Canada’s biggest weed producer is on a roll
Canopy Growth Corporation, Canada’s largest publicly traded medical marijuana producer reported an 180 percent rise in revenue in the fiscal year ending December 31, 2016, according to financial results released by the company today.
This is the first time in a year that the cannabis producer is recording a profit (i.e. the difference between its revenue and expenses), earning $3 million in the third quarter of the 2016/2017 fiscal year. By contrast, this time last year, Canopy Growth was losing money — $3.3 million to be exact.
What’s particularly remarkable about the company’s growth is the rate at which it has been adding patients to its roster. At the end of 2015, the company had 8000 registered patients – as of December 31, 2016, Canopy had a whopping 29,000 patients, almost a four-fold increase in customers legally consuming medical marijuana.
Canopy Growth’s Chairman and CEO Bruce Linton attributed his company’s stunning financial performance this quarter to its growing patient base, the time it required to move a record harvest to sale, and breeding exercises that elevated their product offering.
“The higher THC strains in Canopy Growth’s products carry higher prices. That, coupled with the continued increase in demand in the medical market has boosted revenue,” Jacob Securities weed analyst Khurram Malik told VICE Money.
“The higher THC strains in Canopy Growth’s products carry higher prices.”
The marijuana company, aptly listed as WEED on the Toronto Stock Exchange, sold approximately 1245 kilograms of medical marijuana in its third quarter, at a price of $7.36 per gram. During the same time period a year ago, Canopy Growth only managed to sell 462 kilograms of weed, at a slightly lower price of $7.34 per gram.
In 2015, a National Post investigation revealed that some medical marijuana producers were paying doctors as much as $350 per patient to get them to prescribe weed from specific manufacturers.
Under a federally legislated system introduced back in 2014, patients have to obtain a prescription from a medical doctor to be eligible to order cannabis from one of Canada’s 38 licensed weed producers.
Canopy Growth is fast becoming almost a monopolistic player in the medical marijuana market. It’s recent acquisition of Mettrum Health Corp., another Ontario-based weed producer, will boost its patient base even more, to almost 40,000. That represents nearly half of Canada’s overall medical marijuana patient base.
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Cover: Lars Hagberg/ The Canadian Press