Willow Biosciences Advances its Commericalization Plan; First Commercial Production Expected in Early 2021

  • Leading manufacturer contracted for commercial cannabinoid production
  • First commercial quantities of ultra-pure CBG expected to be produced in Q1 2021
  • First revenue generation expected in Q2 2021, six months ahead of initial expectations

VANCOUVER, BC,Dec. 16, 2020/CNW/ – Willow Biosciences Inc. (“Willow” or the “Company“) (TSX: WLLW) (OTCQX: CANSF) is pleased to announce that it has advanced its commercialization plan by selecting a highly-regarded contract manufacturing organization (“CMO“) to manufacture its first cannabinoid, cannabigerol (“CBG“), with its first commercial scale multi-kilogram run scheduled in Q1 2021.

Willow Logo (CNW Group/Willow Biosciences Inc.)

“Advancing to commercial-scale production is the final step in our transition to becoming a revenue generating company,” said Trevor Peters, Willow’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “Our ability to begin this important milestone ahead of expectations is a testament to our exceptional scientific and commercially minded team. We are seeing strong interest in our CBG samples and are working closely to understand the needs of potential customers. Once our commercial scale multi-kilogram run is complete, Willow will be uniquely positioned to take advantage of what many industry experts are projecting to be a multi-billion dollar market.”

The Company has contracted a leading ingredient manufacturing firm to produce commercial quantities of its ultra-pure CBG at their European facilities. To further streamline the production process and meet strong demand for customer samples, Willow will run a second 500-litre pilot in December. In Q1 2021, the Company will move into large scale fermenters and expects to produce its first multi-kilogram commercial batch of CBG. Willow will closely monitor customer demand and add additional production runs as needed. Willow expects first sales of CBG in Q2 2021, six months ahead of initial expectations.

By manufacturing its initial commercial production volumes in Europe, the Company will benefit from strong demand in this region. Willow’s ultra-pure CBG is well suited to this market’s preference for high quality ingredients across the globe and is expected to drive long term customer acceptance and commercial success. “Our customers need access to high-quality cannabinoids that are manufactured to ensure end-user safety and suitability in multiple global consumer packaged goods applications,” said Chris Speed, Willow’s Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing. “Willow’s proprietary technology is making this possible and, in the process, helping to evolve our industry to the next phase of consumer acceptance.”

About Willow Biosciences Inc.

Willow is a Canadian biotechnology company based in Vancouver, British Columbia, that produces high purity, plant-derived compounds that provide building blocks for the global pharmaceutical, health and wellness, and consumer packaged goods industries. Willow’s current focus is in the production of cannabinoids for the treatment for pain, anxiety, obesity, brain disorders, among other significant indications. Willow’s science team has a proven track record of developing manufacturing technologies for high purity compounds in pain and cancer treatments. Willow’s manufacturing process creates a consistent, scalable and sustainable product that allows for the discovery and development of new life changing drugs.

Forward-Looking Statements

This news release may include forward-looking statements including opinions, assumptions, estimates and the Company’s assessment of future plans and operations, and, more particularly, statements concerning: Willow’s revised milestone projections, including the success, timing and quantity of multi-kilogram runs and pilot tests to complete commercialization scale-up; timing of first sales and revenue generation; the success of the CMO’s commercialization efforts; discussions with consumer-packaged goods entities, manufacturing partners and other key stakeholders; the market size potential of the synthetic cannabinoid industry and Willow’s ability to capture market share; demand for Willow’s products; Willow’s entry into new global markets, including Europe; and the business plan of the Company, generally, including cannabinoid research and production. When used in this news release, the words “will,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “estimate,” “expect,” “intent,” “may,” “project,” “should,” and similar expressions are intended to be among the statements that identify forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements are founded on the basis of expectations and assumptions made by the Company which include, but are not limited to: the success of Willow’s strategic partnerships, including the development of future strategic partnerships; the financial strength of the Company; the ability of the Company to fund its business plan using cash on hand and existing resources; the market for Willow’s products; the ability of the Company to obtain and retain applicable licences; the ability of the Company to obtain suitable manufacturing partners and other strategic relationships; and the successful implementation of Willow’s production strategy, generally. Forward-looking statements are subject to a wide range of risks and uncertainties, and although the Company believes that the expectations represented by such forward-looking statements are reasonable, there can be no assurance that such expectations will be realized. Any number of important factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements including, but not limited to, risks associated with: the cannabinoid industry in general; the success of the Company’s research and development strategies; infringement on intellectual property; failure to benefit from partnerships or successfully integrate acquisitions; actions and initiatives of federal and provincial governments and changes to government policies and the execution and impact of these actions, initiatives and policies; import/export and research restrictions for cannabinoid-based operations; the size of the medical-use and adult-use cannabinoid market; competition from other industry participants; adverse U.S., Canadian and global economic conditions; adverse global events and public-health crises, including the current COVID-19 outbreak; failure to comply with certain regulations; departure of key management personnel or inability to attract and retain talent; and other factors more fully described from time to time in the reports and filings made by the Company with securities regulatory authorities. Please refer to the AIF and the MD&A for additional risk factors relating to Willow, which can be accessed either on Willow’s website at www.willowbio.com or under the Company’s profile on www.sedar.com.

Any financial outlook and future-oriented financial information contained in this document regarding prospective financial performance, financial position or cash flows is based on assumptions about future events, including economic conditions and proposed courses of action based on management’s assessment of the relevant information that is currently available. Projected operational information contains forward-looking information and is based on a number of material assumptions and factors, as are set out above. These projections may also be considered to contain future-oriented financial information or a financial outlook. The actual results of the Company’s operations for any period will likely vary from the amounts set forth in these projections and such variations may be material. Actual results will vary from projected results. Readers are cautioned that any such financial outlook and future-oriented financial information contained herein should not be used for purposes other than those for which it is disclosed herein.

The forward-looking statements contained in this news release are made as of the date hereof and the Company does not undertake any obligation to update publicly or to revise any of the included forward-looking statements, except as required by applicable law. The forward-looking statements contained herein are expressly qualified by this cautionary statement.

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