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Zelda, Ilera Therapeutics Propose Merger To Form 'One of the World's Leading Medicinal Cannabis Companies'

Nina Zdinjak

Zelda Therapeutics Limited (OTC: ZLDAF), an Australian biopharmaceutical company focused on cannabinoid formulations, announced Wednesday a merger of equals with Ilera Therapeutics LLC, a private cannabis science company.

With approval from Zelda’s shareholders, Zelda would acquire 100% of Ilera Therapeutics via an all-scrip — all-stock — transaction, the company said.

The two companies have been in a strategic collaboration since March. 

The combined global medicinal cannabis company would be known as Zelira Therapeutics Limited, with a portfolio of medicines and products that are now in clinical development. 

Zelira Therapeutics would have operations in Australia, Germany, the United Kingdom and the U.S., according to Zelda. The combined company would gather experts in drug development, clinical trial design, consumer marketing and cannabinoid science, and create a leadership team from cannabis industry veterans.

Ilera was purchased by TerrAscend Corp (OTC: TRSSF) in a deal worth $125 to $225 million that closed Sept. 16. 

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"This is a transformational opportunity for both companies. The merger will create one of the world's leading medicinal cannabis companies with a rich pipeline of clinically validated products under development and unique access to the world's largest and fastest growing cannabis markets,” Zelda Chairman Harry Karelis said in a statement. 

Ilera Therapeutics Chairman Osagie Imasogie said the companies are an "excellent and natural fit" in light of their clinical development strategies and operational expertise. 

"Both companies have successful track records of creating substantial value for shareholders and, together, we will retain and further build on this focus." 

Zelda shares were plunging 16.92% to 0.05 cents at the time of publication Wednesday. 

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