Aphria’s stock soars after reporting surprise profit, giving a boost to merger partner Tilray

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The U.S.-listed shares of Aphria Inc. shot up 17% in midday trading Thursday toward a more-than two-year high, after the Canada-based cannabis company reported a surprise fiscal second-quarter adjusted profit and revenue that rose above forecasts, citing strength in its global cannabis and consumer packaged goods businesses. The net loss for the quarter to Nov. 30 widened to C$122.0 million ($96.3 million), or 42 cents a share, from C$8.2 million, or 3 cents a share, in the year-ago period. Excluding non-recurring items, the company swung to EPS of 1 cent from a loss of 19 cents, beating the FactSet consensus for a per-share loss of 3 cents. Revenue rose 33% to C$160.5 million ($126.6 million), above the FactSet consensus of C$153.9 million. Adult-use cannabis revenue rose 149% to C$72.1 million. The average selling price of adult-use cannabis rose to C$4.29 per gram from C$4.15 per gram in the previous quarter, while the average retail selling price of medical cannabis fell to C$6.96 per gram from C$7.38 per gram. Shares of Tilray Inc. jumped 19.4%, as the company and Aphria agreed in December to a merger. The stock, which which is on track for the highest close since November 2018, has soared 98.6% over the past three months while the ETFMG Alternative Harvest ETF has climbed 72.4% and the S&P 500 has gained 9.4%.
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