During the past trading week (August 26 to 30), a variety of cannabis companies offered a snapshot of the industry with quarterly financial reports.
The decision by a Canadian cannabis producer to enter the infused beverage market made headlines, while new distinguished additions to the US marijuana space caught attention.
Here’s a closer look at some of the biggest news during last week’s trading period.
Quarterly earnings season in full swing
The Q2 reporting period continues, and last week cannabis companies across the board reported financials to investors and provided insight on the current state of the industry.
On Wednesday (August 28), Green Thumb Industries (GTI) (CSE:GTII,OTCQX:GTBIF), announced a 60 percent bump in revenues to US$44.7 million. It credited the jump to its acquisition of the Essence retail line, with key stores in Las Vegas. The multi-state operator (MSO) also confirmed its acquisition of Fiorello Pharmaceuticals, one of only 10 licensed medical cannabis producers in New York.
Fellow MSO Curaleaf Holdings (CSE:CURA,OTCQX:CURLF) also indicated higher revenues for the quarter. The company continues to aggressively expand its footprint in US state marijuana markets. However, the firm reported a net loss for the period of US$24.4 million. Curaleaf attributed the loss partly to acquisition costs and a US$5.8 million depreciation.
Larry Scheffler, co-CEO of the company, said Planet 13 is seeing steady growth at its Nevada assets and in terms of volume of consumers. The company operates a massive store, called the Cannabis Entertainment Complex, in Las Vegas.
“We’ve had almost 800,000 visitors since we opened with approximately 80 percent coming from outside Nevada proving that if you want to build a national cannabis brand, you need to be in the SuperStore,” said Bob Groesbeck, co-CEO.
Cansortium CEO Jose Hidalgo said the delays at its cultivation site in Tampa Bay led to the company’s poor results. The executive informed investors that the company is now facing a six month delay.
The firm had projected that its full-year 2019 revenues would reach just over US$80 million; now, the company is projecting revenues of US$40 million.
A trio of Canadian cannabis companies also posted quarterly results. Canopy Rivers (TSXV:RIV,OTC Pink:CNPOF) posted a net loss of C$2.9 million as its investments continue to expand, while cannabis producers Delta 9 Cannabis (TSXV:DN,OTCQX:VRNDF) and WeedMD (TSXV:WMD,OTCQX:WDDMF) issued steady results as they keep reaping the benefits of adult-use sales in Canada.
Cannabis company unveils beverage efforts to challenge alcohol industry
This past week, Zenabis Global (TSX:ZENA) confirmed its entry into the heavily anticipated cannabis-infused beverage market in Canada. The company announced a supply agreement for plain water-soluble cannabis-infused inputs with an undisclosed Canadian beverage technology company.
“Alcohol has had a monopoly on the recreational experience in the market for an incredibly long period of time,” Andrew Grieve, CEO of Zenabis, told the Investing News Network. “As a result, people have not had an alternative.”
The company is promising a cannabis drink with an onset time of less than five minutes. Onset time refers to how long it takes for a beverage to affect the user.
“I believe that, if you have a beverage technology with a known onset and offset and limited calories — and the flavor profile that people want — people will choose a cannabis infused-beverage for their recreational experience over an alcoholic beverage,” Grieve said.
Industry welcomes former acting attorney general and Gronk
Matthew Whitaker’s short stint as acting attorney general for US President Donald Trump ended in February 2019. Now, Whitaker is joining the cannabis industry by way of counseling services for Ontario-based Alternate Health (CSE:AHG,OTCQB:AHGIF).
The company is positioning his appointment as a way to stay ahead of regulations on the US cannabidiol (CBD) market — a market Alternate Health is greatly interested in. Whitaker and his law firm, Graves Garrett, will also be representing the cannabis firm’s legal affairs against a competitor in California.
“I think there is serious potential in the CBD industry, and everyone at Alternate Health will work hard to be a leader in the industry,” Whitaker said in a statement.
Abacus Health Products (CSE:ABCS,OTCQX:ABAHF) ushered in a new celebrity spokesperson for the CBD industry when it announced former NFL player Rob Gronkowski will join the company through an endorsement deal.
“During my career, I pushed myself while recovering from nine surgeries and countless injuries,” Gronkowski, who played for the New England Patriots for nine seasons, said in a statement. “I was in near constant pain and needed to make a change.”
In a press conference, Gronkowski said he is now living free of pain thanks to CBD products. His new duties will include marketing for Abacus’ line of hemp-derived CBD products designed for pain relief.
After dragging its heels for just over three years — and facing a court deadline — the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) announced it will move forward with reviews of applications from federally licensed marijuana growers that want to produce cannabis for research studies.
In a joint statement with the US Department of Justice, the DEA said it will propose new policies to monitor the research cannabis grower program before approving any of the waiting applications.
“DEA is making progress in the program to register additional marijuana growers for federally authorized research, and will work with other relevant federal agencies to expedite the necessary next steps,” Uttam Dhillon, the DEA’s acting administrator, said in Monday’s release.
According to the Associated Press, the DEA was given a deadline of Wednesday (August 28) to respond to the court filing after the Scottsdale Research Institute, one of the applicants, filed a court complaint.
The Alberta retailer holds six currently open shops in the western province. Additionally, the company holds licenses for 16 extra stores in Alberta. Tilray indicated the company wants to expand beyond Alberta in the future.
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Securities Disclosure: I, Bryan Mc Govern, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.