Two cannabis firms owned and led by women have been named as finalists in the Australian Women’s Small Business Champion Awards.

Astrid Dispensary and CoCo Medical Education and Consulting will compete with four others in the Professional Medical Services category with the winner to be announced in Sydney next month.

CoCo co-founder and director Melanie Wentzel said: “One of us would have been good news, but two from the industry is huge.”

Astrid is led by founder and CEO Lisa Nguyen while CoCo was launched earlier this year by Wentzel and former Montu business development manager Mimi Sener.


Medigrowth has raised almost A$3.5 million through Birchal, the third-largest equity crowdfunding campaign in the platform’s history. 

Launched three weeks ago, it has raised $3.45m from 2,047 investors.

Geelong-based Medigrowth will use the funds for product development and research and to progress its manufacturing, research and genetics hub, which has town planning approval and the support of Deakin University. 

Co-founder Adam Guskich said: “We’ve always been aware of the public support for our work, but to see that translate into funding for our current and future projects is so exciting.”


Ecofibre has reported revenue of A$32.51 million in FY23, up 8% on FY22, while net losses widened to $39.91m compared to 14.67m last year.

The firm said $11m in annualised cost savings and the closure of “non-core business lines” would provide a “pathway to positive EBITDA” in H2 FY24.

Cash remained unchanged at $7.3m.

UPDATE (August 24, 2023): Ecofibre has received firm commitments to raise $5m through an institutional placement priced at $0.18c per share.

Funds will be used to support commissioning and testing of new manufacturing equipment and provide working capital to grow its Hemp Black business. CEO and managing director Eric Wang described FY24 as “a watershed year” for Hemp Black.

The board of directors and management intend to subscribe for approximately $500k in tranche two of the placement, subject to shareholder approval at the firm’s upcoming AGM.

Ecofibre will also undertake a Share Purchase Plan to raise up to $1m from existing eligible shareholders.

Prior to launching Cannabiz, Martin was co-founder and CEO of Asia-Pac’s leading B2B media and marketing information brand Mumbrella, overseeing its sale to Diversified Communications in 2017. A journalist...

Leave a comment