The IVC Research Center of Tel Aviv, which provides information on Israeli high-tech to aid investor decisions, has issued the first-ever report on the Israeli medical cannabis scene.
“New companies are being established while older ones are growing,” the report starts. “Yet a significant factor is still missing, namely, a steady stream of capital.”
According to the report, there are 68 companies in Israel active in the medical cannabis field, employing approximately 900 people. From 2013 to 2017, $76.4 million was invested into medical cannabis startups. Ten new companies sprout up every year.
IVC categorized 46 of these companies as early stage. Another 13 have initial revenues and growth. Only one company, Evogene, has significant revenues but it’s not focused exclusively on cannabis.
Similarly, 20 companies in the clean-tech and ag-tech categories deal with farmers in general and not just medical cannabis. Intec raised the most of any of the companies on the list – $10 million – but its gastric retention technology improves the formulations of a wide variety of drugs.
One Israeli company that does focus exclusively on cannabis – Talent Biotechs – was acquired by US-based Kalytera Therapeutics for $10 million in 2017. Talent Biotechs’ CBD solution treats graft versus host disease, a life-threatening condition that can occur following stem-cell or bone-marrow transplantation
IVC deems the companies in the life-science therapeutic category “most interesting, as they have chosen to pursue the regulatory process to develop new medicines or treatments for real diseases.” Among these are ICD Pharma, Izun Pharma, Phytotech Medical and Therapix Biosciences.
Therapix is developing synthetic cannabinoid-based therapies for a range of conditions including Tourette syndrome, age-related cognitive impairment and chronic pain.
Some companies are involved less directly in cannabis drug development – for example, CannabiScope has developed a web-based application to create standard categorization of cannabis strains based on their health impact; Mawi is a social network for medical cannabis users; and veg420 is developing a payment solution for medical cannabis users.
Click here to access the downloadable report.