Rua Bioscience chairman Trevor Burt says the outcome of the cannabis referendum should not have an impact on the NZX debutant, regardless of the outcome.
Shares in the medicinal cannabis company listed on the NZX at a healthy premium, trading at one point at 75c from its 50 cent issue price.
The stock last traded at 67c.
Tairāwhiti-based Rua Bioscience is the first full equity listing since Napier Port's debut on the exchange early this year and the first to have originated from a Māori community.
The only other listed medicinal company is Cannasouth, which joined the NZX in June last year.
The Rua offer was for 40 million shares at 50 cents per share, accounting for a total 28.6 per cent stake in the company.
The company aimed to raise $20 million through the IPO, giving the overall business an implied value of $70m.
Rua is chaired by Trevor Burt, who has previously served on the board of PGG Wrightson and several other entities, including the South Island's Ngai Tahu Holdings.
There was not a lot of clinical evidence around as to the efficacy of medicinal cannabis, Burt said, but there was a mass of evidence that suggested that it could be used for the treatment of spasticity and pain.
"That's the opportunity," he told the Herald.
He said the "art" would be in applying certain types of cannabis cultivars to certain medical conditions.
"Our focus will be on the genetics and the seed IP that we are developing," he said.
"That's where the future lies, as opposed to big warehouses of cannabis plant that have been chopped up and sold."
So does a yes or no result from the referendum - the results of which are due out next week - mean anything for Rua?
"No it does not," he said.
"And we have no intention at all of going into that commercial market," he said.
"It's a bit of noise more than anything," he said.
"I would like to see it go away so that we can get on and focus on what we are about."
While listings have been rare in recent times, NZX chief executive Mark Peterson said he was optimistic about more issues coming to the market.
"We feel good about what is in front of us," he said.
Peterson said there was no doubt retail share trading platforms like Sharesies were playing a part in support for stocks like Rua.
"Sharesies has brought a completely different dimension to the market and I think that that is really healthy."
Rua was established in 2017 in part to support local economic development in Te Tairāwhiti (East Coast) region.
It was the first company in New Zealand to obtain a licence to cultivate cannabis for research purposes.
"Rua will operate in the research, cultivation, extraction and manufacturing parts of the medicinal cannabis supply chain," the company's offer document says.
Proceeds from the offer will be used to fund investment in Germany and other international target markets, including potential investment in New Zealand branding for those markets, it said.
A quarter of the 25 per cent of shares were allocated through a priority offer for Tairāwhiti residents, Waiapu Investments Shareholders and other people closely associated with the business.
The company held its listing ceremony simultaneously across two locations; at the NZX in Auckland and at Uepohatu marae in Ruatoria.
As the RUA ticker went live on the main board at 11am, in place of the traditional ringing of the bell, co-founder Panapa Ehau blew a conch shell in Ruatoria, to mark the start of trading.
Co-founders Manu Caddie and Panapa Ehau said in a statement the milestone was a testament to the Tairāwhiti and Ruatoria communities who have supported the company.
"Rua's community is at the heart of its journey and success, and it is important for us to acknowledge those people who have been there from the beginning; we have built community into the DNA of Rua, and are committed to continuing to attract more talent back to the region, and create economic development opportunities for Tairāwhiti," they said.