How did the first-ever marijuana IPO in the US do on its first day of trading?

The debut gives Tilray, the first marijuana company to stage a successful IPO on a U.S. exchange, a valuation of approximately $1.4 billion.

British Columbia-based Tilray’s stock soared Thursday in the company’s first day of trading after it became the first marijuana company to complete an initial public offering in the U.S.

The company, which is majority-owned by Seattle-based Privateer Holdings and trades on Nasdaq under ticker symbol TLRY, closed up nearly 32 percent at $22.39. Tilray offered 9 million shares priced at $17 each, and more than 11.9 million shares changed hands Thursday.

“We couldn’t be…

more pleased,” said Tilray CEO Brendan Kennedy in a phone interview moments after ringing the closing bell at the Nasdaq MarketSite in New York. “It’s a landmark… in the mainstreaming of the medical cannabis industry.”

Kennedy, who is also one of Privateer Holdings’ three founders, said the company plans to use some of the proceeds from its IPO to increase production capacity across its facilities in Canada and Portugal. Some proceeds will also be used to repay Privateer, which owned approximately 83 percent of Tilray prior to the IPO.

With a valuation of approximately $1.4 billion, Tilray’s successful IPO could mean a substantial return on investment for Privateer Holdings. The firm has put more than $30 million into the marijuana company, according to Tilray’s prospectus. Kennedy said the total investment is…

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