigate the effects of individual and combinations of cannabinoids, potentially including rare cannabinoids, for treating acne, psoriasis and wounds using stem cell-derived organoid cultures developed by Dr. Fuchs’ laboratory and mouse models. Cronos Group expects to be able to adapt the individual and combinations of cannabinoids to develop products for each of these three applications and expects to receive an exclusive, worldwide license to market and manufacture such products.
Cronos has been trending higher and we have been favorable on the Canadian cannabis producer. Momentum has been moving higher after the shares came off its recent lows and we are monitoring this trend.