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📺 NBC launches in-depth coverage of Cannabis in special series all this week
Curaleaf gets a new CFO. Aventine REIT $100M Senior Unsecured Convertible Notes. Verano closes Agri-Kind, Agronomed transactions. Flow Cannabis’ lawn mower starts NorCal wildfire.
🍺 Newsletter Networking @ Amuse HQ, Monday, 7/19, 5-8p, (RSVP here)
If you’re an English Premier League (EPL) fan interested in Fantasy Premiere League (FPL) or the England/Italy Euro Final yesterday have you interested enough to spend 38 weeks playing FPL…I’m starting a league with some colleagues and Cannabis Executives/Investors that you may be interested in.
Reply to this email or email me directly if so.
NBC News will feature in-depth coverage on the future of cannabis in the U.S.
Flow Cannabis’ lawn mower starts NorCal wildfire that destroyed 9 structures. Flow Cannabis released a statement Friday saying that a lawn mower operating on its property started a wildfire on Wednesday in Mendocino County that triggered evacuations and destroyed nine structures and damaged two. Flow Cannabis President Jarom Fawsom said in a statement shared on Twitter by North Bay reporter Sarah Stierch that the July 7 fire near Redwood Valley originated on the company's property after the blades of a mower, operated by an employee, struck a rock and caused a spark. The so-called Broiler Fire started at 2:44 p.m. near Uva Drive and Finne Road, southwest of Redwood Valley, according to an incident report posted by Cal Fire. The blaze had burned 80 acres as of Friday morning and was 100% contained. Firefighters are continuing to monitor the area for smoke and hot spots.
Big Tobacco Flirts With Non-Smokeable Marijuana. British American Tobacco Plc’s recent investment in Trait Biosciences Inc. offers intriguing clues about how Big Tobacco may capitalize on the growing cannabis market. While tobacco companies are no stranger to marijuana, the expectation has been that they would gravitate toward things like vape or smokeable flower with THC. After all, inhalable products are their expertise. But Trait’s strongest patents are for a technology that makes CBD water-soluble. That suggests BAT, the London-based maker of Vuse vaping products and Newport cigarettes, could move into other formats for cannabis consumption — and even end up competing against beer companies. BAT’s corporate-venture unit led the C$31 million ($25 million) investment in Canada’s Trait Biosciences last month. The deal calls for BAT to help commercialize the technology, which could be used in beverages to make the timing of the marijuana compound’s effects more predictable.
Trulieve CEO’s Husbad faces trial on bribery charges. The husband of Trulieve CEO Kim Rivers is on trial in Florida this week on federal bribery and corruption charges stemming from a four-year investigation of his real estate development activities. John Thomas “J.T.” Burnette and Rivers were partners in an investment venture before their marriage and Trulieve’s founding, according to the Tallahassee Democrat, and Burnette is a minority owner of a company that provides construction and related services to Trulieve. Trulieve said in a regulatory filing in 2019 that it concluded that Rivers herself wasn’t a target of the federal corruption investigation, and the potential liability from the case wasn’t great enough to prevent her from continuing as CEO. Rivers emphasized to MJBizDaily in early 2020 that Trulieve had been “fully transparent and had full disclosure” on the matter. In its audited annual financial report in March, Trulieve disclosed that it made property and equipment purchases totaling $96.7 million in 2020 from a company that includes Burnette as minority owner. That compared to purchases of $46.4 million in 2019 and $12.1 million in 2018. The unidentified company was described in the filing as being responsible for the construction of Trulieve’s cultivation and processing facilities, including providing labor, materials and equipment.
“Borat” Sustainable Cannabis Billboard Sparks Lawsuit. There’s no shortage of entertainment-related cannabis companies — but a Borat brand isn’t among them and never will be, according to a lawsuit filed Monday. Sacha Baron Cohen is suing Solar Therapeutics for copyright infringement, false advertising and misappropriation of his right of publicity over a Massachusetts interstate billboard showing his famous character giving a thumbs up and exclaiming, “It’s Nice!” Baron Cohen says Solar Therapeutics figured the ad would boost sales and “took a gamble” that he wouldn’t find out about it. But, he did take notice and he isn’t happy. Not only is he “highly protective” of his image, he also doesn’t believe cannabis use is a healthy choice. Baron Cohen is seeking damages of at least $9 million and has asked a judge to order Solar Therapeutics to stop using his likeness.
Verano — Closing of Agri-Kind, Agronomed Transactions. The Company closed on transactions for the equity interests in two licensees—Agri-Kind, LLC, and Agronomed Biologics, LLC—with cultivation, production, and retail operations in Pennsylvania. The limited license state is the nation’s fifth most populous with over 500,000 participants in the medical marijuana program. Agri-Kind operates one active 62,000 sq. ft. indoor cultivation and production facility in Chester, PA. Agronomed is currently building out a cultivation and production facility in Chester, and is permitted to open six additional dispensaries in the state, , the first of which already opened in Chester last month. The second dispensary location, in Pittsburgh, is scheduled to open in late-July, and the remaining four locations are in development. Through its clinical registrant dispensary operation (The Healing Research Center), Agronomed is partnered with Drexel University College of Medicine to conduct on-going medical marijuana research.
Aventine Property Group — Completes $100M Private Offering of Senior Unsecured Convertible Notes. Aventine, one of the largest internally managed REITs serving the legal adult- and medical-use cannabis industry, has completed a private offering of $100 million aggregate principal amount of 8.00% senior unsecured convertible notes due 2026. The Notes were sold to a well-respected, large institutional investor. The net proceeds from the offering will primarily be used to acquire and develop licensed cannabis real estate assets, including both retail dispensaries and specialized industrial cultivation and production facilities, throughout the United States.
📄Company Updates / Earnings
Harvest Health & Recreation — Acceleration of Expiry Date of Warrants. The Company has elected to accelerate the expiry date of 8,484,047 outstanding subordinate voting share purchase warrants issued on October 28, 2020. Each outstanding Warrant is exercisable to acquire one subordinate voting share of the Company at an exercise price of C$3.05 per share, for aggregate proceeds of C$25.9M if all warrants are exercised. Pursuant to the terms of the warrant indenture governing the Warrants, Harvest may accelerate the expiry date of the Warrants when the closing price of the subordinate voting shares on the Canadian Securities Exchange (CSE) exceeds C$4.97 per share for a period of 10 consecutive trading days. Conditions for acceleration of the expiry date were met as of July 7, 2021.
Red White & Bloom Brands — Sets Dates to Release FY 2020 & Q1 2021 Financial Reports.
Fiscal Year Ended December 31, 2020: Thursday, July 22, 2021 (after market close)
Q1 Ended March 31, 2021: Monday, July 26, 2021 (after market close)
The Company contended with replacing their predecessor auditor MNP mid-audit, due to health issues with its lead engagement partner. Their new auditor, Macias Gini & O’Connell LLP (MGO) completed an exceptionally complex and challenging audit with a very tight timeline. The delay in completing the filing of the Documents was due to MNP not completing its audit procedures in advance of the filing deadline.
SweetWater Brewing Company (Tilray) — West Coast Expansion With New Colorado Brewery and Opening of Sweetwater Mountain Taphouse at Denver International Airport. SweetWater plans to open a new, full-service brewery, production facility, taproom, and restaurant in Colorado - allowing SweetWater to pursue major expansion plans across the U.S. and into the West Coast. The opening of this new brewery marks a major milestone in expanding the availability of SweetWater's tasty brews and 420 spirit throughout the state of Colorado and will propel the 11th largest craft brewery in America into the backyards, fishing boats and coolers of the Western U.S. With the expansion into Colorado, SweetWater's award-winning lineup of year-round, seasonal, and specialty beers are now available in 34 states, plus Washington, D.C.
Verano — To Launch Atlas Thrive™ – Powered by MÜV™ Product Line in Canada via Licensing Agreement. Atlas Biotechnologies announced the launch of Atlas Thrive—Powered by MÜV™ branded products in collaboration with Verano. Powered by MÜV patches, gels and tinctures will be available exclusively through Shoppers Drug Mart’s online storefront at launch. The Atlas Thrive MÜV THC Tincture and 1:1 Transdermal Patch will also be launching through OCS and available to the Ontario market online, and across over 800 retailers, on July 13, with Alberta following suit in August across over 600 more retailers.
The Parent Company — Expands Value Vape Offering with Launch of Fun Uncle Cruisers Vapes with Live Resin. The product line expansion features live resin -- a premium ingredient valued for its retention of cannabinoid, terpene, and flavor profiles that delivers a full spectrum of effects -- and launched as consumers celebrated "Oil Day" on 7/10. Since the introduction of the initial line of Cruisers vapes in late March 2021, the Fun Uncle line is ranked #9 in unit volume, with the brand's flavors of Berry Gelato ranking #2 and Strawberry Cough ranking #10 for April & May. (Source: BDSA, Geography: CA, Time Period: April - May 2021, Top Products, Total Units, Category: Inhalables-Concentrates-Vapes)
Curaleaf — Ranjan Kalia joins as CFO. Kalia will succeed Michael Carlotti, who is stepping down from the role of CFO for medical reasons. Since 2008, Kalia served as EVP & CFO of Virtusa, a global provider of digital strategy, digital engineering and IT services and solutions with more than 25,000 employees globally. Before joining Virtusa, Kalia spent 8 years with EMC Corporation. During his tenure he served in various roles including VP Finance and CFO—Asia-Pacific Region. Prior to that, he also held senior financial, controller and audit positions at GE Capital, Pepsi, and PwC.
Columbia Care — Philip Goldberg of Green Leaf Medical joins Board of Directors. Mr. Goldberg co-founded Green Leaf in 2014 and grew the company into a leading multi-state operator in the mid-Atlantic region with 500 full time employees, 400,000 square feet of cultivation space, three extraction labs, and 10 dispensary licenses across Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Ohio. Mr. Goldberg served as the company’s CEO until it was acquired by Columbia Care in June of 2021.
Clark Hill — Expands Cannabis Practice with Addition of Hoban Law Group and Opens Denver Office. International law firm Clark Hill has expanded its Cannabis Industry Group with the addition of eight attorneys and a team of paralegals and support staff from Denver-based, cannabis law firm, Hoban Law Group (HLG), including president and founder Robert Hoban who joins Clark Hill as a Member, Member-in-Charge of Clark Hill’s new Denver Office, and the Co-Leader of its Cannabis Industry Group. The team will reside in the firm’s new Denver office, formerly the offices of HLG. The addition of this office brings Clark Hill’s global footprint to 26 offices. In March of 2021, Corporate attorney, Sander Zagzebski joined Clark Hill’s Cannabis team at the Los Angeles office. Zagzebski has broad experience as both a transactional and corporate/securities lawyer representing clients across a range of industries. Together, Hoban and Zagzebski will lead Clark Hill’s Cannabis Industry Group, which represents growers, processors, caregivers, transporters, lenders, investors, and other cannabis-industry clients on issues ranging from banking and finance, government relations and legislative advocacy, taxation, and business formation, investments, and governance issues.
BLAZE: Financial Controller
Zenleaf: VP Operations
MariMed: Director of Investor Relations
WUNDER: Director Of Operations