Over the next decade, the legal cannabis industry will see significant global growth, reports Arcview Market Research. In fact, spending on legal cannabis globally is expected to hit $57 billion by 2027 with medical marijuana accounting for 33% of that figure. Now, as millions of people living all over the world look to embrace its medicinal properties, marijuana companies are quickly picking up international exposure to realize higher valuations. Several legitimate players include Scythian Biosciences Corporation (TSX-V: SCYB) (OTC: SCCYF), Aphria Inc. (OTC: APHQF) (TSX: APH), Canopy Growth (NYSE: CGC), Aurora Cannabis (OTC: ACBFF) (TSX: ACB) and Cara Therapeutics (NASDAQ: CARA).
Whether it be Scythian Biosciences Corporation’s venture into Argentina, Colombia, and Jamaica’s medical marijuana market, or Canopy Growth’s growth in the U.S., Canada, South America, and Europe thanks to its 2016 acquisition of Germany-based MedCann, related companies are widening global footprints for growth, offering investors a good deal of promise.
Latin American Marijuana Poised for Global Domination
“Latin America, the Caribbean and Europe present incredible opportunities for those with proven track records when you consider the combined number of licenses granted to date for a population count of well over 1.5 billion outside of Canada and the US is fewer than the number granted to the Canadian market with 36 million people” said Aphria President and CEO, Vic Neufeld.
In Latin America, after Uruguay, the move to legalize medical marijuana really began in one of the region’s largest economies, with the first licences issued in Colombia in 2017, reports The Globe and Mail. “Medical-cannabis legislation has also passed in Chile, Argentina and Peru, with politicians seeing the growing and cultivation of cannabis for medical purposes as a viable alternative to the illegal drug trade of a generation ago, and a defence against the opioid crisis seen across Canada and the United States.”
In April 2017, Colombia approved a law to promote the use of cannabis-based medication. The legislation also establishes parameters for the cultivation of non-psychoactive cannabis.
Scyhian Biosciences for example is one of the major cannabis players seizing the Latin American marijuana favoritism.
Scythian Biosciences Widens Global Footprint
Scythian has begun to expand its global reach significantly to import and distribute its products in the opportunistic conditions of Latin America.
In fact, the company is taking interest in three significant markets, including Argentina, Colombia and Jamaica.
On March 12, 2018, the company entered into a letter of intent with MMJ International Investments to acquire MMJ, a company currently pursuing medical marijuana opportunities in South America. MMJ owns the Argentinian-based ABP S.A., which is a pharmaceutical and distribution company, licensed to import, sell and distribute products to the roughly 43 million people in Argentina.
On March 22, 2018, the company announced the expansion of its global footprint into Jamaica with a letter of intent to become a major shareholder [49% interest] of Marigold Projects, Jamaica Ltd with access to roughly 2.8 million people.
Then, on April 9, 2018, the company expanded into Colombia by acquiring MMJ Colombia Partners, giving it access to roughly 48.6 million people. The acquisition is conditional upon the completion of MMJ Colombia’s acquisition of ColCanna and ColCanna’s receipt of the final Colombian licenses for the cultivation, production, research and export of medical cannabis CBD and THC extracts.
Industry executives said they also plan to use Colombia as a springboard to serve Latin America’s 400-plus million people who live in nations where some form of marijuana is legal, notes Marijuana Business Daily. “Ultimately, these same executives want to make Latin America a staging area to deliver medical cannabis extracts around the globe. When high-THC medical cannabis becomes available nationwide next year in Colombia, the country is poised to become the second-largest federally regulated MMJ market in the world – behind Germany. Industry sources estimate its potential market at 3 million-6 million patients.”
Aphria Inc. (OTCQB: APHQF) (TSX: APH) – Aphria is one of Canada’s lowest-cost medical cannabis producers. The company sells its products through both retail and wholesale channels. It’s also engaged in the research and development and commercial production of cannabis oil.
Canopy Growth (NYSE: CGC) – Canopy Growth Corporation, through its subsidiaries, produces and sells medical marijuana in Canada. The company offers dried, oil, and soft gel cannabis products. Canopy Growth Corporation also sells its products through online.
Aurora Cannabis (OTC: ACBFF) (TSX: ACB) – Aurora Cannabis Inc. produces and distributes medical marijuana products in Canada. The company’s products consist of dried cannabis and cannabis oil. It also operates as a pharmaceutical wholesaler and narcotics dealer of medical marijuana in Germany and the European Union; and produces and sells proprietary systems for the indoor cultivation of cannabis, organic microgreens, vegetables, and herbs. In addition, the company provides counseling and outreach service to help patients learn about how to safely and effectively use medical cannabis; select a strain from the available in Canada; and register with their choice of licensed producer.
Cara Therapeutics (NASDAQ: CARA) – Cara Therapeutics, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, focuses on developing and commercializing chemical entities designed to alleviate pruritus and pain by selectively targeting kappa opioid receptors in the United States. The company is developing product candidates that target the body’s peripheral nervous system and immune cells.
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