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Aurora Cannabis Plans to Complete Construction of Aurora Sun Despite Layoffs

By David Jagielski - Feb 10, 2020 at 4:15PM

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Earlier this month, the cannabis producer announced that it would be cutting 500 jobs.

Aurora Cannabis (ACB 4.11%) confirmed last week that the company is not abandoning the development of its Aurora Sun facility in Medicine Hat, Alberta. Despite announcing that it was laying off 500 employees and that its CEO Terry Boot was resigning, Medicine Hat's Mayor Ted Clugston said he spoke with the company and that the facility is still a priority for Aurora. 

Aurora did not offer an update via press release on the facility but the mayor said in a news report, "The place still is under construction and they do intend to finish the six bays that they always intended to finish which was in their November announcement."

Aurora initially announced in November that it would halt construction on two of its facilities in order to save cash. The company expected to save as much as 110 million Canadian dollars by deferring the construction of Aurora Sun and another CA$80 million from halting construction on Aurora Nordic 2 in Denmark.

Cannabis greenhouse.

Image source: Getty Images.

Construction is now just a fraction of the initial size

Aurora initially planned for Aurora Sun to reach 1.6 million square feet in size with a production capacity of more than 230,000 kg per year. 

With just six growing rooms now planned, only 238,000 square feet of the greenhouse space will likely be operational this year. However, the company hasn't ruled out developing the remaining space but it will depend on demand. 

The cannabis company was expecting things to have gone better but in September, after failing to reach its goal of being profitable by the fourth quarter of fiscal 2019, Aurora pushed those targets back until fiscal 2020, blaming its disappointing results on the lack of pot shops in Canada. 

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