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Aphria-Tilray deal: Tilray delays vote on tie-up with Aphria

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Jeff Lagerquist
·2-min read
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The delay by Tilray follows a resounding victory for Aphria shareholders who support the deal.. (Photo by PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA / AFP)
The delay by Tilray follows a resounding victory for Aphria shareholders who support the deal. (Photo by PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA / AFP)

Canadian cannabis producer Tilray (TLRY) has postponed a shareholder meeting to vote on its reverse takeover by pot rival Aphria (APHA.TO)(APHA).

The Nanaimo, B.C.-based company said on Thursday that it will delay the virtual event until April 30 at 11 a.m. ET. The meeting was initially scheduled for Friday at 11 a.m.

Tilray did not provide a specific reason for the delay, saying only that the change allows voters additional time to participate in the decision. The company said eligible stockholders, those who held Tilray shares as of March 12, that have not already voted, or wish to change their vote, are strongly encouraged to do so.

The delay follows a resounding victory for Aphria shareholders who support the deal. The company said 99.38 per cent of shares represented at its shareholders meeting on Wednesday voted in favour of the reverse-acquisition of Tilray

Aphria and Tilray said the new company will be “the world’s largest global cannabis company,” with pro-forma revenue of $874 million for the 12 months prior to the deal’s announcement on Dec. 16, 2020. 

The companies have said the deal is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2021.

If Tilray shareholders do not support the deal, after Aphria shareholders backed it, Tilray would owe Aphria transaction expenses capped at $10 million.

Tilray chief executive officer Brendan Kennedy is the largest shareholder, with 8.51 per cent of outstanding shares. Company insiders, including Michael Blue and Christian Groh, are also major shareholders. Kennedy, Blue and Groh founded Seattle-based private equity firm Privateer Holdings in May 2010. The firm later invested in Tilray.

Tilary issued a press release on Monday urging shareholders to vote for the tie-up with Aphria. Thursday's release did not repeat that message. 

Tilray shares gained 1.61 per cent to $17.69 at 11:44 a.m. ET on Thursday. Toronto-listed Aphria shares were virtually flat at $17.81.

Correction: A previous version of this story contained inaccurate information regarding the deal's break fee. Aphria would not have to pay Tilray $65 million if its shareholders reject the deal with Aphria. Yahoo Finance Canada regrets this error.

Jeff Lagerquist is a senior reporter at Yahoo Finance Canada. Follow him on Twitter @jefflagerquist.

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