RBC top adviser on Canadian equity issues in blowout first half
By John Tilak and Euan Rocha
TORONTO (Reuters) - Royal Bank of Canada RY.TO was the top adviser on Canadian equity issues in the first half of 2015 as acquisitions and the energy industry's need to strengthen balance sheets fueled record high deal flow, according to data from Thomson Reuters.
The investment banking units of Bank of Montreal BMO.TO and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce CM.TO rounded out the top three by value of deals, the figures showed.
Equity financings rose 40 percent in the period to C$30.3 billion ($24.12 billion), a record high total for the first half.
A C$2 billion equity financing deal by Element Financial Corp EFN.TO was the biggest year-to-date, followed by Valeant Pharmaceuticals International's VRX.TO C$1.9 billion offering.
Element raised the capital to make acquisitions and on June 29 announced a deal to buy a part of General Electric Co's GE.N vehicle fleet-management business for $6.9 billion.
"That is a real testament to investor confidence in Element, and it also speaks to the strength of the market we're in," said Derek Neldner, head of Canadian investment banking at RBC Capital Markets. BMO, Barclays, CIBC and boutique firm INFOR Financial were other advisers on the Element financing.
"Investors have shown a willingness to step up and support companies on acquisitions,” Neldner said.
The year started off with a flurry of energy-sector deals as producers, hit by lower oil prices, shored up their balance sheets. The oil and gas industry remained active in the second quarter with equity fundraisings tied to acquisitions. Continued...