CanniMed Therapeutics Inc (TSE:CMED)(OTCMKTS:CMMDF)(FRA:0GB) , Cronos Group(CVE:MJN)(OTCMKTS:PRMCF) , Aphria Inc (CVE:APH) (OTCMKTS:APHQF) andCanopy Growth Corp (TSE:CGC) (OTCMKTS:TWMJF) (FRA:11L1) are among the most heavily traded stocks on their respective Canadian exchanges in the last few days, and the cause is rooted in Germany. The German parliament voted unanimously to pass the “cannabis as medicine” law, which takes effect in March of 2017.
German Federal Minister of Health Hermann Gröhe said in a statement, “People with disabilities need the best possible treatment, and shouldn’t have to resort to drug traffickers if that means cannabis, which will be covered by health insurance.”
Parliamentary secretary Ingrid Fischbach added, “For serious illnesses that cause chronic pain like multiple sclerosis, cannabis in medicinal form helps alleviate those symptoms.”
There is potentially a 230% bump in revenue for Canadian ACMPR growers as a result of the German medical market coming on stream.
The statement concluded that the availability of cannabis in Germany would be through imports until “state-controlled cultivation” can be established.
Germany has a population of 80 million people, and Canada, 35 million. At the end of September 2016, there were 98,460 registered clients who had consumed 4,773 kilograms of marijuana and 2,420 kilograms of cannabis oil. That suggests, if there 2.3 more Germans than Canadians, an increased marketplace totalling 15,750 kilograms of dried bud and 7,986 kilograms of oil.
Or, in simpler terms, there is potentially a 230% bump in revenue for Canadian ACMPR growers as a result of the German medical market coming on stream.
Canadian Cannabis Companies poised to benefit
Some of Canada’s leading Access to Cannabis for Medical Purposes Regulation (ACMPR)-accredited companies applauded the development, as they are already positioned to be a source of medical cannabis for Germans. With the population of Germany roughly double that of Canada, the development represents access to another market that is likely to be worth twice what Canada’s is.
Cronos Group moved to position itself to access the German market serendipitously in October 2016, announcing its wholly owned subsidiary, Peace Naturals Project Inc, had shipped its first export of premium medicinal marijuana to Germany.
“This export marks an important milestone in Cronos Group’s strategic global expansion and the beginning of a long, fruitful relationship between Peace and Pedanios GmbH,” said Mike Gorenstein, Cronos Group’s CEO.
Listen to the podcast interview with Mike Gorenstein:
In a recent Midas Letter podcast interview, he said “I think it’s going to be a ramp-up, but as far as the [German] medicinal market, we project it will be larger than the Canadian market. I think that the combination of having insurance coverage, it’s really when you compare issues in new medical markets to the black market, why do you go to the trouble of going to see a doctor and get a script and this process of then having to find an LP and register, but with insurance coverage, it makes a lot of sense.”
CanniMed Therapeutics is also well-positioned to ship its products to German patients through its relationship with Australian publicly traded Creso Pharma Ltd. (ASX:CPH), who it appointed as its representative “in the European Union for the purpose of marketing all CanniMed® medical cannabis brands to governments, authorized importers and distributors, institutions, pharmacies and individuals.”
Listen to the podcast interview with Brent Zettl:
CEO Brent Zettl told us in a Midas Letter Podcast Interview that “we have eight countries that we’re speaking with at various levels, and those discussions are all ongoing, and we expect to see something happening in early sales provided that the licensing amendments come through as we need, and then we’ll start to see how that propels. So we think it’s going to, we’re going to have a very strong 2017.”
Bruce Linton, CEO of Canopy Growth Corp, which owns the Tweed, Vert, Bedrocan and also has a takeover bid underway for Mettrum, thinks their strategy will actually be to establish growing operations inside Germany, while supplying Germans patients from Canadian-grown supplies until the industry there is ready.
Listen to the podcast interview with Bruce Linton:
“It worked for bottling lines for Coca-Cola as an expansion process,” he said. “Our intent though is, in most countries, to go in where it’s 100 percent corporate store, which is why in November, we acquired the company that had been our export partner, so we actually have our boots on the ground in Germany to work through the process rather than, you know, a JV and everybody’s not aligned.”
Aphria isn’t shipping product to Germany at this point, but CEO Vic Neufeld says the company is definitely going to be a player in Europe.
Listen to the podcast interview with Vic Neufeld:
“Germany is absolutely most recently very much on our radar,” he told us during a Midas Letter podcast interview. “and we are engaged in dialogue with two different organizations, but we haven’t got to anything formal like a letter of intent.”