How to Invest in a Global Cannabis Portfolio
May 20th, 2020
App, Exclusive, News, Top Story
North America’s cannabis industry may capture the most headlines, but there are many cannabis frontier markets to keep in mind. In fact, North America represented just 25%, or $86 billion, of the $344 billion global cannabis market in 2018, according to New Frontier Data. Asia, Europe, Africa, Latin America, Oceana and the Caribbean are all cannabis frontier markets that investors shouldn’t ignore in their portfolios.
Let’s take a look at some important cannabis frontier markets and why investors may want to consider diversifying their portfolio beyond North America.
Israel’s Unique Position
Israel has been the international center of cannabis research ever since Dr. Raphael Mechoulam discovered tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) in the early 1960s. While medical cannabis has been legalized, recreational cannabis remains technically illegal, although the government largely decriminalized it back in 2017. Government agencies are also very active in funding cannabis research to maintain its clinical edge over other countries.
In January 2019, the government passed a law to allow the export of medical cannabis and the first products were shipped a year later in January 2020. These events have set the stage for the country to become one of the leading suppliers of medical cannabis to Europe—especially given its favorable climate for cultivation—as well as a leader in cannabinoid research and development for the pharmaceutical industry.
Isracann Biosciences Inc. (CSE: IPOT) (OTC: ISCNF) aims to capitalize on these dynamics with its fully-funded 230,000 sq. ft. hybrid greenhouse cultivation project and partnership with a late-stage project consisting of about 200,000 sq. ft. of greenhouses located on over 880,000 sq. ft. of agricultural land. The company is also developing European distribution channels while ensuring that its facilities comply with EU GMP regulations.
In April, the company closed a deal to acquire a 50% interest in a joint venture, Cannation Ltd., for a phased partnership with two near-term farm operations located in the Hefer Valley region of Israel. Cannation has an offtake agreement with Focus Medical Herbs Ltd., a licensed medical cannabis producer in Israel, for a three year definitive supply agreement for about 2,600 kilograms of medical cannabis per year.
Europe’s Burgeoning Market
Many European countries are planning on legalizing medical and adult-use cannabis, following in the footsteps of North America. With a population of more than 740 million, the market is potentially double that of the U.S. and Canada, combined. More than €500 million has already been invested in the market, while analysts believe that the market could be worth upwards of €123 billion by 2028 (roughly half recreational and half medical).
The easiest way to invest in Europe’s nascent cannabis industry is through the newly launched Medical Cannabis and Wellness UCITS ETF (CBDX)—the region’s first medical cannabis ETF domiciled in Ireland. The fund tracks a rules-based index consisting of publicly-traded companies in the medical cannabis, hemp and CBD industries throughout Europe, providing broad exposure in a single security.
Africa’s Cannabis Market
Africa has always been an attractive emerging market for energy and other commodity-related projects, but cannabis is quickly becoming the next hot commodity. Lesotho, Zimbabwe, and South Africa have all made progress in recent quarters when it comes to cannabis legalization and cultivation. For example, Lesotho legalized the growing, processing and exporting of cannabis way back in 2008 for medical use.
Prohibition Partners believes that Africa’s market could reach $7.1 billion by 2023, although some of its estimates may be a bit ambitious. While Lesotho has drawn in a lot of capital investment over the past few years, many companies and investors are waiting to see how Islamic countries will treat cannabis legalization. The region’s economies also tend to be riskier than more mature markets, such as those in North America and Europe.
Cannabis investors should look beyond North America for opportunities in the cannabis industry. While Europe is a natural alternative market, investors should also consider countries like Israel and regions like Africa for frontier market exposure.
This article was published by CFN Enterprises Inc. (OTCQB: CNFN), owner and operator of CFN Media, the industry’s leading agency and digital financial media network dedicated to the burgeoning CBD and legal cannabis industries. Call +1 (833) 420-CNFN for more information.
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CFN Enterprises Inc. (OTCQB: CNFN) owns and operates CFN Media Group, the premier agency and financial media network reaching executives, entrepreneurs and consumers worldwide. Through its proprietary content creation, video library, and distribution via www.CannabisFN.com, CFN has built an extensive database of cannabis interest, assisting many of the world’s largest cannabis firms and CBD brands to build awareness and thrive. For more information, please visit www.cfnenterprisesinc.com.
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