Agra Ventures looking to be a top cannabis player in Canada and Europe

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The Vancouver-based company's strategy is two-pronged - to supply the Canadian recreational market with high-potency flower and while also serving the European medical cannabis market.

What Agra Ventures does:

Agra Ventures Ltd. (CSE:AGRA, OTC:AGFAF) - which changed its name from AgraFlora Organics International Inc on July 28, 2021 - grows, distributes, and markets premium cannabis and cannabis-infused products. 

Its strategy is two-pronged - to supply the Canadian recreational market with high-potency flower products, while serving the European medical cannabis market. 

The company is in a joint venture with Propagation Services Canada Inc (PSC), which operates a 2.2 million-square-foot greenhouse complex in Delta, British Columbia. The company has both an industrial hemp license and a standard cultivation license from Health Canada. Agra holds a 70% stake in PSC.

In Europe, Agra has established a foothold starting in Germany with the acquisition of Farmako GmbH, a leading European medical cannabis distributor in the UK, Luxembourg, and Denmark.

As for its products, the company has seven brands that reflect the wide diversity of uses among consumers: Canutra Naturals (skincare), Edibles and Infusions (gummies), Howlbrands (CBD sports performance), Whole Hemp Health (lotions and oils), Eurasia Infused Cosmetics (CBD), True Focus (THC spray bottle), Potluck (cannabinoid-infused carbonated beverages) and Sports Cap (dispensing-cap technology). 

How is it doing:

Agra Ventures announced its name change on July 24, 2021, which it said was done to reflect the ‚Äúevolved vision and strategic direction‚ÄĚ of the company under its current leadership.

In addition, the company’s main subsidiary Propagation Services Canada (PSC) was rebranded to Boundary Bay Cannabis to conjure up the picturesque setting in which its cannabis is grown in the Delta region, in British Columbia.

The name change was also accompanied by a new logo and blue-based colour scheme to emphasize the company’s outgoing, strong and daring approach, while the rebrand also comes with a new logo for Boundary Bay Cannabis, added the company.

The company added that it plans to complete a share consolidation in the near term. Following the name change and rebrand, as well as evolution of the company’s competitive strategy, the goal of the share consolidation is to simplify the equity component of the company’s capital structure and accompany the recent improvements made to the liability component, said the company. The share exchange ratio related to the upcoming share consolidation is yet to be determined.

The rebrand coincided with the recently completed harvest of the first cannabis crop grown over 130,000-square-feet at the company's Delta greenhouse, which is now drying and will soon be tested for potency and prepped for sale. Agra announced on June 6 that the first wholesale crop growing at the Delta greenhouse was on track for processing and sale towards the end of summer this year.

Agra headed into 2021 with a new CEO who was tasked with setting new goals and priorities for the company. In early March, the company tapped Canadian cannabis industry veteran Elise Coppens for the top spot as well as a seat on the board of directors.

During her career, Coppens has worn many hats -- including but not limited to serving as president of Bloomera, marketing director for Aurora Cannabis, and director of international sales for Ample Organics.

Then in May, Agra announced that the appointment of veteran executive Fiona Fitzmaurice as its new CFO. Fitzmaurice brings more than 14 years of experience in accounting and financial control, the company said, serving both public and private companies. Fitzmaurice has previously worked as CFO of companies including MacDonald Mines Exploration Ltd. (TSX-V:BMK), Pasofino Gold and Mojave Jane Brands. She also has extensive experience with corporate audits, prospectus filings, private placements, financings and corporate acquisitions. 

Agra said its former CFO, Peter Nguyen, had amicably agreed to depart the company in order to “facilitate Ms. Fitzmaurice’s transition as the new steward of AgraFlora’s finances.

The company has been refocusing its business operations under the new management. On April 6, AgraFlora sold its 43% stake in The Edibles & Infusions Corporation, a 51,500-sq ft edibles manufacturing facility and federally licensed research and development lab in Winnipeg, Manitoba, to Organigram Holdings Inc for $35 million.

On April 1, Agra also signed a definitive agreement to sell its wholly-owned subsidiary AAA Heidelberg Inc (AAA) for around C$1 million in cash. AAA operates an 8,800 square foot (sq ft) indoor growing facility in London, Ontario, and the closing of the deal is expected to occur in the second quarter of 2021. And in its July 24 re-branding statement, Agra announced that on July 14 it had sold the Binbrook property held by its wholly-owned subsidiary Sanna Health Corp for around $1.87 million.

Agra is now focused on two businesses: the flagship Delta cultivation asset in British Columbia, where it is now the fourth-largest licensed producer in Canada; and on Farmako, with which it is establishing a footprint in Germany. 

Agra acquired Sanna Health and The Good Company GmbH, the parent of Frankfurt-based Farmako, which has a network of 19,800 pharmacies covering 100,000 patients as well as an 8% market share in early 2020. 

The company has been making deep inroads into the German market thanks to several contract wins in 2021. Farmako struck a binding supply agreement with ZenPharm Limited, a subsidiary of Zenabis (TSX:ZENA) Global Inc to secure additional medical cannabis stock. ZenPharm will supply flower cultivated by Zenabis (TSX:ZENA) to Farmako for distribution to patients in Germany. Farmako has also signed a similar supply deal with Adjupharm GmbH. 

And on April 12, Agra announced that Farmako GmbH, had begun supplying its proprietary THC Testkits to Stadapharm GmbH.  Stadapharm, which is responsible for the specialty pharmaceuticals business within the German STADA Group, is expected to enter the medical cannabis market in the second quarter of 2021. The company said it planned to launch its own THC cannabis flower products and extracts and will also offer the Farmako THC Testkits. 

Farmako has secured special authorization from the German Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices for the distribution of medical cannabis flowers that have undergone an ionizing radiation treatment (AMRadV license). This is a critical milestone for Farmako, as the German medical cannabis wholesaler is able to import for sale in Germany medical cannabis that is EU-GMP certified, but which has been subject to sterilization by irradiation.

Inflection points:

  • News on sale of¬†first cannabis crop grown at the Delta greenhouse
  • More news on Farmako THC Test kits
  • Share consolidation details

What the boss says:

‚ÄúI am proud to announce the new name of¬†Agra Ventures Ltd.¬†(CSE:AGRA,¬†OTC:AGFAF) for our company, which marks a clear path forward from the time of achieving the important milestone of harvesting our first crop of cannabis at the Delta facility,‚ÄĚ said AgraFlora CEO Elise Coppens in the company's statement on July 24.

‚ÄúSimilarly, the executive management team, with the support of the board of directors, also thought it was the right time to rebrand Propagation Services Canada as Boundary Bay Cannabis, as our three initial strains of cannabis are prepared to be sold for the first time,‚ÄĚ she added.

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