Nine countries, five continents: Canopy Growth expands into Africa with latest deal

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      Canopy Growth Corporation, one of Canada’s largest licensed cannabis producers, announced a $28.8 million acquisition of a company in the Kingdom of Lesotho in South Africa.

      The Ontario-based cultivator purchased Daddy Cann Lesotho PTY Ltd., trading as Highlands, which holds licenses to cultivate, manufacture, supply, hold, import, export, and transport cannabis and its resin. This deal now gives Canopy a foothold on five continents spanning nine countries.

      “Lesotho is Canopy Growth’s first step into Africa and we look forward to working with the strong local team at Highlands to establish production and distribution capabilities consistent with Canopy’s global standard for high-quality, regulated medical cannabis products,” says Mark Zekulin, president of Canopy Growth, in a press release on Wednesday (May 30).

      While adult-use is still illegal in Lesotho, it was the first African nation to legalize medical cannabis in 2017. The company is based in a high altitude mountainous region that sees over 300 days of sunshine per year, and growing conditions make for ideal greenhouse cultivation. Canopy says the low operating and resource costs put them in a position to produce large quantities of high quality medical cannabis at a low cost.

      Key members of Highland’s management team will be absorbed and stay on to lead the organization.

      “We’re excited to join the Canopy Growth family and bring together our strong entrepreneurial experience and local knowledge in the region with Canopy Growth’s track record and quality standards in the global medical cannabis industry,” says Jody Aufrichtig, Founder of Highlands, in the release.

      “Lesotho and Southern Africa have enormous potential and we look forward to building a responsible medical cannabis business across the region.”

      Last Thursday (May 24), Canopy Growth also officially became one of the first cannabis cultivators to be traded on The New York Stock Exchange.