1st MMJ Company in Australia to Go Public

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Australia is about the get its first publicly traded cannabis company.

Phytotech, a medical marijuana business based in the city of Perth in Western Australia, is moving forward with an initial public offering. The company wants to sell medical cannabis in several other countries and develop a disposable device to inhale marijuana.

It is seeking A$5 million (US$4.2 million) in its initial offering. Interest has been strong: Investors so far have sought shares totaling A$15 million, with some wealthy individuals as far away as Russia and the United States wanting to buy in. This will likely allow the company to close the offering early, Reuters reported.

The 25 million shares are being offered at A$0.20 per unit, the minimum allowed by the Australian Securities Exchange.

Phytotech plans to grow medical-grade cannabis in Israel – the only country that allows exports of marijuana – for sale in the U.S., Canada and Europe.

It is also trying to get ahead of possible legal changes in Australia, where cultivation and sales are banned. Grow trials are underway in some areas of the country, and a measure to allow MMJ sales is before parliament, Reuters said.