Investorideas.com, a leading investor news resource covering hemp and cannabis stocks releases a snapshot looking at cannabis companies entering, and potentially take the lead in the US market.
With the passing of the US Farm Bill, as well as more and more states legalizing medical and recreational cannabis, both Canadian and US companies are looking to establish themselves across multiple geographic regions in the United States.
One of the largest Canadian cannabis producers, Canopy Growth Corporation (TSX: WEED.TO) (NYSE: CGC), wasted little time entering the US marketplace. Earlier this month, the company was granted a licence by the State of New York to process and produce hemp.
Canopy Growth intends to invest between $100 million USD and $150 million USD in its New York operations, which will be capable of producing tons of hemp extract on an annual basis.
Harvest Health & Recreation Inc. (CSE: HARV) (OTCQX: HTHHF), a vertically integrated public cannabis company has been pushing hard to have one of the largest footprints in the US, having amassed 60 licenses across the United States. Harvest applied for (and won) licenses in 12 states and has a track record of winning in every category, including vertical, retail cultivation, and processing licenses. The company also recently announced that is has qualified for, and is trading on, the OTCQX Best Market.
"Since day one of going public, one of our goals has been to move onto the OTCQX. Harvest is one of the fastest growing companies in one of the fastest growing industries in the world, and OTCQX will allow us to continue harnessing that momentum," said Harvest Chairman, Jason Vedadi. "Working up the investor ladder as a cannabis company is a monumental task, and we are excited to continue making strides towards becoming the biggest cannabis brand in the world."
Other large players like Cronos Group Inc. (NASDAQ: CRON) (TSX: CRON.TO) are looking to gain US market advantage. Cronos recently announced that it has entered into a subscription agreement with Altria Group, Inc. in which Altria has agreed to make an approximately C$2.4 billion equity investment in Cronos Group on a private placement basis in exchange for common shares in the capital of the Company.
"Altria is the ideal partner for Cronos Group, providing the resources and expertise we need to meaningfully accelerate our strategic growth," said Cronos Group's Mike Gorenstein, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer. "The proceeds from Altria's investment will enable us to more quickly expand our global infrastructure and distribution footprint, while also increasing investments in R&D and brands that resonate with our consumers. Importantly, Altria shares our vision of driving long-term value through innovation, and we look forward to continuing to differentiate in this area. As one of the largest holding companies in the adult consumer products sector, Altria has decades of experience in regulatory, government affairs, compliance, product development and brand management that we expect to leverage, particularly as new markets for cannabis open around the world."
Tilray, Inc. (NASDAQ: TLRY), a global pioneer in cannabis production and distribution, made a similar announcement in that they have signed a long-term revenue-sharing agreement to market and distribute a portfolio of consumer cannabis products with Authentic Brands Group, an owner of a portfolio of global lifestyle and entertainment brands, in jurisdictions where regulations permit.
With a global retail footprint of over 100,000 points of sale and more than 4,500 branded freestanding stores and shop-in-shops, ABG's portfolio generates approximately US$9 billion in retail sales annually.
"We are thrilled to partner with ABG, a global leader known for expertly managing and marketing an owned portfolio of iconic brands," said Brendan Kennedy, Tilray President and CEO. "As we work to expand Tilray's global presence, this agreement leverages our complementary strengths and will be accretive to our shareholders as we reach new consumers across the entertainment, fashion, beauty, home, and health and wellness sectors. We look forward to working with ABG to bring unique and sought-after branded cannabis products to the marketplace."
Companies like Harvest Health (CSE: HARV) (OTCQX: HTHHF) may have the upper hand with regards to the US market, as a vertically integrated MSO, not to mention a fully funded company with the means to expand and keep up with State by State legalization, even against companies like Canopy Growth and Aurora. Their business model is well suited to succeed, with or without federal legalization in the United States.
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