Inner Spirit Holdings bolsters position as Canada’s largest cannabis retailer

The Calgary-based cannabis retailer and franchisor started in 2017.

Spiritleaf shops serve customers coast to coast.

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Inner Spirit Holdings Ltd. has gone a long way since the cannabis company was founded in March 2017.

Cannabis has yet to be legalized then, but the Calgary-based firm had a vision of growing a retail chain across the country.

When cannabis became legal in October 2018, Inner Spirit opened its first Spiritleaf store the following month in Brooks, Alberta.

Later in that same month of November 2018, it unveiled a second one in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan.

Today, Inner Spirt operates coast to coast in 60 cities and six provinces.

On Friday (July 9), the company announced the celebration of its 100th store opening with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at its Ottawa store in the city’s South Keys neighbourhood.

In 2020, Spiritleaf stores served around 2.3 million cannabis clients.

In a media release, the company noted that its Spiritleaf chain has “developed into a retail powerhouse with more cannabis retail outlets opened than any other company in the country”.

Company president and CEO Darren Bondar was present at the event, and described the store opening at Ottawa’s South Keys as an “amazing achievement”.

“In just 33 months since legalization, we’ve opened more than 100 corporate and franchise stores from coast to coast across the country, which is one new store about every 10 days,” Bondar said in the news release.

As of July 9, Spiritleaf stores number 101 across Canada.

The same media release stated that Inner Spirit added nine new Spiritleaf stores in Ontario, Manitoba and Alberta in June and early July.

On May 5, 2021, CannCentral reported that Sundial Growers Inc., also a Calgary-based company, has entered into an agreement to purchase Inner Spirit Holdings for $130 million.

Sundial and Inner Spirit announced the deal that is expected to complete in the third quarter of this year.

The announcement came two days after Canadian cannabis companies Tilray Inc. and Aphria Inc. disclosed on May 3 that they have completed a merger.

Follow Carlito Pablo on Twitter at @carlitopablo

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