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Marley company explains Israeli ganja lab investment

Published:Wednesday | March 15, 2017 | 12:00 AMSteven Jackson
Musician and investor Damian Marley.

Stony Hill Corporation, founded by musician Damian Marley, disclosed its strategy behind acquiring a stake in Israeli-based Cannabi-Tech this week.

The US-based start-up indicated that it formed part of its vision to invest in ganja both within its operations and through other entities.

"As Stony Hill continues to expand into multiple segments of the cannabis industry, this investment fits very nicely into our strategy to expand Stony Hill's testing and analytics presence and platform of products. This investment represents another step towards building our company into a leading platform in the cannabis industry," according to Chris Bridges, president of Stony Hill in a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.

Last November, Stony Hill purchased nearly US$50,000 worth of preference shares for less than a five per cent stake in Cannabi-Tech Limited. That investment was announced in February filings and previously reported in the Financial Gleaner.

It was not immediately clear whether the announcement this week was an additional investment by Marley in Cannabi-Tech. Queries to Stony Hill were unanswered up to press time.

Cannabi-Tech provides lab-grade equipment to test the potency of cannabis plants. The share purchase was done as a portfolio investment.

Guy Setton, CEO of Cannabi-Tech, called Stony Hill a "strong partner" and ally.

"We are extremely pleased with Stony Hill's decision to invest in our company and we welcome Stony Hill and Damian Marley as long-term investors and strategic partners," said Setton.

Stony Hill, although in its infancy, offers a broad portfolio of products and assets which Cannabi-Tech thinks will twin well with its testing products.

"Our innovative testing equipment is setting a new industry standard, starting with potency testing, and we look forward to expanding the market presence of our brand through this partnership. We believe this mutually beneficial relationship will yield new opportunities for both our companies," Setton added.

Stony Hill Corporation raised US$750,000 (around $96 million) to finance its sale of cannabis products in two main private placements, including raising US$10,000 in January and US$740,000 last August. At the time, Damian Marley became the president, CEO and main shareholder with some 21 per cent. However, the release this week now describes Bridges as the president and Marley as the founder.