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Flora Growth Signs Agreement To Acquire Industry-Leading Vessel Brand, Entering Luxury Cannabis Consumer Technology Segment

Aug 17, 2021 • 8:34 AM EDT
8 MIN READ  •  By Michael Berger
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Flora Growth Corp. (NASDAQ: FLGC) (“Flora” or the “Company”), a leading all-outdoor cultivator and manufacturer of global cannabis products and brands, is pleased to announce that it has signed a Letter of Intent (the “LOI”) to acquire 100% of Vessel Brand Inc. (“Vessel”). Vessel is designing the cannabis and wellness industries forward by bringing to market innovative products and experiences that elevate consumer expectations. With its unique lineup of high-end dry-herb accessories and vape pen batteries, bespoke product programs for brands, and decades of go-to-market experience, Vessel is the go-to product line for consumers, multi-state operators, and brands alike. Headquartered in Carlsbad, California, Vessel distributes its premium hardware and accessories throughout the United States and internationally, and has numerous high-margin products in its development pipeline to drive incremental revenue and market share growth in new and existing categories.

“Beyond the attractive financial metrics based on Vessel’s high-margin luxury product line, we are adding bench strength and premier talent to capture the many market opportunities around the world as we look to further diversify our innovative product lines and globally recognized brands.”

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Vessel launched in 2018 with a singular focus – create a more thoughtful consumer experience at all touchpoints. With 100% revenue growth year-over-year, Vessel finds continued success by focusing on the intangible aspects of the experience, forging its own path to the top of the cannabis consumption market by honing in on everything from the value in hand and how people interact with Vessel products, to how they feel when they pick up a Vessel piece. To ensure the ultimate consumer experience, Vessel products are conceived and designed in-house with specialized engineering support from strategic partners.

The acquisition by Flora of Vessel is expected to be a substantive addition to the Flora Growth brand portfolio as a rapidly growing company with trailing twelve-month revenues of US$6.2M. Further, upon closing of the acquisition Flora is expected to leverage Vessel’s in-house design, sales, and marketing expertise to conduct an audit of Flora’s existing global brand and product portfolio. As part of this process, the Vessel team will develop a strategic plan to maximize consumer experience and resonance, increase market share and positioning, and reengineer the Flora brand portfolio, while staying true to its values, to make every consumer experience more expressive and personal.

Strengthening The Executive Bench

The Vessel team is led by a group of experienced cannabis, sales, marketing, design, and production professionals including:

Founder and CEO, James Choe. Through James’ leadership, Vessel bases its principles on what matters most: people, design, and community. James’ sincere people-first approach hinges on building highly effective teams and encouraging a collaborative spirit to create memorable experiences for the consumer. In this way, Vessel is bridging the gap between lifestyle and cannabis, ultimately raising the bar across the entire industry. James has extensive experience growing early-stage companies, specializing in supporting high-growth companies with brand, creative, e-commerce and retail strategy, and execution. James has mentored and consulted over 100 brands to date, while also leading the design, development, and successful launch of more than 400 products across several categories.

COO and CFO, Garret Potter. A Southern California native and the Chief Operating Officer/Chief Financial Officer of Vessel. Garrett earned a B.S. and M.S. in Accountancy from San Diego State University, and began his professional career in investment banking and private equity. Garrett possesses extensive experience in consumer-packaged goods and feels that what sets Vessel apart from the competition is its commitment to product design and customer experience. Prior to joining Vessel, Mr. Potter served as CFO at SKLZ, a leading global sporting goods company, and as COO/CFO of HYLETE, a direct-to-consumer athletic apparel start-up.

VP of Marketing, Jessie Casner. An experienced omnichannel marketer and storyteller, Jessie previously operated her own agency, Junction Marketing, where she developed and executed bespoke go-to-market strategies for brands across industries. Prior to that, Jessie was an early team member of The Active Network during its rapid growth phase (pre-IPO and acquisition), MOGL (now Figg, during series A + B funding), 2XU, and Total Gym. Jessie brings a strong knowledge and background in the cannabis, sports, start-up, e-commerce, and apparel industries.

VP of Performance, Jason Choe. Jason Choe is the Vice President of Performance at Vessel and a strategic advisor in top industries. Prior to joining Vessel, the San Francisco State University graduate was an early team member at Coremetrics, which was eventually acquired by IBM and an integral team member of the Marin Software IPO, the first revenue/campaign management SaaS to hit Wall Street. Having managed customer acquisition portfolios of more than $20 million in monthly spending for such powerhouse brands as Experian, Bass Pro Shops, Fossil, Golfsmith, Macy’s, Lexus, Supercell (Clash of Clans), ZYNGA, Jason brings unparalleled customer acquisition and funnel optimization insights.

“As we ramp up production and continue scaling for global growth, we believe that the proposed acquisition of Vessel positions us strategically at an extremely pivotal time. We’re very much looking forward to working with the entire Vessel team, who has a proven history in scaling consumer packaged goods brands and optimizing and executing sales and marketing strategies,” said Luis Merchan, President and CEO of Flora. “Beyond the attractive financial metrics based on Vessel’s high-margin luxury product line, we are adding bench strength and premier talent to capture the many market opportunities around the world as we look to further diversify our innovative product lines and globally recognized brands.”

“Any partnership must first begin with alignment – agreement on the number one priority. For the team at Vessel that priority has always been people and I know under the leadership and guidance of Luis and team, Flora shares that belief. It’s through the dedication to team that our two companies are best poised to create meaningful growth and change in the industry,” said James Choe, Founder and CEO of Vessel. “From the beginning, we made a promise – we will always strive to create the ultimate experience. Through that lens we have created evangelists, not just customers, engineered new experiences, opened our development doors to strategic partners, and began to lead the way on better sustainability practices within our industry. Working in lock-step with the team at Flora, our reach and ability to continue to deliver on that promise – to provide customers the products, brands, and quality they deserve – will be unparalleled.”

About the Transaction

Flora Growth has signed an LOI to acquire 100% of Vessel for consideration of an aggregate amount of US$30M to be satisfied by a combination of a cash payment and/or the issuance of Flora common shares. The completion of the transaction to acquire Vessel is subject to customary closing conditions, including due diligence to the satisfaction of both parties and the entering into of definitive agreements.

Following the closing of the transaction, and continuing for a period of three years thereafter, one nominee of Vessel shall be nominated to the board of directors of Flora for approval by Flora’s shareholders at its annual shareholder’s meeting.

About Vessel Brand Inc.

The industry leader in cannabis consumer technology, Vessel works tirelessly to bring forth innovation and new designs that set industry standards. Vessel’s promise is to make every experience more expressive and personal, and to deliver the best performance in its line, not only for its loyal customers but for brand partners as well. For more information, please visit www.vesselbrand.com

About Flora Growth Corp.

Flora is a cannabis company that leverages natural, cost-effective cultivation practices to supply cannabis derivatives to its diverse business divisions of cosmetics, hemp textiles, and food and beverage. As the operator of one of the largest outdoor cultivation facilities, Flora strives to market a higher-quality premium product at below market prices. By prioritizing natural ingredients and value-chain sustainability across its portfolio, Flora creates premium products that help consumers restore and thrive. Visit www.floragrowth.ca or follow @floragrowthcorp on social for more information.

Cautionary Statement Concerning Forward-Looking Statements

This document contains forward-looking statements. In addition, from time to time, we or our representatives may make forward-looking statements orally or in writing. We base these forward-looking statements on our expectations and projections about future events, which we derive from the information currently available to us. Such forward-looking statements relate to future events or our future performance, including: expected future revenue, the proposed acquisition of Vessel; Vessel’s financial performance; our financial performance and projections; our growth in revenue and earnings; and our business prospects and opportunities. You can identify forward-looking statements by those that are not historical in nature, particularly those that use terminology such as “may,” “should,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “contemplates,” “estimates,” “believes,” “plans,” “projected,” “predicts,” “potential,” or “hopes” or the negative of these or similar terms. In evaluating these forward-looking statements, you should consider various factors, including: our ability to change the direction of the Company; our ability to keep pace with new technology and changing market needs; and the competitive environment of our business. These and other factors may cause our actual results to differ materially from any forward-looking statement. Forward-looking statements are only predictions. The forward-looking events discussed in this document and other statements made from time to time by us or our representatives may not occur, and actual events and results may differ materially and are subject to risks, uncertainties and assumptions about us. We undertake no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of uncertainties and assumptions, or the forward-looking events discussed in this document and other statements made from time to time by us or our representatives not occurring, except as may be required by applicable law.

Contacts

Investor Relations Contact:
Evan Veryard
evan.veryard@floragrowth.ca

Public Relations Contact:
Cassandra Dowell
+1 (858) 264-6600
flora@cmwmedia.com

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Authored By

Michael Berger

Michael Berger is Managing Partner of StoneBridge Partners LLC. SBP continues to drive market awareness for leading firms in the cannabis industry throughout the U.S. and abroad.

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