CanadianCannabisWire Editorial Coverage: The first wave of companies to enter the Canadian cannabis industry were grounded in medical marijuana, which was legalized in 2001. As the country prepares for legalized adult recreational-use this summer, new recreational brands are joining the scene, and many companies rooted in medicinal cannabis are taking action to participate in this second wave of the Canadian market. With its strong branding and modern store design, Choom Holdings, Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF) (CHOOF Profile) is branded to appeal to the Canadian adult consumer ready to experience the cannabis lifestyle. Aurora Cannabis, Inc. (TSX: ACB) (OTCQB: ACBFF) is making strategic investments to establish footing in the recreational sector, while OrganiGram Holdings, Inc. (TSXV: OGI) (OTCQB: OGRMF) is taking measures to increase its production capacity ahead of a surge in product demand. Supreme Cannabis Company, Inc. (TSXV: FIRE) (OTC: SPRWF) has entered into multimillion-dollar agreements to supply cannabis to retail-oriented companies, and in Quebec, Hydropothecary Corp. (TSXV: THCX) is expanding its greenhouse capacity to potentially increase its cannabis production to 30x its current volume.
Highs Coming for Canadian Cannabis
As established companies get serious about brand expansion, supply agreements, and potential retail revenues, investments within Canada’s cannabis sector are soaring. The industry saw $1.2 billion investments in January alone – a 600 percent increase over the previous year – setting an incredible pace for continued growth. Currently, the State of California is the largest legal cannabis market in the world. With a population nearly as large as California’s and an influx of cannabis capital, Canada is on track to potentially become one of the world’s largest recreational-use markets. The country’s combined medicinal and recreational market size is expected to reach $6 billion by the year 2021, surpassing the value of its whiskey and spirits industry.
While the Canadian cannabis industry has found impressive success with medicinal marijuana in recent years, a different approach will be needed to target recreational consumers. Cannabis producers that recognize this tremendous potential are pursuing investments in recreational brands that appeal to the retail market. One of Canada’s most recognizable cannabis producers, Aphria, Inc. (TSXV: APH) (OTC: APHQF), recently shelled out $230 million to acquire recreational brand Broken Coast – one of many M&A deals within the burgeoning industry.
A Relaxed Brand for a Relaxing Product
One of the new companies looking to stake a claim in the recreational market is Choom Holdings, Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF). Choom is based in British Columbia, though its hip, modern brand has been designed around the tropical, relaxed ambiance of Hawaii. The company’s name, “Choom”, and style invoke Hawaiian culture, in particular easy days on the beach and in the countryside enjoying a casual atmosphere that connects with relaxation, which fittingly is one of the main appeals of cannabis. The company’s name, Choom, which means “to smoke marijuana” – comes from a slang word used by a fun-loving group of friends (including former U.S. President Barack Obama) who grew up together in Hawaii during the 1970s.
This relaxed, friendly and informal approach to selling cannabis is designed to tap into a younger market with socially liberal values and disposal income to spare, and differs radically from the marketing focus of medical marijuana companies. The look and feel more closely resembles a food or alcoholic beverage brand, evoking warm feelings instead of healing/medicinal properties, which are the focus of established brands. In short, it’s exactly the sort of approach the recreational cannabis industry will need.
Moving forward, the advantage in the legal cannabis sector seems likely to go to companies such as Choom, which are able to innovate with their branding, creating appealing lifestyle choices. Strict limitations on advertising cannabis will prevent the big medical marijuana players from using their financial clout to dominate the market through saturation advertising, which will create a space for young brands such Choom to grow via agile, modern techniques where traditional approaches aren’t an option.
From Seed to Sale
Choom appears to have another market advantage with its vertical integration. The business has a seed-to-sale model that covers the whole cannabis pipeline, from growing and processing the plants to selling the final product in its own stores. This control over the entire business process allows the company to maximize efficiencies and ensure integration along the supply chain.
This advantage starts in the growing facilities, where Choom will fully oversee the growth of carefully crafted strains of cannabis. Existing facilities are planned for Vernon and Chemainus, Canada, to ensure that the company is prepared for the market as soon as possible. Choom is refitting both facilities, a process scheduled to be complete by July, with more than 13,000 square feet of growing space in planning.
Choom has announced a clear plan for its move into this market. With the Canadian cannabis market expected to see dramatic growth in early stages, the company has capacity to expand as needed. A second phase of expansion is in place for both facilities, which will significantly increase the growing space and allow for doubling crop yields by early 2019.
At the sale end of this supply chain are Choom’s dispensaries, which are designed with a clean, stylish, and modern feel, much like a more relaxed version of an Apple store, a favorite of millennials and those with disposable income. These stores have been envisioned to appeal to two different but important market sectors. One is existing cannabis users, who will be looking for more convenient ways to buy their product once the law changes. The other is the group of “curious customers,” who weren’t willing to use cannabis while it was illegal but are interested in trying it now. Choom’s relaxing retail space is designed to draw in customers from both sides, quickly building up a strong high street brand.
Preparing for Change
To power further growth, the company also recently completed a financing initiative, exceeding expectations and raising CAD $2.7 million (http://cnw.fm/AkT9x). The funds are being invested in advancing the company’s development strategy, as well as for growth and acquisitions.
Having recently released the retail design for its dispensaries (http://cnw.fm/DIl3r), Choom is readying those facilities ready for legalization as well. And with the official launch of its retail program, the company has created the opportunity to develop a chain of branded cannabis dispensaries across Canada (http://cnw.fm/jqn8I).
“Choom is using design and retail strategies that have worked successfully at some of the most profitable storefronts in the country. We are telling our Choom story with our stores and will elevate the concept of a high-quality product though our new retail environments, and we’re inviting others to join us,” Choom president and CEO Chris Bogart stated in the press release.
As the legal cannabis market prepares to open in Canada, Choom appears to have all the pieces in place to create a national premium recreation brand.
A Sector in Waiting
As the creation of Canada’s legal recreational cannabis sector approaches, other companies are also preparing for the change.
One of Canada’s biggest cannabis producers, Aurora Cannabis (TSX: ACB) (OTCQB: ACBFF), is investing in a range of related companies to set itself up for expansion into the recreational sector. The Vancouver-based organization has invested in The Green Organic Dutchman, a company that produces farm grown, organic, pesticide-free medical cannabis in small batches using all natural, organic craft growing principles. It has also teamed up with Liquor Stores NA Ltd. (TSX: LIQ) to convert existing retail outlets into cannabis retail stores.
Another licensed producer of medical marijuana, OrganiGram Holdings (TSXV: OGI) (OTCQB: OGRMF), recently received an expanded cultivation license from Health Canada, enabling the company to move forward with its expansion strategy that would increase current capacity from approximately 5,200 kg/year to an estimated 16,000 kg/year. Its longer-term plan is to increase production to 65,000 kg/year over the next two years.
Supreme Cannabis Company (TSXV: FIRE) (OTC: SPRWF) has made its mission to grow sustainable cannabis companies to cater to the growing recreational market. To this end, it has invested in late-stage ACMPR applicant company BlissCo, and has agreed to provide cannabis to that company through its 7ACRES subsidiary. 7ACRES will also supply cannabis to Namaste (CSE: N) (FRA: M5BQ) (OTC: NXTTF) subsidiary, Cannmart.
Quebec-based Hydropothecary (TSXV: THCX) has signed a letter of intent with Société des alcools du Québec (SAQ) to supply 20,000 kg of cannabis to Quebec’s recreational cannabis market in its first year of operation. This recent announcement follows news in December that the company added 78 acres of land adjacent to its existing 65-acre facility, and that it is working on a 1 million-square-foot greenhouse designed to increase its production to 108,000 kg per year, 30 times the current capacity.
Based on all forecasts, Canada’s cannabis market is set for significant expansion in 2018. New actors and existing medical companies alike are preparing to seize this opportunity through production, distribution, and retail growth. With a clearly defined growth strategy, Choom Holdings is demonstrating its intention to rapidly become a recognizable national brand.
For more information on Choom Holdings, please visit Choom Holdings, Inc. (CSE: CHOO) (OTCQB: CHOOF)
CanadianCannabisWire (CNW) is an information service that provides (1) access to our news aggregation and syndication servers, (2) CannabisNewsBreaks that summarize corporate news and information, (3) enhanced press release services, (4) social media distribution and optimization services, and (5) a full array of corporate communication solutions. As a multifaceted financial news and content distribution company with an extensive team of contributing journalists and writers, CNW is uniquely positioned to best serve private and public companies that desire to reach a wide audience of investors, consumers, journalists and the general public. CNW has an ever-growing distribution network of more than 5,000 key syndication outlets across the country. By cutting through the overload of information in today’s market, CNW brings its clients unparalleled visibility, recognition and brand awareness. CNW is where news, content and information converge.
DISCLAIMER: CanadianCannabisWire (CNW) is the source of the Article and content set forth above. References to any issuer other than the profiled issuer are intended solely to identify industry participants and do not constitute an endorsement of any issuer and do not constitute a comparison to the profiled issuer. The commentary, views and opinions expressed in this release by CNW are solely those of CNW. Readers of this Article and content agree that they cannot and will not seek to hold liable CNW for any investment decisions by their readers or subscribers. CNW is a news dissemination and financial marketing solutions provider and is NOT registered broker-dealers/analysts/investment advisers, hold no investment licenses and may NOT sell, offer to sell or offer to buy any security.
The Article and content related to the profiled company represent the personal and subjective views of the Author, and are subject to change at any time without notice. The information provided in the Article and the content has been obtained from sources which the Author believes to be reliable. However, the Author has not independently verified or otherwise investigated all such information. None of the Author, CNW, or any of their respective affiliates, guarantee the accuracy or completeness of any such information. This Article and content are not, and should not be regarded as investment advice or as a recommendation regarding any particular security or course of action; readers are strongly urged to speak with their own investment advisor and review all of the profiled issuer’s filings made with the Securities and Exchange Commission before making any investment decisions and should understand the risks associated with an investment in the profiled issuer’s securities, including, but not limited to, the complete loss of your investment.
CNW HOLDS NO SHARES OF ANY COMPANY NAMED IN THIS RELEASE.
This release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended and such forward-looking statements are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. “Forward-looking statements” describe future expectations, plans, results, or strategies and are generally preceded by words such as “may”, “future”, “plan” or “planned”, “will” or “should”, “expected,” “anticipates”, “draft”, “eventually” or “projected”. You are cautioned that such statements are subject to a multitude of risks and uncertainties that could cause future circumstances, events, or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements, including the risks that actual results may differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements as a result of various factors, and other risks identified in a company’s annual report on Form 10-K or 10-KSB and other filings made by such company with the Securities and Exchange Commission. You should consider these factors in evaluating the forward-looking statements included herein, and not place undue reliance on such statements. The forward-looking statements in this release are made as of the date hereof and CNW undertakes no obligation to update such statements.