Latest posts

Rod Baker, Neil Baker and Gordon Capital, the Disruptor of the 80s
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Rod Baker's dad Neil Baker was a Bay Street legend!

Memba them?

The Millennial's guide to Gordon Capital, Jimmy Connacher and Neil Baker
Members Public

A guide to the legendary Gordon Capital, the Big, Bad disruptor of the 80s... like The Wolf of Wall Street, but in a convenient blog post format.

Memba them?
The rise of Anson Funds and Moez Kassam

The rise of Anson Funds and Moez Kassam
Members Public

Anson Funds and its founder Moez Kassam have emerged as players on Bay Street.

Hedge funds

Gluskin Sheff downgraded to low-status
Members Public

An update on Gluskin Sheff under new owners Onex.

HNW shops

Bridging Finance bagholder update
Members Public

Recovery rates will be low.

Money Managers

Vaccine tourist Rod Baker of Great Canadian Gaming fame
Members Public

Can he avoid the slammer?

Moguls

Drake and Ryan Reynolds value Wealthsimple at $5 billion!
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Iconic investors, blockbuster valuation.

Fintech

Key players in the Bridging Finance shutdown
Members Public

Featuring Ninepoint Partners (the former Sprott Asset Management), Admiral Gary Ng and the former CEO of OPTrust.

Kompromat

Mogo, Moka, some Montreal players and the El Mocambo's Michael Wekerle
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From zero to $50m exit in 4 years.

Fintech

Hedge fund manager Shawn Kimel donates $21m to Mount Sinai Hospital
Members Public

Arbitrageur Shawn Kimel, founder of hedge fund K2 and his partner Kate Schatzky have gifted $21m to Sinai Health, aka the Toronto Mount Sinai Hospital. Shawn was treated at the hospital for a severe brain injury stemming from a bike accident in 2017. This will lead, among other initiatives, to

Hedge funds

Wealthsimple is leaving the US...is still bloated
Members Public

This post is only for those of you who follow Wealthsimple. I am the world’s foremost Wealthsimple expert, people depend on me. And this story may bring schadenfreude to some, which is an important feeling, especially during these difficult times. Wealthsimple has announced the transfer of its US business

Fintech

GameStop: Two Montrealers among biggest winners: Richard Mashaal of Senvest and Ryan Cohen
Members Public

My sister publication, The Wall Street Journal, has reported on a $700m gain on GameStop, now fully realized, by a hedge fund operated by Senvest Management. Montreal connoisseurs will know that Senvest has roots in Montreal and is part of a TSX-listed holding company, Senvest Capital. It was originally started

Hedge funds

Burgundy Asset Management's origin myth
Members Public

If status isn't the most important thing, then why is Richard Rooney - a man with $13 million just in his foundation and the body of a Greek god - insisting on re-casting himself of late as a co-founder of Burgundy Asset Management? Hmm??? Is he really a co-founder? We’

HNW shops

Burgundy Asset Management downgraded to low-status
Members Public

What's the most important thing in life? Give yourself full marks if you said "status". This is why I was so alarmed when I recently came across statistics about average account sizes at Burgundy Asset Management, a firm I previously associated with blue-blood, properly wealthy Canadians. Like the billionaire Jackman

HNW shops

Martin Connell and the Ewing Morris dilemma
Members Public

The Ewing Morris Opportunities Fund had one of the more notable negative performances of 2020. It was still down 21.7% as of November 2020. I have already covered their struggles before here. I mentioned that fund had a $20m investor and I finally solved that mystery. It all started

Hedge funds

Bay Street Lame Ducks taking advantage of wage subsidies
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Some well-known names on the Street are taking advantage of wage subsidies!

Kompromat

Burgundy Assets Under Pressure
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Blue-blood money manager Burgundy Asset Management is in flux.

HNW shops

Bill Ackman and Tim McElvaine back Andrew Wilkinson
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A lunch with Bill Ackman paid off for Andrew Wilkinson, a mogul in his own right.

Tech/VC

American private equity giant likely ensnared in Gary Ng's loan fraud
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Big name PE firm caught by rudimentary fraud!

Kompromat

Admiral Gary Ng in troubled waters: $172m loan fraud alleged by IIROC
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Explosive allegations against golden boy Gary Ng who bought PI Financial for $100m at age 34.

Kompromat

Moez Kassam and Anson up 29% YTD
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Moez Kassam is under attack, but is having a good year performance-wise.

Hedge funds

Anthony Melman and a parable on SPACs
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Onex biggie Tony Melman and the Acasta SPAC misadventure.

Private Equity

Jay Hennick: from pool boy to billionaire
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An under-the-radar billionaire who started from the bottom.

Moguls

Eric Rosenfeld of Canaccord and SPACs
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Eric Rosenfeld is back in the news with Canaccord.

Hedge funds

Ewing Morris: Even Harry Rosen couldn't save this hedge fund
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Hedge fund with big-name backers has performance issues.

Hedge funds

Reza Satchu-ration
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Possibly my last post on Reza Satchu. No promises, though.

Kompromat

Admiral Gary Ng sells PI Financial
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Dramatic turn in the Gary Ng story, he unloads the firm he had bought for $100m only 18 months prior.

Kompromat

OPM Wire pardons Raj Rajaratnam - Insider trading officially de-stigmatized
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This post is really weird!

NoBull Klev

Moez Kassam, Anson Funds
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One of the most colourful characters on Bay Street.

Hedge funds

I've got jack squat on Gary Ng
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New twists in the Gary Ng story!

Kompromat

Move over Mike Katchen, Gary Ng bought PI Financial for $100m cash at age 34
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The mysterious brokerage owner Gary Ng!

Kompromat

That time Reza Satchu had a home in Nevada
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A little known part of the Reza Satchu story!

Kompromat

Move over phoenix, Nick Maounis is also a Greek legend
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The comeback of Amaranth founder Nick Maounis.

Memba them?

That time I called Reza Satchu's mom
Members Public

More interesting revelations about Reza Satchu, founder of Alignvest.

Kompromat

Reza Satchu: Kevin O'Leary with hair
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The myth and reality of Reza Satchu.

Kompromat

That time Brent Belzberg fought Imperial Capital
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A David v Goliath battle on Bay Street.

Private Equity

Montreal family office conned by American She-Wolf
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Montreal entrepreneur Ariel Shlien is the victim of a Ponzi scheme.

Family offices

BloombergSen: fighting inequality through crappy returns
Members Public

BloombergSen, another fund performance fees and performance issues.

Hedge funds

Walter Global Asset Management wants to back money managers...sad!
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A wealthy Montreal family office wants to invest in emerging managers, for some reason.

Family offices

Eric Nuttall - oil and gas fund manager of the decade
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Let’s go there and talk about man of the hour, Eric Nuttall. The last man limping in the active management of an energy fund. People want me to talk about Eric Nuttall - I have resisted so far, because he fails the bigliness test. Also, I didn’t want

Hedge funds

More Blind Squirrels of Bay Street
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Updates on various hedge funds. Jeff Banfield, Waratah, XIB, Avner Mandelman and more!

Hedge funds

Canadian Hedge Fund Death Watch
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How did hedge funds fare in the March market crash?

Hedge funds

That time I phoned Black Swan author Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Members Public

NoBull Klev

Albert Friedberg, billionaire Original Gangster of Macro
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Albert Friedberg, old-school macro trader.

Hedge funds

Polar Asset Management, Original Gangster of Canadian hedge funds
Members Public

Polar has been around for a long time and is a rare institutional-grade hedge fund in Canada.

Hedge funds

The nature of the Portfolio Manager - Analyst relationship
Members Public

Money Managers

Barrage Capital : The One Direction of Hedge Funds
Members Public

Montreal Buffett disciples with intriguing performance.

Hedge funds

The rise of Ian Ball, Rob McEwen's protégé
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A rising star on Bay Street.

Moguls

OPM Wire revokes Greg Boland's title as The Smartest Guy on Bay Street
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“Investor activism is a shareholder right; it’s only newsworthy because investors were quite lazy for so long.” Greg BolandEver since Derek DeCloet declared Greg Boland the "Smartest Guy on Bay St." in 2006, this notion has gone unchallenged. That is, until I started stirring things last year. Now, upon

Hedge funds

That time I met Brian Chapman of Clearwater Capital
Members Public

Brian Chapman is an under-the-radar investment wizard.

Moguls

The need for an Apex Allocator
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A thought piece on changes in the investment industry.

NoBull Klev

Waratah Advisors - Apology & retraction
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More Waratah polemics!

Hedge funds

Mike Katchen started it
Members Public

Is Mike Katchen as affable as everyone says?

Fintech

Are Wealthsimple and Allianz really BFFs?
Members Public

In the four months I have been paying attention to Wealthsimple, no one - with the possible exception of Mike Katchen - has done more to refocus the company on the bundling opportunity in Canada than me. I think the banking product they launched this week is the best everyday

Fintech

Waratah Performance - A hedge fund that is only semi-crappy
Members Public

Does Waratah Capital Advisors add any value?

Hedge funds

OPM Wire goes activist on West Face's ass
Members Public

My other resolution is to double down on the fire-breathing. Welcome to OPM Wire, Phase 2. You know that advice to newly incarcerated inmates that on your first day, you should pick a fight with the biggest guy in prison so that everyone else falls in line? Today, OPM Wire

Hedge funds

The first 3 funds I ever picked blew up 💥
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Hedge funds

Wealthsimple, OPM Wire and The Globe are caught in a Mexican standoff
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Wealthsimple is employing some Trumpian exaggeration tactics.

Fintech

John Phillips and Shopify - the biggest angel score in Canadian history
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Meet Canada's newest billionaire.

Tech/VC

Wealthsimple's new initiatives in banking and crypto
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OPM Wire was first to report on these major new initiatives by Wealthsimple.

Fintech

An investment riddle for the Holidays
Members Public

Strategy

Philip Fayer of Nuvei - Move over Mike Katchen, there's a new king of fintech - with unicorn status
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A financing last week minted Canada’s first fintech unicorn. Nuvei, a Montreal based payments processor, raised US $270 million at a US $2 B valuation. Nuvei was started by Philip Fayer in 2003, when he was 24 years old. Philip started the company while taking some time off from

Fintech

The secret to raising money
Members Public

Man is the most vicious of all animals, and life is a series of battles ending in victory or defeat.-Donald Trump, politician, author and thinker “The older I get, the more I realize how many kinds of smart there are. There are a lot of kinds of smart. There

Marketing

That time I met Ron Mock, departing CEO of Teachers
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My career is the sum of my experiences. - Ron MockRon Mock, President and CEO of Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan is retiring at the end of the year, having been in post since January 2014. Teachers manages over $200 billion. During his tenure (to the end of 2018), Ron Mock

Pension funds

Jeff Banfield, Original Gangster of Arbitrage
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Jeff Banfield is primarily known as an arbitrageur. After working for many years as a prop trader at banks, he started Banfield Capital Management in 1997. In February 2001, Banfield was allegedly involved in some insider trading shenanigan (or it might have been a kerfuffle, I'm not a regulation expert)

Memba them?

What Wealthsimple can learn from Kevin O'Leary
Members Public

Fintech

Francois Rochon of Giverny Capital: The real Warren Buffett of Canada
Members Public

Money Managers

Ontario Teachers' troubled investment in China Hospitals Inc
Members Public

Pension funds

Eric Sprott and Tom Stanley lost big yesterday
Members Public

Eleanor Roosevelt said great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people. But why would you listen to an antisemite who married her fifth cousin? So forget her, we are going to discuss events and people. Specifically, Tom Stanley (aka Tom Lazarus Stanley), Eric Sprott and how

Hedge funds

Sam Belzberg's comeback and his answer
Members Public

Start from Part 1 here. Belzberg continued to be an active and opportunistic investor. In 1992, he started Gibralt Capital as his main investment vehicle post First City. He took advantage of opportunities like the Savings and Loans crisis in the US in the 90s and distressed property in Alberta

Moguls

My Bud Fox-like meeting with Sam Belzberg
Members Public

Read Part 1 here. A friend who was acquainted with Belzberg gave me a preview of the meeting. He said: “try to keep your pants on the whole time”, meaning that Sam was a charmer. We met in a small conference room along with Travis Dowle, a portfolio manager working

Moguls

Sam Belzberg - That time I met Brent Belzberg's uncle
Members Public

In its short life, this newsletter has already amassed an audience bigger than Obama's inauguration. I feel the pressure to be relevant, so today I am going to write about a guy who peaked in the 80s and is no longer alive. You are going to enjoy it and fax

Moguls

Move over Lazarus, Tom Stanley also rose from the dead
Members Public

This post, like my last one, is about Tom Stanley, although from now on, I will call him Tom Lazarus Stanley. In case you don’t know, Lazarus is a Bible character who was brought back to life by Jesus. Of course, Jesus also famously came back to life, but

Hedge funds

Tom Stanley of Resolute Performance has delivered near 8x returns since 2016
Members Public

Move over Tiger Woods, there's a new Comeback Kid.  Tom Stanley is the manager of the Resolute Performance Fund, a strategy he has been managing continuously, in various guises since 1993. For a while he had a phenomenal track record and reputation, culminating in a 2005 Report on Business Magazine

Hedge funds

Greg Boland is probably a nice guy. At least, I really hope so
Members Public

What possessed me, a newbie blogger, to start a campaign to elicit the performance history of Greg Boland, one of the most powerful men in Canadian finance? At this point, I would settle for just knowing how big his RRSP is and on behalf of the Globe, what his favourite

Hedge funds

Fred H. Mannix is a new billionaire scion in fintech land
Members Public

Wealthy heir joins Accelerate in biz dev role.

Fintech

Will Greg Boland keep you warm in the middle of a protracted drawdown?
Members Public

We readily concede that Greg Boland is really astute. But no one is infallible. Every manager has periods of adversity. In such a situation, would his brains be enough to keep giving you warm fuzzies? Some of you may know this as the Shania Test. Forget Sharpe ratios, the Shania

Hedge funds

I tried to contact Greg Boland. I was unsuccessful. I am drawing adverse inferences.
Members Public

I want to turn my attention to Greg Boland and West Face Capital. He's probably the most prominent hedge fund manager on Bay St, manages billions and is a mover and shaker in Canadian corporate boards. Just in case you need a background: his rise on Bay St started as

Hedge funds

Cymbria: a Berkshire-like exit option for business owners looking to sell
Members Public

I buried the lead in my previous story on EdgePoint Wealth. What I should have said is that the founders of EdgePoint used $2.5 million in startup capital to create $1.5 billion (and counting) in value for their business in a little over 10 years. And at the

Private Equity

Move over Mike Katchen, Tye Bousada founded three separate billion dollar investment firms
Members Public

I have been telling myself I need to improve my titles, so I am proud of the one above, because it combines three clichés of business journalism: rivalry, whiz kids and billions. At OPM Wire, everything is a pissing contest, so consider the following my competitive response to Report on

Money Managers

Sagard Holdings, Power Corp's answer to Blackstone, has made $27 million since 2005
Members Public

Who is providing capital to media darling Wealthsimple? Power and affiliates? Wrong! You are clearly no Vladimir Putin. Companies don’t make decisions, humans make decisions. Paul Desmarais III is the driving force behind the fintech initiatives at Power. But Paul III is not in charge of Power. His father

Private Equity

The Wealthsimple founders before Wealthsimple
Members Public

The three co-founders of Wealthsimple.

Fintech

RBC disses TD - Comparative advertising is coming
Members Public

Marketing

Is Dave Nugent still Chief Investment Officer of Wealthsimple?
Members Public

Let me start by telling you about a pivotal event that happened at the foundation of Wealthsimple.  In Canada, in order to have a license to manage discretionary money, you generally need two things: real experience in the field and an educational certification (either the CFA or a more local,

Fintech

James S. A. MacDonald, Canadian hedge fund pioneer and the last boss Greg Boland had
Members Public

Today, I am launching what will be by far my most popular feature, Memba him (which I totally copied from TMZ).  So, Memba him? James S.A. MacDonald. I was reminded of James S.A. MacDonald, as I was listening to the Supreme Court of Canada live hearings yesterday to

Memba them?

Are Koho, Wealthsimple and Power one happy family?
Members Public

As I promised last time, I am moving on from Wealthsimple to talk about Koho.  As it happens, Koho also has the Power / Portage group as a majority investor and even has Michael Katchen as a director, so I will still need to talk a bit about Wealthsimple.  But how

Fintech

Forgive me for saying this, but Wealthsimple is one of the more bloated robo-advisors
Members Public

The central tenet of passive investing is that lower fees are the surest path to satisfactory performance.  Pioneer John Bogle took many steps to achieve this, such as setting up a mutual structure (ie the investing clients own the management company) or being based out of suburban Philadelphia.  Here's a

Fintech

Wealthsimple's global ambitions are - to date - a flop...we have the numbers
Members Public

In 2018, Wealthsimple founder Michael Katchen penned an essay saying "Canada is bad at thinking big". Wealthsimple launched in the US in January 2017.  By then, US robo-advisors had been around since 2008.  So it was pretty bold of Wealthsimple to try to break into that competitive market. Let's check

Fintech

Robert Krembil has made another killing
Members Public

Another case of the rich are getting richer.

Moguls

What Wealthsimple acquiring SimpleTax means and why tax preparers are the urologists of the financial world
Members Public

Fintech

Joe Lewis, Tavistock, Newton Glassman and Callidus Capital, the distressed investor that went meta
Members Public

The saga of Callidus Capital as a public company is winding down with a shareholder vote later this month on a take private offer at $0.75 per share. The original IPO price was $14. The offer is from Braslyn, an affiliate of the Tavistock Group. Tavistock is the investment

Private Equity

Andrew Wilkinson of Tiny Capital, the Charlie Munger of Tech
Members Public

So Bill Ackman is holding a Buffett-type lunch auction. Ackman is essentially a Buffett clone, except that he has an inclination for activism and shorting, which has sometimes proven too clever by half. The Buffett recipe is very hard to improve. Ackman claims to have learned from his mistakes and

Tech/VC

UK fintech unicorn Revolut is coming to Canada
Members Public

Revolut - the UK based digital only bank unicorn - had been quieter for several months, its global expansion plans somewhat stalled. But today, it announced that it is going ahead with expanding into 24 new markets through a new global deal with Visa. It aims to hire 3,500

Fintech