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Curaleaf chairman calls allegations of his links to Russian oligarchs ‘rumours and misinformation’

Feb 28, 2022 | Media Partners, The GrowthOp

This post is presented by our media partner The Growth Op
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“To be clear: Executive Chairman Boris Jordan is an American citizen and Curaleaf is an American company,” company responds

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In a case of the Twitterverse behaving badly, some posters claimed Boris Jordan, executive chairman of U.S.-based cannabis company Curaleaf, had financial ties to Russian companies and oligarchs. The accusation is believed to have, at least in part, contributed to the company’s lower stock price on Friday.

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Curaleaf, which provides “patients with quality cannabis for health and wellness,” responded in short order. “There is misinformation circulating today. To be clear: Executive Chairman @Boris Jordan is an American citizen and #Curaleaf is an American company,” it tweeted last week.

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Jordan sent his own tweet to emphasize those points. “Curaleaf is an American success story founded by Me! Pls stop spreading misinformation, I was born in the US and live and work in the US! Our shareholder Andrei Blokh is also a US citizen,” he posted, with Curaleaf adding that Blokh is not active in the company.

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“Being of both Ukrainian and Russian descent I pray for diplomacy & a peaceful resolution that protects the lives of all citizens on both sides of this conflict,” Jordan, Curaleaf’s largest shareholder who has businesses in the U.S., Europe and Russia, later tweeted.

Despite a planned meeting between delegations representing Russia and Ukraine, fighting between the two sides has continued.

CNN quotes UN Secretary-General António Guterres as telling the UN General Assembly on Feb. 28: “The fighting in Ukraine must stop.”

Chilled by the reported move of Russia to put nuclear defences on alert, “the mere idea of a nuclear development is simply inconceivable,” Guterres reportedly said, and added that “nothing can justify the use of nuclear weapons.”

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The fighting, however, continues as Russian forces all but try to encircle Kyiv. Ukraine, though, has put up fierce resistance and managed to repel some attacks, notes BBC.

Jordan’s last Twitter post on Friday featured a peace sign and the words, “… I remain hopeful that the proposed talks will come to fruition to allow a diplomatic resolution.”

In a statement to Benzinga, Jordan framed the allegations as “rumours and misinformation spread during turbulent times. We are committed to fostering trust and transparency throughout the cannabis industry.”

According to a company statement, “the speculation on social media that the company and its major shareholders and executives will somehow be subject to any U.S. government economic sanctions now or in the future is incorrect.”

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As of about noon Feb. 28, figures on Yahoo Finance show that Curaleaf Holding, Inc. was making its way back up to US$7.04, following a Friday close of US$7.05 and a Feb. 28 opening of US$6.75.

Last year, Curaleaf Holdings, Inc. signed a definitive agreement to buy EMMAC Life Sciences Limited for $429 million in a mostly shares deal.

For Curaleaf, the proposed acquisition opens the door to the promising European market, potentially twice the size of that in the U.S. It further allows the company to build on an already developed platform that brings with it cultivation, good manufacturing practice processing, distribution and research and development across several key European medical cannabis markets.

Tweets have been known to affect stock prices in past. Elon Musk, for example, was reportedly being sued in late 2018 after his infamous ‘Tesla 420’ tweet.

This time around, the tweet contributed to shares climbing 11 per cent, but the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission “constitutes fraud for containing ‘false and misleading statements,’” The Inquirer reported at the time.

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