LOS ANGELES (AP) — Marijuana stocks have come down hard from their highs a year ago, and the skid isn’t just spooking investors.
On Tuesday, MedMen Enterprises Inc., which sells legal cannabis in California and 11 other states, backed out of a blockbuster deal to buy PharmaCann, a Chicago-based marijuana company with operations in eight states.
In its announcement, Los Angeles-based MedMen cited the steep pullback in U.S. and Canadian cannabis stocks this year. It noted the Horizons Marijuana Life Sciences Index, a Canadian exchange-traded fund that tracks cannabis stocks, is down 47% since March.
“The underperformance has made it increasingly more critical to allocate capital efficiently, given the current industry headwinds,” MedMen said in a news release.
The deal was announced in December and was seen as a forerunner of a wave of marijuana industry mergers and acquisitions promising big returns for investors.
Billions poured into marijuana stocks last year as investors got on board with the big, multistate operators with the funds to acquire costly licenses in the 11 states where it is legal to sell cannabis products.
A flurry of deals in late 2018 and early this year continued to entice investors. But hopes of mergers getting