Cannabis Stock News Update: Akerna & Aurora

What's happening in the fast-moving cannabis industry

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Welcome to our new weekly series, Schaeffer's Cannabis Stock News Update, where we will recap what happened in the world of marijuana stocks last week and we will look ahead at the pot stocks to watch in the upcoming week.

Investor interest in the cannabis industry continues to grow and the leading players continue to break through legal barrier after legal barrier. Right now, nine states and D.C. have legalized recreational marijuana and 29 states have legalized medicinal marijuana. Normally, when we talk "cannabis stocks," we are talking about companies that sell both recreational and medicinal cannabis. More and more companies, though, are starting to see the opportunity presenting in this quickly growing industry and we are continuing to see more marijuana IPOs on the calendar.

Here's a quick roundup of the cannabis sector news last week:

Organigram Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: OGI -- $1.14), one of the leading licensed producers of cannabis in Canada, announced a new product last week. The new product, SHRED, is a high quality, high potency, affordable dried flower product which is pre-shredded for additional consumer convenience. This news broke on September 17.

22nd Century Group, Inc. (NYSE: XXII -- $0.57) is a major plant-based lifestyle company that specializes in provision of commercial-grade solutions to pharmaceutical and consumer products. 22nd Century Group is taking its expertise in plant genetics and applying it to the cannabis plant as well to produce proprietary varieties of the cannabis product. In addition to that mission, the company totes over 200 issued or pending patents that can be used in the production of tobacco and cannabis plants.  On September 17, 22nd Century Group announced that the company had appointed Dr. Micheal Koganov as a board of director to leverage his pharmaceutical expertise.

In a press release on September 17, Zynerba Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ: ZYNE -- $3.70), a pharmaceutical company that produces transdermal cannabinoid therapies for neuropsychiatric disorders, announced that it has received U.S. Food and Drug Administration orphan drug designation to use its Cannabidiol (CBD) to treat 22q11.2 deletion syndrome. Zynerba is focused on releasing a CBD gel (Zygel™) to therapeutically treat those with 22q.

Finally, in general cannabis industry news, a new poll conducted by Ganja Goddess revealed that the majority of the respondents stated that they had been consuming, on average, 9% more cannabis than usual since April when the shutdowns began. Overall, 78% of those polled stated that they were using cannabis to help manage health conditions, especially sleep disorders and anxiety disorders.

A little off the beaten path of cannabis stocks, we find rumblings of a growing psychedelics sector. Compass Pathways (NASDAQ: CMPS -- $29.00), a U.K.-based healthcare company, announced on Friday, September 18, that it began trading on NASDAQ under the symbol CMPS. This is the first time a psychedelics company has ever been listed on a major U.S stock exchange. Predating the IPO, Compass Pathways announced a patent for a synthetic version of the active ingredient in "magic mushrooms" to be used in the treatment of depression for those whom other treatment has not worked successfully. CMPS shares jumped 71% to $29 after the IPO of 7.5 million shares priced at $17 each.

Two big marijuana stocks to watch this coming week:

Akerna Corp. (NASDAQ: KERN -- $4.22), the developer of the cannabis industry's first seed-to-sale enterprise resource planning (ERP) software technology, announced that the company will report financial results for its fiscal fourth quarter on Thursday, September 24. This comes days after the company announced their product release of MJ Analytics, a cannabis data analytics platform. MJ Analytics came to life through partnership with Domo Inc. (NASDAQ: DOMO -- $36.58), a well-known business intelligence company.

Aurora Cannabis Inc. (NYSE: ACB -- $6.53), a Canadian company that has led the way toward defining the future of cannabinoids worldwide, also announced an investor conference call to discuss its fiscal fourth quarter revenue results on Tuesday, September 22. Earlier this month, Aurora appointed a new CEO and investors are ready to hear how the company fared in their final fiscal quarter of 2020.


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