Canopy Growth Acquires Germany's C3 Cannabinoid Compound Company

The deal is a power play in the emerging European medical cannabis market.

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SMITHS FALLS, ON and NEUMARKT, Germany, May 2, 2019 /PRNewswire/ PRESS RELEASE - Canopy Growth Corporation is pleased to announce that it has acquired German-based, Bionorica SE-founded C3 Cannabinoid Compound Company ("C3") in a transformative deal that will see established single cannabinoid medicines brought together with the world's leading full-spectrum medical cannabis offering.

The all cash-acquisition for €225.9 million (CDN $342.9 million) furthers Canopy Growth's expansion into European markets with prescription medicines and gives the Company immediate access to a wealth of knowledge and intellectual property that C3 has developed in its nearly 20 years of research and development into synthetic and natural cannabis medical products.

C3's primary medicinal offering is dronabinol, a pure chemical compound with standardized concentrations of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), one of the active ingredients found in cannabis plants that is responsible for various pharmacological effects. Dronabinol is available in Austria, Denmark, and Germany for nausea and vomiting refractory to conventional treatment in oncology and palliative care, and for cancer pain. In Germany, dronabinol can be prescribed for any type of chronic pain and for any condition in palliative care. C3 has a total of five medicines in the market and its commercial operations generated €27.1 million (CDN $41.5 million) in 2018.

The acquisition will allow Canopy Growth to further empower European physicians with the knowledge and therapies drawn from the full range of synthetic to naturally-derived cannabinoid-based medicines. Adding dronabinol to Canopy Growth's product offering in Europe and potentially other key markets will allow the Company's medical division, Spectrum Cannabis, to present an expanded, medically validated suite of cannabinoid therapies to the benefit of healthcare professionals and patients. Furthermore, C3's infrastructure including production, distribution, and sales & marketing significantly adds to the Spectrum Cannabis footprint in Europe, including an expanding product line and additional reach into pharmacy and medical specialists' networks.

C3's clinical research programs currently underway are expected to complement Canopy Growth's own clinical activities and provide data that could potentially be applied to emerging product lines, enhancing the Company's prospects for bringing new approved products to market sooner. C3's founding company, Bionorica SE, one of the world's leading manufacturers of scientifically researched herbal medicines and Canopy Growth have also entered into a separate cooperation agreement and will be collaborating in areas spanning clinical research, IP development and distribution opportunities.

With its substantial cash reserve, Canopy Growth will continue to make strategic investments and acquisitions that will drive growth, create competitive advantage, enhance Canopy's IP portfolio, and accelerate development and approval of cannabis-based therapeutics to continue to better serve its patients globally.

EXECUTIVE COMMENTARY:

"What this boils down to is greater choice," said Bruce Linton, Chairman & Co-CEO, Canopy Growth. "This acquisition will allow us to offer more options to physicians across Europe, accelerate our commercial sales and increase our economic footprint on the continent, and drive forward new innovations. Our goal is to build on C3's extraordinary reputation and decades of success as we move to an innovative continuum of medical cannabis therapies that will enable physicians globally to better treat their patients."

"We are committed to changing the conversation around cannabis-based therapeutics in Canada and around the world," said Dr. Mark Ware, Chief Medical Officer, Canopy Growth. "To do that, we need a diverse toolbox of therapies that can be used by physicians who see the potential of the complete spectrum of cannabinoid-based medicines. Welcoming C3 into our portfolio will help us put those tools in the hands of physicians and their patients in Germanyand elsewhere across Europe."  

"In the last two decades, we've devoted ourselves to the research of cannabinoids and have developed a wide range of valuable cannabinoid compounds and related patents," commented Professor Michael A. Popp, Owner and CEO, Bionorica SE. "Combining our knowledge, intellectual property, and reputation amongst clinicians and doctors in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Denmark with Canopy Growth's expertise with natural full-spectrum medical cannabis products and ongoing clinical trials promises to better serve patients globally."

FAST FACTS:

  • C3 operates two state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities specializing, respectively, in natural extraction and synthetic cannabinoid production. These facilities have grown over the past 12 months to meet the growing demand for dronabinol and are scheduled for further expansion this year to accommodate forecasted rapid growth in the business.
  • In March 2017, Germany became the first country in the world to make dronabinol reimbursable. The prescription medicine is the first reimbursable cannabinoid agent in the country.
  • C3's senior management team includes; Dr. Josef Harrer, Head of Business Development and Medical Marketing at Bionorica ethics; Kristin Mann, Head of Marketing and Sales, Anna Urlacher, Chief Financial Officer, and Dr. Silvia Heise-Grubner, Head of Austrian operations. All four will continue to drive the business post-closing, accepting leadership roles in the Company.