NEW YORK, April 29, 2020
FinancialBuzz.com News Commentary
NEW YORK, April 29, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The continued trend of legalization of cannabis in numerous countries, and the growing awareness of cannabis products' viability for medical purposes has helped the industry to gain momentum worldwide. Medical cannabis is used for the treatment of chronic conditions, such as cancer, arthritis, and neurological conditions, such as anxiety, depression, epilepsy, and Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease. Such a wide scope of applications is anticipated to further help push product demand while recent data shows that, despite regulatory inconsistencies in the U.S on the federal level, U.S. retail sales of cannabis and CBD products jumped 24% in 2019, according to Packaged Facts. Furthermore, U.S. retail sales of cannabis and CBD products are on pace to increase 18% per year to USD 33 Billion in 2024. The U.S. is primarily limited to the CBD industry since other aspects of the cannabis plant are still federally illegal. Meanwhile, cannabis retail dispensaries are growing significantly, powering gains among multi-state operators with growing geographical footprints and increasingly sophisticated retail and product branding. Pressure BioSciences, Inc. (OTC: PBIO), Curaleaf Holdings, Inc. (OTC: CURLF) (CSE: CURA), Innovative Industrial Properties, Inc. (NYSE: IIPR), Green Thumb Industries Inc. (OTC: GTBIF) (CSE: GTII), Neptune Wellness Solutions Inc. (NASDAQ: NEPT) (TSX: NEPT)
The increasing popularity of CBD is mainly credited to various medical applications that are associated with the products. For example, full-spectrum CBD oil is considered a great source of Omega 3 and Omega 6; Omega 3 plays a vital role in creating hormones that regulate inflammation as well as contractions and relaxation of arteries. These products also lower triglyceride levels in the blood, reducing the chances of suffering from heart disease and stroke.
"While there continues to be uncertainty and a healthy amount of confusion around hemp cultivation for CBD production, it is clear that demand is nonetheless continuing to rise across the U.S.," noted Giadha Aguirre de Carcer, New Frontier Data CEO and Founder. "As states issue more licenses, consumer demand increases, and mass-market retailers such as CVS and Walgreens continue to expand their own product offerings, we expect the FDA may be forced to provide further regulatory clarifications sooner rather than later."
Pressure BioSciences, Inc. (OTCQB: PBIO) just announced breaking news this morning that, "has signed a binding letter of intent to merge with Cannaworx, Inc. (USA) and its diverse portfolio of products and intellectual property developed by its founders Bobby Ghalili, DMD and Adrienne Denese, MD, PhD.
Drs. Ghalili & Denese bring extensive medical expertise and product innovation, along with a successful multi-year track record of developing and selling personal care and nutrition products into the newly combined public company. Currently, Cannaworx and its principals have twelve products, including several novel products that utilize the company's patented/patent pending, full and partial spectrum, hemp-derived phytocannabinoid formulations for pain relief. Cannaworx plans to launch many of these products in 2020, two of which with a pain indication allowed under an FDA OTC monograph, which the company believes will make them the only oral hemp-derived phytocannabinoid-containing products available in today's market with such a claim. (www.cannaworx.io)
Post-merger, Cannaworx products will utilize PBI's proprietary Ultra Shear Technology™ (UST™) platform. UST is a revolutionary, patented method for processing oil-based products (e.g., hemp-derived CBD oil in water) into long-term stable, highly bioabsorbable, top quality nanoemulsions PBI UST CBD Video 022720. The Company believes UST processing will further increase the bioavailability and efficacy of the Cannaworx human, veterinary, and agricultural products; reduce manufacturing costs; increase profit margins; and distinguish the Cannaworx product lines for quality and performance within multiple markets.
Mr. Richard T. Schumacher, President and CEO of PBI, said: "We have been actively searching for an opportunity to participate in the end-product growth and upside we believe our UST platform creates and delivers. We are very excited to bring our companies together for what we believe to be a momentous inflection point in significant new growth and increased shareholder value."
Now equipped with an extensive intellectual property portfolio utilizing a proprietary pressure platform, nanotechnology and advanced delivery systems, the merged company plans to disrupt large, addressable markets, including the U.S. hemp-derived CBD market, which is anticipated to reach $23.7 billion by 2023. In addition, the merged company is targeting the international cosmetics market (projected at $758 billion by 2025), the global biopharmaceuticals market (expected to reach $389 billion by 2024), the global food & agriculture technology and products market (estimated at $729 billion by 2023), and the worldwide food and beverage market.
Dr. Ghalili described the vision and motivation behind the decision to merge Cannaworx into PBI: "We have worked for years to bring state-of-the-art effectiveness to the formulation of a diversity of human and veterinary products that were created to deliver oil-based nutrients and therapies into the water-based biology of humans and animals. Our plan to introduce a variety of important, health-promoting phytocannabinoid ingredients into these products multiplied the challenge of achieving water-solubility for these oil-based components. As we evaluated technologies for achieving effective nanoemulsion delivery of oil-based materials in water, we discovered that PBI's UST platform was in a class of its own, clearly out-performing all competing technologies evaluated. The opportunity to combine our capabilities, products, intellectual property, marketing and distribution channels, and proprietary methods with those of PBI was an astonishingly valuable opportunity to leverage and enable our product lines for real differentiation in our served markets and to help propel significant growth."
The binding letter of intent executed between the companies details the milestones that need to be met to complete the transaction, including the completion of all due diligence and acquisition financing.
About Pressure BioSciences, Inc.
Pressure BioSciences, Inc. (OTCQB: PBIO) is a leader in the development and sale of innovative, broadly enabling, pressure-based solutions for the worldwide life sciences and other industries. Our products are based on the unique properties of both constant (i.e., static) and alternating (i.e., pressure cycling technology, or PCT) hydrostatic pressure. PCT is a patented enabling technology platform that uses alternating cycles of hydrostatic pressure between ambient and ultra-high levels to safely and reproducibly control bio-molecular interactions (e.g., cell lysis, biomolecule extraction). Our primary focus is in the development of PCT-based products for biomarker and target discovery, drug design and development, biotherapeutics characterization and quality control, soil & plant biology, forensics, and counter-bioterror applications. Additionally, major new market opportunities have emerged in the use of our pressure-based technologies in the following areas: (1) the use of our recently acquired, patented technology from BaroFold, Inc. (the "BaroFold" technology) to allow entry into the bio-pharma contract services sector, and (2) the use of our recently-patented, scalable, high-efficiency, pressure-based Ultra Shear Technology ("UST") platform to (i) create stable nanoemulsions of otherwise immiscible fluids (e.g., oils and water) and to (ii) prepare higher quality, homogenized, extended shelf-life or room temperature stable low-acid liquid foods that cannot be effectively preserved using existing non-thermal technologies.
Curaleaf Holdings, Inc. (OTCQX: CURLF) (CSE: CURA) announced recently that it has completed its acquisition of three Arrow Alternative Care ("AAC" and "Arrow") dispensaries in Connecticut. "The acquisition of AAC further strengthens our market presence in Connecticut, while reaffirming our position as a leading cannabis operator in the United States," said Joe Lusardi, CEO of Curaleaf. Strategically placed in key metro areas, AAC has established itself as a market leader in Connecticut, operating three out of the 18 total dispensaries in the state. AAC's first store opened in Hartford in 2016, the second in Milford in 2017 and the Stamford store opened to customers in January 2020. "As with most Curaleaf dispensaries, Arrow will operate as an essential service business allowing Curaleaf to continue to provide patients with the products they rely on during these challenging times. And like all our dispensaries, Arrow has implemented the additional COVID-19 measures to protect employees and patients while remaining open. We look forward to providing our products directly to Connecticut patients and to building a long-lasting relationship with them."
Innovative Industrial Properties, Inc. (NYSE: IIPR), the first and only real estate company on the New York Stock Exchange focused on the regulated U.S. cannabis industry, announced recently that it closed on the acquisition of a property in Michigan, which comprises approximately 115,000 square feet of industrial space in the aggregate. The purchase price for the property was $5.0 million (excluding transaction costs). Concurrent with the closing of the purchase, IIP entered into a long-term, triple-net lease agreement for the property with a wholly owned subsidiary of Cresco Labs Inc. (Cresco), which intends to operate the property as a regulated cannabis cultivation and processing facility upon completion of redevelopment.
Green Thumb Industries Inc. (OTCQX: GTBIF) (CSE: GTII) cannabis consumer packaged goods company and owner of Rise™ and Essence retail stores, announced recently that it is opening its 43rd location, Rise Lakewood, on April 13. This is the fifth Rise™ store in Ohio and the second Rise™ location in Lakewood. "As a designated essential business during the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, we are honored to provide cannabis to more members of the community with a second location in Lakewood," said GTI Founder and Chief Executive Officer Ben Kovler. "We are grateful to be able to promote well-being through the power of cannabis, especially during these stressful and uncertain times."
Neptune Wellness Solutions Inc. (NASDAQ: NEPT) (TSX: NEPT) specializes in the extraction, purification and formulation of health and wellness products. The Company has in excess of 100 customers across several verticals including legal cannabis and hemp, nutraceutical and consumer packaged goods. Late last year the Company announced that it had entered into a collaboration agreement with International Flavors & Fragrances Inc. (IFF) to co-develop hemp-derived CBD products for the mass retail and health & wellness markets. App Connect Service, Inc. is also a party to the agreement to provide related branding strategies and promotional activities. "We are pleased to enter this strategic partnership and drive innovation that satisfies customers' demands for quality, sustainability and traceability," said Nicolas Mirzayantz, Divisional CEO, Scent at IFF. "The hemp-derived CBD products we are developing will target consumer preference towards natural health & wellness products."
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