Ascend Wellness Holdings, multi-state cannabis operator with operations in Illinois, Michigan, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Ohio, goes public in what many industry professionals call “most anticipated [cannabis] IPO of the year. The move comes just a day after Tilray and Aphria closed their merger, becoming the world’s largest cannabis company by revenue.
An upward trajectory
Ascend’s public transaction was announced just a few days ago. In late April, the company said it was raising about $ 80 million through an initial public offering of about 10 million shares of its Class A common stock at $ 8 per share.
A syndicate of underwriters led by Canaccord Genuity completed the offering. Beacon Securities Limited, Eight Capital, ATB Capital Markets and Cormark Securities also participated in the capital increase. The underwriters have received an over-allotment option of up to 1.5 million shares, exercisable within 30 days of the closing of the transaction.
The stock begins trading on the Canadian Securities Exchange (CSE) today, Tuesday, May 4, under the symbol “AAWH”. An OTCQX Best Market listing is expected in the coming days.
“We are extremely proud that in just over three years AWH has built one of the most attractive US cannabis companies in the market,” CEO Abner Kurtin said in an email. “Our public offering validates both our business strategy and propels us as one of the major operators east of the Rockies. Our strategy of going deep, not large scale, building vertically integrated operations and establishing flagship outlets in high traffic areas, is unlike any other company in the market today. “
Recent moves to the east coast and west-central
Just last week, Ascend opened a 16,000 square foot cannabis dispensary, considered the largest on the East Coast.
Management has assured that two more retail outlets – in New Bedford and Newton – will open soon.
Also in April, Ascend partnered with Lowell Farms Inc. to bring Lowell Farms brand Lowell Smokes Pre-Rolls to Illinois and Massachusetts.
According to management, the proceeds of the offering will be used to fund expansion in New York and Ohio, as well as other capital expenditures. A percentage of the money will be set aside for “future M&A transactions, general administration, tax liabilities, working capital and general business needs.”