Australia’s Ecofibre’s purchase of US partner will support hemp facemask supply chain

Ecofibre Limited, an Australian manufacturer of hemp-derived CBD, food products, textiles and composites, has completed a $42 million purchase of a portfolio of manufacturing businesses in North Carolina to support the commercialization of its Hemp Black facemask and gaiter line.

The acquisition of textile manufacturing platform TexInnovate, completed ahead of schedule this week, was completed for $10.5 million in cash, $10.5 in Ecofibre shares and a future payout of up to $21 million in cash and shares over the next five years, pending TexInnovate’s achievement of $6 million in earnings before interest and tax (EBIT) for two consecutive years.

Ecofibre CEO Eric Wang said the acquisition was key in establishing the necessary infrastructure to profitably market and sell Hemp Black products.

“The acquisition completes our first strategic priority, and the team is now focused on completing integration and growing the combined business,” Wang said in a statement released this week.

At the end of April, Ecofibre announced that its Hemp Black subsidiary had started distributing facemasks across the United States to address increased demand under the coronavirus pandemic.

U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell held up a Hemp Black mask while touring an Ecofibre factory in Kentucky on Monday, advocating face coverings and social distancing to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus. The number of coronavirus cases in the United States has surpassed 5.8 million, and more than 180,000 have died, according to a New York Times database.

Ecofibre is based in New South Wales, Australia, and trades on the Australian Stock Exchange as EOF.