John Wilkin
Partner | Toronto
Toronto: 416-863-2785

John's practice focuses on domestic and cross-border mergers and acquisitions and corporate finance transactions for public companies. He regularly advises purchasers, vendors and target companies in connection with public and private mergers and acquisitions transactions, and acts for both issuers and underwriters on public offerings and private placements. He also advises Canadian and international companies on a wide range of corporate governance and securities law compliance matters.

John has significant experience in the mining, telecommunications, utilities and financial services sectors, and with issuers listed on multiple exchanges. John practised in the Firm's London office for two years, where his practice was exclusively devoted to advising on international mergers and acquisitions, and international equity and debt financings.

SELECT EXPERIENCE

Recent matters include advising:

Mergers, Acquisitions and Reorganization Transactions

  • Bell Aliant Inc. and Bell Aliant Preferred Equity Inc., and the special committee of the board of directors of each, on BCE Inc.'s C$4-billion privatization of Bell Aliant, and Bell Aliant Regional Communications, Limited Partnership on its C$2.3-billion exchange of medium term notes
  • As co-counsel to BlackBerry Limited in connection with a US$4.7-billion acquisition proposal from Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited
  • Talison Lithium Limited on its C$728-million proposed acquisition by Rockwood Holdings Inc.and the subsequent C$848-million competitive offer by Chengdu Tianqi Industry (Group) Co., Ltd.
  • Equinox Minerals Limited on its A$1.2-billion acquisition of Citadel Resource Group Limited
  • Talison Lithium Limited on its C$47.9-million acquisition and related C$40-million financing of Salares Lithium Inc. and concurrent C$327.4-million listing on the Toronto Stock Exchange
  • Bell Aliant Regional Communications Income Fund on its conversion to a corporation to form Bell Aliant Inc.
  • GrainCorp Limited on its A$757-million acquisition of United Malt Holdings, including Canada Malting Co. Limited

Capital Markets

  • Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp. on its C$1.15-billion issuance and secondary public offering of convertible unsecured subordinated debentures represented by instalment receipts
  • CI Financial Corp. on its C$450-million public offering of debentures and renewal of its C$1.5billion shelf prospectus
  • Syndicate of underwriters on the C$132-million public offering of subscription receipts of Stornoway Diamond Corporation forming part of the C$948-million financing package for the development of the Renard Diamond Project
  • BlackBerry Limited on its US$1.25-billion private placement of convertible debentures to Fairfax Financial Holdings Limited and other institutional investors
  • Bell Aliant Regional Communications, Limited Partnership in connection with the renewal of its C$1.5-billion medium term note shelf prospectus and subsequent C$350-million, C$300-million and C$400-million public offerings of notes
  • IAMGOLD Corporation in connection with its US$650-million offering of senior notes
  • Underwriters in connection with the initial public offering (IPO) of Labrador Iron Mines Holdings Limited and its five subsequent public offerings of common shares and flow-through shares aggregating approximately C$350-million
  • Avnel Gold Mining Limited in connection with its IPO and subsequent private placements, rights offering, public offering of ordinary shares, and $325-million shelf prospectus
  • Equinox Minerals Limited on its IPO and four subsequent public equity offerings aggregating C$675-million
  • Northland Resources S.A. on its C$256-million global public offering of shares
  • Bell Aliant Preferred Equity Inc. on its C$287.5-million and C$200-million public offerings of rate reset preferred shares

Advisory

  • The special committee of the Board of Directors of Teranga Gold Corporation in connection with the successful proxy contest with Mineral Deposits Limited
  • Various public companies, including Bell Aliant Inc., BHP Billiton plc, CI Financial Corp., Equinox Minerals Limited, Kazakhmys PLC, Talison Lithium Limited, Northland Resources S.A., Crescent Gold Limited and Avnel Gold Mining Limited on strategic advisory and securities compliance matters, including corporate governance, continuous disclosure obligations and shareholder meetings
AWARDS & RECOGNITION

John has been recognized in the following publications:

  • The Legal 500 Canada 2017 (Mining)
  • The Best Lawyers in Canada 2017 (Mining)
  • International Who's Who Legal 2017 (Mining)
  • Who's Who Legal: Canada 2016 (Mining)
  • The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory 2016 (Mining, Corporate Finance & Securities)
  • The 2016 Lexpert Guide to the Leading US/Canada Cross-Border Corporate Lawyers in Canada (Corporate Finance & Securities)
  • Lexpert magazine's 2011 "Rising Stars" survey as one of Canada's leading lawyers under 40
PUBLICATIONS
Show Past:
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Blakes Bulletin on Capital Markets, November 23, 2015.
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PROFESSIONAL APPEARANCES
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Speaker: TSX Listings
INDABA Mining Conference, Cape Town, South Africa, 2015.
Speaker: Public Offerings
Intensive Course in Canadian Securities Law and Practice, Osgoode Hall Law School Professional Development, Toronto, Ontario, 2007-2016.
Guest Lecturer: Overview of the Canadian Capital Markets and M&A Transactions in the Mining Sector
York University Schulich School of Business Executive Education Program for China Exim Bank, 2010-2012, 2014, 2015.
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