The Amgen property at 4000 Nelson Road in Longmont. (Lewis Geyer, Daily Camera file)

Mystery cannabis ‘consortium’ eyeing Longmont’s biggest biz property

Updated Feb. 13, 2016 at 3:32 p.m.

Pharmaceutical interests with ties to cannabis are reported to be involved in talks to purchase Longmont’s largest commercial property: The 70-acre facility formerly home to biotech firm Amgen.

The campus was put up for sale in June for an asking price of $85 million, following the listing of Amgen’s 300,000-square-foot Boulder facility. That property was purchased for $14.6 million by AstraZeneca in September.

Greenwood Village-based Binswanger was tapped to list both properties. The real estate organization did not broker the AstraZeneca deal, senior vice president Eric Dienstbach told the Denver Post in September, but is currently marketing the Longmont property.

Dienstbach confirmed this week that at least two interested parties are involved in negotiations for the property — including one with ties to cannabis.

One interested party is “a consortium of doctors, scientists and pharmaceutical products — let’s call them natural products — that have an idea for the property that might include some by products of marijuana,” Dienstbach said. “It’s a big plan; it has a lot of moving parts to it.”

The other party is a “more typical corporate entity,” he said.

Marijuana businesses are banned within Longmont city limits, per a 4-2 vote of the city council in 2013. But production of non-psychoactive cannabidiol (CBD), a chemical compound derived from hemp plants, is not. CBD, touted for its pain-relieving and anti-inflammatory properties, is most frequently used in medical applications.

Boulder-based CBDRx last year harvested 50,000 pounds of hemp for use in “cannaceuticals.” The company has a research and development facility in Longmont, but officials said they didn’t know who the potential buyer might be.

Very few companies in the cannabis space have the capital needed to purchase the sprawling facility — unless banded together in a “consortium” — and only a handful of bigger players are working with CBD.

The unnamed potential buyer is using a local agent, Dienstbach said, and a deal is likely two to three months away.

“We still have quite a bit of discussion to go.”

Shay Castle: 303-473-1626, or

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