Please join us – at your convenience – for a new series of podcasts on private equity and midmarket M&A, with a focus on Canada. In these concise 15-minute segments, a wide range of industry participants discuss the deal market trends that they've been seeing. The host and originator of the series is Mario Nigro, M&A partner at Stikeman Elliott in Toronto.

Episode 15 – In for the Duration: Today's Midmarket from the Perspective of a Long-term PE Investor.

With Andrea Nickel, Managing Director, Celina Capital Corp., Toronto
Andrea Nickel of Celina Capital joins Mario Nigro to discuss Celina's experiences during the pandemic. Founded in 2017, Celina is a long-term midmarket value investor that partners with management teams, generating results in the form of cash flow rather than quick exits. Business in the first half of 2021 has been brisk, as the pandemic continues to spur seller activity across all sectors. While interest rates are a wild card, Andrea believes that the market is likely to remain robust for the foreseeable future. Spotify | Apple Podcasts  (iTunes) | SoundCloud

Episode 14 - Canada's Midmarket: Accelerating Growth as Available Capital Increases

With Stephen Jakob, Founder and Managing Partner, Osprey Capital Partners, Toronto

This podcast features Stephen Jakob, co-founder of Osprey Capital Partners, advisors to families and shareholders selling mid-sized businesses. Over the past 20 years, growing private equity activity has substantially increased available capital in Canada's midmarket. According to Stephen, the pandemic has only exacerbated this trend, as numerous search funds, unfunded sponsors and U.S. funds join the hunt for Canadian acquisitions, with bidding wars now commonplace for even relatively small businesses.

 

 

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Episode 13 - Financial Diligence: A View from the Front Lines

With Damiano Peluso, Partner, Transaction Services, KPMG, Toronto

Damiano Peluso of KPMG joins Mario Nigro to discuss how financial due diligence has been affected by the pandemic. Some of the changes are practical, such as fewer face-to-face meetings and an inability to work on-site. Others are more substantive, as advisors develop new approaches to disentangle COVID-related issues from those that reflect longer-term strengths and weaknesses in the seller's business. Looking forward, Damiano sees continuing strength in the M&A market over the next 12 months.

 

 

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Episode 12 - Private Equity and the North American Distribution Sector

With Jay Greyson, Co-Founder and Partner, Supply Chain Equity Partners, Tampa, FL

Our guest on this podcast is Jay Greyson of Tampa-based Supply Chain Equity Partners (SCEP), the only North American PE firm that invests exclusively in the supply chain/distribution sector. Jay discusses how pandemic-related disruptions, baby-boomer retirements and impending capital gains tax changes in the U.S. are bringing many companies to market. Canada is a significant part of SCEP's portfolio and the firm continues to pursue opportunities north of the border.

 

 

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Episode 11 - Canada's Growing Midmarket Tech Sector: Insights and Outlook

With Shivalika Handa, Managing Director, PwC Corporate Finance

Shivalika Handa, a corporate finance advisor and leader of PwC Canada's technology transactions group, joins Mario Nigro in this podcast. From a technology M&A perspective, the pandemic sharply accelerated a longer-term trend of international investor interest in Canada's tech sector, including the country's fintech, healthcare and AI clusters. Shivalika notes that this improved access to foreign capital has lessened pressures to relocate to the U.S., with the result that Canadian tech companies are growing in place, producing more midmarket players and new M&A opportunities.

 

 

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Episode 10 - Pandemic Selling: An Investment Banker's Perspective on Canadian Midmarket M&A

With Christian Davis, Managing Director, Midmarket Investment Banking Group, CIBC

In this episode, Mario Nigro speaks with CIBC's Christian Davis about the trends he's seeing in Canadian midmarket M&A. The remarkable sell-side strength of the pandemic era appears to be based on a combination of long-term and pandemic-specific factors. In Christian's view, activity is likely to remain robust over the medium term, with rising inflation being one "red flag" that he and his team are watching closely.

 

 

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Episode 9: PE Investing in Residential Real Estate Development

With Sasha Cucuz, CEO of Greybrook Securities, Toronto

Sasha Cucuz joins us to discuss private equity in the real estate context. His company, Toronto-based Greybrook Securities, makes private equity investments in residential real estate development projects in Southern Ontario and across North America. Greybrook is actively involved in managing the projects in collaboration with developers. Sasha provides his insight into the direction of the residential real estate market and discusses new opportunities, notably in the area of healthy building interiors, that have emerged during the pandemic.

 

 

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Episode 8: Bridging the Small Business "Tech Gap": A Unique Investment Approach

With Dr. Afsheen Afshar, Founder and Managing Member of Pilot Wave Holdings

Our guest in this podcast is Dr. Afsheen Afshar, founder of New York-based Pilot Wave Holdings. Focusing on smaller midmarket companies, Pilot Wave invests not only capital but also AI and other advanced technology expertise into its portfolio businesses. As an MD/PhD from Stanford University, Afsheen spent a number of years leading the data science divisions of top U.S. financial firms before moving into his current role. His recent experience includes Pilot Wave's first deal in Canada, which he and Mario Nigro discuss before turning to the overall state and direction of the deal market.

 

 

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Episode 7: Turning a Regional Canadian Business into a Continent-wide Innovator

With Rob Cherun, CEO of Stealth Monitoring

In this podcast, Mario Nigro is joined by Rob Cherun, an Ottawa native and CEO of Stealth Monitoring, a success story of Canadian entrepreneurship. They discuss the company's expansion from regional business to significant player in the U.S. and Canadian commercial video surveillance markets, as well as its future possibilities.

 

 

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Episode 6  – Private Equity Without a Permanent Fund: The Argyle Capital Approach

With Mark MacPherson, Co-Founder and Partner, Argyle Capital Partners Inc., Toronto

Mark MacPherson is co-founder and partner of Argyle Capital Partners Inc., a Toronto-based midmarket firm. In this podcast, he and Mario Nigro discuss Argyle's approach of raising capital for each specific deal rather than creating a pool of committed capital and finding ways to deploy it, as well as the company's response to the pandemic.

 

 

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Episode 5: Opportunities at the Lower End of the Midmarket

With Glen Silvestri, Sage Capital Partners, Toronto

Glen Silvestri, co-founder and managing partner of Toronto-based Sage Capital Partners, joins us to discuss his company's experiences as an investor in businesses at the lower end of the Canadian midmarket. While there are challenges to working in this neglected market niche, there are also many rewards.

 

 

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Episode 4: Investing in Canada during the Pandemic: A U.S. Private Equity Perspective

With Chip Chaikin, Partner, Blue Point Capital Partners, Cleveland, Ohio

Chip Chaikin, whose Ohio-based firm is about 20% invested in Canada, discusses the challenge of looking for deals and managing relations with portfolio companies across a closed border and refers to some of the differences in the pandemic response in Canada and the United States.

 

 

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Episode 3: Midmarket/Entrepreneurial M&A Advisory in the Pandemic

With Alan Chettiar, Partner, M&A Advisory, FirePower Capital

Alan Chettiar discusses the resilience he has seen, as an advisor to midmarket entrepreneurs, over the past year. The software sector has been strong throughout the period and most other sectors are now back on track, as buyers begin to price deals on a post-Covid basis.

 

 

Spotify | Apple Podcasts (iTunes) | SoundCloud

Episode 2: Midmarket Lending: A Banker's Perspective

With Ross Thomas, District VP, TD Commercial Banking, Mississauga, Ont.

Ross Thomas is involved in midmarket lending and discusses what he has been seeing in the Mississauga-Etobicoke (Toronto-area) market, which is home to many industrial and logistics companies, during the pandemic. Transition management and succession planning have continued to be busy.

 

 

Spotify | Apple Podcasts (iTunes) | SoundCloud

Episode 1: Evolution of Representation and Warranty Insurance

With Sean Flinn, VP and Co-head, M&A Practice, BFL Canada

 

Sean Flinn joins us to discuss how RWI is used in transactions involving PE firms and how Canada is following the lead of other countries in using it in a wider range of situations.

 

 

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