Legal cannabis industry: Altria, Molson-Coors among companies exploring marketPosted by On

Marlboro cigarette maker Altria on Friday became the latest major company to explore an entry into the legal cannabis market as more states approve the once-taboo substance for medical or recreational use.

Altria, which also owns Philip Morris USA, will invest $1.8 billion in Canada-based Cronos Group for a 45 percent stake in the company. The deal grants Altria the option to acquire a controlling stake in Cronos at CAD $19 per share and to nominate four executives to Cronos Group’s board of directors.

“Altria is the ideal partner for Cronos Group, providing the resources and expertise we need to meaningfully accelerate our strategic growth,” said Mike Gorenstein, Cronos Group’s chairman, president and chief executive officer. “The proceeds from Altria’s investment will…

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