M&A Uptick Expected to Continue in 2021: Q&A with Fox Rothschild Partner Melissa Sanders and Associate Jared Schwass

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<![CDATA[Anarkoooo | Adobe StockAs the state-by-state markets continue to grow, major players outside the cannabis industry are looking for a way in. And those already with a footprint in the sector are poised to go bigger. Earlier this month, a blockbuster deal kicked off the 2021 cannabis merger-and-acquisition season, when Ireland-based Jazz Pharmaceuticals inked a $7.2-billion deal to acquire United Kingdom-based GW Pharmaceuticals, the manufacturer of the Food and Drug Administration-approved Epidiolex. It was the biggest handshake yet for the cannabis industry, and it could be just the beginning of what’s to come in a global market still in its infancy. At Fox Rothschild, a Philadelphia-based law firm with a national cannabis practice group, Partner Melissa Sanders and Associate Jared Schwass told clients there is much more room for businesses to expand in an alert they released Feb. 1.Sanders advises corporate clients on a wide range of business matters, with a particular focus on mergers and acquisitions, private placements of securities, financing transactions and ownership transition programs. Schwass is an attorney in the corporate department and a member of the firm’s Cannabis Law Practice Group. He advises businesses entering and operating in the legalized cannabis market on regulatory compliance, risk mitigation and business transactions.“At the end of 2020, we saw an uptick in merger-and-acquisition activity as the industry shook off some pandemic-related instability, and we expect that trend to increase significantly in 2021,” they said in the alert. “Despite abundant money available to the large multi-state operators (MSOs), most cannabis companies still have relatively limited avenues to raise capital due to the federal illegality of the industry,” they said. “However, that may change soon with the democrats now controlling both houses of Congress and the White House.”When cannabis is descheduled, Sanders and Schwass said they anticipate an influx of cash into…

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