The Week In Cannabis: Stocks Rebound Hard And Many More News

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What a week for cannabis stocks!

Finally rebounding, ETFs inched alongside many big companies in the industry. Over the last five trading days:

  • The Horizons Marijuana Life Sciences Index ETF (OTC: HMLSF) (TSE:HMMJ) was up 19.11%
  • The ETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF (NYSE: MJ) gained 13.87%
  • The AdvisorShares Pure Cannabis ETF (NYSE: YOLO) surged 13.01%
  • The Cannabis ETF (NYSE: THCX) advanced 16.9%
  • The Amplify Seymour Cannabis ETF (NYSE: CNBS) inched up 14.8%
  • The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (NYSE: SPY) closed the period up 1.87%

“Cannabis stocks seem to be slowly inching their way out of the bear market they’ve been in,” commented Debra Borchardt, CEO of Green Market Report. “We’re seeing companies make adjustments to cultivation plans, restructuring debt and merge for strength as markets open more slowly than planned. Improvements in valuations are sure to ease the concerns of many investors.”

Among top corporate news this week were:

TerrAscend Corp. (CSE: TER) (OTC: TRSSF) completion of a non-brokered private placement with orders reaching a total of around $33.5 million, including the first tranche of the private placement that was completed Dec. 30.

GW Pharmaceuticals plc (NASDAQ: GWPH)’s reporting of preliminary unaudited fourth-quarter financial results, showing total net product sales of around $108 million for the period, and $309 million for the full year. Net Epidiolex sales were projected to have hit about $104 million in the fourth quarter and $296 million in 2019 as a whole. GW Pharma said it plans to post official fourth-quarter and full-year 2019 financial results Feb. 25.

Seed funding rounds of $1.5 million for Hemp Synergistics and $2.25 million for Respira Technologies.

Aphria Inc. (TSX: APHA) (NYSE: APHA)’s second-quarter financial results, featuring net revenue of CA$120.6 million ($92.2 million), up 457% year-over-year from CA$21.7 million, and a net loss for the quarter of CA$7.9 million orCA$0.03 per share versus net income of CA$16.4 million, or CA$0.07 per share, in the first quarter.

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High Times announcing its intent to open dispensaries bearing its iconic logo in two of the world’s largest adult-use cannabis markets: Los Angeles, California, and Las Vegas, Nevada. The company also named a new president and interim CFO, Paul Henderson, formerly with Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS), Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) and Group Flor.

And Carlos Santana joining Left Coast Ventures in the development of premium cannabis and CBD brands under the guitarist and marijuana advocate’s brand.

In the policy world, members of the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health held a hearing titled “Cannabis Policies for the New Decade.” In the committee’s first ever hearing on marijuana reform, members of the House listened to the testimony of three witnesses: Matthew J. Strait, DEA; Douglas Throckmorton, M.D., FDA; and Nora D. Volkow, M.D., Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The aim of the hearing was to discuss and comment on six proposals that are currently undergoing congressional consideration.

Meanwhile, Montana cannabis activists from the group New Approach Montana submitted two complementary initiatives aimed at legalizing marijuana for adults 21 and over to the Montana Secretary of State for review. The state will now review the initiatives for legality before approving the measures for signature gathering. Over 75,000 total signatures are needed to get the issues before voters in November.

And Hawaii’s cannabis decriminalization finally came into effect, Hawaii residents can no longer be incarcerated for low-level cannabis possession.

Finally, in Italy, the government came out with regulations regarding the use of cannabis and derivatives in foods. Going forward, cannabis can be infused into foods, legally, as long as THC levels remain under 2 milligrams per kilo of food, and 5 milligrams per kilo of oil.

More News From The Week

MariMed Inc (OTC: MRMD), a multi-state cannabis and hemp operator, announced that its edibles brand Betty’s Eddies is now available in Massachusetts. Designed for the health-focused cannabis consumer looking for a safe, dosable, non-smokable cannabis product, these edibles contain full spectrum extract, non-GMO organic fruits and vegetables and are lactose free, gluten free and naturally preservative free.

CEO Bob Fireman told Benzinga, “Massachusetts continues to be a key market for MariMed as the demand for high quality, infused cannabis products continues to grow rapidly. As part of an overall growth strategy in 2020, we plan to drive revenues through a strategic expansion into new markets by increasing our presence and the availability of our premium licensed brands.”

Papa & Barkley, a cannabis wellness company, released its standards of clean cannabis to inform and educate about what consumers can look for in cannabis and CBD products to find those with clean ingredients. A Declaration of Clean Cannabis published on their website outlines five key principles including organic and regenerative farming practices, solventless (chemical-free), whole plant infusion, clean supporting ingredients, and triple-tested by third-party.

The company was inspired by how clean beauty and clean food movements taught the public about the chemical processes used in everyday products and how to make cleaner choices. The Clean Halo site provides information and resources on Papa & Barkley’s sourcing standards, solventless whole plant infusion process, and a step-by-step guide explaining how to read a Cannabis Testing Certificate of Analysis (COA) using a real COA of their popular 1:3 Releaf Balm from third-party testing partner Cannasafe.

“Clean is the future of cannabis because consumers care more than ever about the ingredients that go into what they use or consume so that they can make informed choices for themselves and their loved ones,” said Angela Pih, Chief Marketing Officer of Papa & Barkley. “Clean isn’t simply a trend or a marketing buzzword to us, it’s a set of principles that guide our decisions from soil to shelf to create the cleanest cannabis wellness products available in the U.S.”

HEXO Corp (TSX: HEXO) (NYSE: HEXO) announced Friday it has signed a definitive agreement with institutional investors for the purchase and sale of 11.98 million common shares at a price of $1.67 per share for gross proceeds of $20 million before fees and other costs. The company will issue to the investors common share purchase warrants with a five-year term to buy 5.99 million Hexocommon shares at an exercise price of $2.46 per share.

Cannabis company TerrAscend Corp. (CSE: TER) (OTC: TRSSF) announced that

TerrAscend NJ, LLC has obtained a permit from the New Jersey Department of Health to grow medical cannabis.

The Fresh Toast, a media company focusing on cannabis and other topics, announced Friday that it has entered cash positive territory following the signing of its first medical engagement contract.

Gynica, a company that focuses on clinically proven cannabis-based solutions in the field of women’s health, developing optimal therapeutic results based on innovative technology and understanding of the pharmacological effects of different cannabinoids and compounds, targeted to specific female-related diseases, is collaborating with Lumir Lab, a research and development lab focused on cannabinoids, to find a cannabis-based treatment for endometriosis.

Organizers for National Expungement Week (N.E.W.), a grassroots movement to clear and/or seal eligible convictions from among the 77 million Americans disenfranchised by criminal records, have announced N.E.W. 2020 will take place Sept. 19-26, 2020.

Organigram Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: OGI) (TSX: OGI), the parent company of Organigram Inc., said Thursday it has struck a supply agreement with Medical Cannabis by Shoppers, a subsidiary of Shoppers Drug Mart Inc.

Avicanna Inc. (TSX: AVCN) (OTC: AVCNF) also announced that Medical Cannabis by Shoppers will be the only Canadian distributor of the Rho Phyto medical cannabis and Pura Earth CBD derma-cosmetic product lines. Pho Rhyto is the company’s line of phyto-therapeutic medical cannabis products formulated for medical use; these products come in various forms such as oil drops, creams, gels, capsules, sprays and tablets.

Mental health care company COMPASS Pathways received a U.S. patentfor its method of treating drug-resistant depression using a psilocybin formulation. The patent includes the use of Compass’ synthesized investigational psilocybin formulation COMP360 that targets patients with treatment-resistant depression.

Ericka Pittman is joining Viola, a leading producer and licensed wholesaler of cannabis products created by Al Harrington. Pittman is the first African American female CMO of a multi-state cannabis operator. In her role, she will be tasked with building brand awareness for the company and emphasizing Viola’s purpose and social equity driven mission.

And finally less than a month after short seller Grizzly Research published a report claiming that Trulieve Cannabis Corp (OTC: TCNNF) is “a fraud,” Trulieve filed a lawsuit against Grizzly Research, GeoInvesting, GeoInvesting analyst Siegfried Eggert and two other men alleging the group libeled the cannabis company and violated several laws in compiling and releasing the report.

Top Stories Of The Week

Check out the top stories on Benzinga Cannabis this week:

Check out these and many other cannabis stories on Benzinga.com/cannabis

Events Calendar

February 11-12: the Cannabis Packaging Summit is set to debut at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, Califsornia, adjacent to packaging technology event WestPack. As the global packaging market for cannabis products is expected to be worth $25 billion by 2025, the Cannabis Packaging Summit will be the first event to exclusively focus on cannabis packaging. Tabletop exhibits and networking sessions with engineers, brand managers, and other key decision-makers will also explore the packaging challenges and opportunities facing cannabis manufacturers and how the suppliers of packaging solutions can begin to approach this booming consumer market with greater insight and understanding.

February 24-25: The premier gathering of cannabis entrepreneurs and investors in North America, the Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference, is heading to Miami in 2020 for its sixth installment.

The conference, which takes place Feb. 24-25 at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach, creates an ideal setting for attendees to learn from the individuals and experts driving the cannabis space forward amid regulation, legalization and industry changes. 

March 13-22: SXSW disembarks in Austin, Texas, once again, with its second year featuring a CannaBusiness track. Check out details here.

May 1-3: The CBD Show returns to the UK with 3 full days of content, more than 50 speakers, specialized workshops, and 100+ exhibitors from around the globe. Hosted at London Olympia, days one and two of the event are dedicated to the business side of things. Day 3 is open for the public sector to explore the latest offerings on the CBD market. Register for your tickets here.

Lead image by Ilona Szentivanyi. Copyright: Benzinga

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