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Avicanna begins Viola pot sales in Canada

2021-11-09 12:36 ET - News Release

Mr. Aras Azadian reports


Avicanna Inc. has begun the distribution of Viola cannabis products across Canada on the Medical Cannabis by Shoppers on-line platform, a subsidiary of Shoppers Drug Mart Inc., Canada's leading health, beauty and convenience retailer. The well-established equity-focused brand will also be made available across adult-use channels, including Ontario and New Brunswick, imminently.

Founded in 2011 by NBA veteran Al Harrington, Viola is one of the leading producers and licensed wholesalers of premium-quality cannabis products in the United States with its footprint across four states. Viola's mission is to increase minority representation and provide greater employment opportunities to black and other underrepresented communities in the cannabis industry. Viola cannabis products available at the Medical Cannabis by Shoppers platform include THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol) offerings starting with live-terpene disposable vaporizers and extending into other categories, including 510 cartridges and concentrates.

"We're excited to launch in Canada with our partner Avicanna, who shares our vision to increase representation and promote equity within the cannabis industry," said Al Harrington, co-founder and chief executive officer of Viola Brands, "and look forward to having Viola's premium products available at Medical Cannabis by Shoppers."

"Today, Canada's incredible diversity is not well represented by existing brands, and, through this multilayered partnership with Viola, we seek to fill that gap, bring some much-needed minority representation and extend Al's vision to Canadian consumers," said Aras Azadian, chief executive officer of Avicanna. "Additionally, having Viola's premium products launched in Canada through our distribution agreement with Medical Cannabis by Shoppers Drug Mart Inc. will be a huge win for Canadians as the products will be available nationwide immediately."

Canadians will now have access to Viola's award-winning cannabis products for the first time through a national chain. Through the company's multilevel partnership with Viola, Avicanna is responsible for managing the overall commercialization of all Viola-branded products in Canada through its manufacturing, distribution and sales infrastructure. Additional Viola cannabis products will be available in several provinces across adult-use channels offering multiple options for consumption through a portfolio expansion expected by the end of 2021, with initial listings approved in New Brunswick and Ontario.

About Avicanna Inc.

Avicanna is a commercial-stage Canadian biopharmaceutical company and an established leader in cannabinoid research, development and evidence-based products for the global consumer, medical and pharmaceutical market segments. Avicanna conducts its research in Canada, including its R&D (research and development) headquarters in the Johnson & Johnson innovation centre, JLABS @ Toronto, Canada, located in the MaRS Discovery District, and in collaboration with leading Canadian academic and medical institutions. Avicanna has established an industry-leading scientific platform, including advanced R&D and clinical development, that has led to the commercialization of over 20 products across four main market segments:

  • Rho Phyto: These medical and wellness products are an advanced line of pharmaceutical-grade cannabis products containing varying ratios of CBD and THC. The product portfolio contains a full formulary of products, including oral, sublingual, topical and transdermal deliveries that have controlled dosing, enhanced absorption and stability studies supported by preclinical data. These products are developed using pharmaceutical drug development processes and are supported with preclinical data. The advanced formulary is marketed with consumer, patient and medical community education and training.
  • Pura H&W/Pura Earth: These registered, clinically tested cosmetic products include a portfolio of functional CBD consumer derma-cosmetic and topical products.
  • Aureus: As a part of Avicanna's vertical integration based out of Santa Marta, Colombia, its raw material business units are primarily dedicated to providing a consistent source of cannabinoid raw materials for Avicanna and its global partners' food, cosmetic, medical and pharmaceutical needs. Aureus-branded products are cultivated, extracted and manufactured by Avicanna's subsidiaries in Colombia, including SMGH which is GACP (good agricultural and collection practices) and USDA (U.S. Department of Agriculture) organic certified and where they benefit from optimal environmental conditions to produce cannabinoid active pharmaceutical ingredients economically, organically and sustainably and include a range of CBD, THC, and rare cannabinoids such as CBG (cannabigerol) extracts and standardized seeds. The company is well positioned to be a global supplier of cannabinoid raw materials demand and has already successfully exported its products to over 11 countries in four continents.
  • Pharmaceutical pipeline: Leveraging the company's scientific platform, vertical integration and real-world evidence, Avicanna has established a pipeline of indication-specific cannabinoid-based drug candidates that are in various stages of clinical development and commercialization. Avicanna's drug candidates are in the preclinical stage and the company is dedicated to providing solutions for unmet medical needs in the areas of dermatology, chronic pain and various neurological disorders.

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