The fourth largest pharmaceutical company in the world by revenue, Novartis International AG, is partnering with Canadian medical cannabis company Tilray to develop and distribute medical cannabis products. The partnership will be spearheaded by Sandoz Canada, an arm of Sandoz International GmbH, which is the generics-focused branch of Novartis.
The companies will co-develop and market non-smokable medical cannabis products and, if regulations allow, Sandoz will wholesale and distribute the products to Canadian hospitals and pharmacies.
“This agreement is a major milestone on the long road to legitimizing medical cannabis as conventional medicine. Tilray is pleased to be, what we believe is, the first federally licensed producer of medical cannabis to form a strategic alliance with a local affiliate of a global pharmaceutical company to improve the availability and quality of medical cannabis products for Canadian patients in need.” – Brendan Kennedy, Tilray CEO, in a press release
In January, Tilray announced it would provide medical cannabis products to Shoppers Drug Mart, Canada’s largest provider of pharmacy products and services. The company also distributes its products in Germany through a partnership with NOWEDA – one of the nation’s largest pharmaceutical distributors.
According to a Financial Post report, Sandoz has not taken any financial stake in Tilray.