Verano Archives - Green Market Report

Debra BorchardtDebra BorchardtApril 9, 2019
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8min10830

Harvest Health & Recreation, Inc. (CSE: HARVOTCQX: HRVSF) is acquiring CannaPharmacy, Inc. in a deal with undisclosed value. CannaPharmacy owns or operates cannabis licenses in Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey, and Maryland.

Harvest recently announced the private placement of $500 million in convertible debentures to continue to finance acquisitions and corporate growth. Harvest said that it expects that the transaction will be accretive to Harvest’s 2020 revenue and EBITDA.

“We’re seeing significant M&A activity across our industry, but the most important factors are the price one pays for an acquisition, strength of the assets relative to the market size and synergies between the companies,” said Steve White, CEO of Harvest. “Harvest was already fully funded to build out our entire footprint, inclusive of the significant assets that come with the Verano acquisition. Our recent $500 million financing, secured in $100 million tranches for new accretive acquisitions like CannaPharmacy, continues to solidify Harvest’s position as the leading company in the cannabis industry in reach, brands, infrastructure, assets, and footprint.”

Expanding Its Footprint

The CannaPharmacy acquisition will bring operations in four major northeastern states. The licenses and assets of CannaPharmacy will add to Harvest’s extensive national footprint across 17 states and Puerto Rico. Upon closing of this transaction and the closing of the previously announced acquisition of Verano Holdings,  Harvest will hold licenses that allow it to operate up to 213 facilities, including 130 retail dispensaries.

“All of our efforts back up our three core objectives; to expand and deepen our retail and wholesale footprint, build national brands and continue our path to profitable growth, and this CannaPharmacy deal is no different,” said Jason Vedadi, Executive Chairman of Harvest. “Harvest has led the cannabis market in the Western United States for years, and this acquisition will similarly widen and extend our U.S. foothold to the East Coast. When you add that to our existing dominant position in the Pennsylvania and Maryland markets, acquisition of CBx and its suite of brands, as well as our pending acquisitions of Falcon and Verano, with its holdings throughout the eastern seaboard and brands and infrastructure to leverage, we are looking at Harvest becoming a household name throughout the region in a matter of months.”

The company statement outlined the acquisition as follows:

New Jersey

  • One of six operational (and 12 awarded) fully vertical licenses, permitting cultivation, retail sales and manufacturing.
  • Woodbridge, NJ flagship store open and operational on a major highway since 2013, one of six in the state, 20 miles from NYC. According to the most recent NJ Dept. of Health annual report in April 2018, this dispensary has served more patients and completed more cannabis transactions since inception than any other dispensary.
  • A satellite store is approved and under construction in Union, NJ, 17 miles from NYC, on one of the most heavily trafficked highway corridors in the state at the intersection of the Garden State Parkway, NJ Turnpike, Route 22, and Route 78.
  • Approval pending for a third dispensary in densely populated Monmouth County, NJ (the “Jersey Shore”), which presently does not have a single dispensary.
  • 43.4% year-over-year revenue growth from 2017 to 2018.
  • New Jersey has 42,000 medical patients and growing 60 percent annually.

Pennsylvania

  • One 46,800 square foot cultivation and processing facility in the fifth most populous state in the country, with a statutory cap of 25 grower-processors;
  • Facility is a former Pepsi bottling plant employing local Pennsylvanians.
  • Harvest currently has seven state licenses allowing up to 21 retail stores throughout the state.
  • Pennsylvania currently has 116,000 medical patients as of February 2019 and growing at 10 percent month over month.

Maryland

  •  Rights to one dispensary in Prince George’s County.

Delaware

  • One of three fully vertical licenses, permitting cultivation, manufacturing, and three retail dispensaries.
  • Newark, DE flagship open and operational on a major highway leading into the heart of downtown, one of four stores statewide, in the county that hosts 60 percent of the state’s population.
  • Two additional dispensaries expected to open in 2019-2020.
  • Delaware currently has 7,104 medical patients, a 53 percent increase from 2017, and is experiencing rapid growth in a state with one of the most liberal lists of qualifying conditions in the country.

Harvest recently won every license it applied for in Pennsylvania, giving the company the ability to open up to 21, the largest retail network in the state. Harvest received the highest scores on all but one of its regional applications (where it placed 2nd overall) based on its responses to the criteria developed by the Pennsylvania Department of Health.


Debra BorchardtDebra BorchardtMarch 11, 2019
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8min9640

Harvest Health & Recreation, Inc. (CSE: HARVOTCQX: HRVSF) has entered into an agreement to buy  VeranoHoldings, LLC in an all-stock deal valued at approximately USD $850 million based on a share price of C$8.79. Harvest Health stock jumped over 15% on the news to lately trade at C$9.56. The deal is expected to close in the first half of 2019 and comes with a $20 million termination fee.

If this deal is completed, the combined company will be one of the largest multi-state operators (MSO’s) in the U.S., as measured by licenses held and facilities permitted. Harvest will hold licenses that will allow it to operate up to 200 facilities in 16 states and territories across the country, including 123 retail dispensaries. Harvest Health was founded in 2011 and currently owns licenses for more than 140 facilities in the U.S. It is often ranked as the third largest cultivator.

“The combination with Verano fits perfectly with our vision of creating the world’s most valuable cannabis company,” said Jason Vedadi, Executive Chairman of Harvest.  “We are confident that this is an opportunity to continue to leverage each of our company’s strengths and drive continued shareholder value, while at the same time achieving the scale we know will give us a leadership position in one of the largest cannabis markets in the world.”

The newly combined company plans to continue hubs of operation in both Arizona and Illinois and merge key leadership talent.  Both companies have recently attracted management expertise across consumer-packaged-goods, beverage, spirits, logistics, branding, horticulture, and extraction technologies from some of the largest most influential companies in the world, all supporting the companies’ explosive growth.

“This is a natural match between like-minded entrepreneurs who have built our companies from the initial facilities into two of the largest MSOs in the U.S, with an unwavering focus on operational excellence, superior quality products and service, and delivering value to customers and shareholders,” said George Archos, Verano Co-founder, and CEO. “Our growth and unique positioning in key markets allowed us to evaluate some of the largest players in the space, but we only had one unanimous choice for a major transaction and that was Harvest.”

According to the company statement, Harvest’s planned acquisition of Verano will include:

·      Licenses and operations in 11 states and territories, including seven cultivation licenses, 37 retail licenses and potential to reach 150+ million Americans;

·      Vertically integrated, cash-flow positive operations;

·      Proven executive team with retail, manufacturing, branding, logistics and operational experience and 300 employees.  Hiring for approximately 300 new positions in 2019 with a focus on hiring minorities, women and veterans;

·      Game changing ethanol extraction technology at pharmaceutical grade levels providing new market opportunities for cannabis biotech, food, and beverage verticals;

·      Portfolio of premium proprietary brands with 150 + product SKUs sold in 150 + retail locations;

·      Total cultivation expansion capacity of 900,000 sq. ft in Illinois, Nevada & Maryland;

·      Ownership of an interest in nine Zen Leaf™ dispensaries with average annual revenues 2.5x higher than retail cannabis industry averages;

“Verano has been creating a brighter way for cannabis production, products and health and wellness by assembling a stellar team of experts drawn from the cannabis industry and the top echelons of Fortune 500 corporations,” noted Sam Dorf, Verano Co-founder and Chief Growth Officer.  “We are excited to join forces with Harvest to leverage each of our strengths to share the benefits of cannabis in innovative new ways with an ever-increasing customer base.  Verano and Harvest independently have always focused on business fundamentals to drive year over year growth in both revenue and EBITDA.  Together, we expect to accelerate that momentum and raise the bar even higher for the industry.”


StaffStaffFebruary 5, 2019
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6min5890

It’s time for your Daily Hit of cannabis financial news for February 5, 2019.

On The Site

Verano

Illinois-based Verano Holdings, LLC has acquired Four Daughters Compassionate Care Inc. of Sharon, Massachusetts and its provisional medical cannabis licenses for an undisclosed amount. The first cultivation and dispensary facilities in Sharon are expected to open in six to nine months. The company said it would hire 50-75 employees locally and train them for these sites in 2019.

As a result of the acquisition, Verano has begun building a cultivation and production facility in Sharon Massachusetts. The company is also renovating an adjacent building for the dispensary. The acquisition marks Verano’s expansion into an additional adult-use market and its expanding geographic footprint into the Northeast from its current 10 operating facilities in Illinois, Maryland, Nevada and Florida, with 45+ licenses under active development in Florida, Michigan, Ohio, Puerto Rico, and Maryland.

GTI

Green Thumb Industries Inc. (OTCQX: GTBIF) is acquiring For Success Holding Company, the owner of Los Angeles-based Beboe branded cannabis products for an undisclosed amount that will be paid in GTI stock.

Beboe is known as a premium brand for its high-end packaging including its iconic rose gold vaporizer pens. The products are available in more than 125 California and Colorado retail locations and via home delivery across California.

In Other News

Jushi

Sound Wellness LLC, a subsidiary of Jushi Inc. has received approval of its industrial hemp-CBD processor license application as part of the New York State Industrial Hemp Agricultural Research program, administered by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets. With this announcement, Jushi is proud to support the Western New York community, New York farmers, and the nation’s premier industrial hemp program. Sound Wellness’ hemp-CBD processor license supports the company’s initiative to create product innovations centered around the untapped potentials of hemp.

By investing over $5 million in a high-tech hemp processing operation on the east side of Buffalo, NY, Jushi expects to create approximately 30-65 jobs in the area. The facility will house a state-of-the-art lab, allowing Sound Wellness to create advanced product formulations using CBD distillate, CBD isolate, and water-soluble CBD.

The Flowr Corp.

The Flowr Corporation (OTC: FLWPF)  has submitted an application to list its common shares on The NASDAQ Capital Market and has filed a Form 40-F Registration Statement with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Target Group Inc.

Target Group Inc. (OTCQB: CBDY) entered into an agreement to acquire Massachusetts-based CannaKorp Inc. CannaKorp is the holder of the patent-pending WISP vaporizing system.

The WISP™ is a pod-based, herbal vaporizing system that uses precisely measured, sealed and tested WISP™ Pods containing dried, ground botanicals. The WISP™  vaporizer, used together with WISP™  Pods, gives cannabis users the predictability and assurance to know what they’re inhaling with every use, without the hassle of grinding, measuring, or packing. For the rapidly evolving market of cannabis consumers who prefer vaporization, Wisp™ presents a proven method of delivery with unique bioavailability benefits and avoids the health concerns associated with the combustion of cannabis and other herbs.

Origin House

CannaRoyalty Corp. d/b/a Origin House  (OTCQX: ORHOF) entered into an agreement to provide strategic financing of US$704,000 to Humboldt’s Finest, an alliance of heritage cannabis farms representing Humboldt County. Humboldt’s Finest produces sun-grown cannabis flower on their farms in Humboldt County, California, which is processed into products including jarred flower, pre-roll flower joints, live resin dabs/jars and/or live resin cartr


Debra BorchardtDebra BorchardtFebruary 5, 2019
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5min8150

Illinois-based Verano Holdings, LLC has acquired Four Daughters Compassionate Care Inc. of Sharon, Massachusetts and its provisional medical cannabis licenses for an undisclosed amount. The first cultivation and dispensary facilities in Sharon are expected to open in six to nine months. The company said it would hire 50-75 employees locally and train them for these sites in 2019

“We’re excited to join forces with the Four Daughters team to build upon the solid foundation of support and host agreements they secured within each of the communities, and put construction on the fast track to help bring Four Daughters’ dream to fruition,” stated Sam Dorf, Verano’s Chief Growth Officer. “This transaction continues Verano’s strategy to create a brighter way for health and wellness with high quality, organic branded products for cannabis patients, consumers and their communities through the acquisition of licenses and/or partnerships with operators in highly regulated, limited license states.”

Four Daughters Compassionate Care was co-founded by Brian and Lynne Striar, whose family has longstanding roots in the Sharon Community. The Striar family members, including the namesake’s four daughters, Stephanie, Kimberly, Nicole, and Robin, who have been heavily involved in cannabis advocacy, will be active members of Verano’s local operational management team. The dispensaries operate under the name Zen Leaf.

As a result of the acquisition, Verano has begun building a cultivation and production facility in Sharon Massachusetts. The company is also renovating an adjacent building for the dispensary. The acquisition marks Verano’s expansion into an additional adult-use market and its expanding geographic footprint into the Northeast from its current 10 operating facilities in Illinois, Maryland, Nevada and Florida, with 45+ licenses under active development in Florida, Michigan, Ohio, Puerto Rico, and Maryland.

Four Daughters Assets

The statement noted that the FDCC assets in the transaction included: 

  • The medical cultivation and production facility and medical dispensary now under construction in Sharon, with local approval for additional recreational facilities  
  • Real estate and community host agreements in Plymouth for an adult use dispensary
  • Real estate and community host agreements in Halifax for a 180,000 sq. ft. adult-use cultivation greenhouse and a 20,000 sq. ft. processing facility  

Community Involvement

Verano said that it would continue sharing a percentage of its profits with the Town of Sharon in perpetuity, a holdover from FDCC. “We will be providing the training to enable local residents to manage and staff a broad array of full- and part-time positions from the moment the doors open,” noted Ron Goodson, Verano President and Chief Operating Officer. “Whether you have experience in the cannabis industry or not, this provides a great opportunity to get your foot in the door and learn about the world’s fastest growing industry, and the plant that has the power to positively impact human health and wellness.”

Nevada Lawsuit

Verano had no new comments regarding the recent lawsuit filed in Nevada by Naturex and BB Marketing. The $135 million lawsuit is alleging that Verano cut its Nevada partners out of an application process. George Archos, Verano’s CEO, said in a statement to the Las Vegas Review that “based on what we know of the allegations … we do not believe the complaint has merit. We intend to defend aggressively against these claims.”

Verano owns 50% of Naturex, which was founded by Michael and Robert Frey. The brothers claim they submitted all of their information to Verano for an application on behalf of Naturex. Verano said it didn’t have all the information needed to submit the application. However, it did submit an application through Lone Mountain Partners, which is the Verano local entity. Lone Mountain was awarded 11 retail licenses.


Debra BorchardtDebra BorchardtOctober 23, 2018
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5min14312

Ontario-based Scythian Biosciences (OTC: SCCYF) is selling its Florida operation called 3 Boys Farms and using that money to become a multi-state operator.

In July, Scythian sold its Caribbean assets to Aphria (OTC: APHQF)  in a deal valued at $193 million. Scythian spent $136 million to purchase CannCure Investments Inc, which is an Ontario-based company that is itself in the process of acquiring an interest in the Florida-based 3 Boys Farms, along with The Healthcare Organization. That deal was supposed to close on October 15.

Scythian is selling its 100% interest in 3 Boys Farms, which is a strictly Florida operation to Verano in exchange for $100 million of Class B units in Verano. In exchange, Scythian will receive a substantial stake in Verano which will open the company up to key markets, including Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, Nevada, Ohio, Florida, and Puerto Rico, with additional states to be added in 2019. All part of the company’s expansion strategy. Only four states are operational at this time.

“Scythian delivers on its promise to investors by identifying and investing in the most impressive emerging cannabis company in the U.S. marketplace, Verano,” said Scythian Chief Executive Officer Brady Cobb. “Verano brings strong, efficient and expansive operations to numerous U.S. markets. Its customer-centric dispensary experience that is filled with its diverse and high-quality products (150 SKU’s), cutting-edge cultivation facilities, innovative processing techniques, and seasoned executive/management team will fast-track its standing to the top of the U.S. cannabis industry.”

Deal Details

Scythian is investing $88 million in Class B units of Verano as part of a larger brokered private placement of securities of Verano to accredited investors for an aggregate amount of $100 million. Clarus Securities Inc. acted as the sole agent in the financing. The deal is expected to close on or about October 26, 2018. According to the company statement, Scythian also entered into a membership interest contribution agreement between Scythian and Verano, under which Scythian will acquire the remaining 40% of 3 Boys Farms and, when completed, sell and convey its entire interest in 3 Boys Farms to Verano in exchange for $100 million of Verano class B membership units.

Verano

Verano Holdings is a national, vertically integrated operator of licensed cannabis cultivation, manufacturing, and retail facilities. Verano develops and produces a suite of limited edition, fashion-forward cannabis products, which offer medicinal therapies and inspirational product options. It designs, builds and operates the Zen Leaf™ branded dispensary.

Facilities include:

  • Illinois: one cultivation and production facility and three dispensaries;
  • Florida: one cultivation and production facility and up to 30 dispensary facilities under current law;
  • Maryland: one cultivation and production facility and two dispensaries;
  • Nevada: one cultivation and production facility and one dispensary;
  • Michigan: licenses under development;  
  • Ohio: licenses under development;
  • Puerto Rico: licenses under development

“This transformative investment will fast-track our long-term goal to dominate the most important growth industry in the United States,” stated George Archos, Verano’s Chairman, and CEO. “Even with our accelerated growth, we will remain focused on our core values of operational excellence with an unwavering commitment to producing safe, quality cannabis products for a consistent experience.”

 

 



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The Green Market Report focuses on the financial news of the rapidly growing cannabis industry. Our target approach filters out the daily noise and does a deep dive into the financial, business and economic side of the cannabis industry. Our team is cultivating the industry’s critical news into one source and providing open source insights and data analysis


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