BPH Energy is looking to add medical cannabis to a portfolio that includes a next-gen brain function monitor.

Special Report: BPH Energy is preparing to join the ASX’s other 29 pot stocks with a strategic investment into medical cannabis.

The resources company-come-biotech investor has not confirmed a specific target just yet but has set aside $100,000 in a recent $1.2m capital raising for due diligence on cannabis opportunities.

Director David Breeze says the company (ASX:BPH) first began considering the sector about a year ago, and earlier this year was approached by an Australian group with a Canadian focus to make a significant investment in the space.

“We are a biotech investor and therefore the cannabis space fits under the board listing category that we’re already in,” he told Stockhead.

“Medical cannabis is attractive for us in terms of both making an investment, and as a way to move into a sector with significant potential for value creation.”

Opportunities abroad

Mr Breeze cited the Australian federal government’s move to allow exports of manufactured products in January as a key reason to be encouraged about Australian medical cannabis opportunities.

The company hasn’t yet settled on a specific sector within medical cannabis yet, but Mr Breeze cited the massive ramp up being seen overseas when asked whether they’re going to look at what’s available in Australia versus making a play on that international growth.

Anecdotally, Australia has approved as many as 3,000 applications to use medical cannabis.

But according to stats from the federal medical regulator at October 31, only 1,771 applications had been approved for the Special Access Scheme B — the system where people can apply to use unregistered cannabis products — in the two years since the substance was legalised.

By comparison, Canada has legalised medical and recreational cannabis. The former is legal in a variety of European countries and in the UK, African countries are moving on legalisation legislation, and as of last week, it began to start being legalised in Asia, with South Korea the first to pull the trigger.

“Drinks companies are getting in, and most recently we’ve seen that large tobacco companies are looking to also move in as their markets for cigarettes shrink.”

”Just this week Marlboro-maker Altria made a bid for a big Canadian company,” Mr Breeze said.

“There are significant dollars moving into this investment space.”

The global market for legal marijuana was estimated to be worth $US9.3 billion in 2016 by Grand View Research.

Future forecasts put the value of the industry anywhere between New Frontier Data’s $US25bn estimate to Grand View Research’s monumental $US146bn.



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