The U.K.s first publicly-listed medical cannabis company is to open a nationwide chain of High Street CBD cafes and change its trading name as it looks to secure additional capital.
Sativa Investments PLC was established as a medical cannabis investment vehicle in March last year with the aim of investing primarily in Canadian companies. However, following the faster-than-expected legalization of medicinal cannabis in the U.K. last November, Sativa has changed its strategy to focus on British operations.
This shift to trading means it will change its name to Sativa Group, it said in a statement to the London NEX Exchange. It believes that and other moves will ‘broaden the appeal of the equity opportunity to additional institutions and family offices, many of which are precluded from investing in fund-type vehicles’.
Cannabis Cafe for Bath
Sativa Investments (Group), which currently has a market value of £37m, announced earlier this month that it would be opening a chain of Goodbody & Blunt retail wellness centers.
The Bath prototype will include a café for customers to consume CBD infused tea, coffee and water. Opening in the next few weeks it will be the first of three pilot stores after which the company intends to roll-out a national franchise network.
Its two existing U.K. businesses are CBD manufacturer, wholesaler and retailer George Botanicals, and PhytoVista Laboratories, an independent testing facility that analyzes both the company’s and third parties’ products and compounds.
Sativa is planting its second crop of hemp, covered by its low THC growing licence, and has applied to the U.K. Home Office for a Research & Development licence to grow higher THC cannabis.
Research Deal With King’s College
This application, if approved, is expected to meet the immediate need to satisfy the company’s three-year research agreement with King’s College London relating to the impact of cannabinoids on inflammation and respiratory diseases, it says.
Chief Executive and Founder Geremy Thomas said: “Sativa delivered on its listing objectives expeditiously and is now into its next phase of becoming a full-spectrum group covering the key value-add parts of the medicinal cannabis and CBD industries.”
He continued: “The group has an exciting future and the team is looking forward to achieving future key milestones including the opening of the Bath Goodbody & Blunt store and the planting of the first seeds at our test and growing facility once Home Office approval is granted.”
The company also announced it has shelved plans to create it own ‘large-scale growing facility’ concluding that ‘smart-sourcing of the raw material, to which the company can then add value through advanced extraction, manufacture, testing, distribution will provide greater returns’.