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For Urbana, investing is all about patience and conviction

“There was none for them. These companies couldn’t raise money on the big exchanges,” Caldwell says. “It took them in the direction of the CSE, which was a boon to the exchange, and actually a boon to Canada Is.”

Citing a recent study by Deloitte, Caldwell says the cannabis industry has added $43 billion to Canada’s GDP and $13 billion to Ontario’s provincial GDP since 2018. Over the same period, it has created approximately 48,000 jobs in Ontario, approximately $15 billion in federal tax revenue, and $3 billion in tax revenue for Ontario.

The role of the CSE in listing cannabis companies has led to growth in business in other sectors as well. As Caldwell points out, the attorneys and accountants who helped take companies public found the experience very user-friendly. Word spread, and it has since become a preferred destination for smaller companies and startups in resources, technology, and other areas.

All told, Urbana invested about $8 million in CSE. Today, that investment represents a 49% stake in the exchange, which is valued at $194 million.

“We have been able to take a long view and patience in backing the companies in which we invest privately,” Caldwell says. “This is just one example of the impact of allowing new companies and industries to build and flourish in Canada.”

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