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London Calling For 200-Year-Old Slovenian Cannabis Firm

Written by Peter McCusker

A Slovenian cannabis company has listed on a junior London stock market raising over five million euros to fund its ambitious European growth plans.

Freyherr International has 20 hectares of hemp cultivation in its home country and two hectares of medical cannabis growing in North Macedonia, which legalised medical cannabis in 2016.

Company boss Tomaž Frelih told Proactive Investors that it was attracted to the London NEX exchange as a way of accessing growth capital and demonstrating to investors that it is a ‘serious, structured business’.

He says the company will use the cash to upgrade its facilities and look to develop its vertically-integrated business model in other jurisdictions where medical cannabis has been approved – a potential market of over 20 countries, he said.

200-Years Of History

The company’s history stretches back almost 200 years to when it was co-founded by a member of the Freyer family. They moved from the Czech Republic to Slovenia where they became recognized as pioneers in pharmaceuticals.

Freyherr International is the U.K. parent company of a group of medicinal cannabis firms including cultivation business Freyherr d.o.o, pharmaceuticals business Freyherr d.o.o. and dispensary unit Patron do.o.

Mr Frelih says its long-term ambitions is to embrace a pharma-based approach which will see it produce high-quality, medical grade cannabis. The company’s cannabis operation was initially established in Slovenia almost five years ago, and in its first statement to the NEX Exchange earlier this month Chairman Tony Burke elaborated. 

“I’m delighted with the progress the Group has made since the beginning of the year and all companies in the group continue to improve performance.”

High-Quality Pharma Cannabis

“Our focus is on the research, development and production of high-quality medicinal cannabis and CBD products.” 

He went on to say it is focused on ‘cannabinoid research and development from plant cultivation to end product, including improving extraction, production, and the supply of cannabinoid products to the medicinal, cosmetics, and edibles sectors’. 

He says its largest customers are in Slovenia, Austria, Spain, U.K., Ireland and the Netherlands. Freyherr is also expanding into new markets, including Brazil, New Zealand, Australia and South Africa, he said. 

Its products are sold in over 700 pharmacies in North Macedonia, and it is planning an ‘aggressive’ expansion into other markets. While Slovenia has yet to permit medical cannabis, and it is still an illegal drug, possession has been decriminalized and CBD and hemp oils are legal.

Meanwhile, North Macedonia legalized growing cannabis for medical purposes in 2016, and Prime Minister Zaev, is a vocal supporter of the industry.

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About the author

Peter McCusker

Peter McCusker is an experienced news and business editor, who believes it’s time to fully embrace the multiple, proven, medical benefits of the cannabis plant.

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