Enertopia (CSE:TOP) (OTCBB:ENRT) is delving into a new market with tons of growth potential, with a product that is set to be among the first of its kind in the $20 billion sexual health industry.
The promise of success is evident, proven by the company's partnership with none other than Maureen McGrath, the renowned "sexpert" and the host of the popular Sunday Night Sex Show on CKNW Radio.
Enertopia announced earlier this month its move into the health and wellness sector, as plans to obtain a medical marijuana producer's license for a facility in Ontario were taking longer than originally expected.
Its first product in its new foray is called V-Love TM for women, a topical gel designed to bolster women's sexual pleasure. The active ingredients are designed to increase the blood flow to the female genitalia.
McGrath, speaking in an interview with Proactiveinvestors, says that there is currently nothing that is FDA-approved on the market for low sexual desire for women, while there are 26 medications approved for men for their sexual dysfunction
"With the slowing of the licensing process, we made a conscious effort to add to our wellness portfolio and now we offer investors one of the few opportunities to take part in sexual health via a publicly traded company in Canada with our V-Love TM offering," adds president and chief executive officer Robert McAllister.
The lubrication industry is a $1 billion industry worldwide, while the Viagra market is estimated at $4 billion, with no current female equivalent.
"A lot of women have low sexual desire and increased blood flow helps to increase swelling of a woman's clitoris and vaginal lubrication begins, enhancing pleasure," explains McGrath, who has her own private practice in Vancouver, and is a registered nurse in the field of sexual health for both men and women.
The gel, which McGrath says is a non-messy, water-based product, is completely condom compatible and will be available for sale in Canada shortly. The company handed out samples and introduced the gel at the Vancouver Wellness Show this past Valentine's Day weekend, with many asking where the product can be purchased. Women were genuinely excited about having a product to increase sexual desire, while several men said they were "thrilled" and felt it would be the best Valentine's Day Gift for them, according to McGrath and McAllister.
Enertopia's sexual health product line does not stop here. With plans to introduce the V-Love gel in Canada and the US this year, it is also planning the release of a second product in the US. This will be the V-Love gel infused with hemp oil-derived cannabidiols (NYSE:CBD), which are known to have antioxidant properties.
CBDs, which are also one of the two active ingredients of medical marijuana, can be infused into a number of products for the treatment of a wide variety of oxidation-associated diseases such as ischemic, age-related, inflammatory and autoimmune disorders. These products are not legal yet in Canada under federal law, and as such, Enertopia's V-Love TM infused gel would only be sold in the U.S.
McGrath says the CBD-infused women's gel may impact pain management, citing that 16.6 percent of women experience vaginal pain, and not necessarily during intercourse.
"Women are largely underserved in the field of sexuality and sexual health," says McGrath. "I speak to so many women that have a lack of understanding about or comfort with their own sexuality --- the discomfort with it is huge."
She explains the health benefits of an orgasm for women, which are "rarely discussed", including the release of endorphins at orgasm, which aids with pain management and sleep in addition to decreasing stress levels and reducing anxiety in women. "Sex is a natural pain reliever and your best sleeping pill, as the only side effect is pleasure," the sexual health expert emphasizes.
The company's platform, with the help of McGrath, is based on educating women about understanding sexual desire and the importance of having an orgasm as well as on sexual health in general. "Many women receive unhealthy messages such as 'sex is dirty', or not important in a marriage, when really, it is the foundation. It's very important for any relationship, especially as you navigate through the challenges of life," says McGrath
Enertopia's CEO McAllister says the company is active in researching new opportunities in the alternative health and wellness sector. "The taboos are slowly being removed, allowing people to regain their lives," he stresses, adding that everyone has to be their own personal advocate for better health.
Enertopia, with US$400,000 in the bank, says it has enough to launch its V-Love TM gel in Canada, and has already started a radio advertising campaign from which it has received a "huge initial response". Its plan is to become cash flow generating before the end of the second calendar quarter, building shareholder value from its sexual health products while it sustains the lengthy licensing process to produce medical marijuana in Canada.
Last April, the company signed a joint venture agreement for a medical marijuana grow facility in Burlington, for which a licensed producer application was submitted last July. The application is at the "enhanced screening process" stage, after which the facility is expected to move through the security screening process.
But new licenses granted from Health Canada under the new regulatory regime have been at a standstill since early last year and none have been issued since November 2014, with hundreds of applications and two pending court cases by licensees under the old system delaying expected time frames. Enertopia realized that while it pursues its applications (one in Burlington and one in Saskatchewan), it needed to take action to move forward, thus embarking on a strategic planning session last fall.
McAllister believes that the medical marijuana and health and wellness sectors are a natural fit, and that the growing sexual health market has lucrative potential. "Through our market research, we believe there is big opportunity here," he affirms.