The deal would create the world’s largest vertically integrated hemp-derived CBD company, according to a statement jointly released by Boulder, Colo,-based Charlotte’s Web and Woonsocket, R.I.-based Abacus.
“The complementary strengths of our relative market positions made this merger a logical strategic move,” said Charlotte’s Web CEO Deanie Elsner. “With this acquisition we strengthen the business to reflect the evolution of the category. Together we are the most developed CBD company across every channel and segment and positioned to accelerate our growth and extend our market share. Furthermore, it enables us to drive more scale production through our vertically integrated infrastructure.”
Abacus, founded in 2014, produces and markets topical pain relievers and skin care products containing active pharmaceuticals as well as organic and natural ingredients, including hemp extract or oil containing CBD from the Cannabis Sativa plant.
Abacus in February acquired Harmony Hemp, a Salt Lake City-based supplier of more than two dozen O-T-C products in the topicals, bath and beauty categories that are distributed to more than 4,000 retail locations in the United States.
Perry Antleman, CEO of Abacus, said the sale of the company to Charlotte’s Web provides a unique opportunity to the firm’s shareholders and employees to participate in the “compelling potential” of the combined businesses. “By joining with Charlotte’s Web, we have the opportunity to maximize our growth by leveraging the company’s leading brand, vertical integration, infrastructure, expertise, financial position and capital markets presence, and position the combined company to deliver benefits for our stakeholders over the long-term.”
According to the companies, key strategic highlights of the proposed deal include:
- Expands Charlotte’s Web product portfolio for the topicals category, forecasted to become fastest growing and largest CBD segment by 2021, by targeting specific need states to drive greater category reach.
- Expands Charlotte’s Web’s breadth and depth into the retail skin care segment.
- Expands Charlotte’s Web’s reach to the personal care and beauty segment through the Harmony Hemp brand.
- Puts Charlotte’s Web at the forefront of the growing and valuable sports landscape through existing Abacus partnerships.
- Creates a best-in-class innovation leader across all hemp derived category segments, including Charlotte’s Web’s proprietary genetics capabilities and its newly created CW Labs, established to help the firm create cutting-edge innovations in wellness.
- Creates portfolio scale across all channels and customers, including Charlotte’s Web’s direct-to-consumer platform, its 11,000 retail doors and Abacus Health’s 12,000 doors to establish access through 15,000 unique doors. Abacus also has a network of 16,500 medical and other practitioners.
- Leverages Charlotte’s Web’s vertically integrated supply chain to create cost advantages.