TORONTO Oct 6 Canadian merger and acquisition
activity in the first nine months of the year touched their
highest level since the financial crisis, buoyed by several
big-ticket deals across a range of sectors, data from Thomson
Reuters showed on Thursday.
M&A deal value jumped 17 percent to $209.7 billion in the
period, up from $178.9 billion from a year ago, according to
Thomson Reuters data. It was the best first nine months since
2007. Full-year figures will be available in January.
Morgan Stanley, Barclays Plc and Royal Bank
of Canada were the top three advisers for Canadian M&A
in the period, followed by Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan
and Bank of Montreal. CIBC took the
third position among Canadian banks.
The biggest deal of the year so far is Enbridge Inc's
planned acquisition of Spectra Energy Corp at
about $28 billion (C$37 billion). A move by Canadian fertilizer
producers Potash Corp of Saskatchewan Inc and Agrium
Inc to combine in a merger of equals was another
"Investors in the market broadly are strongly endorsing
these deals. People are very supportive of strategic M&A," said
Derek Neldner, RBC's head of Canadian investment banking, who
noted that there were several transformational deals this year.
"Fundamentally we find M&A activity is driven by confidence
- board of director and management confidence," he added.
RBC helped advise Potash Corp in its deal with Agrium, and
Enbridge in its deal with Spectra.
After a lull in recent quarters, the traditional driver of
Canadian deal activity - mining and resource M&A - has begun to
"We're starting to see a slow but steady rebound in the
resource sectors, and that generally leads to more M&A and
fundraising," said Bruce Rothney, chief executive of Barclays
"There's some evidence of a turning point in mining and, to
a degree, oil and gas."
Barclays advised Agrium and Spectra on their respective
Other highlights of the year include TransCanada's
$10.2 billion acquisition of Columbia Pipeline Group and Fortis
Inc's proposed $11.3 billion purchase of ITC Holdings
Corp, which is expected to close by the end of the year.
(Reporting by John Tilak; Editing by Bernadette Baum)