NEW YORK, N.Y., September 8, 2020 – PRESS RELEASE – Columbia Care Inc. has signed a definitive agreement to purchase Project Cannabis, an award-winning cannabis company based in Los Angeles, Calif., for approximately $57 million in Columbia Care stock and approximately $12 million in cash from the proceeds of a concurrent sale of Project Cannabis’ real estate assets. Columbia Care’s acquisition of Project Cannabis is expected to close in the fourth quarter, 2020.
Project Cannabis is one of the leading cannabis cultivators, wholesalers and retailers of highly recognized, award-winning, branded products, including Triple Seven and Classix, in the world’s largest cannabis market. In Los Angeles, Project Cannabis operates a 32,000-square-foot cultivation facility, along with three adult-use retail dispensaries in prime locations in North Hollywood, Downtown Los Angeles and Studio City. In San Francisco, it operates one adult-use retail dispensary in the Soma district, close to both professional baseball and basketball stadiums. This location also houses one of the only permitted consumption lounges in San Francisco.
The acquisition of Project Cannabis enables Columbia Care to materially increase its scale throughout California and position its wholesale and manufacturing operations as one of the leading suppliers in the state. Going forward, Columbia Care’s new state of the art 45,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in San Diego will manufacture and package all extracted products and concentrates for Project Cannabis. Leveraging its distribution network of more than 100 dispensaries throughout the state, Project Cannabis will continue to sell its entire brand portfolio while simultaneously cross-selling Columbia Care’s medically focused products, recently acquired products and brands from the TGS acquisition, and several new consumer oriented product lines such as the Amber Live Resin portfolio, Columbia Care’s fastest growing product in California.
“Project Cannabis perfects our operating model in California, enables us to maintain supply chain continuity, optimize profitability and gives us the full suite of capabilities, products and brands needed to be a market leader in the state,” said Nicholas Vita, CEO of Columbia Care. “In addition to being immediately accretive to Columbia Care’s adjusted EBITDA and cash flow, Project Cannabis expands our portfolio of unique products, nationally recognized premium brands, wholesaling expertise and adult use knowhow, all of which are scalable into the rest of our U.S. markets. Since its founding, the Project Cannabis team has developed the well-earned reputation for cultivating the highest-quality products and award-winning genetics resulting in an extensive distribution network of over 100 dispensaries state-wide. The uniqueness and depth of this distribution channel will enable us to access and serve much of the state’s addressable market. We also expect to benefit from operating synergies, for example, by bringing in house the manufacture of Project Cannabis’ finished goods, including processing and packaging. The expected impact upon gross margins on targeted SKUs should be approximately +10% to 15%. At a price of approximately 1.3x current year revenue (excluding synergies), Project Cannabis is growing substantially faster than the overall market and materially adds to Columbia Care’s critical mass and scale in California, while immediately a contributing to state level and consolidated cash flow and Adj. EBITDA. We look forward to leveraging the strategic advantages our combination will bring to the California cannabis market. Consistent with our recently closed acquisition of TGS, the acquisition of Project Cannabis serves as a concrete affirmation of our commitment to operational and fiduciary discipline and strategic focus to drive profitability and shareholder value in a manner consistent with our mission and corporate values.”
Commenting on the acquisition, Project Cannabis EVP Cameron Wald stated, “Joining Columbia Care, one of the largest and most experienced MSOs in the U.S., is a pivotal next step in Project Cannabis’ growth trajectory. Although we have been approached by virtually every conceivable strategic partner, we believe our culture, focus on producing the highest-quality products through the most effective brand architectures and extensive distribution network aligns perfectly with Columbia Care’s vision to grow its footprint into the market leader in California. Our team has done a tremendous job cultivating and building sought-after brands, while making our Project Cannabis dispensaries trusted destinations for a consistently excellent retail experience. I could not be prouder of the entire team. Together, we plan to immediately capitalize on synergies in our wholesale business and expand our product offerings by leveraging Columbia Care’s state of the art pharmaceutical-grade GMP manufacturing facility to accelerate our profitable growth. We are all very happy to be long term shareholders and contributors to building the best company in the industry.”
All amounts reflected in this press release and references to $ are in U.S. dollars.