Ceres Acquisition Corp. recently made industry headlines by announcing a business combination with private multi-state operator Paralell to create a publicly traded U.S. cannabis company. The company, backed by cannabis-focused investment firm Ceres Group Holdings, is looking to become the newest high-profile special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) to come to market. With forty-two retail stores in four U.S. states—and one of three license holders in Texas—cannabis investors have begun to take notice.
An important consideration for Ceres Acquisition in solidifying the deal was Parallel’s strong management team. Parallel is headed by William “Beau” Wrigley, an heir to the Wrigley’s chewing gum empire who took over the business in 1999 and sold it for $23 billion in 2008. As far as seasoned consumer packaged goods professionals is concerned, Crouthers opined that, “We’re getting one of the folks in the industry (Beau Wrigley) that knows it better than just about anyone.”
The impending Ceres-Parallel entity would be coming to market in a strong financial position. Including $225 million from a private investment in public equity (PIPE), the company is expected to have approximately $430 million at the close. No listing date has yet been announced, however the business acquisition is expected to close in the summer.
Some investors may recognize Parallel by its former business name, Surterra Wellness. The company changed its name in October 2019 in response to its new parent company brand, under the name Parallel. The company has a leading presence in Florida, with the second most dispensaries (38) in-state. As of the latest Office of Medical Marijuana Use report, Parallel dispenses more low-THC cannabis (CBD) than anyone else.
TDR recently say down with Ceres Acquisition Corp. CEO Joe Crouthers to talk about SPACs, the U.S. cannabis market and how the Parallel business combination fits into the company’s organizational scheme.