Canopy Growth lays off 200 employees in an effort to be “the best”

Apr 29, 2020

Once great cannabis giant Canopy Growth is feeling the pain of the economic downturn that’s been hitting the whole of the marijuana industry lately, a contraction that’s been elevated, in part, by the global pandemic caused by the novel coronavirus. According to a statement put out by the company today to several news organizations, the Canadian pot company is cutting 200 jobs across the U.S. and the U.K. The move is part of an internal restructuring effort, meant to bolster several departments.

The company’s CEO David Klein had previously foreshadowed these cuts. In February he told reporters that the company was looking to reduce costs company-wide. A month later, Canopy shuttered two of their facilities in British Columbia, which saw the elimination of upwards of 500 jobs, followed by further belt-tightening in early April. The company has since closed an indoor growing facility in Saskatchewan and stopped all farming operations in New York.

According to a statement, Klein said that Canopy had prioritized being first throughout their earl;y history, but that they would now focus on producing high-quality products.

“For a long time Canopy has prioritized doing things first, but going forward, we’ll be focused on doing things the best in the markets and in the product formats that show the greatest promise,” Klein said in an emailed statement, according to Bloomberg.

Over the past year, Canopy Growth’s stock has fallen 66 percent as the company has struggled to turn a profit.

High Times sets up shop In California

After years of writing about pot, the magazine of high society is finally putting its money where its mouth is. Hightimes Holding Corp. announced this week that the company entered into an agreement with Harvest Health and Recreation to purchase 13 cannabis dispensaries in varying states of readiness out on the West Coast. According to a statement, the company spent $80 million in cash and stock for the dispensaries.

High Times hopes to take advantage of its name and brand in moving into the retail cannabis business and, as some have argued, the company may be looking to take advantage of pot’s “essential business” designation during the COVID-19 pandemic. Whatever their reason, analysts agree it’s a smart purchase ahead of the company’s planned move to list its shares on a national exchange.

“We’ve long supported Harvest and the other cannabis-retail-trailblazers as they pushed forward despite changing legislation, insurmountable licensing fees, political stigma and, frankly, through a process that was designed to be difficult,” said Adam Levin, Hightimes Holding Corp.’s Executive Chairman in a statement. “We have enormous respect for the Harvest brand and look forward to ushering in the next generation of retail experience with Harvest as a significant shareholder in our company. We look forward to finding a myriad of ways to work with Steve and the team at Harvest.”

Meanwhile, according to reports, High Times has sold some public shares but has yet to trade on an exchange. They currently have over 27,000 investors who have subscribed to a $50 million offering.

“This transaction allows Harvest to invest in one of the most iconic brands in the industry,” said Steve White, Harvest’s Chief Executive Officer in a statement. “As one of the pioneers of the regulated cannabis ecosystem, we have always admired the work of High Times and are excited to watch the High Times brand flourish, as they poise themselves to enter the cannabis distribution and retail spaces.”

Meanwhile, the more things change

NORML hit nearly 300,000 Twitter followers today and celebrated by showing just how the country has come over the years in moving forward with cannabis legalization…

And on the same day that happened, Bashaud Breeland, a Superbowl winner with the Kansas City Chiefs, spent the day in jail for smoking pot

And a 14-year-old African American boy with a heart condition in Rancho Cordova, California, was beaten by a police officer after being accused of smoking marijuana…

The more they stay the same.

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