Asterion Signs DAA for $400 Million

Asterion Signs Exclusive Definitive Association Agreement for $400 Million Financing, Development and Construction

Asterion Cannabis Inc. (“Asterion” or the “Company”), announces that the Company and its wholly-owned Australian subsidiary, Asterion (Australia) Pty Ltd., (“Asterion (Australia)”), has entered into an exclusive Definitive Association Agreement (DAA) on March 30, 2020, to finalize the development, construction, maintenance and financing of the first ($400 million) phase of its facilities in Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia (“Project”) with entities within the Watpac Limited group (“Watpac”).

Watpac is a large and well-known contractor in Australia and part of the BESIX Group, a global construction, property development and concessions company.

The DAA sets out a process for the parties to rapidly enter into Design and Construct and Facilities Maintenance agreements (or agreements of similar nature). As part of the DAA Watpac will work with Asterion to finalise acceptable standard Australian commercial terms for these agreements and separately investigate opportunities for investment in the Project.

Asterion’s Chairman and CEO, Mr. Stephen Van Deventer, commented, “This is a significant milestone achieved during the current global economic uncertainty and dynamic cannabis capital markets. Watpac and Asterion are aligned in the vision to bring our facility into successful and efficient production. Together we will work to finalise acceptable standard Australian commercial terms for funding and maintenance. Over the next few years Asterion coupled with Watpac’s skillset will set benchmarks within this rapidly evolving medical cannabis industry in the pharmaceutical sector.”

Watpac’s CEO, Jean-Pol Bouharmont, commented, “We are excited to be working with Asterion on this unique, next generation project and we look forward to bringing our expertise in project development, design, detailed engineering and construction of large-scale infrastructure to their proposed new Toowoomba facility. It’s scale and unique combination of the advanced intensive horticulture and pharmaceutical grade processes and products presents an exciting opportunity for us. ”.

Asterion is currently in the process of completing a non-brokered private placement for $10 million equity at $1.50 per share with a half warrant, each whole warrant entitling the holder thereof to purchase an additional share at $2.00 per share for two years subject to an accelerator. Only accredited and sophisticated investors may participate. The proceeds of these funds will be used for operations and implementing sales of medical cannabis to registered Australian medical patients. All securities issued under the non-brokered private placement will be subject to a hold period of four months and one day in Canada.

This news release does not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of an offer to buy the securities described herein in the United States, or in any jurisdiction in which such an offer or sale would be unlawful. The securities described herein have not been and will not be registered under the United States Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “1933 Act”) or any United States state securities laws, and may not be offered or sold in the United States or to the account or benefit of a “U.S. person” (as defined in Regulation S under the 1933 Act) or a person in the United States absent registration or an applicable exemption from the registration requirements.

About Asterion

Asterion Cannabis Inc. is a Canadian medicinal cannabis company with a wholly-owned Australian subsidiary, Asterion (Australia) Pty Ltd. With its cultivation to market strategy, the company’s focus is leading and advancing cannabis agriculture, producing the highest quality, low cost, genetically uniform cannabis strains and cannabinoid products for global supply. The Australian government formally recognizes the company with a Major Project Status and the company has been granted a medicinal cannabis license, a cannabis research license, and a manufacture license from the Australian Office of Drug Control.

Led by a highly experienced team with over 200 years of combined relevant credentials spanning – North America, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia-Pacific. Management experience with large scale projects includes medicinal cannabis, renewable energy, and capital markets.

About Watpac

Watpac is a leading national construction group with operations across Australia’s East Coast and South Australia and the Northern Territory. Watpac has been part of Australia’s communities for nearly four decades and through previous entities since the 1920s. Watpac employs around 700 people, and in December 2018, Watpac became a wholly owned subsidiary of BESIX Group. BESIX is a multidisciplinary contracting company founded in Belgium more than 100 years ago. The company specialises in complex construction, infrastructure and marine works with a focus on value creation across the project lifecycle. BESIX employs around 15,000 people globally. More information is available at www.watpac.com.au

On Behalf of the Board of Directors

“Stephen Van Deventer”

Chairman & CEO

For further information, please contact:

Investor Relations

IR@asterioncannabis.com

Forward-Looking Statements:

This news release contains forward-looking statements and forward-looking information (collectively, “forward-looking statements”) within the meaning of applicable Canadian and U.S. securities legislation, including the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. All statements in this news release that are not purely historical are forward-looking statements and include statements regarding beliefs, plans, expectations and orientations regarding the future including, without limitation, the amount of the non-brokered private placement, the intended use of proceeds of the non-brokered private placement, the construction of the Project, the financial investment in the Project and provision of maintenance services following the completion of the construction of the Project by the Finance Company and the Company’s anticipated business plans and prospect of success in executing its plans. Often, but not always, forward-looking statements can be identified by words such as “plans”, “expects”, “may”, “will”, “intends”, “anticipates”, “believes”, “proposes” or variations of such words including negative variations thereof and phrases that refer to certain actions, events or results that may, could, would, might or will occur or be taken or achieved. Forward-looking statements are based on certain assumptions regarding the Company, including expected growth, results of operations, industry trends, growth opportunities, and the Company and Asterion Australia’s expectations that Asterion Australia will be granted the necessary permits and be able to continue to obtain the financing needed to complete the Project and to carry out its planned future activities, retain and attract qualified personnel and obtain and/or maintain the necessary rights or permits needed to carry out its future business activities.

Actual results could differ from those projected in any forward-looking statements due to numerous factors including, but not limited to, the inability of the Company and/or Asterion (Australia) to, among other things, successfully complete the non-brokered private placement, successfully complete the Project, obtain the required regulatory approvals and financing required for the construction and operation of the Project, execute its proposed business plans, and carry out its planned future activities. Other factors such as general economic, market or business conditions, outbreaks of infectious diseases or the occurrence of pandemics, such as the recent outbreak of the novel coronavirus COVID-19, or changes in laws, regulations and policies affecting the biotechnology or medical cannabis industry and delays in obtaining governmental and regulatory approvals, may also adversely affect the future results or performance of the Company and Asterion (Australia). These forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this news release and, unless required by applicable law, the Company assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking statements or to update the reasons why actual results could differ from those projected in these forward-looking statements. Although the Company believes that the statements, beliefs, plans, expectations, and intentions contained in this news release are reasonable, there can be no assurance that those statements, beliefs, plans, expectations, or intentions will prove to be accurate. Readers should consider all of the information set forth herein and should also refer to other periodic reports provided by the Company from time-to-time.

Readers are cautioned that forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance or events and, accordingly, are cautioned not to put undue reliance on forward-looking statements due to the inherent uncertainty of such statements.

Click here to connect with Asterion Cannabis Inc. for an Investor Presentation.

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Highlights: Peak Processing Solutions subsidiary of Althea Group Holdings has entered into agreements with BBCCC, Inc., The Boston Beer Company and WeedMD Rx Inc., a subsidiary of Entourage Health Corp. Under the product development agreement, Peak will provide research and development services including laboratory support and the testing of various product formulations and recipes, for the new line of BBC products …

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Peak Processing Solutions, a subsidiary of Althea Group Holdings Limited (ASX: AGH) (‘Peak’ or ‘the Company’) is a leading developer, manufacturer, and distributor of cannabis infused edible, topical, and concentrate products is pleased to announce that the Company has entered into agreements with WeedMD Rx Inc., a subsidiary of (TSXV: ENTG) (OTCQX: WDDMF) (‘Entourage’) and BBCCC, Inc., a subsidiary of the Boston Beer Company Inc. (NYSE: SAM) (‘BBC’).

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Sydney, Australia – Medlab Clinical Ltd an Australian biotech using delivery platforms to enhance medicines is pleased to announce the execution of a Master Services Agreement with WEP Clinical Ltd for the exclusive development and delivery of Named Patient Programmes relating to the unlicensed supply of its proprietary NanaBis and NanoCBD to patients in the UK and Europe. This Master Services Agreement is the first …

Sydney, Australia (ABN Newswire) – Medlab Clinical Ltd (ASX.MDC), an Australian biotech using delivery platforms to enhance medicines is pleased to announce the execution of a Master Services Agreement (MSA) with WEP Clinical Ltd (WEP) for the exclusive development and delivery of Named Patient Programmes relating to the unlicensed supply of its proprietary NanaBis(TM) and NanoCBD(TM) to patients in the UK and Europe.

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Gold isn't all that glitters in the land down under — silver in Australia is a major industry, and the country is home to both large and small players.

When it comes to precious metals, Australia has long punched above its weight — the nation was born riding the wave of a gold rush.

Gold isn't all that glitters through — Australia is also a major global producer of silver. It's among the 10 top producers, and was ranked seventh in 2020, with 1,300 tonnes coming from the many operational mines in the country. By comparison, the world's top producer, Mexico, produced 6,300 tonnes that same year.

Other key players in the silver market are Peru, China and Russia, which produce more silver than Australia, and the US, Argentina and Bolivia, which produce less.


Australia is sitting on quite a lot of the precious metal, with the world's second largest reserves, behind only Peru.

According to Geoscience Australia, one of the country's first mines was a silver-lead mine near Adelaide. Since then, the entire continent has been combed over with a fine-toothed comb, with deposits identified in every state and territory and active mines in every jurisdiction but one (Victoria).

Overall, Australia is well explored when it comes to silver, and since the mid-1800s it's had a constant stream of silver production. Aside from that, the country boasts metals-processing facilities in South Australia that separate the precious metal from its commonly mined counterpart metals, lead and zinc.

Silver companies in Australia

Those looking at the Australian silver market have options. There are plenty of big players with interests in Australian silver, and many smaller players for investors to consider researching too.

Most silver comes from mines dedicated to other metals — Glencore's (LSE:GLEN,OTC Pink:GLCNF) Mount Isa in Queensland produces mainly copper, zinc and lead, but silver is separated by the company's integrated processing streams. Glencore also operates the McArthur mine in the Northern Territory, which is primarily zinc, but between its copper and zinc assets, Glencore produced 7,404,000 ounces of silver in Australia in 2020 — over 200 tonnes.

Elsewhere, BHP (ASX:BHP,NYSE:BHP,LSE:BLT) produces a lot of silver as well at the Olympic Dam operation in South Australia. Perhaps best known for the production of uranium and copper, it also yields significant silver resources to the tune of 984,000 ounces in 2020 (or almost 28 tonnes).

According to Geoscience Australia data from 2016, over 20 mines in Australia produced silver in that year, while there are dozens of other resources identified in each state.

A primary producer of silver is the Cannington mine in Queensland, where South32 (ASX:S32,OTC Pink:SHTLF), a company that was spun off from BHP in 2015, mines silver and lead. Cannington is a big one, producing 11,792,000 ounces in 2020, or 334 tonnes of silver.

Tasmania boasts the Rosebery mine, which has seen 85 years of continuous operations and is currently owned by MMG (ASX:MMG,HKEX:1208). Rosebery, like all the others here, is polymetallic, and besides silver also produces copper, zinc, lead and gold. MMG also has the Dugald River mine in Queensland which also produced silver.

Getting into smaller companies, there are those like New Century Resources (ASX:NCZ) which restarted the Century mine in the Northern Territory for zinc and silver.

The future of silver in Australia

So, you get the picture — there's a lot of silver to be mined in Australia by way of mining everything else.

It's worth noting that because silver operates both as a precious and an industrial metal, and is mined most often alongside base metals, it can be pulled in many directions. However, it traditionally follows (and lags behind) its precious metal sibling, gold, making it a valuable investment commodity to keep an eye on.

Looking forward, the future of the commodity in the land down under — especially given Australia's significant reserves and operator diversity — is as bright as you'd like it, and depends on what investors are most interested in, given the by-product nature of the metal.

Don't forget to follow us @INN_Australia for real-time updates!

Securities Disclosure: I, Scott Tibballs, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

Australia took a stand against Facebook and Google earlier this year, and the move could have long-term implications for tech investors.

It was a ban that sent Australians wild and had the whole world watching.

Back in February, Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) stopped users in Australia from posting news in a week-long blackout, reacting to proposed legislation that would have forced the social media behemoth to pay publishers for content.

What prompted Facebook to "friend" Australia again, and what are the potential long-term implications of the squabble? Read on to learn what tech-focused investors in Australia should know about the situation.


Australia squares off against Facebook

On February 25 of this year, Australia's federal government passed the News Media and Digital Platforms Mandatory Bargaining Code. It was developed after extensive analysis by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, and is aimed at ensuring that news media businesses are fairly remunerated for their content.

It stipulates that digital platforms such as Facebook and Google (both named in the documentation) must pay news outlets whose content they feature — for example, if content is shared on Facebook or shows up in Google search results. The idea is that this will help to sustain journalism in Australia.

Unsurprisingly, Facebook and Google didn't react well to the code, which was first introduced in 2020.

Google didn't make any moves after it passed, but Facebook quickly made it impossible for Australian users to share news content, and pages for both local and international news organisations went blank — a major concern given the COVID-19 and wildfire concerns that were circulating at the time.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison was scathing about Facebook's decision — which he ironically shared in a Facebook post — declaring the tech giant's actions "as arrogant as they were disappointing." He added, "These actions will only confirm the concerns that an increasing number of countries are expressing about the behaviour of BigTech companies who think they are bigger than governments and that the rules should not apply to them."

Despite strong feelings from both Australia and Facebook, the dispute was resolved fairly quickly, with the country agreeing to make four amendments to the legislation and Facebook restoring Australian's access to news.

Implications for Big Tech and news organisations

Both Australia and Facebook have claimed victory in the dispute, with a Facebook representative saying the company will be able to decide if news appears on the platform — meaning it won't automatically have to negotiate with any news businesses. Changes were also made to the arbitration process.

Tech experts have pointed out that larger news companies may ultimately benefit from the changes, but smaller ones could be pushed to the side. Major publishers that have struck agreements with tech giants, such as News Corp, Nine Entertainment (ASX:NEC,OTC Pink:NNMTF), Seven West Media (ASX:SWM) and Guardian Australia, may be able to increase their market share while smaller independent players lose out.

A business that is in full support of the laws is Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT). During the conflict, President Brad Smith came out loudly in favour of Australia's law, and advised that his company is willing to step up with search engine Bing should Google and/or Facebook pull out of the Australian market.

"In Australia, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has pushed forward with legislation two years in the making to redress the competitive imbalance between the tech sector and an independent press. The ideas are straightforward. Dominant tech properties like Facebook and Google will need to invest in transparency, including by explaining how they display news content," he said in a blog post.

"The United States should not object to a creative Australian proposal that strengthens democracy by requiring tech companies to support a free press. It should copy it instead."

Global reach and tech investor impact

Six months down the road from Australia's landmark legislation, it's tough to say what the long-term impact may be.

That said, market watchers do believe the country is part of a new precedent of forcing Big Tech into paying for journalism — something giants Facebook and Google are not used to.

Countries looking to pursue similar legislation include Canada, where Facebook agreed in May to pay 14 publishers to link to their articles on its COVID-19 and climate science pages, as well as other unspecified use cases. Canada is pursuing other avenues too. Meanwhile, in France, Google said it will pay publishers for news content after the country took up new EU copyright laws that make digital platforms liable for infringements.

For investors, the takeaway is perhaps that while companies like Facebook and Google may seem too big too fail, they too can fall subject to new regulations that can change how they do business. As nations around the world look to take back control from these mega companies, it's important to be aware of possible effects on their bottom lines.

Don't forget to follow @INN_Australia for real-time updates!

Securities Disclosure: I, Ronelle Richards, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.

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