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ONTARIO’S RETAIL LOTTERY MESS

The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario announced the winners of the second REC retail lottery. Winners are not guaranteed licenses, and will be subject to background checks.
AGCO, Twitter—Jameson Berkow

The draw took place as planned on Tuesday, but—with no explanation—they did not release the results until the next day. After massive response to the last lottery in January, the Ontario government introduced stricter conditions this round.
Twitter—AGCO, Globe and Mail

The AGCO allowed multiple applications by different people and companies to file the same address. There were no restrictions on proximity to other REC stores.

Of the 13 winners in Toronto, five are on Queen Street. Of those, three are on Queen West, where two of the city’s five REC stores are already located. Optimists wondered whether that would make Queen West a cannabis destination. GrowthOp

Three winners in rural Toronto suburb Innisfil, population 36,566, won lottery spots at 1982, 1988, and 2008 Commerce Park Drive.

  • Lawyer Trina Fraser said, “It wouldn’t be in the regulator’s interest to have three stores located that closely together. […] They just can’t let that happen.”
    Global News

The highest profile winner was numbered company 11180673 Canada Inc, whose secured retail site was the Harbord Street location of Toronto raid-flouting unlicensed dispensary CAFE. CBC Toronto, CityNews

One location is the same spot at which former premier Kathleen Wynne’s government proposed a government-run Ontario Cannabis Store location. Noting the location was 400 metres from a public school, then aspiring premier Doug Ford raised the store during a televised debate, saying, “I won’t put [cannabis retail] beside schools like you did. It was beside a school on your watch.”
Global News

Two winners were connected with major LPs: Cory Floyd Cacciavillani, who won a spot in the Greater Toronto Area, is the son of Aphria co-founder Cole Cacciavillani, while Najla Guthrie, who won a spot in Toronto, is CEO of clinical research company KGK Science, owned by Auxly Cannabis.
Financial Post