CannTrust renamed Phoena as firm rebuilds following scandals

Beleaguered cannabis company CannTrust Equity Inc. has been renamed Phoena Holdings Inc. The company says the new name is derived from the word “phenotype,” which describes traits within a plant’s genetic code that are used to produce cannabis.

Phoena will be 90 percent owned by investors led by a subsidiary of Kenzoll B.V., a Netherlands -based private equity investment company, and 10 percent owned by CannTrust Holdings Inc. The renaming is meant to usher in a new era for the company, which exited creditor protection in March after receiving $17 million in financing from the Kenzoll subsidiary, Marshall Fields International B.V.

The creditor protection came after the Vaughan, Ont.- based company behind the Liiv, SYNR.G, Xscape, and Estora brands was found growing thousands of kilograms of cannabis in unlicensed rooms between 2018 and 2019.

Later, the Ontario Securities Commission and investors began pursuing lawsuits against three of the company's former executives, who they accused of making misrepresentations about CannTrust having necessary licenses for growing cannabis.

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