VIDEO: Medical ganja company targets $4b in revenue by 2019; eyes IPO by 1Q next year

BY TERRON DEWAR Caribbean Business reporter dewart@jamaicaobserver.com

Friday, October 31, 2014

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LOCAL medical marijuana company, Medicanja Limited, expects to generate approximately $4 billion in sales within four years.


"Revenue from the sales and services of over 18 products that we have planned from Medicanja limited, including six product lines, will be in excess of $4 billion," said the executive chairman of Medicanja Limited, Dr Henry Lowe.


What's more, during the first quarter of next year, Medicanja plans to launch an initial public offering (IPO) to raise funds from the market to continue product development and research.


"This will give Jamaicans at home and in the Diaspora a chance to invest" in a product that shares a strong brand association with the country, he said.


On Wednesday, the company launched seven new products that will hit the market in December.


The products are among the first in a line of 18 pharmaceutical and nutraceutical items that the company plans to bring to market over the course of the next year.


'The magnificent seven', as the first line of products are called, was designed to help with the 'pain management of some 84 ailments using products such as marijuana-based rubbing alcohol (CanjaCol), healing oil (CanjaRub), pain-relief spray (CanjaSol), anti-inflammatory cream (CanjaFlam), Arthritis cream (CanjaSolve), sublingual drop (CanjaRelief) and nausea relief sprays (CanjaSure).


Medicanja has plans to expand its line to include pharmaceuticals that will treat HIV and AIDs, Parkinson's disease, diabetes, epilepsy, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), among others.


Come next year, the company will launch another eight products, which will include glaucoma eye drops (CanjaVase), teas (CanjaTeas), and pills (CanjaTabs).


The ultimate aim is to develop a global customer base through export, but Lowe believes that it is important that the products first gain traction in the local market.


"Starting off in Jamaica is very important, because if we can get local acceptance then it becomes easier to go after the Diaspora and other global markets," with the United States (US) and Canada being the first targets, he said.


The medical marijuana industry in the US is currently valued at US$2.8 billion. The industry is projected to double within the next two years, and grow by some 14 per cent annually to about US$9 billion by 2018.


Canada has over 37,000 patients who currently hold medical marijuana licences, with a gram of ganja being sold for CAD$5 (about J$500), the price of which is expected to rise to CAD$7.50 by the end of 2015.


"We are talking big business, not monkey money," said former Prime Minister P J Patterson, who is a member of the Medicanja board.


Patterson, in calling for the Government to speed up the development of the facilitating legislative framework, said that "the benefits to be gained from the expansion of the medical ganja industry are clear, and any further delays will only serve to destroy our competitive edge".


 

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