Canadian cannabis producer Tilray has completed a CAD 419 million ($318.1 million) deal to acquire Manitoba Harvest, the world’s largest hemp food manufacturer, from Compass Group Diversified Holdings.
Tilray will issue an additional CAD 49 million ($37.2 million) in shares based on Manitoba Harvest achieving certain performance milestones in 2019. As part of the deal, Manitoba will operate as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tilray.
Headquartered in Winnipeg, Canada, and founded in 1998, Manitoba sells products in more than 16,000 stores across the US and Canada.
Its portfolio includes a range of hemp-based granola, hemp-based protein powder and shelled hemp seeds. The firm plans to launch a line of wellness bars this summer.
The acquisition will expand Tilray’s product portfolio into the natural foods category, as it incorporates Manitoba Harvest’s expertise in working with cannabinoids, including cannabidiol (CBD).
By leveraging Manitoba Harvest’s established distribution network, Tilray plans to accelerate its expansion into the US and Canadian markets, where legal, for CBD products.
Tilray CEO Brendan Kennedy said: “We’re proud to officially welcome Manitoba Harvest to Tilray’s growing portfolio of brands and network of experts.
“We look forward to working collaboratively to develop and distribute a diverse portfolio of branded hemp-derived CBD food and wellness products in the US and Canada.”
Bill Chiasson, Manitoba Harvest CEO, added: “We are excited about being an important part of the growth strategy for Tilray. By leveraging our combined strengths and capabilities, we hope to accelerate our mission of transforming consumer health through the power of hemp.”
Canada legalised the recreational use of cannabis in October, leading to a surge in investments in Canadian marijuana companies.
In December, Tilray and AB InBev, the world’s largest brewer, said they each intend to invest up to $50 million to research marijuana beverages as part of a new partnership.
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