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31 January 20225 minute read

DLA Piper support Leafy Tunnel on Europe's first cannabis and psychedelics fund launch

DLA Piper Cannabis practice has advised Leafy Tunnel on the first closing of its Guernsey-based fund, established to invest in both medicinal cannabis and psychedelic companies; the first of its type in Europe.

The investment strategy of the fund will focus on European medicinal cannabis and global medicinal psychedelics opportunities, investing in companies at the Seed and Series A stage. The USD30-million fund plans to invest in 15 companies and has already made seven investments across the fund’s investment strategy. These include Beckley Psytech, Tetra Pharm Technologies, Iuvo Therapeutics, Maya Health, Prohibition Holdings, Tactogen and Ceretype.

The DLA Piper team advised on the fund formation, certain investments of the fund, financial and life sciences regulatory elements, while acting as lead counsel, coordinating all stakeholders and other advisors. DLA Piper continues to support Leafy Tunnel on its investment strategy.

The team was led by Co-Head of the Cannabis practice and Corporate senior associate, Dylan Kennett, alongside Corporate Funds senior associate, Sam Whittaker. The wider team included Corporate partner Jonathan Powling and Corporate Funds associate Charlotte Baker, and partners Laura Ford (financial regulatory issues), Richard Taylor (life sciences regulatory) and Matt Davies (Tax).

Commenting on the transaction, Dylan said:

“It is very encouraging to have worked with Leafy Tunnel on the launch of the first successful fund of this type in Europe. Alongside the UK, Guernsey will play a vital role in facilitating the growth of cannabis and psychedelic medicines in the near future and this transaction represents another building block in the establishment of these markets. It’s great to see more institutional capital come into the space, thus accelerating the progress a number of these companies are making; funding them with the right capital at the right time. We look forward to continuing to advise Leafy Tunnel and to help other companies, investors and stakeholders grow in this exciting and dynamic space.”

Leafy Tunnel Co-Founders, Nikolay Tretiyakov and Bek Muslimov, said:

“The DLA Piper team was central to the fund formation process. Dylan, Sam, Charlotte and the rest of the DLA Piper team played a vital role throughout the fund establishment process by coordinating the fund launch with all of the advisors and assisting the Leafy Tunnel team with the drafting of the fund formation documents, tax advice as well as advice in relation to the fund’s investments. We are grateful to their team for the support and immense expertise that they brought.

Medical cannabis and psychedelics are being increasingly recognised for their superior safety and efficacy compared to conventional pharmaceuticals and Leafy Tunnel is excited to have embarked on the mission to address these urgent healthcare challenges and rally investors looking to capitalise on financial opportunities these medicines hold.”