IPO interview with CEO of DanCann Pharma

DanCann Pharma is a Danish pharmaceutical biotechnology company powered by cannabinoids that is now doing an IPO on Spotlight. Nyemissioner.se has asked CEO Jeppe Krog Rasmussen a few questions.

What does DanCann Pharma do?

DanCann Pharma A/S is a Danish pharmaceutical biotechnology company powered by cannabinoids. DanCann Pharma is focused on discovering, developing, manufacturing, and commercializing of novel cannabinoid therapeutics in a broad range of disease areas.

DanCann Pharma was established in March 2018 shortly after the establishment of the new pilot program with medical cannabis in Denmark – this based on the poor supply of cannabinoid-based drugs. For this reason, DanCann Pharma today work on the mission to ensure access to treatments with quality-assured cannabinoid substances. DanCann Pharma manufactures and handles prescription (Rx) and over-the-counter (OTC) medications. Our primarily current focus is on pain patients with alternative needs to manage their disease and illness.

DanCann Pharma is licensed to handle narcotics and euphoriant substances, and during the summer of 2018, the company was licensed as one of the first companies in Denmark to handle and cultivate cannabis for medical use. DanCann Pharma is a vertically integrated company with upcoming activities from cultivation (based on NASA technology) and genetic development to refining and formulating cannabis and cannabinoid pharmaceuticals. DanCann Pharma’s business case has several tracks, including, but not limited to: import and distribution, R&D and its own in-house production (cultivation, refining and formulation).

What is your main difference from other companies in the cannabis pharma space?

Today, over +100 different cannabinoids (potential APIs (Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients)) have been identified in the cannabis plant. While the main focus has been on the two major components, THC and CBD, we want to unleash and release its true potential by giving patients an exclusive product portfolio, including rare and new cannabinoids.

We try to challenge the existing medical cannabis industry with methods and new ways to investigate the future with our strategy called ”Positioning for the Future”.

This by our approach to the pharmaceutical aspect and the clinical lines throughout the value chain (from cultivation to formulation) – including specifically the focus areas on unique cannabinoids and focus on tablet and capsule development (uptake of the drugs / pharmaceuticals (slow to rapid / instant dissolution / uptake).

The regulation around cannabis is still in its early days in Europe and is very different from country to country, where is Denmark in this context?

On 1 January 2018, medical cannabis was legalized in Denmark under a 4-year Pilot Programme that allow all Danish Physicians to prescribe cannabis for medical use. The Programme was approved by 9 out of 10 political parties in the Danish parliament at the time and is therefore widely supported across the political parties.

The purpose of the Pilot Programme is to give patients a legal opportunity to test medical cannabis treatment if they have not benefited from conventional medication. The Pilot Programme has given Danish companies a possibility to import, cultivate, produce, distribute and/or export medical cannabis, if the company obtains the necessary authorizations from the Danish Medicines Agency (DMA).

Through its legislation, Denmark has achieved a unique position in the European market. The majority of countries in Europe are highly dependent on imports as they have no or partially limited production (quota based). Denmark, in contrast, has no limit on how much medical cannabis must be produced. Also, the new export legislation gives the Danish manufactures access to large markets in form of neighboring countries, since Denmark is one of the only countries in Europe that is allowed to export.

With this advantage in the export regulation, the Danish manufacturers can capture the market before it is established. What really describes the European market so far is the large number of countries with patients’ schemes, but the very narrow supply of manufactures.

What markets will you target in the beginning and what are your plans for the future?

DanCann Pharma’s target groups within its short / middle term strategy are patients with treatment recommendations recommended by the authorities (Danish Medicine Agency), including multiple sclerosis, chronic pain, spinal cord injury, and nausea (vomiting) as a result of chemotherapy treatment of various cancers. Patients undergoing treatment with chronic pain are considered as the main target group.

We initially focus on our domestic market (Denmark) and Scandinavia – and follow this very closely – and aim to target new European markets in 2022 – 2023 build on our experiences.

It is the Company’s strategy to take advantage of the fact that in general most large companies within the industry are looking at Germany and more mature markets (major markets) in Europe, where the patient size is the attractive part. Instead DanCann Pharma wants to differentiate itself and think differently – not only when talking about product development – but also when talking about GTM-strategies. This by targeting minor and new upcoming markets for a strong participation and the conquest of market shares – these which we see as being blue ocean markets – and not as e.g. Germany, which we consider to be a red ocean market due to its enormous competition.

Long term DanCann Pharma aim to launch new innovative pharmaceuticals for new patients’ groups (treatment with novel cannabinoids) and by doing this achieve a strong market position. New treatment capabilities with an exclusive product portfolio (IPRs) will provide the company with a unique market position targeting the Global market.

You are doing an IPO, what will the capital be used for?

The IPO is intended to raise the necessary capital to meet the goals set by the company, namely to obtain the necessary approvals with regard to the various processes and associated licenses through the Danish Medicines Agency and to integrate in the Scandinavian markets with our short- and medium-term goals in DanCann Pharma.

More concret the capital will be used according to the list below

(1) Establishment of BIOTECH PHARM (our production facilities) Approx. 50-60 %

(2) Partnerships and R&D Approx. 10-20 %

(3) Operating costs Approx. 30-40 %

Lastly, what would you like to say to investors that are interested in DanCann Pharma?

First of all, I would like to invite all the potential investors, both new and existing, to subscribe for our IPO.

DanCann Pharma sees a huge opportunity for a unique position in a new unexplored market where several competing companies appear to have not been successful with their strategy. We want to challenge this and question our own and competitors’ methods and always look for a potentially better way of doing things.

With our approach to the market, we want to accommodate patients as well as Physicians, without the risks associated with massive cultivation in the first place, since we expect that this industry is going to take 100 new leaps before we reach the end goal.

We see our current position as an advantage. We have not ”rushed” our business, but carefully considered how to approach this task. This is reflected in all the choices we, as an organization, make to ultimately ensure patient safety and satisfying results for our investors.

Join our journey – from idea to launch – and help us change the world.


Read more about the DanCann Pharma IPO

DanCann Pharma A/S

Dancann Pharma fokuserar på att upptäcka, utveckla, tillverka och kommersialisera nya terapeutiska cannabinoider inom ett brett spektrum av sjukdomsområden.