On Tuesday, Green Thumb Industries Inc. (GTI) finalized a deal to acquire 100 percent of Integral Associates, Nevada’s top cannabis company. The move marks a major expansion for the Chicago and Vancouver-based GTI. Integral will bring onboard its operational capacity, distribution and, crucially, its significant retail footprint in Nevada. The total value of the transaction is approximately $290 million. $52 million will go to Integrated Associates in cash along with 20.8 million Subordinate Voting Shares of GTI.
Beneath its unassuming name, Integral Associates emerged as the leader of Nevada’s rapidly-developing retail cannabis industry. The company owns and operates two cultivation and processing facilities: Desert Grown Farms and Cannabiotix NV, covering 95,000 square feet. Desert Grown Farms has gained recognition for its genetics library that houses more than 100 strains of cannabis. Cannabiotix NV is well-known to High Times readers, having earned multiple High Times Cannabis Cup awards, including a 2018 Flower of the Year award for its Kush Mountain strain.
The acquisition deal also includes the Essence retail brand. Under the brand Essence, Integral Associates owns and operates three nationally-recognized dispensaries, including the first and only dispensary on the Las Vegas Strip. The Essence Las Vegas Strip location earned Business Insider’s number one dispensary in Nevada and its top-25 dispensary in the United States award, in addition to several others, including a High Times top-10 dispensary in Nevada award.
Nevada legalized adult-use cannabis in 2016. But unlike other regulated retail states, Nevada is a limited license adult use market. This means that there are only a certain number of retail licenses available; hence, just the single dispensary on the Las Vegas Strip. Acquiring Integral Associates means GTI also acquires a handful of those limited licenses.
In a press release announcing the deal, GTI Founder and CEO Ben Kovler described the acquisition as “immediately accretive and an important milestone” as the company positions itself to scale in Nevada. Armen Yemenidjian, who founded Integral in 2014, will join GTI’s leadership team as president. Yemenidjian described Tuesday’s deal as “a big win for Nevada communities and the customers we will continue to serve.”
GTI expects the acquisition to officially close in the first half of 2019. Despite the agreement and unanimous approval by the Board of Directors, the deal must secure customary regulatory approvals.
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Originally appeared in: https://hightimes.com/news/green-thumb-industries-acquires-nevadas-top-cannabis-company/