Clarus is an idea shop. We don’t cover all sectors and we don’t cover all the names in a space. By being very select in a sector, we try to deliver the best ideas that generate the best absolute returns to investors. We have been helping our clients with ideas like these lately:
We got involved in the medical marijuana space early, some 2 ½ years ago, and have delivered extraordinary returns to investors by way of names like Aphria (APH), our first idea in the space in July 2014 had an equity value of $41 million (share price $0.78/sh) and is now $750 million (recent price $6.70/sh). We have been publicly involved with multiple cannabis related companies and have become a go-to player in the emergent space.
Our mining group has been outstanding at generating ideas like: Endeavour Mining, a deep value turnaround story, whose market cap when we initiated in February 2015 was $223 million ($5.40/sh) at writing was $2,374 million ($25.39/sh) ; Golden Predator (GPY), a new exploration play in Canada’s Yukon that is proving up a potentially major new play and Cardinal Resources (CDV-ASX) which is delineating the large Namdini play in Ghana.
In special situations we identified: CRH Medical, a gastrointestinal company in early 2015, trading at $3.62/sh ($250 million) it recently surpassed $11.00/sh (equity value $800 million); Polaris Infrastructure, a geothermal energy turnaround and growth story, in January 2016 traded at $8.05/sh ($125 million) and recently traded at $14.30/sh ($225 million) having traded as high as $18.80/sh.
Our focus on oil and gas explorers like Leucrotta Exploration whose recovery from $0.83/sh (EV $98 million) to a recent $2.40/sh ($354 million) or Yangarra Resources trading from $0.48/sh ($85 million) in January 2016 to a recent $2.64/sh ($276 million), have strongly outperformed the sector because they are not commodity price calls but fundamental reserve growth stories.
Market Upheaval in Q4 Still Provided Specialized Access
Clarus capital markets activities continued in Q4 2018 even though markets were very volatile and unforgiving. Clarus remained active with transactions for gold mining exploration companies and cannabis related companies. In the cannabis space, considerable M&A activity has emerged on the Canadian front as the market sorts out those that can deliver quality product consistently. In addition, a highly specialized new Canadian marine technology company that focuses on underwater sensors for unmanned vehicles (drones) raised funds for its expansion while a US focused medical services company raised funds for its future expansion.
Emergence of World Leading Financial Market in the Cannabis Space
While cannabis companies predominantly focused on the Canadian market were the first to emerge in the financial market, we are now seeing US focused players accessing capital on Canadian markets. Liquor companies, beverage companies, tobacco and pharma companies have begun to think about how they can play in the cannabis space. Clarus remains deeply involved having brought two new companies public (totaling $102 million IPO values) and advised another on a $300 million M&A transaction.
And let’s not forget the gold mining market. Clarus raised funds for exploration related companies and played a major role in the annual Denver Gold forum hosting multiple events with a total of 12 companies and 15 money managers.
In total, some $523 million of value was raised or advised on.
What's Happening at Clarus...
While uncertainty continues to roil most segments of the market due to trade concerns, the passage of cannabis legislation in Canada removed the final legal uncertainty for this dynamic new industry. Capital market activity in the cannabis space was widespread in June and Clarus was once again one of the leaders raising or advising on $294 million in three transactions in June alone. We also continued to be active helping to raise $50 million for new and emerging businesses in modular construction and potentially the massive new LNG market; and $10 million for a new gold mining venture. Total capital raised was $354 million for the month. (6/29/2018)