Neptune offers shares to media company in CBD partnershipNeptune pivoted several years ago from krill oil raw material supply to a formulation strategy and a concentration on hemp extraction, and sold its krill oil business to former competitor Aker BioMarine.
Neptune has now entered into a partnership with American Media, LLC, which publishes magazines such as Men‚Äôs Journal‚Äč and Us Weekly‚Äč. According to Neptune, the company‚Äôs portfolio of brands has a combined circulation of more than¬† 5.7+million and reaches more than 53 million readers each month. American Media’s online reach consists of¬† more than¬† 65 million unique visitors and more than 762 million page views a month.
The deal is meant to support the growth of Neptune‚Äôs consumer brands in the US market. Those include Forest Remedies, which is a line of hemp-derived CBD supplements, and OceanO3, a legacy krill oil line.
An unusual aspect of the deal is how it will be financed.¬† American Media has agreed to provide advertising and creative services to Neptune to support the marketing and commercialization of Neptune’s consumer-facing brands in the US In return, the company will have the opportunity to become a shareholder in Neptune.
¬†Neptune, which is based in Laval, Quebec, will issue to AMI 3 million warrants, each warrant allowing the holder to purchase one common share of Neptune at an exercise price of $8 USD per share and with a 5-year expiration date. The warrants will vest proportionally to the services rendered by AMI. Upon exercise of the warrants AMI will be required to hold the shares acquired for a minimum of 6 months.
The structuring of the compensation end of the deal reflects the perceived huge growth potential for hemp based products in the US.¬† Earlier this year Neptune acquired Sugar Leaf Labs‚Äč‚Äč, a hemp processing facility in North Carolina and owner of the Forest Remedies brand.¬† That deal could end up being worth as much as $150 million.
“American Media’s pedigree and reach will accelerate the growth of Neptune’s consumer-facing products into the US retail landscape. We are excited to have American Media join the Neptune family,”‚Äč said Michael Cammarata, CEO of Neptune.
Cammarata said Neptune envisions a future where hemp ingredients will find a home in beauty products, personal care products as well as in what the company called ‚Äėhome care‚Äô products.
‚ÄúThis further enhances our ability to build a diverse customer base which includes hemp, nutraceutical and consumer package goods companies,‚ÄĚ‚Äč Cammarata added.