Vancouver, British Columbia – January 19, 2021 – Willow Biosciences Inc. (“Willow” or the “Company“) (TSX: WLLW; OTCQX: CANSF) is pleased to announce that it has advanced its work on its proprietary yeast strain for production of Tetrahydrocannabinol (“THC“), and plans to commercially launch in the Canadian market.
“We are excited to announce our proprietary THC yeast biosynthesis production process for launch in the Canadian market,” said Trevor Peters, Willow’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “Our platform technology enables us to produce a variety of cannabinoids and leverage our previous work on CBG. From conversations with prospective customers in Canada, we believe that there is significant demand for consistent, high-purity THC. The flavourless, odorless attributes of our finished product make it suitable as a core ingredient for the cannabis 2.0 market in Canada. There is also strong demand for a more sustainable and environmentally friendly way to produce THC. Our manufacturing process is 50 to 500 times more efficient than indoor cultivation and is the next evolution of sustainable cannabinoid manufacturing.”
The Company’s Canadian based research and development group has developed a proprietary yeast strain and process for the production of THC and is working toward a pilot scale run later this year. While there is already a well-established market for THC in Canada, the Company believes there is significant demand from consumer product manufacturers looking for a consistent, high-purity, odorless, flavourless THC ingredient like Willow’s for the 2.0 market, which consists of vapes, edibles, beverages, concentrates and topicals. The THC market for 2.0 products is already a multi-billion-dollar, multi-ton addressable market for Willow to sell into. The Company has identified a development partner for product isolation, purification and scale up to pilot and is in talks with several manufacturing companies in Canada to serve the adult-use market.
Willow will launch its THC into the Canadian adult-use market first due to its highly-regulated, legal and developed status. The Company is carefully watching the developments in the United States surrounding potential legalization and will be ready to react to any positive regulatory changes should they arise.
About Willow Biosciences Inc.
Willow is a Canadian biotechnology company based in Vancouver, British Columbia, that produces high purity, plant-derived compounds that provide building blocks for the global pharmaceutical, health and wellness, and consumer packaged goods industries. Willow’s current focus is in the production of cannabinoids for the treatment for pain, anxiety, obesity, brain disorders, among other significant indications. Willow’s science team has a proven track record of developing manufacturing technologies for high purity compounds in pain and cancer treatments. Willow’s manufacturing process creates a consistent, scalable and sustainable product that allows for the discovery and development of new life changing drugs.
For further information, please visit our website at www.willowbio.com or contact:
President and Chief Executive Officer
T: (403) 669-4848
Troy Talkkari, CFA
Vice President, Corporate Development
T: (403) 618-1117
150, 2250 Boundary Road
Burnaby, BC V5M 3Z3
This news release may include forward-looking statements including opinions, assumptions, estimates and the Company’s assessment of future plans and operations, and, more particularly, statements concerning: Willow’s milestone projections, including the success and timing of THC production efforts, pilot tests and commercialization; timing of first sales and revenue generation; discussions with prospective customers, manufacturing partners and other key stakeholders; benefits of the Company’s manufacturing process; the Canadian market size potential of consistent, high-purity THC; potential product uses for the Company’s THC and benefits thereof; the synthetic cannabinoid industry and Willow’s ability to capture market share; demand for Willow’s products; Willow’s entry into new global markets, including the United States; regulatory developments in the United States and the Company’s ability to react thereto; and the business plan of the Company, generally, including cannabinoid research and production. When used in this news release, the words “will,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intent,” “may,” “project,” “should,” and similar expressions are intended to be among the statements that identify forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements are founded on the basis of expectations and assumptions made by the Company which include, but are not limited to: the success of Willow’s strategic partnerships, including the development of future strategic partnerships; the financial strength of the Company; the ability of the Company to fund its business plan using cash on hand and existing resources; the market for Willow’s products; the ability of the Company to obtain and retain applicable licences; the ability of the Company to obtain suitable manufacturing partners and other strategic relationships; and the successful implementation of Willow’s production strategy, generally. Forward-looking statements are subject to a wide range of risks and uncertainties, and although the Company believes that the expectations represented by such forward-looking statements are reasonable, there can be no assurance that such expectations will be realized. Any number of important factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements including, but not limited to, risks associated with: the cannabinoid industry in general; the success of the Company’s research and development strategies; infringement on intellectual property; failure to benefit from partnerships or successfully integrate acquisitions; actions and initiatives of federal and provincial governments and changes to government policies and the execution and impact of these actions, initiatives and policies; import/export and research restrictions for cannabinoid-based operations; the size of the medical-use and adult-use cannabinoid market; competition from other industry participants; adverse U.S., Canadian and global economic conditions; adverse global events and public-health crises, including the current COVID-19 outbreak; failure to comply with certain regulations; departure of key management personnel or inability to attract and retain talent; and other factors more fully described from time to time in the reports and filings made by the Company with securities regulatory authorities. Please refer to the AIF and the MD&A for additional risk factors relating to Willow, which can be accessed either on Willow’s website at www.willowbio.com or under the Company’s profile on www.sedar.com.
The forward-looking statements contained in this news release are made as of the date hereof and the Company does not undertake any obligation to update publicly or to revise any of the included forward-looking statements, except as required by applicable law. The forward-looking statements contained herein are expressly qualified by this cautionary statement.