High Tide has new CFO, opens 61st store in Ontario

Published on May 3, 2024 by Pat Bulmer

Inside a High Tide Canna Cabana store Photo: Contributed
Cannabis retailer High Tide, which owns Canna Cabana, had hired a new CFO.

Calgary-based cannabis retailer High Tide has a new chief financial officer.

In a news release Wednesday, the company announced the CFO job has gone to Mayank Mahajan.

Mahajan has 15 years of experience in the global financial industry, and academic and professional credentials from Canada, the United States and India, a news release says.

Meanwhile, the 61st Canna Cabana cannabis store in Ontario has just opened. The store in Ajax’s Meadow Ridge Plaza is parent company High Tide’s 170th Canna Cabana outlet in Canada and its second in the city.

High Tide is the second-largest cannabis retailer in North America by store count. Its Canna Cabana chain is the largest non-franchised cannabis retail chain in Canada, with locations spanning British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario and growing.

“This opening builds on the success of our existing Ajax location, which is performing above our provincial average,” said Raj Grover, founder and chief executive officer of High Tide, in a news release “The east end of the Greater Toronto area holds tremendous growth opportunity for the Canna Cabana brand, as we look to open more locations between Toronto and Ottawa.”

About a week earlier, High Tide opened its 60th Ontario store in Owen Sound.

High Tide happy about US decision to reclassify cannabis

The company also has its eye on the global market, applauding the US government’s decision to reclassify cannabis as a less dangerous drug.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration has proposed to shift marijuana from a Schedule I drug, which includes heroin and LSD, to a less tightly regulated Schedule III drug, which includes ketamine and some anabolic steroids, the Associated Press reported.

Federal rules allow for some medical uses of Schedule III drugs. But the proposed change faces a lengthy regulatory process, the news agency said.

Calgary-based High Tide, which owns Canna Cabana stores and several related brands, praised the decision in a recent news release.

“Today’s news marks a historic moment for cannabis reforms in the United States, and we commend the Biden administration for taking this important step,” says Grover, founder and chief executive officer of High Tide.

Reclassifying cannabis to Schedule III of the Controlled Substances Act will change the Internal Revenue code, which will allow companies to deduct business expenses from gross income, he said.

“Rescheduling will support the growth of a legal, legitimate sector in the U.S. that will displace the illicit market. In the coming days, we will engage with the key financial exchanges to understand how this news might change their listing policies,” Grover said.

“Coming on the heels of Germany’s partial adult-use legalization announcement in March, this development makes me even more excited about our international prospects.”

Other High Tide brands include Queen of Bud, Daily High Club, Vodka Glass, Puff Puff Pass, Dopezilla, Atomik, Silipipe and Evolution.