Canopy Growth Corporation has closed the previously announced acquisition of all outstanding shares in the global cannabinoid-based research company Beckley Canopy Therapeutics, including the joint commercial venture Spectrum Biomedical UK. "These teams will now be integrated into the broader Spectrum Therapeutics organization to increase the breadth of the clinical research being pursued under the Spectrum banner and to combine continental European and United Kingdom commercial teams," the team with the company explains.
As a part of the acquisition, Canopy Growth's European management structure will evolve. "Paul Steckler and Steven Wooding will assume the roles of co-managing directors in charge of all European operations. Steckler is a seasoned pharmaceutical executive with over 20 years' experience in commercial roles, having worked in both large and small pharmaceutical companies including Pfizer. Wooding has held multiple positions within a 27-year career at Janssen, the Pharmaceutical arm of Johnson & Johnson. Most recently, he was head of Global Commercial Strategy and Market Access for Janssen."
"The acquisition comes at a time when commercial opportunities across Europe are ramping up," said Mark Zekulin, CEO of Canopy Growth. "Spectrum Biomedical has completed all necessary approvals to import cannabis into the UK market and is proud to facilitate patient access to safe cannabinoid-based medicines there. Consolidating our UK-based operations will allow Canopy to simultaneously improve its research and commercial capabilities across the continent."
Beckley Canopy was formed as a joint venture in January 2018 between Beckley Research & Innovations (BRI) and Canopy Growth to research and develop clinically validated cannabis-based medicines, with a strong focus on intellectual property protection. The research platform combined European and North American-based leaders in cannabis research from BRI and Canopy Growth to create a strong and complementary UK-based European partnership. Since its inception, Beckley Canopy has made significant progress in its core research areas, added additional indications of interest, and worked closely and in a complementary fashion with the global Canopy research team.
Sale of stake in AusCann
Additionally, Canopy Growth Corporation has sold its 42,087,639 shares in Australian cannabis company AusCann Group Holdings via an off market block trade at $0.15 per share for gross proceeds of $6.3 million. The trade was facilitated by Canaccord Australia.
The sale represents Canopy Growth's total 13.2-percent interest in AusCann.
"Canopy Growth remains optimistic about the future of the Australian medical cannabis market and will continue to collaborate with the team at Auscann to support greater physician understanding and patient access to high quality cannabis products throughout Australia," said Mark Zekulin, CEO of Canopy Growth. "The decision to divest our position in AusCann, which we obtained three years ago in exchange for support provided, will allow us to sharpen our focus on our wholly-owned operations in the market, while continuing to collaborate with our partners at AusCann."
Dr. Marcel Bonn-Miller, Canopy Growth's Global Senior Director of Clinical Science, will continue to sit on the AusCann Board of Directors to facilitate future collaboration.