ANTONIO L. Tiu’s Greenergy Holdings, Inc. has forayed into the production of medicinal cannabis as it built a new Australian subsidiary with a United States firm.
In a disclosure to the exchange on Thursday, Greenergy said its board of directors has approved the formation of Yakuru Group Pty. Ltd., where it will hold a 51% equity interest in.
Yakuru is a cannabidiol distributor that started in Denver, USA. Greenergy tapped the company to form Yakuru Group in Australia, Mr. Tiu told BusinessWorld.
“Yakuru started in Denver, we form a new company with Greenergy owning 51% in Australia,” he said in a text message.
Yakuru Group will be engaged in biotechnology and will focus on the development and marketing of medicinal hemp across the globe.
In a statement, Greenergy said it wants to ride on the decision of Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration to allow the sale of cannabidiol over the counter.
Cannabidiol, also called CBD oil, is a primary by-product of hemp, which is a variety of the cannabis plant.
In recent years, cannabidiol has been used in other countries to treat various ailments and in managing pain and anxiety. However, the use of cannabis products, whether medicinal or recreational, remains illegal in the Philippines.
But since the Dangerous Drugs Board had previously signaled its intent to consider allowing the use of cannabidiol in treating rare forms of epilepsy, Greenergy “saw great opportunity” in investing in Yakuru Group ahead of the government’s decision.
“Just the Philippines alone has a population five times bigger than Australia. We want to provide people suffering from various severe illnesses worldwide with this miracle oil to help alleviate their pain,” Mr. Tiu, Greenergy president and CEO, said in the statement.
Aside from developments in Yakuru, Greenergy’s Australian affiliate Plentex Ltd., which is engaged in agricultural processing and aquaculture, is also planning to do plantation of medicinal hemp in New South Wales and Queensland for exportation.
Greenergy posted a P10.16-million attributable net loss in the first semester, lower than P11.67 million in the same period last year. Shares in Greenergy at the stock exchange gained 17 centavos or 8.29% to P2.22 each on Thursday. — Denise A. Valdez