According to a report by Ameri Research Inc., the global legal cannabis market was valued at $14.3 billion in 2016 and is forecast to grow at a CAGR of 21.1% between 2017 to 2024, reaching $63.5 billion by 2024. The market is going through a period of robust growth thanks to increasing legalization and decriminalization of cannabis products across North America and Europe. The report specifies that due to the complex regulatory structure at state and federal level, the full probable value of the market is not yet clear. A recent report published by Arcview Market Research explains that growth of the legal cannabis industry will reaccelerate beginning 2018, as adult use sales rise in Canada, California, and Massachusetts along with medical sales in Florida. Cannabis Wheaton Income Corp. (OTC:CBWTF), Cannabis Sativa, Inc. (OTC:CBDS), Kush Bottles, Inc. (OTC:KSHB), Innovative Industrial Properties, Inc. (NYSE:IIPR), Vitality Biopharma, Inc. (OTC:VBIO)
Major markets for the cannabis industry such as the state of California, where legal sales of recreational products have begun on January 1st, are expected to become examples of how to manage the new and growing cannabis industry. Giadha Aguirre de Carcer, New Frontier Data CEO, explained, “Significant changes are already underway in California for medical cannabis and adult use laws, which we see will have major implications for the cannabis industry, including ecommerce and delivery services in the state… As the largest state in the country – and the largest potential market for cannabis products – the implications for the growth of the industry because of California’s adult use market cannot be overstated.”
Cannabis Wheaton Income Corp. (OTC:CBWTF) is also listed on the TSX Venture Exchange under the ticker symbol ‘CBW’. Earlier today the company announced breaking news that, “it has entered into a binding strategic alliance and streaming agreement (the “Agreement”) with IDP Group Inc. and HMT Solutions Inc. (“IDP”) whereby IDP, via a newly formed subsidiary (the “CannabisCo”), will become a significant streaming partner to the Company, and the newest participant in the Wheaton Licensing Program. IDP is a privately-owned company with a seasoned management team that brings decades of project development experience and a proprietary vertical cultivation methodology that is fully scalable and expected to increase functional bench space by over 200%.
IDP plans to operate out of their wholly-owned former large-scale Nestle® Canada plant in Chesterville, Ontario (the “Facility”) that sits on 47 acres of land and hosts an existing 373,000 square feet of building space. The Facility is ideally situated only 50 minutes southeast of Ottawa, Ontario and next to rail access and en route to the 401 highway. Pursuant to the Agreement, the Company will provide IDP with $12,000,000 in funding related to the initial costs for the phase I construction of the Facility, which is currently estimated to be 100,000 square feet. The Company will have the option to fund phases II and III on the same terms as phase I, combined this would increase the overall facility footprint to 300,000 square feet. The phase II/III expansion is expected to increase the effective bench space of the Facility to over 400,000 square feet by utilizing IDP’s innovative vertical cultivation methodology. Phase II/III expansions are subject to the Company completing satisfactory due diligence and the parties agreeing to a construction budget and timeline. In addition, the Company will assist IDP in obtaining it’s ACMPR licensing (“License”) through its Wheaton Licensing Program by providing IDP with all of the resources and expertise necessary to achieve the License.
As consideration for its licensing efforts and funding commitment, the Company will receive a minority equity interest in CannabisCo and a perpetual stream of 30% of all cannabis (or cannabis-derived products including any cannabis trim) produced at the Facility. The Company will also secure the rights to IDP’s intellectual property related to indoor vertical cultivation, modular farming and in-house LED lighting technology. The Company estimates that the stream will result in approximately 7,500,000 grams of cannabis for the Company’s benefit per annum out of phase I.
Chuck Rifici, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Wheaton Income, stated “The partnership with IDP is a fantastic addition to the Cannabis Wheaton platform as Hamed and the team bring years of complementary skills and technology to this project. We also look forward to implementing their proprietary vertical cultivation system and custom-made fabricated LED lighting systems that we believe can set new standards for yields per square foot and operating cash costs per gram for indoor cultivation. We believe this to be an exciting and an accretive deal for both parties.”
Hamed Asl, Partner at IDP Group, commented. “We are excited to partner with Chuck and the industry leading Wheaton team on this transformational project for our community. When Nestle left Chesterville 12 years ago, the city lost nearly 300 jobs and we aim to bringing back economic activity to the region. This project is a tremendous opportunity for all stakeholders involved while also providing exposure for our modular farming system and other proprietary technologies, which we believe have the potential to enhance the value of Wheaton and its streaming partners. The Transaction remains subject to certain conditions precedent including receipt of applicable regulatory approvals including Health Canada approval and the execution of a definitive agreement which the parties expect to occur within 60 days.”
Cannabis Sativa, Inc. (OTCQB:CBDS) is engaged in the licensing of cannabis related intellectual property, marketing and branding for cannabis based products and services, operation of cannabis related technology services, and ancillary business activities. CBDS licenses the “hi” and “White Rabbit” brands, holds a U.S. patent on the Ecuadorian Sativa strain of Cannabis, owns patent pending and trade secret formulas and processes, offers the hi benefits discount pharmacy card, and operates subsidiaries including: PrestoDoctor, Wild Earth Naturals, and iBudtender. On December 4, 2017, the company announced that its subsidiary, PrestoDoctor, is expanding its online medical marijuana recommendation services into New York. PrestoDoctor currently serves patients via both their online platform and with dispensary kiosks operating in California and Nevada and will now extend their online services to patients located in the State of New York.
Kush Bottles, Inc. (OTCQB:KSHB) is a dynamic sales platform that provides unique products and services for both businesses and consumers in the cannabis industry. Founded in 2010 as a packaging and supplies company for dispensaries and growers, Kush Bottles has sold more than 100 million units and now regularly services more than 4,000 legally operated medical and adult-use dispensaries, growers, and producers across North America, South America, and Europe. On January 16, 2018, the company reported financial results for its first fiscal quarter of 2018, for the period ended November 30, 2017.Revenue was up 258% Year-over-Year to $8.85 million.Net income, including $382,000 in non-cash stock compensation, $202,000 in depreciation and amortization expense and $1.9 million in SG&A, was $94,615 compared to net loss of $161,000 in the fiscal first quarter of 2017.
Innovative Industrial Properties, Inc. (NYSE:IIPR) is a self-advised Maryland corporation focused on the acquisition, ownership and management of specialized industrial properties leased to experienced, state-licensed operators for their regulated medical-use cannabis facilities. On December 18, 2017, the company announced that it closed on the previously announced acquisition of the property located at 5900 West Greenhouse Drive in Willcox, Arizona, which comprises approximately 358,000 square feet of greenhouse and industrial space. Concurrent with the closing of the purchase, the Company entered into a long-term, triple-net lease agreement with a subsidiary of The Pharm, which intends to continue to operate the property as a medical-use cannabis cultivation and processing facility in accordance with Arizona medical-use cannabis regulations. The initial term of the lease is 15 years, with two options to extend the term for two additional five-year periods. The Pharm is one of the largest wholesalers of medical-use cannabis in the state of Arizona.
Vitality Biopharma, Inc. (OTCQB:VBIO) is dedicated to unlocking the power of cannabinoids for the treatment of serious neurological and inflammatory disorders. Recently, the company announced it has submitted an orphan drug designation request for VITA-100 to the U.S. Food & Drug Administration. Vitality Biopharma’s gut-targeted cannabosides enable delivery of THC without psychoactivity or intoxication, which may enable more widespread use of cannabinoids for treatment of pediatric digestive disorders. The Company has already completed studies that demonstrate the efficacy of cannabosides for treatment of preclinical models of colitis. Cannabosides were able to reduce weight loss, decrease damage to the colon, and markedly improve gastrointestinal health compared to the placebo controls.
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