With the cannabis industry proven to be ultracompetitive and full of regulatory obstacles, consolidation has been a common tactic that can decrease costs and increase market share. With Canada leading the international market, the biggest deals are currently occurring among Canadian companies and the Financial Post just covered the finalization of the most lucrative cannabis industry deal in history:

Aurora Cannabis Inc. closed what’s likely the largest marijuana deal in history on Wednesday, acquiring rival producer MedReleaf Corp. in a transaction valued at more than $2.5 billion.

The friendly all-stock takeover, which was announced in May, will create an industry giant with large-scale cultivation capacity in Alberta and Ontario, and a presence in several other provinces.

“The closing of this transaction brings together two vertically integrated, successful pioneers in the cannabis industry, creating a company with more than 1,200 employees and a rapidly growing domestic and international footprint,” Aurora’s chief executive Terry Booth said in a press release.

This billion dollar stock deal won’t be the last blockbuster cannabis merger as such consolidating moves don’t seem to be slowing down at all. If anything well-capitalized companies taking over smaller businesses will only increase, and just as we’ve seen in literally every other industry, major mergers and takeovers will be just another part of the business.

While these billion dollar agreements are currently only occurring among Canadian-based companies, we can expect similar deals in the United States once federal prohibition ends. Who knows, it’s possible that Canadian cannabis companies listed on American financial markets, like Tilray and Canopy Growth, could decide to join forces, even before Uncle Sam gives the go-ahead on full legalization.

Learn the latest about major deals and how businesses can compete in the cannabis industry, including using capital gained from listing on the Canadian Securities Exchange at the next International Cannabis Business Conference in Portland, Oregon, this September 27th-28th. Get your early bird tickets by September 12th to save $200!