Aphria and Tilray to Merge, Creating World’s Largest Cannabis Company
Leading Canadian cannabis companies Aphria and Tilray have entered a definitive agreement to merge. The merged entity will retain the Tilray name but the all-stock deal involves Aphria shareholders paying a 23% premium to buy up approximately 62% of outstanding Tilray stock in a reverse acquisition. Together, Tilray and Aphria’s revenue for the last 12 months totaled $685 million on a pro forma basis, meaning that, once merged, the company will be the largest cannabis firm worldwide, with an equity value of nearly $4 billion.
In keeping with Aphria’s controlling acquisition of Tilray stock, the new Tilray will be led by current Aphria chairman and CEO Irwin Simon, who will hold the same titles at the merged company. Its board of directors will consist of seven current Aphria board members and two from Tilray including current Tilray CEO Brendan Kennedy.
“This is an exciting day for both companies including our 2,500 employees, for the cannabis industry, and for patients and consumers around the world,” Simon said. “Our highly complementary businesses create a combined company with a leading branded product portfolio, including the most comprehensive Cannabis 2.0 product offerings for patients and consumers, along with significant synergies across our operations in Canada, Europe, and the United States.”
In addition to Canadian cannabis operations, Aphria’s recent acquisition of Atlanta, Georgia-based Sweetwater Brewing will give the combined company a strong launchpad for U.S. operations. Management plans to use Sweetwater and its infrastructure to build awareness for its combined brand portfolio, positioning it to compete in the U.S. market when regulations allow. The company’s Manitoba Harvest CBD brand is also poised to expand its presence stateside.