Aquis Stock Exchange-listed Ananda Developments has seen its stock jump by nearly 20% over the last week following the announcement that its MRX1 CBD oil is on track to launch commercially this month.
In a commercial update published last week (June 26), Ananda said its ‘cannabidiol medical oil’ was now due to go on sale ‘in July 2023’.
Business of Cannabis reported in March this year that Ananda had closed a £2m acquisition of MRX Global, which the company said would not only significantly accelerate its road to revenue generation, but also give them the rights to a CBD formulation that had just been approved for two Phase II clinical trials in the UK with £1.55 million of grant funding.
Now Ananda says it is on track to be able to generate revenue for the first time this month, with the product being available for medical cannabis prescriptions, as well as via a new website due to be launched over the coming weeks.
Alongside the commercial launch, Ananda said its MRX1 oil formulation was due to enter stability testing on July 3 in preparation for its inclusion in the University of Edinburgh’s randomised control trial (RCT), thought to be the first UK cannabis RCT since GW Pharma’s trials for Epidyolex and Sativex.
Elsewhere, Ananda’s cultivation operation was reportedly ‘exceeding expectations’, with the time from germination to seed production decreasing from an average of 95 days to 35 days in its current cycle, while the number of seeds produced per plant had also increased from under 10 to 300 seeds per plant.
Ananda says it is aiming to prioritise the production of ‘balanced and high CBD cultivars in the UK market’, suggesting that while there ‘is a large range of high THC cultivars currently being imported, there is only a small choice of balanced and high CBD cultivars’.
“As a result of this progress,” said Ananda, “the Company has commenced early-stage discussions with third parties who are interested in moving their cultivation strategy from clones to seeds.
MGC Pharmaceuticals stock continued its downward trajectory this week following the announcement that it was forced to terminate the appointment of an unnamed senior executive.
According to an RNS sent to investors on Friday (June 30), and following an internal investigation, MGC found that a ‘Person Discharging Managerial Responsibilities (PDMR) from their senior management role within the company had been discharged due to a number of ‘serious breaches’ of the company’s trading policy.
The manager is understood to have disposed of shares in the company during ‘closed periods’, and prior to announcements of information relating to the company to which they were privy.
In response, MGC has reportedly ‘arranged additional training with all PDMRs and employees to reinforce the importance of compliance’ with trading policies.
Chair of MGC Pharma Dr Stephen Parker commented: “The values, ethics and integrity of MGC Pharma have always been of paramount importance. Unfortunately, the best of intentions and the most rigorous corporate governance framework cannot always prevent unacceptable behaviour.”
Elsewhere, following the news that Australia had become the first country in the world to regulate psilocybin and MDMA as mental health treatments, MGC said it ‘welcomed’ the news and was well positioned to capitalise on its potential.
“Following the latest regulatory advancements, MGC has positioned itself as a key player in pioneering psychedelic research and development, and as a result, the Company is now able to offer accurate, pharmaceutical-grade products. Additionally, MGC will look to expand sales in Australia through the Company’s existing channels to provide Psilocybin to those in need of treatment.”
UK-based CBD producer Dragonfly Biosciences is also poised to cash in on the burgeoning Australian sector as it prepares to list on the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX).
Dragonfly is reportedly planning to raise up to A$5m at 20¢ a share, valuing the firm at between A$37m and A$40m.
The listing, which is set to be led by Finexia Securities and RM Corporate Finance, is now set to take place ‘next month’ after having filed for an IPO in April, according to the Australian Financial Review.
In late 2021, the company made its first attempt at going public on the ASX when it looked to raise A$10m in a float that was also set to be led by Finexia Securities, valuing the company at A$95m.
However, in February 2022, the company rolled back its IPO plans and told investors that it had deferred its efforts ‘at the request of key parties essential to a successful float’.
The company cited the ‘current sentiment in global equities markets’ alongside the ongoing regulatory uncertainty surrounding CBD in the UK.