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Merger makes Nanaimo-based Tilray the world’s largest cannabis company

Tilray-Aphria merger boosts combined companies’ manufacturing, marketing and distribution clout
Tilray and Canadian cannabis producer Aphria have merged to create the world’s largest cannabis company, based on combined pro-forma revenue. (News Bulletin file)

Nanaimo-based Tilray medical and adult-use cannabis company has merged with an Ontario-based company to create the world’s largest cannabis company.

According to a press release Wednesday, Dec. 16, Tilray is merging with Aphria, of Leamington, Ont., to create a company with revenue of $874 million.

The combined company will have its principal Canadian offices in Leamington and Nanaimo, U.S. offices in Seattle and New York and European offices in Portugal and Germany and will operate under the Tilray corporate name. Shares will trade on NASDAQ under ticker symbol ‘TLRY.’

Irwin D. Simon, Aphria’s chairman and chief executive officer, will lead the combined company as chairman and CEO, with a board of nine directors – seven who are currently Aphria directors and two from Tilray, including Tilray CEO Brendan Kennedy and one director yet to be designated.

Kennedy said in the release that he looks forward to working with Simon and the combined company’s management team to make its consumer products more accessible around the world.

“We are thrilled to bring together two cannabis industry leaders,” Kennedy said. “At this nascent stage of development and expansion of the global cannabis market, we believe companies with leading geographic scale, product range and brand expertise are most likely to benefit long-term. By leveraging our combined strengths and capabilities, we expect to be able to meet the needs of consumers more effectively all over the world and advance patient care.”

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Simon said the two businesses are highly complementary and share a leading branded-product portfolio.

“This is an exciting day for both companies including our 2,500 employees, for the cannabis industry, and for patients and consumers around the world,” said Simon in the release. “We are bringing together two world-class companies that share a culture of innovation, brand development and cultivation to enhance our Canadian, U.S., and international scale as we pursue opportunities for accelerated growth with the strength and flexibility of our balance sheet and access to capital.”

Stated benefits of the merger include financial strength and flexibility, creation of the leading Canadian adult-use cannabis licenced producer, increased product range and commitment to innovation, enhanced consumer packaged good presence and infrastructure in U.S., a stronger platform to pursue growth opportunities in European markets and growth in the beverage segment of the Canadian and U.S. markets.

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About the Author: Nanaimo Bulletin News Staff

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