It seems everyone with a cannabis company is flocking to the Canadian exchanges to list shares. the latest entrant isn’t from Canada or the U.S. but instead comes from Colombia.
Khiron Life Sciences Corp. (KHRN), is a medical marijuana company with its core operations in Colombia that began trading on the Toronto Ventures Exchange on Thursday. The stock jumped 18% on the first day of trading to close at C$1.18.
The company’s strategy isn’t based on how Colombia can export its product to Canada but instead will focus on developing domestic markets within Columbia. “Today that is not really possible,” said Alvaro Torres, the President, and CEO of Khiron. “It is true that we can grow medical cannabis at a much lower cost and Colombia allows for exports, but that is not our focus. Eventually, though it will happen.”
Khiron is one of the first fully-licensed medical cannabis companies in Colombia, with cultivation and production licenses for low- and high-THC awarded by the Ministry of Health and Social Protection and Ministry of Justice, respectively. It is also one of the first companies to receive a cultivation quota for high-THC mother plants.
Torres said that Khiron’s main strategy is to get as close to the patient as possible. “We are looking at how to develop medical marijuana for a possible six million patients,” he said. The company’s strains are coming from Israel Medical Cannabis and it will be targeting chronic pain, epilepsy, anxiety, and depression. He also said that he expects in the short term Khiron will export to its neighboring countries until they develop their own programs.
Khiron has raised $17 million of equity capital raised over three financing rounds. Khiron has worked with leading Canadian investment banks like Canaccord Genuity to complete these offerings.
The company is securing a land package in Ibagué, Colombia, which is an ideal location for cultivation. The location includes access to clean water, ideal temperature conditions, and military presence. Initial 7,500 square meters of productive area construction is ready for commercial cultivation. Torres said he expects that commercial production will begin in the fourth quarter of this year. The lab is being built now and should be complete in August.