MGC Pharma – One of Australia's Brightest Biotech Companies

MGC Pharmaceuticals is an industry-leading, European biotech company supplying GMP Phytocannabinoid-derived medicines. 

The company operates within a "seed-to-pharmacy" model, which essentially means they start with research and development, then cultivate, produce, and finally sell the medicinal cannabis products they've developed.

The company essentially operates two divisions with one focusing on research and the other focusing on cultivation, production and distribution. Product development happens in-house and from there, vertical integration takes it from concept to customer.

MGC Pharmaceuticals
Source: Company Presentation

MGC Pharma is truly a global cannabis company. Headquartered in Australia, with a European head office in the United Kingdom (where they aim to list on the London Stock Exchange later this year), they also have a primary operation based in Malta, with their research base operating out of Slovenia. Oh, and they also have a science and research team in Israel, which is globally recognized as being at the tip of the medicinal cannabis spear.

The company listed on the ASX in 2016 and went through a rocky-patch early on as they struggled to find the right team to execute what was a questionable strategy. However, in the past 12 months, this has significantly changed. 

Presently the company has two operational facilities in Malta and Slovenia, three developed products already in the market (with over 400 registered medical patients to date), and a pipeline of potential products currently in development.

The Malta Hub

MGC Pharma was one of the first companies to sign a long-term lease agreement for the development of a fully-integrated GMP compliant medical cannabis production facility in Malta. The vertically-integrated operational hub will include cultivation, production and manufacturing capabilities to produce their unique cannabis-derived medicines for global distribution. There will also be an on-site research and development facility to advance the next generation of genetic IP.

MGC Pharmaceuticals
Source: Company Presentation

Malta is the ideal location for the facility, as it provides an almost perfect cultivation climate with the ability to harvest up to three times a year. In addition, Malta also provides access to existing operational and distribution pipelines in Europe with direct access to key emerging markets through the FDA Mutual Recognition agreement signed with Austria, Croatia, France, Italy, Spain, Sweden and the UK.

Their distribution capability is also impressive.

MGC's main distribution partner is Lenis, who provides added value products in niche therapeutic areas and the distribution of innovative pharmaceutical products and generic pharmaceuticals with a limited number of competitors.

Although Lenis dominates their European distribution, they also have Grow Biotech, Mexacare, and AM Mangion assisting them in this area, with AM Mangion also distributing their products to Africa and Asia. And in Australia, they have distribution agreements with Health House (covering Western Australia), and Cannvalate (Australia's largest distribution network with over 1,000 doctors and 600 pharmacies) who cover the East coast.

The Product Range


Their lead asset is CannEpil which is an oral oil solution to treat seizures associated with drug-resistant epilepsy, which accounts for approximately 30% of the people diagnosed with epilepsy. CannEpil is currently authorized to be prescribed in Australia and UK through early patient access schemes, and with over 500,000 epilepsy patients in the UK, and 250,000 epilepsy patients in Australia, this is a significant target market for the company's drug. Currently, in a Phase IIb study, the results of the trial are due for release in Q1 2021.


CogniCann is MGC's second asset designed to improve dementia and Alzheimer's patients' quality of life.  Produced from two proprietaries, preselected, specifically bred genotypes of the cannabis plant with a stable and specific ratio of cannabinoids. Besides THC and CBD, CogniCann™ contains a minor amount of additional specific cannabinoids and terpenes from the cannabis plant that are working synergistically with CBD and THC to maximize efficiency.

CogniCann is currently authorized to be prescribed in Australia and UK through early patient access schemes, and with over 800,000 dementia patients in the UK, and 400,000 dementia patients in Australia, this is another significant total addressable market for the company. The dug is currently in a Phase IIb study with results due in Q3 next year.


InCann is a bioactive Capsule for symptoms of Crohn's disease and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). Currently, the latest research and results are based on observational research in Israel and pre-clinical trials on humans in Europe. An official clinical trial program will be initiated in Q2 next year.

The company is also aggressively undertaking additional research and development for medicines that leverage cannabis formulas through successful trials in Europe and Australia. These include CepaCann for the treatment of Cerebral Palsy and a range of Oncological drugs for the treatments of various cancers.

RMIT Australia Cannabis
RMIT Campus – Melbourne Australia

MGC Pharmaceuticals has also partnered with RMIT to develop CannaHub, a digital research hub for the application of Phytocannabinoid derived medicines including the International Library of Cannabinoids (the world's first library of cannabis medicine where details of medical cannabis clinical research, cannabinoid sequences and their treatments can be found). CannaHub provides an interface connecting doctors and patients with clinical research and information on cannabinoid sequences and their potential treatments

The company also has a strategic alliance with Australia's leading epilepsy association, Epilepsy Action Australia (EAA). MGC products will be introduced by EAA to members, and the two companies will collaborate on developing campaigns to increase awareness and access to medication.

Disclaimer: Past performance is not an indicator of future performance.

Disclaimer: Past performance is not an indicator of future performance.

Why MGC Pharmaceuticals?

Built on decades of experience with a technical team of globally-recognized scientists and doctors. This is a biotech with an experienced team that has the right skills to deliver. They have focused operation with two core divisions; research & development, and manufacturing and distribution allowing this vertically-integrated seed-to-pharma company to continue to bring newly researched assets to market.

The company is also very strategically located with operational bases close to key markets supported by corporate headquarters, particularly in Europe. And finally, a portfolio of established and upcoming products that have a very broad total addressable market, which could yield commercial IP for many years to come.

The old adage of "it doesn't matter how you start, it's all about how you finish" is very applicable to MGC Pharmaceuticals. After a rocky start, with management changes and a badly told story, the company lost its way for a while. However, 12 months later they have emerged as one of Australia's most exciting cannabis biotechs.

This is one to watch closely.

To learn more about MGC Pharma, visit their Company HQ.

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Mark Bernberg
Mark Bernberg

Mark Bernberg is a long-time cannabis investing enthusiast and founder of The Green Fund, Asia Pacific's preeminent media house, positioned at the forefront of the global cannabis industry.

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