As recently as this May of 2018, Cura Cannabis was at the peak of Oregon’s robust cannabis industry. They were set up to sign a $1 billion deal with Curaleaf, a Massachusetts company. This monster acquisition would have left the Portland cannabis provider as one of Oregon’s only companies with a $1 billion valuation.
By fall of that year, though, Cura Cannabis found itself facing a major setback.
In the fall of 2018, the company sold over 180,000 units of its flagship product, Select Elite cartridges. During the release, Cura Cannabis was adamant in claiming that the products contained 100 percent cannabis.
However, an Oregon Liquor Control Commission investigation challenged such claims. Investigators found that the cartridges contained additional terpenes from various plants.
Making matters worse was the fact that the cartridges were sold during a temporary terpene ban implemented by Gov. Kate Brown. While selling products with inaccurate content descriptions is illegal on its own, the sale of the products during the ban led to the OLCC taking the matter seriously.
Paying The Price
As a result of the investigation, Cura Cannabis issued an apology and instigated a recall of the products. Months later, on January 30, they paid a $110,000 fine to the OLCC, $100,000 for not acknowledging additives and $10,000 for dishonest practices.
The fine dealt a significant blow to Cura Cannabis, both financially and in terms of PR. However, the settlement with the OLCC cleared the way for the company to complete its sale to Curaleaf. Unfortunately, the deal had wound its way down to $400 million by this point.
Now, just days after the fine and acquisition, Cura Cannabis is facing a new lawsuit. Tom and Elena Powers, a Portland couple, are demanding that Cura Cannabis relinquish all profits for the illicit products.
Michael Fuller, the attorney who filed the suit, believes that the case will come to court within the coming year. According to Fuller, the final ruling could result in Cura Cannabis paying damages exceeding $37 million.