Shareholders approve Ottawa-based Tetra Bio-Pharma’s $12M acquisition

cannabis drug

Tetra Bio-Pharma’s shareholders are endorsing the local firm’s plans to accelerate its cannabidiol research efforts as excitement around the market for hemp-based products heats up.

The Orléans-based research firm, which develops cancer therapy drugs from the non-psychoactive component of cannabis known as CBD, received shareholder approval last week for its previously announced acquisition of Halifax’s Panag Pharma. Nearly a third of Tetra’s outstanding shares were represented at a special meeting to vote on the proposed acquisition, with 99.79 per cent ultimately in favour of the deal.

First announced at the end of January, Tetra says the $12-million cash-and-stock deal will allow the firm to expand its commercial operations with the help of Panag’s roster of researchers and existing drug formulations.

"We are very pleased to soon welcome Panag to the Tetra family. We have been working with Panag for over a year and as a combined entity we will have a robust product pipeline of cannabinoid-derived drugs for development as prescription or (over-the-counter) drugs,” said Guy Chamberland, CEO and chief strategy officer of Tetra Bio-Pharma, in a statement.

Excitement has been building around the CBD market as companies explore its vast potential as an ingredient in myriad health and wellness products. In the United States, recent regulations have legalized the cultivation of hemp for certain uses, ranging from medical treatments to beauty products. The legislation south of the border has opened up a legal market that some estimate will hit US$16 billion by 2025 and further balloon from there.

The acquisition still requires approval from the TSX Venture Exchange but is expected to close before the end of the month.