Cronos Group Inc. (NASDAQ: CRON) (TSX: CRON) (“Cronos Group” or the “Company”), today announces its 2021 Second Quarter business results.
“This quarter, Cronos Group continued to bring high-quality and insight-driven products to market. I am particularly proud of the Spinach™ brand gummy innovation launched this quarter into the Canadian adult-use market, SOURZ by Spinach™, which has quickly jumped to be one of the most desirable products in the edibles category. In the U.S., we officially re-launched PEACE+™ in the direct-to-consumer channel, which rounds out our different pricing tiers for the U.S. hemp-derived CBD market. Having brands across price points and usage occasions is critical to meeting consumer needs in the CBD category,” said Kurt Schmidt, President and CEO, Cronos Group.
“Our U.S. growth strategy focuses on delivering long-term shareholder value by assembling a best-in-class brand and intellectual property portfolio and positioning to deploy our products in the U.S. market through investments and opportunities with companies that share our vision and commitment to responsibly distributing disruptive cannabinoid products that improve people’s lives. In the second quarter of 2021, we were able to lock in a component of that strategy as we made a strategic investment in PharmaCann, a leading vertically integrated U.S. cannabis company. We look forward to capitalizing on opportunities in the U.S. that we expect will strengthen our ability to compete in this emerging market.”
Second Quarter 2021
- Net revenue of $15.6 million in Q2 2021 increased by $5.7 million from Q2 2020. The increase year-over-year was primarily driven by continued growth in the adult-use Canadian cannabis market and increased sales in the Israeli medical cannabis market.
- Gross loss of $15.8 million in Q2 2021 increased by $12.9 million from Q2 2020. The increase in losses year-over-year was primarily driven by an increase in inventory write-downs in the ROW segment, which totaled $12.0 million in Q2 2021, representing an increase of $8.9 million from Q2 2020, the impact of strategic price reductions on various adult-use cannabis products in Canada taken in the second half of 2020, as well as start-up costs associated with new product development in the Rest of World (“ROW”) segment.
- Adjusted EBITDA loss of $49.8 million in Q2 2021 increased by $22.8 million from Q2 2020. The increase in losses year-over-year was primarily driven by an increase in gross loss as described above, an increase in sales and marketing costs due to brand development in the U.S. segment, and an increase in research and development (“R&D”) costs driven by increased spending on product development and developing cannabinoid intellectual property in the ROW segment.
- Capital expenditures of $2.1 million in Q2 2021 decreased by $6.5 million from Q2 2020. The decrease year-over-year was primarily driven by a reduction in construction costs in the ROW segment and a decrease in costs related to the Company’s enterprise resource planning system.
In June 2021, Cronos Group announced a strategic investment (the “PharmaCann Investment”) in PharmaCann Inc. (“PharmaCann”), a leading vertically integrated U.S. cannabis company. A wholly owned subsidiary of Cronos Group purchased an option (the “PharmaCann Option”) to acquire an approximately 10.5% ownership stake in PharmaCann on a fully-diluted basis for a total consideration of approximately $110.4 million. PharmaCann has a broad geographic footprint in the U.S. and has built an efficient, effective and scalable operating model, including six production facilities and 24 dispensaries operating under the Verilife™ brand across the following six limited license states: New York, Illinois, Ohio, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts. PharmaCann continues to invest in its manufacturing infrastructure and brand development to capitalize on the significant consumer retail and business-to-business wholesale opportunities. Following the exercise of the PharmaCann Option (which will be based upon various factors, including the status of U.S. federal cannabis legalization), Cronos Group and PharmaCann will enter into commercial agreements that would permit each party to offer its products through either party’s distribution channels.
Brand and Product Portfolio
In June 2021, Cronos Group launched SOURZ by Spinach™, an exciting new line of cannabis gummies with bold and unique dual flavor combinations, into the Canadian adult-use market. SOURZ by Spinach™ delivers bold fruit flavors in a distinctive “S” shape with a proprietary coating designed to provide a sour and sweet flavor profile, differentiating the product and elevating the consumer experience. SOURZ by Spinach™ has quickly risen to being one of the top performing brands in the edibles category. According to Hifyre™ data, SOURZ by Spinach™ has achieved a double-digit market share in the edibles category during the July and August-to-date period. OCS Data for Ontario sales to retailers reports all three of the SOURZ by Spinach™ stock keeping units (“SKU”) ranking in the top-10 of the edible category, during the 4 weeks ending August 1, 2021.
In June 2021, Cronos Group launched Spinach™ DABZ, a new line of cannabis concentrates into the Canadian adult-use market. Spinach™ DABZ are 100% cannabis-derived with no color remediation or additives to preserve terpenes and full spectrum cannabinoids. Broadening the reach of Cronos Group’s Spinach™ brand into new and emerging categories with differentiated products will continue to be the key driver of innovation initiatives.
During the second quarter of 2021, the Spinach™ brand also launched a 28-gram format for Spinach™ flower, Spinach™ Nuggetz, and a new flower SKU, Spinach™ GMO Cookies, in select markets in Canada.
In June 2021, the Company officially re-launched PEACE+™, Cronos Group’s U.S. hemp-derived CBD offering that is positioned in the mainstream market through its direct-to-consumer website, peaceplus.com. PEACE+™’s initial product portfolio consists of four tinctures. The Company intends to expand the product portfolio over time with innovative U.S. hemp-derived CBD products.
Subsequent to the end of the second quarter of 2021, in July 2021, Happy Dance™ launched a new facial skin care product, Look Alive CBD Face Moisturizer. This moisturizer has a whipped, light texture and is packed with hydrating ingredients such as avocado oil, hyaluronic acid and high-quality U.S. hemp-derived CBD. The product is now available online to U.S. consumers through the brand’s direct-to-consumer website, doahappydance.com, and online at ULTA.com and is expected to become available in ULTA Beauty™ stores throughout the U.S. in the coming weeks.
Intellectual Property Initiatives
In June 2021, Cronos Group and Ginkgo Bioworks, Inc. (“Ginkgo”) announced an amended collaboration and license agreement that will enable the companies to accelerate the commercialization of cultured cannabinoids at scale. The amended agreement follows the receipt of Cronos Fermentation’s processing license in April 2021, and most recently the receipt of its license issued by the Canada Revenue Agency. With the amended agreement and both licenses in hand, Cronos Fermentation commenced commercial-scale production of cannabigerol (“CBG”) in June 2021. Cronos Group is prioritizing rare cannabinoids, such as CBG, and plans to sequence commercial production and subsequent product launches based on this approach. Cronos Group expects that the final productivity target for CBG will be achieved prior to September 2021, as previously announced.
Kendrick Ashton Jr. was elected to Cronos Group’s Board of Directors at the Annual Meeting of Shareholders held on June 25, 2021. Mr. Ashton is the Co-Founder and Co-Chief Executive Officer of The St. James, a leading developer and operator of performance, wellness and lifestyle brands, experiences and destinations. Prior to founding The St. James in 2014, Mr. Ashton was a founding member and Managing Director of Perella Weinberg Partners, a boutique financial services firm founded in 2006. Prior to joining Perella Weinberg Partners, Mr. Ashton was an investment banker at Goldman, Sachs & Co. and gained legal experience at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz. Mr. Ashton is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, the Board of Trustees of the National Urban League, the Board of Directors of Archbishop John Carroll High School and the Board of Directors of Bellwether Education Partners and is an emeritus member of the Board of Visitors and Foundation Board of the College of William & Mary.
In April 2021, Thomas Cohn joined Cronos Group as Head of Regulatory and Product. Mr. Cohn joined Cronos Group from The Avon Company, where he served as General Counsel and Corporate Secretary. Mr. Cohn also served as Deputy General Counsel, Regulatory at NBTY, Inc., a leading vertically integrated manufacturer, marketer and distributor of nutritional supplements with global operations. Prior to his time at NBTY, Inc., Mr. Cohn served in various roles at the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) from 1991 to 2008, including as Director and Assistant Director of its Northeast Region, where he was responsible for managing antitrust and consumer protection investigations and law enforcement actions, as well as local and regional outreach efforts to educate consumers, businesses, and law enforcement agencies on fraud identification and avoidance, and how to comply with antitrust and consumer protection laws enforced by the FTC.
In July 2021, Anthony Parisi joined Cronos Group as Global Head of Audit, a newly formed role for the Company. Mr. Parisi joins Cronos Group with over 20 years of audit experience, most recently serving as Vice President of Global Audit and Risk Management for Reliance Worldwide Corporation, an ASX listed company.
In June 2021, Carlos Cortez joined Cronos Group as Vice President & Controller, a role which includes serving as the Company’s principal accounting officer. Mr. Cortez joins Cronos Group with over 18 years of experience, most recently serving as Corporate Controller of SharpSpring, Inc., a publicly traded cloud-based marketing technology company. Prior to his time at SharpSpring, Inc., Mr. Cortez was the Senior Finance Director – Record to Report for Discovery, Inc., a publicly traded global media company, from August 2019 until December 2020. Prior to his time at Discovery, Inc., Mr. Cortez spent five years as Corporate Controller for Malibu Boats, Inc., a publicly traded manufacturer of recreational powerboats.
Second Quarter 2021
- Net revenue of $13.4 million in Q2 2021 increased by $5.7 million from Q2 2020. The increase year-over-year was primarily driven by continued growth in the adult-use cannabis flower market in Canada and sales in the Israeli medical cannabis market.
- Gross loss of $16.4 million in Q2 2021 increased by $12.9 million from Q2 2020. The increase in losses year-over-year was primarily driven by an increase in inventory write-downs which totaled $12.0 million in Q2 2021 representing an increase of $8.9 million from Q2 2020, the impact of strategic price reductions on various adult-use cannabis products in Canada taken in the second half of 2020, and start-up costs associated with new product development.
- Adjusted EBITDA loss of $32.6 million in Q2 2021 increased by $14.0 million from Q2 2020. The increase in losses year-over-year was primarily driven by an increase in gross loss as described above, and an increase in R&D costs driven by increased spending on product development and developing cannabinoid intellectual property.
Second Quarter 2021
- Net revenue of $2.2 million in Q2 2021 essentially unchanged from Q2 2020.
- Gross profit of $0.6 million in Q2 2021 essentially unchanged from Q2 2020.
- Adjusted EBITDA loss of $10.7 million in Q2 2021 increased by $5.9 million from Q2 2020. The increase in losses year-over-year was primarily driven by an increase in sales and marketing costs related to brand development.
The Company will host a conference call and live audio webcast on Friday, August 6, 2021, at 8:30 a.m. EDT to discuss 2021 Second Quarter business results. The call will last approximately one hour. An audio replay of the call will be archived on the Company’s website for replay. Instructions for the conference call are provided below:
- Live audio webcast: https://ir.thecronosgroup.com/events-presentations
- Toll-Free from the U.S. and Canada dial-in: (866) 795-2258
- International dial-in: (409) 937-8902
- Conference ID: 9738856