Named the #1 tobacco stock picker in 2013 and 2016 by Thomson Reuters/Starmine, it is no shocker that Lavery started his career in a financial analyst role at Swedish Match AB (OTC:SWMAF) (OTC:SWMAY). In addition to his industry-level experience, Lavery holds a Master of Business Administration degree from Columbia Business School and a bachelor’s degree in commerce from the University of Virginia.
Now that Big Tobacco is taking a more active role in the cannabis industry, Lavery’s knowledge of the tobacco and CPG landscapes will undoubtedly give him a unique insight into marijuana-related investments.
So far, with the global industry still in its infancy, Lavery only covers a few cannabis-related companies. Here they are in alphabetical order:
Altria Group, Inc. (NYSE:MO)
Altria, the Big Tobacco company behind brands like Marlboro, Black & Mild, and more, recently took a $2.4 billion CAD stake in globally diversified and vertically integrated cannabis company Cronos Group Inc. (NASDAQ:CRON) (TSX:CRON). As of January 8th, Lavery had an “Overweight” buy rating on shares of Altria with a price target of $64 USD per share.
Canopy Growth, the world’s largest cannabis company with operations all over the globe, was recently awarded a New York hemp license, which caused Lavery to reiterate his “Overweight” buy rating with an even higher price target of $60 USD per share.
Imperial Brands Plc (LSE:IMB) (OTC:IMBBF) (OTC:IMBBY)
Imperial Brands is another Big Tobacco company that has a bit of exposure to the rapidly-growing cannabis industry. One of their brands, Rizla, is one of the best selling rolling paper brands in the whole world. Most recently, Lavery had a “Hold” rating assigned to Imperial Brands based on slowed earnings growth.
Tilray, Inc. (NASDAQ:TLRY)
Tilray, the Privateer Holdings-backed cannabis producer that is currently serving tens of thousands of patients in ten countries spanning five continents, has relationships with Novartis on the medical side and AB InBev on the beverage side. These factors combined recently earned shares of TLRY an “Overweight” buy rating from Lavery with a $90 USD price target.
If and when other Big Tobacco companies enter the cannabis space, Lavery is already covering them. In the meantime, it looks like he is adding some pure-play cannabis companies to his watch list. Be sure to subscribe to updates here so you never miss an important development.
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