More reporting from Cannabis Professional
Despite there being more than 4,800 submissions from more than 1,800 individuals or firms in Ontario’s retail lottery, a surprising number of recognizable names – and one recognizable address – cropped up among the 42 winners.
- 104 Harbord St. in Toronto: This was the location of CAFE, a well-known illegal dispensary. The lottery winner associated with the address is a numbered company, registered earlier this year, that lists Canadian film producer Robert Heydon as its sole director in the federal corporate registry. Mr. Heydon did not respond to requests for comment.
- Cory Floyd Cacciavillani: Mr. Cacciavillani, who won a license in Burlington, is the son of Aphria Inc. co-founder Cole Cacciavillani. The younger Cacciavillani appears to have teamed up with other people related to Aphria, including former CEO Vic Neufeld, to submit multiple applications that listed 1025 Plains Road East as the proposed retail address.
- Michele Romanow: The venture capitalist and Dragon’s Den star won a license for 619 King St. West. in Toronto, using a numbered company. Ms. Romanow and business partner Andrew D’Souza both submitted applications related to the address.
- Najla Guthrie: The CEO of Auxly subsidiary KGK Science Inc. won a license for 964 Kingston Rd. in east Toronto.
- The Serruya family: No one from the well-known retail and cannabis investing family was drawn directly in the lottery. However, three of the winning addresses were also listed on other submissions from members of the Serruya family. This suggests the family may have interests in those three winning properties. Whatever the case, the lottery was clearly a family affair: seven Serruya family members submitted 42 applications.
The final point highlights a strange aspect of the lottery: large numbers of applicants appear to have worked together to apply for the same locations. The Oshawa address that was drawn twice, 20 Simcoe St., was the address listed on 169 separate applications. Another winning address, 65 Collier St. in Barrie, Ont., was listed on 91 applications.
On average, 25 applications were submitted for every winning address.