What happened

Shares of EnWave (NWVCF 2.71%) (ENW -3.85%) gained 25.4% in April, according to data from S&P Global Market Intelligence. The S&P 500 (including dividends) returned 4.1% last month.

EnWave is a fast-growing small Canadian company that produces and distributes all-natural dried cheese snacks and licenses, manufactures, and installs equipment for dehydrating organic materials -- including cannabis. 

EnWave shares are up a whopping 83.1% in 2019 through Friday, May 3, versus the S&P 500's 18.3% return over this period. The stock, which trades over the counter in the U.S., is listed on Canada's TSX Venture Exchange and Germany's Frankfurt Stock Exchange. 

Several glass jars filled with dried cannabis sitting on a table.

Image source: Getty Images.

So what

The main catalyst for EnWave stock's pop last month was the company's announcement on April 26 that it entered into a licensing deal and formed an intellectual-property partnership with Aurora Cannabis (ACB -5.25%), one of the top Canadian marijuana growers. Moreover, Aurora made a $10 million strategic equity investment in EnWave, giving it an approximate 4.91% stake. 

EnWave shares soared 13.4% that day and tacked on 24.5% in the three trading days following the news. 


Data by YCharts.

The royalty-bearing license agreement gives Aurora the exclusive rights to EnWave's patented radiant energy vacuum (REV) drying technology for the production of cannabis materials in the European Union, excluding Portugal. "Aurora has also secured exclusive license options for both Australia and South America, excluding Peru, exercisable pursuant to minimum REV machine purchase order requirements," according to the press release. "Additionally, Aurora has signed a non-exclusive sub-license to use REV technology in Canada." Canadian grower Tilray (TLRY) has the exclusive right to use and sub-license EnWave's REV tech in Canada, so it also stands to financially benefit from Aurora's using REV in Canada.

Moreover, Aurora placed a purchase order for two of EnWave's 120kW REV dehydration systems for its Aurora Sky and Aurora Sun facilities in Canada, and intends to purchase a third 120kW system for its Aurora Nordic facility in Denmark within sixty days of the agreement.

As to the intellectual-property agreement, the two companies intend "to jointly develop new innovations relating to REV technology that are applicable to the cannabis industry. All intellectual property developed ... will be owned by EnWave, but any realizable commercial value will be shared on an undisclosed basis with Aurora." 

EnWave touts that its REV technology reduces drying time from five to seven days (air drying) to less than one hour. Thus, users can bring their products to market faster and reap significant working capital savings. 

EnWave stock's robust April performance is a continuation of the momentum shares have enjoyed all year:


Data by YCharts.

Now what

If you're an investor who wants exposure to the fast-growing cannabis space and have a high tolerance for risk, you might want to put EnWave on your watch list.

In the first quarter of fiscal 2019, the company's revenue grew 73% year over year, and, as with the previous quarter, earnings per share came in at breakeven.

EnWave hasn't yet announced a date for the release of its fiscal second-quarter results, but it should be sometime late this month.