A Weed Producer Is Raising Capital in a U.S. IPO for the First Time
Shares in Canada’s Tilray will start trading Thursday on the Nasdaq, with the firm becoming the first cannabis grower to complete an initial public offering on a U.S. stock exchange.
That’s not to say Tilray is the first weed producer to list on the Nasdaq—Canada’s Cronos Group trades there too, and Canopy Growth is listed on the New York Stock Exchange—but it is the first to raise capital via a listing on a U.S. exchange.
Tilray’s IPO size was around $153 million, at a price of $17 per share for 9 million shares of Class 2 common stock, with each share carrying one vote. The estimate had been $14-$16 per share. Seattle private equity firm Privateer owns 75 million Class 1 shares, each of which comes with 10 votes, and institutional investors also have 8 million preferred shares that will convert to Class 1 shares.
Tilray grows, processes and distributes marijuana—originally for medical purposes, but recreational weed will also be legal in Canada as of mid-October. Tilray filed for its IPO the day after that legalization vote went through.
The company reportedly intends to use the money from its IPO to build out its production facilities, repay Privateer, and fund future acquisitions.