Ecofibre has appointed an interim chief executive and is plotting a sale and leaseback of two manufacturing properties in the US as it continues efforts to reduce debt.

John Foley, who has been consulting for Ecofibre, will lead the business until a permanent CEO is found.

Ecofibre’s facility in Kentucky. Two other sites, in North Carolina, are the subject of a sale and leaseback agreement.

Foley is described as a “seasoned, successful private equity CEO” who has been assisting the business with Project Ensure, an internal initiative designed to drive the company towards a cash-positive position.

He will command a weekly salary of US$10,000 and be based in Greensboro, North Carolina.

Meanwhile, Ecofibre has struck a conditional deal to sell two properties in Greensboro for a combined US$10.4 million (A$15.7m) to a real estate investment firm.

It will lease back the premises for US$924,000 (A$1.4m) per month for the first year, rising 3% each year during an initial seven-year term.

Shares in Ecofibre climbed 9% to $0.059c in Monday trading.

UPDATE (May 15, 2024): Ecofibre has announced the resignation of president of Ecofibre Advanced Technology Jeff Bruner “in accordance with his contract”.

It also confirmed Bruner has joined litigation lodged by former chief science officer Dr Alex Capano in March over allegations involving subsidiary EOF Bio.

Capano filed proceedings in Delaware in the US accusing several board directors of being “conflicted” in their roles with the company.

Ecofibre said it is “vigorously defending” the litigation and has filed a motion to dismiss.

Bioxyne/BLS

Bioxyne subsidiary BLS has inked an exclusive supply and collaboration agreement with Swiss firm CY Biopharma to develop psychedelic treatment options for patients with depression and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Bioxyne said the deal provides BLS with the opportunity to manufacture and supply the Australian, New Zealand, US, and European clinical trials market with novel psilocybin products; develop proprietary formulations and drug-delivery methods; and supply Australian patients via the authorised prescriber scheme.

Sam Watson

CEO Sam Watson said: “Psychedelics are showing significant potential in the treatment of various mental health conditions; a beacon of hope for the large cohort of patients who do not respond to conventional treatment options.”

“In Australia, 10.4% of people report experiencing symptoms of depression, and 33% of patients diagnosed with depression respond inadequately to current treatments within certain indications. Our goal is to help these patients get their lives back.”

CY Biopharma CEO Dr Anton Hoos added: “Together we plan to build a reliable supply of pharmaceutical-grade, naturally derived psilocybin for patients in Australia and New Zealand.”

Aurora Cannabis

Canadian firm Aurora Cannabis has landed its first branded dried flower range in New Zealand, an emerging market it said was “poised for growth”.

CEO Miguel Martin added: “We see great potential in the New Zealand market and intend to leverage symmetry with our leadership in Australia.”

Aurora acquired MedReleaf Australia in February in a A$50 million cash and share deal.

Steve has reported for a number of consumer and B2B titles over a journalism career spanning more than three decades. He is a regulator contributor to health journal, The Medical Republic, writing on...

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...

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