British American Tobacco said on Thursday it will buy a nearly 20% stake in Canada-based cannabis producer Organigram for about 126 million pounds ($175.81 million) as it diversifies beyond its main tobacco business.

Organigram grows cannabis and makes cannabis-derived products in Canada where marijuana was legalized in 2018.

Big tobacco and liquor companies in North America have already made large investments in the nascent industry, with cannabis seen as a less-harmful alternative to cigarettes.

And with top Democratic lawmakers in the United States also promising to decriminalize marijuana use, analysts and experts predict record investment in the industry this year.

The deal with Organigram will give BAT access to R&D technologies, product innovation and cannabis expertise, it said in a statement.

More in category

Oregon officials weigh keeping pandemic rules in place indefinitely
April 18, 2021FOX Business
Oregon officials weigh keeping pandemic rules in place indefinitely
Top European soccer clubs threaten breakaway Super League
April 18, 2021MarketWatch
Top European soccer clubs threaten breakaway Super League
The pandemic’s differing earnings effects will be on display with tech, airline reports
April 18, 2021MarketWatch
The pandemic’s differing earnings effects will be on display with tech, airline reports
Intel earnings to give first look on how shortages are affecting U.S. chip makers in 2021
April 17, 2021MarketWatch
Intel earnings to give first look on how shortages are affecting U.S. chip makers in 2021
Get ready for stock buybacks to roar back
April 16, 2021MarketWatch
Get ready for stock buybacks to roar back
Businesses are hiring and layoffs are falling, but jobs aren’t returning all at once
April 17, 2021MarketWatch
Businesses are hiring and layoffs are falling, but jobs aren’t returning all at once
These stocks are ‘cash cows’ that give you a better way to play the value sector
April 16, 2021MarketWatch
These stocks are ‘cash cows’ that give you a better way to play the value sector
Opinion: Why switching investment strategies to get a market edge only leaves you behind the pack
April 16, 2021MarketWatch
Opinion: Why switching investment strategies to get a market edge only leaves you behind the pack
Crypto for the long term: what’s the outlook?
April 15, 2021MarketWatch
Crypto for the long term: what’s the outlook?
Coinbase is a leader like Tesla, Zoom and Snowflake. Shares are worth $500, say BTIG analysts.
April 15, 2021MarketWatch
Coinbase is a leader like Tesla, Zoom and Snowflake. Shares are worth $500, say BTIG analysts.
Opinion: Long-tenured CEOs can take a business from good to great — and these companies have them
April 14, 2021MarketWatch
Opinion: Long-tenured CEOs can take a business from good to great — and these companies have them
Investor group calls for banks to set tougher climate targets
April 18, 2021FOX Business
Investor group calls for banks to set tougher climate targets
Chile has one of the world's best vaccination rates. Covid is surging there anyway
April 18, 2021CNBC
Chile has one of the world's best vaccination rates. Covid is surging there anyway
Indiana was prepared to offer Celtics’ Brad Stevens $70 million
April 18, 2021FOX Business
Indiana was prepared to offer Celtics’ Brad Stevens $70 million
Top Republican says Senate GOP could be open to smaller infrastructure bill
April 18, 2021FOX Business
Top Republican says Senate GOP could be open to smaller infrastructure bill
Minnesota Governor Calls Alleged Assaults on Journalists ‘Chilling’
April 18, 2021The NY Times
Minnesota Governor Calls Alleged Assaults on Journalists ‘Chilling’
Clubhouse closes new funding round, with valuation reportedly at $4 billion
April 18, 2021MarketWatch
Clubhouse closes new funding round, with valuation reportedly at $4 billion
European Super League announced with 12 football clubs, including six from England
April 18, 2021CNBC
European Super League announced with 12 football clubs, including six from England
Making Sense of India’s Economy
April 18, 2021Bloomberg
Making Sense of India’s Economy
2 Killed in Driverless Tesla Car Crash, Officials Say
April 18, 2021The NY Times
2 Killed in Driverless Tesla Car Crash, Officials Say
In the Roaring Twenties, Ads Make a Comeback
April 18, 2021The NY Times
In the Roaring Twenties, Ads Make a Comeback