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Better Buy: OrganiGram Holdings Inc. vs. Canopy Growth Corporation

By Keith Speights – Nov 17, 2018 at 7:15AM

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It's a matchup of small against big in this battle of Canadian marijuana stocks.

There arguably isn't a more intriguing matchup of Canadian marijuana stocks than the one between OrganiGram Holdings Inc. (OGI -1.42%) and Canopy Growth Corporation (CGC -7.01%). The correlation between the performance of these two stocks is really high.

The big difference, though, is in their market caps. OrganiGram's market cap of around $500 million pales in comparison to Canopy Growth's market cap of close to $11.5 billion. 

Which of these two marijuana stocks is the better buy? Here's what you need to know about how OrganiGram and Canopy Growth stack up against each other.

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Image source: Getty Images.

The case for OrganiGram

Great bang for the buck. That's probably the most compelling reason to buy OrganiGram stock.

Sure, the company currently can only produce 36,000 kilograms of cannabis on an annualized basis. But OrganiGram expects its annual production capacity will jump to 62,000 kilograms by April 2019, then up to 89,000 kilograms in August, and 113,000 kilograms by October. This should put the company in seventh place overall in terms of projected production capacity

Even better, OrganiGram's current market cap ranks it behind at least eight other Canadian marijuana stocks. The amount of capacity you get per dollar invested makes OrganiGram more attractive than many of its larger rivals.

That's not the only reason to consider OrganiGram, though. The company claims one of the highest crop yields and lowest cost of cultivation in the industry. It's not surprising, therefore, that OrganiGram secured supply agreements for the recreational marijuana markets in seven Canadian provinces, including the biggest prize -- Ontario.

OrganiGram also has made strides in expanding into international medical marijuana markets. The company teamed up with Alpha-Cannabis Pharma to enter the important German market. It bought a stake in Serbian hemp producer Eviana. OrganiGram also partnered with CannaTrek to reach the Australian medical marijuana market. 

In addition, the company's strategic investment in Hyasynth could pay off over the long run. Hyasynth has developed a process to produce high-quality cannabinoids using genetically engineered strains of yeast rather than growing cannabis plants. This approach could potentially enable the production of pure cannabinoids at a fraction of current costs. 

The case for Canopy Growth

While OrganiGram might provide a great bang for the buck, Canopy Growth probably gives the biggest bang -- period. It's the largest marijuana stock in the world in terms of market cap. And Canopy is arguably in the best position to capitalize on the growth of the global cannabis industry.

One reason why that's the case is Canopy's capacity. The company claims over 4.3 million square feet of licensed growing space. It expects to boost that total to 5.6 million square feet in the not-too-distant future. 

Canopy Growth also lined up supply agreements with all of Canada's provinces and territories that announced their supply plans. The company is in great shape to reach the retail market thanks to its Tweed retail cannabis stores and its acquisition of Hiku, which owns the Tokyo Smoke chain of retail cannabis stores.

International medical marijuana markets present even greater opportunities for Canopy -- and the company is poised to seize those opportunities. Canopy Growth has significant operations in Australia, Europe, and Latin America. Overall, the company has operations in nine countries across five continents. 

But the real feather in Canopy's cap is its relationship with Fortune 500 alcoholic beverage maker Constellation Brands. The two companies are working together to launch cannabis-infused beverages. Constellation invested $4 billion in Aug. 2018 to up its stake in Canopy Growth to 38%. 

Better buy

It's actually a tough decision between OrganiGram and Canopy Growth. In fact, it's so tough that I'm going to waffle some.

OrganiGram appears to be the better bargain. I think it could outperform Canopy Growth over the next year or two because of its more attractive valuation. 

Over the long run, though, I think that Canopy Growth will be the bigger winner. The global marijuana market is likely to grow by leaps and bounds over the next 10 to 15 years. With its tremendous capacity, its worldwide operations, its huge cash stockpile, and its close relationship with Constellation Brands, I expect that Canopy Growth will be the largest player in this market. 

I like both of these marijuana stocks. OrganiGram probably has an edge in the shorter term, while my take is that Canopy Growth will be the bigger winner over the long term. 

Keith Speights has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Constellation Brands and OrganiGram Holdings. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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