Growth Navigator: Psilocybin Exports, Cannabis ESG & SAFE

PSYCHEDELICS

Atai Life Sciences Increases It’s Stake in Compass Pathways

Atai Life Sciences (Nasdaq: ATAI) announced that it has increased its ownership interest in COMPASS Pathways from 19.4% to 20.8%. The increase in their equity stake shows atai’s confidence in COMPASS and the future of their lead psilocybin analog COMP360, following the recent COMP360 data in treatment-resistant depression (TRD). Atai Life Sciences is COMPASS’ largest shareholder.

“Today’s announcement underscores our belief in the potential of COMPASS and COMP360 in the future of mental health care. In my personal opinion, the market doesn’t seem to appreciate the full upside potential given these impressive COMP360 data, the size of the unmet patient need and the potential of COMPASS’ broad patent portfolio,” said Christian Angermayer, Founder and Chairman of atai Life Sciences.

HAVN Life Sciences Successfully Imports Psilocybin into Canada

HAVN Life Sciences (CSE: HAVN) (OTC: HAVLF) announced that they have successfully exported naturally derived psilocybin from their facility in Jamaica.  The importation of psilocybin into Canada was completed after HAVN went into a supply agreement with Nectar Health Sciences Laboratory Division Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Psilobrain Therapeutics Inc.

“As the research and drug development work on psilocybin moves forward, HAVN Life continues to position itself as a supply chain leader, able to meet the demand for naturally derived psilocybin,” said Tim Moore, HAVN Life CEO at the time of the announcement.

This is positive news for HAVN Life and the overall industry, as they are navigating the regulatory hurdles in order to facilitate the ease of distribution of psychedelic drugs into various jurisdictions.  For example, in the US psilocybin is not illegal.  However, special permission is required by the DEA every time it is transported. This news enhances the prospects for researchers, scientists, and public psychedelic companies alike, as they will have access to a reliable source of natural derived psilocybin for clinical studies, patient therapy and drug development.

CANNABIS

SAFE: What has to Happen for the Bill to get Passed (& Included in the NDAA)

Where We’re At

The House of Representatives passed the SAFE Banking Act five times; however, the bill has languished in the Senate without a vote on the matter. It was clever of the House to add this amendment to the NDAA, as this is “must-pass” legislation in order to fund the American Military.

Senate has not yet passed its version of NDAA – after it does a *Bicameral Panel of negotiators will be appointed to reconcile the differences between the Senates measure and the one the House has already approved. It will be up to the conference committee to decide whether the cannabis banking language makes it to the president’s desk to be signed into law.

In order to get the SAFE Banking Act passed, the final conference bill (NDAA) must retain the text describing it – Title LIV of HR 4350 (Sections 5401 through 5415). It must be included in the final conference version of the bill to be considered by the House and Senate.

Problems

Senator Corey Booker (D) has said repeatedly that he would not vote to pass legislation that didn’t include explicit language for marijuana criminal justice reform, social reforms etc. – He has his own version of a comprehensive bill.

Many Senate members have a hold on the proposal to vote on 21 amendments. It’s possible we don’t get a Senate passed version and have to rely on procedural methods for conference in the House. This isn’t necessarily bad for SAFE, but we will have to see what happens (fighting over the amendments are where bills get pared down from the original proposal).

Would Biden Sign it?

In the summer, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki shared the president’s view in his support for decriminalization and support for expunging federal sentences over cannabis – however thus far he has remained non-committal over the SAFE banking act specifically. So, who knows?

Supporters

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT) introduced the SAFE Banking Act in the Senate, where it currently has bipartisan support from 39 Senators.

National Credit Union Administration – legalization will happen, let’s resolve banking complications now

Internal Revenue Services- the cannabis industry should have access to bank, like other markets so they can more easily comply with tax laws

Law Enforcement – testified before Congress that getting the large amounts of cash in the Cannabis industry into the Banking system is very important – accounts can then be monitored in accordance with federal Anti-money laundering laws and the Bank Secrecy Act

House / Senate Members – with the advent of SAFE Banking Act – they are bringing more money into the local financial system of their respective state

November Cannabis Performance

It was a volatile November for cannabis stocks, Trulieve (CSE:TRUL) and Cresco Labs (CSE:CL) led the pack up 10% and 8% respectively.

The AdvisorShares Pure US Cannabis ETF (NYSE:MSOS) was down -2% on the month, while Curaleaf significantly lagged it’s large cap peers – up 1% for the month.

Trulieve Issues Inaugural ESG Report

A big milestone for industry; Trulieve is the first cannabis company to release an Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) report. The report highlights Trulieve’s achievements to date and serves as a foundation for demonstrating how their ESG approach, strategies and commitments are embedded within its core business.

“Since Trulieve was founded, our patients, customers and employees have been at the heart of everything we do. We believe in the power of cannabis for all and take great pride in providing access to innovative products for our customers, building engagement in the communities where we work and live, advocating for our industry, and ensuring a positive social approach to social justice and equality,” said Kim Rivers, CEO.

Key takeaways include:

  • Established ESG targets for 2022, with key activities of reducing their carbon footprint, broadening Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) activities, and establishing a board committee.
  • A Review of Trulieve’s environmental sustainability, approach to community engagement and social responsibility, and corporate governance protocols
  • Case studies to illustrate the Reports them: The Trulieve Way

 

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The opinions provided in this article are those of the author and do not constitute investment advice. Readers should assume that the author and/or employees of Capital 10X hold positions in the company or companies mentioned in the article. For more information, please see our Content Disclaimer.

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