FAST-GROWING UK cannabis wholesaler Always Pure Organics has acquired two Belgian companies – Distribution Legal Hemp and NexGen – for £3m.
Manchester-based APO says the ‘post-Brexit acquisition’ will strengthen its presence in its key European market – where 80% of its clients are based – and boost its presence in the fast-growing CBD flower market.
Joeri Perneel, CEO of Distribution Legal Hemp (DLH) and NexGen, will start in a newly-created role as APO’s Chief Commercial Officer, with a focus on the companies’ activities in the Benelux and French markets.
The deal has been funded out of APO’s balance sheet with its Scottish Co-Founder and CEO Gavin Ogilvie taking the helm at the enlarged company.
CBD Flower Market To Grow
Mr Ogilvie said: “As part of our ambitious global expansion plans, DLH gives us a brilliant complementary business.
“Belgium is the first nation in Europe to legalise the use of CBD flower through their existing tobacco substitutes legislation, so by buying DLH we have instantly secured 75% of Belgium’s CBD flower market.
“It’s likely that France will also seek to regulate the CBD flower through the same legal mechanism before long, and APO will therefore be in a strong strategic position to take full advantage of this new market when it opens.”
DLH’s CEO, Joeri Perneel, said: “Both companies have known each other and worked together for more than two years.
“The deal is on all levels complementary. DLH/NexGen is the market leader in Belgium within the segment of tobacco substitute and is a pioneer in the segment of wellness. We are only at the beginning of the journey and I’m happy to work with APO to build this new group into a world-class player.”
Over the past two years, both companies have grown rapidly. APO has increased staff from six to 62 and, in the past year, revenues have grown 215% with a 2021 forecast of £12.6m. Similarly DLH grew 170% in the past year.
APO – a top three wholesale and white label market leader in the UK, Japan, and Europe – says the purchase gives its access to a much-needed distribution hub and a foothold in the fast-growing European CBD retail sector.
DLH has a number of successful B2C wellness retail brands – Pure CBD, Pet CBD and market leading tobacco substitute brands Sensy and Jane’s Garden – with direct access to multiple major retail chains selling tobacco substitute and wellness products across Europe.
Main Image: L-R; Joeri Perneel and Gavin Ogilvie