A Moncton-based medical marijuana company has nearly tripled in value after going public on Monday.
OrganiGram Inc., one of only 13 companies authorized by Health Canada to grow medical marijuana, is now worth about $100 million, says CEO Denis Arsenault.
The company needed investors to expand its operations to meet the anticipated high demand for its product, said Arsenault.
He credits the company's location and language for its market success.
"We're the only producer east of Ottawa, so it gives us a geographical advantage. And also as francophones, as Acadians, it gives us a great opportunity to service the Quebec market, where 23 per cent of the population is situated," said Arsenault.
"You know, many of our competitors do not even have a bilingual website, let alone a social media presence or customer service in French. And I think the investors have recognized that by giving us the highest market cap of the three publicly-traded companies in Canada at this time."
Starts shipping soon
The other two producers that are now public are Toronto-based Bedrocan Cannabis Corp., and Tweed Marijuana Inc., which is based in Smiths Falls, Ont.
OrganiGram, which was incorporated under the Business Corporations Act and is now publicly traded on the TSX Venture exchange, is scheduled to begin shipping out product by the end of the month, or early September.
Arsenault expects the current workforce of 22 will double by the end of the year.
The company plans to offer 16 strains of marijuana to address various medical needs, such as pain management, anxiety disorders, and appetite control.
Orders will be shipped directly to patients across the country from the 20,000-square-foot facility, located in an industrial park.
Prices will be set between $6 and $9 a gram.
Health Canada has estimated medical marijuana sales will hit $1.3 billion annually by 2024.