Australian companies ramping up for medical marijuana market

Australian businesses looking to enter the nation’s nascent medical cannabis market are doing plenty of prep work, including raising millions and signing partnership deals.

Within recent days, Perth-based AusCann was at the center of two such related developments. The publicly traded company on Wednesday revealed it is attempting to raise 10 million Australian dollars ($7.4 million), according to the Australian Financial Review, by selling 20 million new shares. The money would be used for growing and manufacturing MMJ products.

The same company has also entered into a partnership with a firm that specializes in alkaloid-based pain medication, Tasmanian Alkaloids, to produce MMJ chronic pain medicine, the Examiner reported. Under the terms of the partnership, AusCann will be responsible for “technical and market access,” while Tasmanian Alkaloids will take care of the extraction and manufacturing end.

A spokesman for Tasmanian Alkaloids said the company hopes to have MMJ products ready for sale within two to three years.