Cannabis News

Cannabis company to acquire Columbia Care in $2B deal

By Nina Zdinjak

Europeans are increasingly open to the legalization of cannabis, according to new polling data published by Hanway Associates and reported by Curaleaf International, one of the vertically integrated marijuana companies in Europe.

The data revealed that the majority of Europeans support legal, government-regulated marijuana sales to adults over 18. The survey interviewed over 9,000 people, 55% of whom said they were in favor of legal recreational cannabis, 20% said they were indifferent. and the remaining 25% were against.

Photo by Flickr user Håkan Dahlström

RELATED: Malta is set to become the first country in Europe to legalize cannabis

Additionally, some 48% support regulated marijuana retail stores, 35% favor home cultivation, and 32% support social clubs. Interestingly, growing at home elicits the most opposition with 41% opposed.

Europe & cannabis

The EU’s openness to cannabis legalization should come as no surprise, as Europeans witness the economic benefits in the United States, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, when cannabis use surged and many money was made by selling it and delivering it during the lockdown.

Additionally, many European countries have legalized marijuana for specific medical purposes and others have decriminalized general use while some are currently testing both options as pilot programs, such as France.

RELATED: Luxembourg will lead Europe into the cannabis era

Just last year, Luxembourg was the first European country legalize the cultivation of weed for personal use, while Malta has become the first on the continent to officially legalize cannabis. Many industry experts believe that Germany could be next to go all-recreational.

About five years ago, Germany decriminalized medical cannabis. Analysis last year from the Institute for Competition Economics (DICE) at the Heinrich Heine University of Düsseldorf suggested that a fully legal cannabis market could earn Germany up to 3.4 billion euros. euros ($3.85 billion) in tax revenue.

“There is a clear political desire and will in Germany to legalize recreational use,” said Curaleaf CEO Joe Bayern. Reuters. “Given that (Germany) is the largest economy in Europe, we believe it will lead the way and create a domino effect for the rest of the continent.”

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Photo by Sabina Fratila via Unsplash

The European market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 67.4% from 2021 to reach €3.2 billion ($3.49 billion) by 2025, according to a report by the research firm. Ban Partners.

“This report clearly shows that the majority of Europeans want recreational cannabis to be available in a way that gives adults access to regulated, high-quality products,” said Antonio Costanzo, CEO of Curaleaf International. “As the largest vertically integrated cannabis company in Europe with a market-leading medical cannabis offering in nine European countries, I believe Curaleaf International is uniquely positioned to capitalize on this opportunity. Additionally, our parent company, Curaleaf Holdings, uses a multi-state operator model in the US that can be replicated in Europe to give us a significant first-mover advantage.

This article originally appeared on Benzinga and has been republished with permission.

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