The Week In Cannabis: CannTrust Continues Fall, Earnings A Mixed Bag, Clio Goes Green
CannTrust Holdings Inc (NYSE:CTST) plummeted last week after issuing a press release acknowledging it hat failed a Health Canada inspection in July. The company said it accepts the findings and is already taking actions to fix its wrongdoings.
Meanwhile, Greenlane Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ:GNLN) posted a net sales increase of 30.6% in the second quarter of 2019, with sales totaling $53 million, and Canopy Growth Corp (NYSE:CGC) tumbled after reporting an adjusted EBITDA loss of CA$92 million ($69.1 million), up from CA$22.5 million ($16.8 million) last year. Canopy's first-quarter net loss rose from CA$90.9 million a year ago to CA$1.281 billion.
Commenting on Canopy’s results Patrick Sanders, assistant managing editor for investing at U.S. News & World Report, told Benzinga, “The markets overreacted when CGC reported losing more than $1 billion in the last quarter. It was a sexy headline and made for a great talking point, but the reality is that investors and analysts should be expecting these big losses now. Canopy is spending lots of money paying off its investment in Constellation Brands, building out its infrastructure and making sure it will be a leader as the U.S. market as more states legalize marijuana use. That’s exactly what it should be doing if it’s going to get a piece of the projected $20 billion market the U.S. will offer in by 2024.
“Moving forward, investors should be looking at three things when they consider CGC stock: how quickly it is increasing sales; how quickly it is increasing its harvest, and who will be the permanent CEO. I think the next two quarters are going to be pivotal for Canopy Growth.”
For its part, Tilray Inc (NASDAQ:TLRY) reported second-quarter revenue of $45.9 million, up 371% year-over-year, beating the consensus estimate of $41.1 million. The revenue increase was driven by the acquisition of hemp foods manufacturer Manitoba Harvest, legalization of adult-use marijuana in Canada, and growth in international medical markets.
On Thursday, Benzinga hosted in Cannabis Capital Conference in Detroit, Michigan. Find a comprehensive list of takeaways below, in addition to wo big announcements:
- Jeffrey Radway, CEO and co-founder of Green Peak Innovations, announced the company is partnering with Short's Brewing Company to bring CBD-infused beer and edibles to market. Green Peak is Michigan’s largest cannabis grow operation.
- Two former Detroit Lions, Calvin Johnson and Rob Sims, announced they will be working with Harvard University in the hopes of increasing the understanding of the role cannabis may play in treating the debilitating the brain damage that strikes many football players.
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Clio, the host of a series multi-vertical, international awards competitions for the creative business, announced the launch of Clio Cannabis, a joint venture with High Times. The awards, which begin accepting entries on Aug. 26, will celebrate creators who are at the forefront of marketing and advertising for cannabis products.
Nicole Purcell, President of Clio, told Benzinga, “There is tremendous opportunity for growth in the cannabis industry right now. With the launch of Clio Cannabis, we really want to celebrate the great work that is already being produced and challenge the advertising industry to apply their creative forces to the cannabis companies that could soon be major players in our economy.”
Finally, Hexo Corp (NYSE:HEXO) announced its dried flower cannabis products can now be purchased by consumers in Ontario.
Over the last five trading days:
• The Horizons Marijuana Life Sciences Index ETF (OTC:HMLSF) (TSE:HMMJ) gained 0.44%.
• The ETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF (NYSE:MJ) rose 0.78%.
• The AdvisorShares Pure Cannabis ETF (NYSE:YOLO) was down 0.68%.
• The Cannabis ETF (NYSE:THCX) rose 0.43%.
• The Amplify Seymour Cannabis ETF (NYSE:CNBS) tumbled 0.73%.
• The SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (NYSE:SPY) closed the period down 0.34%.
In Other News
Medicine Man Technologies, Inc. (OTC:MDCL) said it has entered into a binding term sheet with the award-winning Colorado-based cannabis concentrate brand Dabble Extracts.
AmeriCann is developing cultivation, processing and product manufacturing facilities, received a Certificate of Occupancy for Building 1 of its Massachusetts Cannabis Center in Freetown. Beginning Sept. 1, 100% of this 30,000 square-foot greenhouse facility will be occupied by Bask, Inc., an existing MA licensed vertically-integrated cannabis operator, which has signed a 15-year JV Partnership with AmeriCann.
Ben Barton, CFO of AmeriCann, told Benzinga, “We are very excited to begin this Joint Venture with Bask, and look forward to putting the technological innovation of our Cannopy System into effect in Building 1 and beyond.”
Herbés, a new cannabis company pursuing the luxury market, is launching this month with two products: a 2-gram "cannagar," or cannabis cigar, and regular flower.
Created by former Iranian-American international basketball player Jonas Lalehzadeh, the new brand will provide “unparalleled experiences via style and sophistication,” the company told Benzinga.
Cannabis brand Saucey Farms and Extracts announced its new partnership with cannabis retailer MedMen (OTC:MMNFF), which will make several of Saucey Farms and Extracts’ products available in all 11 MedMen locations throughout California, bolstering its retail presence in the state.
Saucey Farms and Extracts founder Alex Todd told Benzinga, “Teaming up with a distinguished retailer like MedMen is a very exciting opportunity for our company. Through this new collaboration, we look forward to expanding our reach in California and introducing a new set of consumers to our premium products.”
Copperstate Farms, a vertically integrated cannabis company, has launched its flagship dispensary Sol Flower in Sun City, Arizona. The mixed-use dispensary complex is the first-of-its-kind in the state to have an adjoining café and classroom accessible to the public. This is Sol Flower’s second location in the Valley.
“At Sol Flower our vision is to empower wellness for all. Residents can access resources on healthcare alternatives, interact with medical cannabis experts, and participate in physical activities such as yoga, meditation, and even cooking with CBD classes,” said Jane Fix, director of patient services at Copperstate Farms.
SEMrush shared some exclusive insights with Benzinga Cannabis:
• Searches for "how to make edibles" have increased over the last year. In July 2018, there were about 18,100 searches for "how to make edibles." This number increased to 22,200 in July 2019. That's a 22% jump.
• In July, there were about 6,600 searches for "edible gummies" on Google. This number has fluctuated over the last year. Searches peaked in October 2018 with 18,100 searches for "edible gummies."
• In July, about 2,400 individuals searched "flying with edibles." This number is up 26% from June.
Vertical Wellness, a vertically-integrated consortium of hemp-based CBD operators and brand, has signed a strategic brand development agreement with Innovation X Marketing, led by Bill Henderson. Under this agreement, IXM’s will identify undiscovered opportunities in the hemp-based CBD industry, with the goal of creating new brands and delivery mechanisms for Vertical Wellness.
J. Smoke Wallin, CEO of Vertical Wellness, told Benzinga, “We are excited to bring IXM’s unique magic to brand expressions in the fastest-growing industry in a generation. IXM fits perfectly with Vertical Wellness’s vision to build the largest portfolio of unique brand assets in the hemp-based CBD industry.”
ManifestSeven, or M7 for short, formerly MJIC, launched its brand new retail platform, Weden. Mimicking Amazon’s one-stop-shop experience for consumers, Weden merges M7’s e-commerce, storefront, delivery and call center services into a singular consumer-facing brand. Weden is backed by a flagship dispensary in Santa Ana, California; and telephone number 1-800-CANNABIS, connecting customers to M7’s full suite of products and solutions.
“Through Weden, we’re creating a seamless retail experience,” said Pierre Rouleau, Chief Operating Officer of ManifestSeven. “And while from a strategic standpoint this is a major milestone for M7, we’re proudest of what this brand represents: inclusion, community, and high-quality products.”
In a first-of-its-kind arrangement, the World Boxing Council and CBD company Craft 1861 launched a joint venture that will see the organizations work together to develop CBD-based recovery protocols for some of the toughest athletes in the world. Craft 1861, which was the first CBD industry sponsor of an IndyCar team, will also work with the WBC to develop nutrition and educational initiatives, as well as a co-branded line of products to be distributed around the world.
The Michigan Marijuana Regulatory Agency announced it's moving its medical program fee structure to a tier-based system based somewhat on the operation's size, similar to what the agency put in place for the recreational market.
Premium vaporizer designer and manufacturer Pax Labs has chosen Headset, a data analytics company focused on the cannabis industry, to serve as its main provider for vendor-managed inventory (VMI) technology.
Leading California cannabis brand, STIIIZY announced its expansion into Michigan’s cannabis market this week. The brand premiered a first look at STIIIZY’s popular products for Michigan retailers and consumers at the state's first High Times Cannabis Cup. The inaugural showing at the marijuana tradeshow was followed by an exclusive VIP party celebration at Detroit's Northern Lights Lounge. The Original STIIIZY, LIIIL STIIIZY and BIIIG STIIIZY products are now available at select retailers across Michigan.
“From day one STIIIZY has been about connecting with communities and culture. We’re fortunate to have such strong demand for our brand in Michigan, so this expansion is an obvious move for us. It’s really a response to the popularity of STIIIZY in the region and we’re excited about the opportunity,” the company told Benzinga.
Agro automation technologies company Seedo Corp (OTC:SEDO) announced a marketing and distribution agreement with Namaste Technologies (OTC:NXTTF). As per the agreement, Namaste will introduce Seedo's home growing device in European markets, including but not limited to, the United Kingdom, Ireland and Germany.
Namaste’s CEO Meni Morim said, “This innovative and ground-breaking product is a great addition to Namaste's marketplace. Our goal is to create the most unique and personalized experience for users seeking innovative devices, and Seedo's home grow unit is ready for European consumers in the hemp space.”
EthoEx and Rexford Management have aligned to build out a large-scale marijuana extraction and manufacturing facility in the heart of Los Angeles. At 20,000 square-feet, the facility will be capable of producing over 5,000 liters of high quality THC distillate a month. This partnership creates the largest vertically integrated marijuana-derived production, processing and distribution facilities in Los Angeles and one of the largest in the state.
Jushi Holdings announced second-quarter financial results where it successfully raised $68.2 million in an oversubscribed private placement. Jushi is projecting revenue on a pro forma consolidated basis for 2020 of approximately $200 million.
Jushi's hemp-derived physician-formulated CBD products are in development and new branding is expected to launch in the fall. It's planning a multi-pronged approach of purchasing licenses, winning applications, acquiring successful local businesses, introducing new branded products, and capitalizing on the brand equity of their medical and adult-use brands, Beyond/Hello, The Clinic, The Lab, and The Bank.
HempFusion announced closing of $36 million financing, bringing the total amount raised this year to $42 million. They plan to use the proceeds to rapidly scale operations, expand nationally and internationally beyond 3,400 retailers, revamp the e-commerce platform, launch of 20 new products before year's end, accelerate M&A activity, increase brand awareness, drive sales across all channels, and advances research and development initiatives.
"The closing of this financing is a pivotal moment for HempFusion, our team's passion to provide our premium CBD products to as many people as possible is now supported by significant capital. We look forward to accelerating our growth and using this capital to establish HempFusion as an industry leader,” said Ian deQueiroz, co-founder and CEO of HempFusion.
Biome announced it has been approved to commence retail sales in New Brunswick and Manitoba, making it five provinces where Biome cannabis products will be available for sale.
"The New Brunswick market is one of the most important provinces for Biome in Canada. It also supports our Atlantic Canadian focus in the domestic market. Our deal is a true supply agreement and not just an authorization to commence operations in the province. We look forward to having products available for customers in the coming weeks,” said Khurram Malik, CEO of Biome Grow.
MariMed Inc. (OTC:MRMD) has qualified to trade on the OTCQX Best Market. The OTCQX Best Market is top tier of OTC Markets; provides exchange-quality trading experience with superior information availability for investors. Their "MRMD" ticker symbol remains unchanged.
Veritas Farms (OTC:VFRM) reported a record 509.9% increase in quarterly revenue, totaling in $2,971,345 compared to $487,169 in Q2 2018, as a result of its recent expansion of brick-and-mortar and online distribution networks. Veritas Farms full spectrum hemp products are currently available in over 4,500 retailers across the country including major retail stores such as Kroger Family of Stores, CVS Pharmacy, Fruth Pharmacy, Neiman’s Family Market and Bartell Drugs
“This sales growth was made possible by the solid foundation for success that we built over the past four years at our state-of-art 140-acre farm and production facilities in Pueblo, Colorado, our unwavering commitment to product quality, and our growing reputation as one of the country’s most trusted vertically integrated hemp extract product brand in the country,” said Alexander M. Salgado, CEO and co-founder of Veritas Farms.
Surterra Wellness announced the appointment of Stevens J. Sainte-Rose as Chief Human Resources Officer and as a member of its Executive Leadership Team. In this newly created position, Stevens will lead Surterra’s global HR function and be responsible for developing and executing HR strategy in support of the company’s overall business plan and strategic direction. Stevens brings more than two decades of expertise in leadership development, culture-building, change management and scaling field talent at large, global consumer goods companies including U.S. Walgreens and Coca-Cola International.
“Stevens’ senior HR experience leading consumer-focused companies will help take Surterra to the next level. He shares our vision of building a consumer-first culture by investing in training and developing the best talent, and we’re thrilled to have him on-board,” said Surterra Chief Executive Officer and Chairman William “Beau” Wrigley, Jr.
Green Flower Media, a cannabis video platform, has announced Green Flower Membership, a streaming video subscription service that puts you on the cutting edge of all-things cannabis today. It contains thousands of original cannabis videos, featuring over 700 of the world’s top cannabis experts across four different channels.
Green Flower Media CEO and founder Max Simon told Benzinga, “People around the world are seeking a trustworthy, credible source to learn about the many facets of cannabis today. With Green Flower Membership, you get instant access to the world’s largest library of expert-led cannabis content, anywhere, anytime.”
Willie Nelson has teamed up with Denver-based roots rock group, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats to launch a line of special edition vape cartridge pens under his Willie’s Reserve label. Made from a high-quality strain of cannabis known as Cherry AK and available exclusively at select LivWell locations throughout Colorado, this collection is the latest of the brands’ partnerships with like-minded artists to showcase the connection between culture and cannabis.
“The legalization of cannabis has re-energized interest in agriculture in the U.S.” said Elizabeth Hogan, VP of Brands at Willie’s Reserve. “It’s amazing to see the new canna-curious consumer enjoying the plant and that’s why we’ve partnered with artists like Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats (who are not widely known for their cannabis consumption.) With this collection, we’re able to highlight innovative farmers and talented artists at the same time.”
Ann Arbor, Michigan-based cannabis producer C3 Industries said it officially entered the Michigan cannabis market with the opening of its first dispensary in the state.
Piper Jaffray analyst Michael Lavery initiated coverage of Cronos Group (NASDAQ:CRON) with an Overweight rating and $18 price target.
The Cannabis ETF (NYSE:THCX), one of several marijuana exchange traded funds that debuted last month, is already making some changes to its roster. THCX, which tracks the Innovation Labs Cannabis Index, added four companies to the portfolio: Valens GroWorks Inc. (TSXV:VGW), EnWave Corp. (TSXV:ENW), cbdMD Inc. (NYSE:YCBD) and Fire & Flower Holdings (TSX:FAF).
Three holdings that were in the original THCX portfolio when the fund debuted last month have been removed: Innovative Industrial Properties (NYSE:IIPR), Vivo Cannabis (TSXV:VIVO) and CannTrust Holdings (NYSE:CTST).
Canadian cannabis producer Green Organic Dutchman Holdings Ltd (OTC:TGODF) reported its financial results for the second quarter, which included a revenue growth of 20% sequentially.
The company posted a revenue of almost CA$2.90 million ($2.19 million), up by 20% on the quarter. It did not generate any revenue in the same period of the last year.
Charlotte’s Web Holdings, Inc. (OTC:CWBHF) reported 45% year-over-year second-quarter revenue growth. Gross margins for the quarter were 75.3%, with $18.8 million in gross profits.
Helix TCS Inc. (OTC:HLIX) announced second-quarter revenue came in at $3.9 million, up 108% compared to the same quarter last year. Gross profit for the quarter was $1.9 million, while gross margin hit 49%. Cash flows from operations improved in the quarter by $462,000, or 39%, compared to the first quarter.
Tallahassee, Florida-based Trulieve Cannabis Corp.(OTC:TCNNF) benefited from 19% medical marijuana patient growth in The Sunshine State in the second quarter, fueled largely by the introduction of smokable flower in the state's medical market, the company said.
Commercial CBD products are headed from the United States to Mexico, via a partnership between Green Lotus and Mexican consumer packaged goods brand CBD Life SA.
Carlos Frias, CEO of Green Lotus’ parent company Freedom Leaf Inc. (OTC:FRLF) has been a player in the hemp and cannabis industry for 16 years.
"We wanted Green Lotus to be a first-in-class brand, and we succeeded. The Mexican market is prime territory for CBD products," he told Benzinga. "We’ve been working on this deal for three years."
Harvest Health & Recreation, Inc. (CSE:HARV) (OTC:HRVSF) generated $26.6 million in total revenue for its second quarter. The sum represents a 39% increase. Gross profits more than doubled compared to the first quarter, with Harvest generating $16.9 million for the second quarter compared to $7.9 million the previous window.
A new report by Arcview Market Research and BDS Analytics projects California’s legal cannabis market to reach $3.1 billion in 2019 sales. The firms are forecasting a 19% compound annual growth rate over the next five years, which will place annual consumer spending at $7.2 billion in 2024.
"Despite the burdens imposed on the legal market by regulators, with a $2.7 billion gross domestic product, California has the world's largest legal cannabis market and will continue to until federal legalization makes it merely a part of the larger U.S. market," said Tom Adams, Managing Director and Principal Analyst for BDS Analytics' Industry Intelligence group and Editor-in-Chief for Arcview Market Research.
Glass House Group announced it has entered a binding agreement to purchase 100% of the stock and interests of F/ELD in an all-stock deal.
Kiva Sales and Services (KSS) has announced a distribution partnership with Jetty Extracts, one of the largest vape brands in California.
Medical Marijuana Inc. (OTC:MJNA) boasted record revenue of $20.7 million in the second quarter of 2019, a 30.8% increase over the same quarter in 2018. The results also highlighted 13 of 14 quarters of sequential revenue growth, $1.4 million of cash from operations, with total cash balance increasing to $5.4 million at quarter-end, and adjusted EBITDA of $1.5 million.
"We're excited to share our success in Q2 with our shareholders so that they can feel confident in how fast the company is growing in 2019," said Medical Marijuana, Inc. CEO Dr. Stuart Titus. "At the same time, we also hope that consumers will view our success as a commitment to expanding access to CBD around the world."
AG Health’s Endocannabinoid Nutrition Brand, VEDA, has been named an official sponsor of the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL) for the second year in a row, making the NWHL the first major sports organization to partner with a CBD nutrition brand in two consecutive years, the company said. As an official partner with the NWHL in its 2019-2020 season, VEDA will make its CBD products available and continue to empower the female athletes through sponsoring multiple deal points, a representative said.
Nabis Holdings, a Canadian investment company with specialty investments in assets across multiple divisions of the cannabis sector, announced it was acquiring a licensed medical marijuana dispensary in the state of Arizona. The company did not disclose further details.
“As we continue expansion throughout the U.S., Arizona’s strong medical cannabis market will play a key role in Nabis’ large scale growth projections for the next year,” said Shay Shnet, CEO and Director of Nabis. “We are diligently working to identify other limited-license states, and remain focused on opportunities like Arizona in which we are able to supplement and expand Nabis’ position on operating licensing rights.”
Two Roots Brewing Co. announced the addition of two new seasonal styles to its THC infused non-alcoholic craft beer line.
“Our seasonals are for the craft beer enthusiast. The refreshingly fruity flavors in Mango Dango are driven by a hoppy mouthfeel, whereas Grapefruit Fight is a true radler mixing traditional lager and grapefruit," said Maikel van de Mortel, EVP of Marketing of Cannabiniers.
More From Benzinga Cannabis
Here are some of the most interesting cannabis-related stories from this week.
And learn all about our Detroit event in these stories:
Check out these and many other cannabis stories on Benzinga.com/cannabis
August 22: As the U.S. grapples with a solution to the opioid crisis, Arfinn Med, the free online EMR portal for licensed physicians to share and report medical cannabis efficacies, will host a live one-hour webinar titled, “The Opioid Epidemic: Is Medical Cannabis a Possible Solution?” Designed for medical professionals to explore alternative solutions to combat the opioid epidemic, the webinar will discuss the latest studies and research on the impact of medical marijuana on opioid addiction. Leading the presentation and discussion will be medical cannabis expert and member of The Physician CBD Council, Dr. Dung Trinh, as well as Arfinn Med’s CEO and founder, James West. Space will be limited to allow for discussion. To register for the webinar, visit https://arfinnmed.com/webinar/
August 22: The Institute of the Americas’ Life Science & Biotech Program is kicking off its Latin America Cannabis Initiative with a by-invitation-only series of executive roundtables. The Mexico Edition will be the series’ first and will be held Aug. 21 at the Institute’s facilities on the UC San Diego campus. The roundtable discussions will be attended by selected public and private sector leaders, and researchers from the U.S. and Mexico. Entrepreneurs, sector stakeholders, thought leaders, consultants, growers, processors, investors, among others, will represent the various facets of the growing cannabis industry making for a candid, and interesting dialogue. Discussion will focus on the advancement of strategic economic and commercial priorities, economic growth, inclusion, regulatory cooperation, and regional competitiveness.
September 5–6: the Cannabis Science Conference is returning to Portland, Oregon. This year, “Amazon” John Easterling and special guest Olivia Newton-John will deliver a joint-celebrity plenary address entitled, “Plant Medicine – A Personal Healing Journey.” This year’s conference covers a wide selection of topics, including genomics, informatics, medical cannabis, testing and hemp science. It brings together a diverse group of people including laboratory personnel, medical professionals, entrepreneurs, patients, plant experts, and scientists.
October 4–6: Argentina will hold its first big cannabis conference, Expo Cannabis at the La Rural event hall in Buenos Aires. The event arrives at a key moment in the country’s regulatory history and the development of a nascent legal industry.
October 11-12: CBD Expo MOUNTAIN will bring the largest CBD event platform to Denver, CO to broadcast products with the community and share knowledge with the industry. The event features more than 150+ exhibitors, along with a substantial lineup of speaker presentations, panel discussions, demos and workshops from experts in the research, production, globalization, distribution and sale of CBD products. The theme for CBD Expo MOUNTAIN will focus on compliance & regulation and investments & business.
October 11–12: the first ever Budtender Awards are coming to Las Vegas, sponsored by cannabis financial technology Canna Paid and cannabis educational program Clover Leaf University. The awards aim to pay homage to the nation’s top Budtenders and the many facets of cannabis culture. The two-day event offers panel discussions, a product and service expo, a closing night performance, awards show, and after party culminating in a performance by legendary hip hop artist Cypress Hill.
October 22–23: The Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference is coming to Chicago, Illinois! You know you can’t miss it. Go to https://www.benzingacannabisconference.com/ for more information.
October 23–24: Marijuana Venture Magazine’s Retail and Dispensary (RAD) Expo, a national trade show focused on the retail cannabis industry, will return to the Oregon Convention Center in Portland, Oregon. The RAD Expo will feature presentations from industry veterans to speak about successful entrepreneurship and topics including merchandising, partnership management, interior store design and retail operations. The 2019 show will focus heavily on CBD products and CBD brands with a presence in health grocery stores, luxury retailers, pet stores and other retail categories that carry hemp-derived products.
November 15-16: CBD Expo EAST will bring the largest CBD event platform to Orlando, FL to broadcast products with the community and share knowledge with the industry. The event features more than 150+ exhibitors, along with a substantial lineup of speaker presentations, panel discussions, demos and workshops from experts in the research, production, globalization, distribution and sale of CBD products. The theme for CBD Expo EAST will focus on globalization and spa + wellness.
November 19-21: The Medcann World Forum 2019 will be held in the Mediterranean Conference Centre which dates back to the 16th Century. where it was originally built as a hospital by the order of St. John. The 3 days will focus on 6 main pillars – Medical, Business, Research, Legislation, Regulatory and Fintech. The event will host Malta’s top policymakers, international regulatory experts and global business leaders.
December 5-6: CBD Expo WEST will bring the largest CBD event platform to San Diego, CA to broadcast products with the community and share knowledge with the industry. The event features more than 150+ exhibitors, along with a substantial lineup of speaker presentations, panel discussions, demos and workshops from experts in the research, production, globalization, distribution and sale of CBD products. The theme for CBD Expo WEST will focus on research and development and cannabinoid formulations.
Photo by Javier Hasse.
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