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Financial Services

Financial Services
Financial Services

Blake, Cassels & Graydon is a pre-eminent Canadian firm in the banking and finance space…. The firm is renowned for its involvement in especially high-value deals and is distinguished by its nationwide and international reach. Sources state: ‘If we are working on a new deal that we know will be complicated, our first call is to Blakes, knowing they will have the expertise required.’

Ranked Band 1 in Banking & Finance, Chambers Canada: Canada’s Leading Lawyers for Business 2024

Increased competition, regulatory reform and the economic downturn have challenged the financial services industry worldwide. In the current environment, it is more important than ever for financial services companies to have experienced financial services lawyers with the industry knowledge, regulatory expertise and legal acumen required to deal with their increasingly complex issues.

Blakes is acknowledged as having the preeminent Financial Services practice in Canada. We are known for our deep bench strength and industry expertise. Many of the largest and most highly regarded financial institutions and financial services providers in Canada, the U.S., Europe and Asia, as well as other non-Canadian financial organizations, regularly retain Blakes as counsel.

Our clients rely on us to assist them with:

  • A wide variety of domestic and cross-border financing transactions, including syndications, project finance, asset-based lending, trade finance, high-yield offerings, debt and debtor-in-possession (DIP) financing, warehouse facilities credit arrangements, private placements, securitizations and structured financing, subordinated debt arrangements, as well as aircraft and other equipment finance and capital markets debt offerings

  • The establishment or acquisition of financial services entities

  • The development of business and consumer loan and leasing programs

  • Compliance with the federal and provincial regulatory requirements that apply to financial services entities and their products and distribution networks

  • The purchase and sale of lease, loan and credit card portfolios and deposit businesses
  • ​First Nations finance and banking
  • Franchise finance

  • Time-share financings

  • Private credit/direct lending

  • Letters of credit

  • Securities lending

  • Financial products and services distribution arrangements

  • Outsourcing by financial institutions

We also offer our clients seamless access to the expertise of our tax, securities, insolvency, regulatory and other specialty groups as needed.

Recent Experience
  • Royal Bank of Canada on its C$13.5-billion acquisition of HSBC Bank Canada.

  • Scotiabank on the establishment of its joint venture with Cineplex, Canada’s largest movie theatre chain, and Empire, owner of one of Canada’s largest grocery networks (including Sobey’s, IGA, Foodland and Farm Boy), and the launch and expansion of the Scene+ national loyalty program.

  • Definity Financial Corporation and its affiliate McDougall Insurance Brokers Limited on their acquisition of McFarlan Rowlands Insurance Brokers Inc.

  • The Toronto-Dominion Bank, as Administrative Agent and sole Sustainability Structuring Agent, for Ivanhoe Cambridge's C$1-billion sustainability-linked credit facilities.

  • ​Killick Capital Inc. on the corporate refinancing of the Killick Aerospace Group, a leading provider of commercial and business aircraft parts and engine solutions.

  • ​CIBC on a C$1-billion sustainability linked credit facility in favour of Northland Power Inc.

  • ​CIBC on a C$100-million senior unsecured revolving credit facility established in favour of Parkpool.

  • ​WELL Health Technologies Corp. on its C$200-million senior secured credit facilities in support of its C$266-million acquisition of MyHealth Partners Inc.

  • ​Intact Financial Corporation in connection with its proposed C$12.3-billion acquisition, together with Tryg A/S, of RSA Insurance Group Plc and related private placements of C$4.45-billion of subscription receipts.

  • The lender on a C$100-million secured term credit facility to Sienna Senior Living Inc.

  • Investors Real Property ​Fund on the financing from Otéra Capital Inc. of 55 University Avenue, an 18-storey office building located in Toronto’s financial district.

  • AST Investor Services Inc. (Canada) on its C$165-million acquisition by TMX Group Limited.

  • ​TC Energy Corp. on its sale of a 65 per cent equity stake in the Coastal GasLink Pipeline Project to KKR and AIMCo and the concurrent execution of a credit agreement providing non-recourse project-level financing to fund the majority of construction costs for the project.

  • ENMAX Corporation in connection with the establishment of bridge credit facilities in favour of ENMAX for the approximately US$1.3-billion acquisition by ENMAX of Emera Marine.

  • Global Payments Inc. in its acquisition of the merchant acquiring business and portfolio of 40,000 merchants of Desjardins Group.

  • Equinox Gold Corp. on its US$578-million all-stock acquisition of Leagold Mining Corporation and concurrent private placement of US$170-million and debt financing of US$500-million.

  • Republic Financial Holdings Limited on its acquisition of Scotiabank (British Virgin Islands) Limited from The Bank of Nova Scotia.

  • TC Energy Corporation on the sale of an 85 per cent equity interest in Northern Courier Pipeline to AIMCo and, in conjunction with the sale, the financing of long-term, non-recourse debt, with projected aggregate gross proceeds to TC Energy of C$1.15-billion.

  • Cronos Group Inc. in connection with the C$2.4-billion strategic equity investment in Cronos Group by Altria Group, Inc.

  • Power Financial and Power Corporation on their and Great-West Lifeco’s substantial issuer bids totalling C$5-billion.

  • Subversive Capital Acquisition Corp. on its US$575-million initial public offering​.

  • Bespoke Capital Acquisition Corp. on its US$350-million initial public offering as a newly organized special purpose acquisition corporation.

  • TransCanada Corporation on its US$13-billion acquisition of Columbia Pipeline Group Inc.

  • Cenovus Energy Inc. in connection with its C$10.5-billion acquisition bridge credit facility, the largest energy asset acquisition undertaken in Canada.

  • The lenders on the financing of the C$8.5-billion Sturgeon refinery project being developed by North West Redwater Partnership.

  • MBNA Canada Bank on its C$8.5-billion credit card portfolio sale to The Toronto-Dominion Bank.

  • A Canadian bank in connection with its C$5-billion medium term notes (principal at risk structured notes) program and US$6-billion structured note program.

  • Kinder Morgan Canada Limited in connection with the establishment of a C$4-billion revolving construction credit facility for the purpose of funding the development, construction and completion of the Trans Mountain expansion project.

  • The DIP agent on the US$2.3-billion DIP facility to Toys “R” Us Canada and its U.S. parent.

  • MCAP Financial Corporation on its C$1.5-billion mortgage purchase from Home Trust Company.

  • Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, as agent, in connection with credit facilities totalling C$1.5-billion for Northland Power Inc.

  • WillScott Corp. in the amendment of its US$1.425-billion revolving credit facility related to its acquisition of Modular Space Holdings, Inc.

  • Syndicate of lenders in connection with the establishment of credit facilities in favour of Wolf Midstream Inc. to finance (on a project financing basis) its acquisition of a 50 per cent ownership interest in the Access Pipeline from Devon Energy Corp. for C$1.4-billion.

  • Nouvelle Autoroute 30 in connection with a cross-border bond issuance valued at approximately C$1.218-billion to refinance the project debt for the Autoroute 30 concession project.

  • Canadian Imperial Bank of CommerceThe Toronto-Dominion Bank and Bank of Montreal, as co-lead arrangers, in connection with the C$1.07-billion amended and restated credit facility for Toromont Industries Ltd. to finance its acquisition of the Hewitt Group of Companies.

  • The Toronto-Dominion Bank, as lead arranger, in connection with the C$1-billion and US$500-million credit facilities for Parkland Fuel Corporation to finance its acquisition of Chevron Canada's downstream fuel business in B.C. and Alberta.

  • Jarislowsky, Fraser Limited on its C$950-million purchase by Scotiabank of all equity interests in Canada's third-largest independent investment manager.

  • Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, as agent, in connection with credit facilities totalling C$900-million for Richardson International Limited.

  • Aareal Bank AG in connection with a C$716-million syndicated financing for a group of Canadian hotels, the largest (by number of properties) hotel financing in Canada, covering a portfolio of 23 hotel properties across the country.

  • Canadian Tire Corporation on its agreement with Scotiabank regarding a strategic partnership that will see Scotiabank acquire a 20 per cent equity interest in Canadian Tire’s financial services business for C$500-million in cash.

  • CI Financial Corp. on its acquisition of a majority stake in WealthBar Financial Services Inc.

  • Stored Value Solutions, a subsidiary of FleetCor Technologies, Inc., on its acquisition of Buyatab Online Inc., as part of its expansion in the emerging digital-gifting space.

  • The Bank of Nova Scotia on the sale of the business and assets of Roynat Lease Finance, a division of its subsidiary Roynat Inc., to Meridian Credit Union Limited.

Awards & Recognition

Recognized as Law Firm of the Year for Banking & Finance Law by The Best Lawyers in Canada 2022

Blakes is ranked No. 1 in the M&A league tables for financial services for 2021 announced by deal value (Bloomberg)

Blakes Financial Services lawyers have been recognized as leaders in their field in the most recent editions of the following publications:

  • Chambers Canada: Canada’s Leading Lawyers for Business (Banking & Finance – Nationwide Canada, Banking & Finance: Financial Services Regulation – Nationwide Canada, Insurance: Dispute Resolution – Nationwide Canada, Insurance: Transactional & Regulatory – Nationwide Canada, Project Finance – Nationwide Canada and Transportation: Aviation: Finance – Nationwide Canada)

  • Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business (Banking & Finance – Canada, Banking & Finance: Financial Services – Canada and Capital Markets: Securitisation – Canada)

  • The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory (Blakes is “Most Frequently Recommended” in Banking & Financial Institutions every year since the directory’s inception in 1997. Also, “Most Frequently Recommended” in Asset Equipment Finance/Leasing, Asset Securitization, and Project Finance. Also recommended in Derivative Instruments.)

  • The Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada (“Most Frequently Recommended” in Banking & Financial Institutions, Asset Securitization and Project Finance)

  • Lexpert Guide to the Leading US/Canada Cross-Border Corporate Lawyers in Canada (Financing)

  • IFLR1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial and Corporate Law Firms (Banking, Financial Services Regulatory and Project Finance)

  • The Legal 500 Canada (Banking and Finance, Insurance and Transport: Aviation)

  • Who's Who Legal: Banking (Finance, Fintech and Regulatory)

  • Who's Who Legal: Canada (Aviation, Banking, Insurance & Reinsurance and Project Finance)

  • Who's Who Legal: Insurance & Reinsurance

  • Who's Who Legal: Project Finance

  • Who's Who Legal: Transport – Aviation Finance

  • Legal Media Group’s Guide to the World’s Leading Banking, Finance and Transactional Lawyers (Banking, Insurance and Reinsurance, Project Finance, Structured Finance and Securitisation and Women in Business Law)

  • The Best Lawyers in Canada (Asset-Based Lending Practice, Aviation Law, Banking and Finance Law, Derivatives Law, Equipment Finance Law, Project Finance Law and Structured Finance Law)