Halo Collective Inc. (“Halo”) (NEO: HALO) (OTCQX: HCANF) (Germany: A9KN) today announced that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Bophelo Bioscience & Wellness (Pty) Ltd. (“Bophelo”), has signed a processing and distribution agreement with Cantourage GmbH, (“Cantourage”) one of Europe’s leading providers of medical cannabis. With this agreement, Bophelo has secured a path to market to the rapidly growing European medical cannabis market for products cultivated at its current 5-hectare campus with future expansion of 200 hectare in the Kingdom of Lesotho in Southern Africa. Bophelo plans to export cannabis starting material to Cantourage for processing into certified medical cannabis products with the first EU sales targeted for 2022.
Bophelo’s agreement with Cantourage is the latest step forward in Halo’s initiative to reorganize its international assets (the “International Reorganization”) into an ethically-sourced company called Akanda Corp. (“Akanda”), which is underpinned by trusted brands. Bophelo achieved Good Agriculture and Collection Practice (“GACP”) in August 2021. Over the coming quarters, Akanda plans to leverage Bophelo to ramp production volumes from its grow scalable campus situated in the Mafeteng Special Economic Zone (‘SEZ’) for destination to Europe. The European market is expected to reach $3.8 billion in annual sales by 2025.
“We are moving quickly to establish a presence in Europe for our high-quality medical cannabis products, and working with the seasoned industry veterans of Cantourage enables us to navigate the European regulatory system and reach patients promptly and cost-effectively,” commented Tej Virk, CEO, Co-Founder and Director of Akanda.
“We are most excited about bringing some of the award-winning brands including DNA Genetics dried flower to the UK and broader European market. CanMart in the UK is a fully licensed strategic manufacturing and fulfillment center positioned to import, distribute and export EU GMP medical cannabis products. Cantourage is the ideal partner, well-known for providing cultivators Fast Track Access to the European medical cannabis market, which requires stringent EU GMP quality standards.”
“By partnering with Akanda and Bophelo, Cantourage intends to provide doctors and patients with greater choice of therapy options and cultivars,” commented Philip Schetter, CEO of Cantourage.
“In addition, we will be able to offer products which were grown in a sustainable and eco-friendly way thanks to their admirable business practices and Lesotho’s climate conditions, which are excellent for the cultivation of medical cannabis.”
Founded in 2019, Berlin-based Cantourage has established itself as one of the leading European companies in the medical cannabis sector, helping producers access the European market without having to deal with complex and lengthy regulatory processes. Cantourage is led by the same team that founded Pedanios GmbH in 2015, one of the first federally licensed companies in Germany to specialize in the importation and distribution of medical cannabis. Within less than a year, Pedanios was the dominant leader in the market for medical cannabis flower, and the company was subsequently acquired by Aurora Cannabis Inc in 2017. The team is now continuing to shape the medical cannabis market in Europe with Cantourage.
According to Prohibition Partners, the value of the European cannabis market is expected to grow from over $475 million by the end of 2021 to reach $3.8 billion in 2025. This makes Europe the world’s third largest cannabis market behind the U.S. and Canada.
Completion of Halo’s International Reorganization remains subject to the entering into definitive documentation, the approval of the Halo board of directors and the receipt of all required regulatory approvals. There can be no certainty that the International Reorganization will be completed on the terms described in this press release or at all.
About Akanda Corp.
Akanda is a recently formed Ontario corporation that was founded in connection with Halo’s proposed International Reorganization. Following completion of the International Reorganization, it is anticipated that Akanda will be an international medical cannabis company, cultivating ethically sourced cannabis of the highest quality at scale, leveraging trusted brands, at a low-cost compared to many of its competitors. It is expected that Akanda’s initial portfolio will include key businesses such as Bophelo, Halo’s cultivation and processing campus in the Kingdom of Lesotho in Southern Africa, with distribution and route-to-market through CanMart Ltd. (“CanMart”), Halo’s UK-based fully approved pharmaceutical importer and distributor which supplies pharmacies and clinics within the U.K.
Bophelo operates a campus in the Kingdom of Lesotho focused on the cultivation and production of medical cannabis products for international export. Akanda believes Bophelo to be one of the largest licensed marijuana cultivation sites in the world with access to 200 hectares of canopy. Through partnerships and licensing agreements with award-winning seed producers, including DNA Genetics, Bophelo
will provide Akanda with a low-cost gateway to the broader African continent and access to international markets. CanMart is one of a limited number of fully approved importers and distributors of medical cannabis products in the U.K. market with supply and distribution to pharmacies and clinics throughout the U.K. CanMart is committed to providing a range of the best possible cannabis-based medicinal products sourced from around the world.
A cornerstone of Akanda’s value system is its fundamental commitment to using its operations as a force for sustainability and social good. Akanda will seek to deliver on this promise by driving positive change in wellness, empowering individuals in Lesotho, and by uplifting the quality of the lives of employees and the local communities where it operates – while limiting its carbon footprint. Adhering to best practice ESG operating and disclosure standards is among Akanda’s highest priorities.
About Halo Collective Inc.
Halo is a leading, vertically integrated cannabis company that cultivates, extracts, manufactures, and distributes quality cannabis flower, oils, and concentrates, and has sold approximately nine million grams of oils and concentrates since inception. The Company continues to expand its business and scale efficiently, partnering with trustworthy leaders in the industry who value Halo’s operational expertise in bringing top-tier products to market.
Halo currently operates in the United States in Oregon and California, Canada, Southern Africa in the Kingdom of Lesotho, and the United Kingdom.
The Company sells cannabis products principally to dispensaries in the U.S. under its brands Hush, Mojave, and Exhale, and under license agreements with Papa’s Herb®, DNA Genetics, Terphogz, and FlowerShop*, a cannabis lifestyle and conceptual wellness brand that includes G-Eazy as a partner and key member.
As part of continued expansion and vertical integration in the U.S., Halo boasts several grow operations throughout Oregon and two planned in California. In Oregon, the Company has a combined 11 acres of owned and contracted outdoor cultivation, including East Evans Creek, a six-acre grow site in Jackson County with four licenses owned and operated by Halo and two third-party licenses under contract to sell all of their product to Halo; Winberry Farms, a one-acre grow site located 30 miles outside of Eugene in Lane County with a license owned and operated by Halo; and William’s Wonder Farms, a three-acre grow site in Applegate Valley, under contract to sell all of its product to Halo pending the closing of Halo’s acquisition of its licenses and business assets.
In California, the Company is building out Ukiah Ventures, a planned 30,000 sq. ft. indoor cannabis grow and processing facility, which will include up to an additional five acres of industrial land to expand the site. Recently, Halo partnered with Green Matter Holding in California to purchase a property in Lake County, developing up to 63 acres of cultivation, comprising one of the largest licensed single site grows in California. Halo also plans to expand its operations in California by opening three dispensaries in North Hollywood, Hollywood, and Westwood, one of which may serve as the first FlowerShop* branded dispensary.
In Canada, Halo acquired three KushBar retail cannabis stores located in Alberta as a first in its planned entry into the Canadian market, leveraging its Oregon and California brands. With the KushBar retail stores as a foundation, the Company plans to expand its foothold in Canada.
Halo has also acquired a range of software development assets, including CannPOS, Cannalift, and, more recently, CannaFeels. In addition, Halo owns the discrete sublingual dosing technology, Accudab. The Company intends to spin-off these assets and its intellectual property and patent applications into its subsidiary Halo Tek Inc. and expects to complete a distribution to shareholders on a record date to be determined by Halo.
Halo has recently announced its intention to reorganize its non-U.S. operations into a newly formed entity called Akanda Corp., whose mission will be to provide high-quality and ethically sourced medical cannabis products to patients worldwide. Akanda will seek to deliver on this promise while driving positive change in wellness, empowering individuals in Lesotho, and uplifting the quality of the lives of employees and the local communities where it operates, all while limiting its carbon footprint. Akanda will combine the scaled production capabilities of Bophelo Bioscience & Wellness Pty. Ltd., Halo’s Lesotho-based cultivation and processing campus located in the world’s first Special Economic Zone (SEZ) containing a cannabis cultivation operation, with distribution and route-to-market efficiency of CanMart Ltd., Halo’s UK-based fully approved pharmaceutical importer, and distributor that supplies pharmacies and clinics within the U.K. With a potential maximum licensed canopy area of 200 hectares (495 acres), Bophelo has scalability that is arguably unmatched in the world today.
For further information regarding Halo, see Halo’s disclosure documents on SEDAR at www.sedar.com