nuEra Cannabis Becomes a Vertically Integrated Illinois Powerhouse With Ieso Acquisition

CHICAGO, Feb. 06, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — PRESS RELEASE — nuEra Cannabis, an Illinois cannabis retailer, has marked a significant expansion milestone by becoming a fully vertically integrated player with the closing of its strategic acquisition of Ieso, which holds one of only 20 full-scale cultivation licenses in the state.

The transaction brings a substantial cultivation facility located in Murphysboro, Ill., under nuEra’s umbrella, including:

  • An 85,000-square-foot facility, of which 36,000 square feet are under greenhouse and indoor cultivation, with potential expansion capabilities of up to 210,000 square feet of flowering canopy
  • A complete hydrocarbon extraction operation
  • A commercial kitchen
  • A license to transport cannabis products to dispensaries statewide

nuEra and Ieso are both pioneers of the Illinois cannabis industry, as they were original licensees from the inception of the state’s pilot medical cannabis program in 2015. Privately owned nuEra has grown and established itself as a top player in Illinois, the third-largest cannabis market in the country. Contrastingly, publicly traded companies in the cannabis space have reeled from low stock prices and unfavorable credit markets over the last year.

nuEra Cannabis Pursues Bold Multipoint Expansion Strategy in 2024

Realizing Maximum Potential with a Dispensary in Dekalb

In a bold move underscoring its growth trajectory, nuEra has also announced plans to open a new dispensary in DeKalb, Illinois, by spring 2024. This expansion is part of a larger strategy to maximize the company’s presence in the Prairie State. nuEra is under contract to reach the maximum dispensary count allowed in Illinois by year’s end, putting the family-operated company on equal footing in the state with the largest multistate operators.

Process and Product Revamps, New and Innovative Brand Plans

As part of the acquisition process, nuEra has been working with the Ieso team to revamp cultivar selection, cultivation practices, and sales and marketing strategies at the facility since early 2023.

The improvements in operations have increased cultivation yields, and the company has introduced multiple new brands and categories of products, including:

  • nuEra, its revamped premium line, which won High Times Cannabis Cup awards in both the flower and edibles categories in the summer of 2023
  • Midweek Friday, a budget-friendly line of “shareable” cannabis that recently made its debut
  • Interstate 420, which, within a few short months following its launch, was identified by cannabis data analytics firm Headset as one of the top five flower brands in Illinois and the fastest-growing brand in the state

“2023 was a year of growth and transformation for nuEra, and in this new year, we have even bigger plans in store,” said nuEra founder and chairman Bob Fitzsimmons. “Riseau, a new line of beverages, will launch in the spring; a new medically focused brand offering products with high alternative cannabinoid ratios is in the works; and we’re formulating a complete revamp of our edibles line, among many other plans.”

As nuEra transitions into this new growth phase, the company remains dedicated to its core values of quality, integrity, and community engagement. This vertical integration marks a significant step toward achieving the company’s vision of being a leading cannabis retailer and cultivator in the region.

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