The Globe and Mail reports in its Thursday, June 6, edition that Bank of America Merrill Lynch analyst Christopher Carey raised his rating for Cronos Group ($21.58) to "buy" from "underperform" after chief executive officer Mike Gorenstein said the cannabis producer is aiming to be "aggressive" in its cannabidiol (CBD) launch in the United States. The Globe's David Leeder writes in the Eye On Equities column that Mr. Carey believes Cronos's partnership with Altria Group will prove valuable in "winning the U.S." Mr. Carey raised his share target to $27 from $17. Analysts on average target the shares at $20.40. Mr. Carey says in a note: "The potential to scale distribution nationally via Altria separates Cronos vs peers. While clearly a high multiple even vs peers, following recent management comments, we have improved confidence CRON is near announcing its launch, in our view a significant catalyst: (1) improving near-term visibility in the largest market for cannabis derived compounds in the world, (2) CRON beginning to flex its near group-leading balance sheet ($2.4-billion cash) and partnerships (Altria, MO) to begin a transformation we see creating a vastly different company in the years ahead."
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