Cannabis retailers High Tide and Meta merge in deal giving them 63-store network

TORONTO – Cannabis retailers High Tide Inc. and Meta Growth Corp. will merge in a new deal that they say will make them the largest legal pot shop network in Canada.

The companies say the merger will give them a combined 63 stores across Ontario, Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan and make it the single largest Canadian cannabis retailer by revenue with about $133 million in annualized revenue.

The companies plan to double their current footprint to about 115 locations by the end of 2021 by focusing mostly on Ontario.

Under the agreement, Toronto-based Meta’s shareholders will receive 0.824 of a High Tide share for each Meta share they hold. Meta shareholders are expected to hold a 45.6 per cent stake in the combined company.

The companies expect the merger to deliver annual cost and operational synergies between $8 million and $9 million within 12 months of closing of the deal and will list High Tide on the TSX Venture Exchange once the deal is complete.

High Tide chief executive Raj Grover will lead the combined company going forward while Meta chief executive Mark Goliger and chief financial officer Mike Cosic will ensure that there is an orderly transition.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 21, 2020.