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3 Cannabis Stocks to Buy and Hold for the Next 10 Years

Motley Fool - Mon Jan 23, 2023

It can be hard for investors to see anything good in the cannabis space through all the smoke of 2022's collapsing share prices. The AdvisorShares Pure Cannabis ETF(NYSEMKT: MSOS) is down more than 70% over the past year, while the ETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF(NYSEMKT: MJ) is down more than 57%.

That doesn't mean there aren't good cannabis stocks out there. Thanks to the market's general malaise regarding the industry, at least three are selling at discounts and look likely to be great long-term holdings over the next decade: Trulieve Cannabis(OTC: TCNNF), NewLake Capital Partners (OTC: NLCP) and OrganiGram Holdings(NASDAQ: OGI).

All three cannabis companies are trading at price-to-book ratios below what their assets would bring if sold off, and at lower ratios than other large cannabis companies such as Canopy Growth and Curaleaf Holdings.

OGI Price to Book Value Chart

OGI Price to Book Value data by YCharts.

Trulieve is a sleeping giant

Trulieve has 181 dispensaries across eight states, and has the leading market share in cannabis sales in Florida, Arizona, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Over the past year, its shares have fallen by more than 71%. The company has struggled as it has digested its 2021 purchase of Harvest Health & Recreation -- a $2.2 billion acquisition -- so some share price decline may have been warranted, but not such a steep one.

In the third quarter, Trulieve reported revenue of $301 million, up 34%, year over year. It lost $115 million in net income, but once non-recurring charges for acquisitions, asset impairments, and discontinued operations are factored out, its adjusted net income was $4 million. The company also reported adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization (EBITDA) of $99 million, its 19th consecutive quarter of positive adjusted EBITDA.

Considering the strength of the company's business, it's becoming too big a bargain to pass up at a price-to-book ratio of 0.64, meaning that it trades for only 64% of what its assets are worth.

Three of the four states where Trulieve is the market share leader -- Florida, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia -- still only allow cannabis for medical use, but governments in all three could change that in the coming years. Imagine what it would do to Trulieve's bottom line if its 122 dispensaries in Florida were also able to sell recreational cannabis to adults.

NewLake keeps rising

NewLake Capital Partners may not be an overlooked gem for much longer. While shares of the cannabis real estate investment trust (REIT) are down more than 38% over the past year, they are up more than 19% over the past three months.

The company concentrates on single-tenant triple-net leases and has a portfolio of 32 cultivation facilities and dispensaries. It began operations in 2019 and went public with an initial public offering in August 2021.

The best thing about NewLake is its high-yield dividend -- around 9.3% at the current share price. The company has shown a strong commitment to maintaining its payout and raised it to $0.39 per share in the fourth quarter -- the seventh consecutive quarter it has hiked its distribution. The bump was an increase of 5.4% sequentially and 25.8% year over year. As of the third quarter, the company's adjusted funds from operation (AFFO) payout ratio was 75%, well within the safety margin for a REIT.

That dividend is sustainable because of the company's consistent growth. For the first three quarters of 2022, NewLake reported revenue of $32.6 million, up 70.9% year over year, and AFFO (a more appropriate metric than net income for a REIT) of $27.8 million, up 90.9% year over year.

It's also worth noting that NewLake trades at only 18 times earnings, a cheaper valuation than the 21 times earnings that Innovative Industrial Properties, the best-known cannabis REIT, trades for.

NewLake confidently sees long-term growth because it focuses on quality tenants in more profitable limited-license states while locking those tenants in with long-term leases with built-in rent increases. Unlike Innovative, it has never had a rent default. As more states legalize marijuana sales -- either medicinal or adult-use, NewLake gives cannabis companies an alternative for capital financing.

OrganiGram headed in the right direction

OrganiGram Holdings is one of the few thriving pure-play Canadian cannabis companies. Its stock is down more than 39% over the past year, but over the past three months, it is up by more than 9%.

The company reported its fiscal 2023 first-quarter results on Jan. 12. The biggest highlight was its 5.3 million Canadian dollars in net income for the quarter, compared to a CA$1.3 million loss in the same period last year. The company said the increase in net income was due to higher gross margins along with lower overhead and production costs. The company's highly efficient main growing facility in Moncton, New Brunswick, allows it to produce cannabis less expensively than its competitors in Canada. On top of that, the company, instead of rapidly expanding, has just slowly added revenue while keeping overhead costs down by focusing on automation in packaging.

OrganiGram also reported revenue of CA$43.3 million, up 43% year over year, and its fourth consecutive quarter of positive adjusted EBITDA at CA$5.6 million. That wasn't easy to do in Canada, where there was a glut of cannabis, keeping prices down. OrganiGram's management has kept its focus on keeping costs low while focusing on quality products, adding loyal customers as it does so.

The quarter continued a positive trend. In its fiscal 2022, the company reported revenue of CA$145.8 million, up 84% over fiscal 2021. For the year, it said it had a net loss of CA$14.3 million, compared to a net loss of CA$130.7 million in fiscal 2021.

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Jim Halley has positions in Innovative Industrial Properties and Trulieve Cannabis. The Motley Fool has positions in and recommends Innovative Industrial Properties, Organigram, and Trulieve Cannabis. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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