More speakers to be announced soon!
Craig Alexander is the first Chief Economist at Deloitte Canada. Craig has over 20 years of experience in the private sector as a senior executive and leading economist in applied economics, forecasting and public policy. He has previously held positions as Chief Economist at TD Bank Financial Group and Vice President Economic Analysis at C.D. Howe Institute. Most recently, Craig served as Senior Vice-President and Chief Economist at The Conference Board of Canada, producing macroeconomic forecasts for the Canadian national economy as well as provinces, territories, cities and industries. Craig is a passionate public speaker on economic and public policy issues. Craig holds a graduate degree in Economics from the University of Toronto.
Craig AlexanderChief Economist, Deloitte LLP
The Honourable Pierre Pettigrew is Executive Advisor, International at Deloitte Canada. He was also the Government of Canada Special Envoy for the Canada-European Union Trade Agreement (CETA).
Pierre has had success in both the public and private sectors. While a consultant at the Deloitte Montreal office from 1985-1995, he emerged as a strong voice for business on international trade issues and unity matters that brought him an appointment to the Federal cabinet in 1996.
Pierre served as a Minister for 10 years, most notably as Minister of Human Resources Development, as Minister for International Trade and Foreign Minister. He represented in Parliament the Montreal district of Papineau now represented by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.
Pierre is on the advisory board of Forbes Manhattan, a Toronto-based private merchant bank specialized in commodities. He sits on a number of profit and non-profit boards. He is the only Canadian on the board of the Inter-American Dialogue in Washington.
Pierre regularly arbitrates international trade disputes between countries at the World Trade Organization (WTO) in Geneva.
Pierre PettigrewExecutive Advisor, International, Deloitte Canada LLP
James Padwick is a Partner at Wildeboer Dellelce LLP, one of Canada’s premier business and corporate finance transactional law firms.
James’ debt practice involves all manner of credit facilities (syndicated, non-syndicated, secured, non-secured, domestic, cross-border, revolving, term), having acted for both lenders and borrowers on transactions from the relatively small to the larger multi-jurisdiction, multi-billion dollar facilities. He has extensive experience structuring complicated transactions across a variety of asset classes – from traditional bank loans to a broad range of specialty loans.
Recent experience includes loans with equity or royalty sweeteners, loans to finance mines to achieve production, a loan to a grain elevator, and loans backed by a wide variety of weird and wonderful collateral (wine portfolios, a book of online generated business loans, charged-off credit card receivables, cattle herds, auto leases, HVAC installations and physical gold production).
Drawing on his MBA and business experience, James emphasizes a practical approach which is responsive to clients’ needs with a focus on getting deals done.
James PadwickPartner, Wildeboer Dellelce LLP
Nadim Hirji is responsible for the strategic growth and leadership of Canadian Commercial Banking within BMO Bank of Montreal. Canadian Commercial Banking is a dedicated team of over 600 people committed to driving growth through best-in-class relationship management while sustaining top-tier customer loyalty. This team provides upper mid-market companies with a single point of access to financial options with an integrated suite of commercial debt products, M&A advisory, mezzanine finance & equity, treasury & payment solutions, and deposit products and services.
Nadim, who has 26 years of industry experience, began his career at BMO in 2003 and after progressing through several senior roles, received his first executive appointment as Head, Ontario and Atlantic Canada in 2008, and then later as Head, Prairies Region, in Canadian Commercial Banking. Most recently, Nadim was the Head of Special Accounts Management Unit (SAMU) where he was responsible for developing the Enterprise’s overall strategic direction for SAMU, balancing portfolio risk/return, and maximizing the value of assets while returning capital to the organization through timely and innovative resolutions.
Within BMO Bank of Montreal, Nadim serves on the Board of BMO Life Insurance Company and BMO Life Assurance Company and is a voting member of the BMO Corporate Donations Committee.
Externally, he serves on the Board of the Canadian Business Growth Fund, a $545 million fund dedicated to support Canadian entrepreneurs and is on the Board of the Providence Healthcare Foundation, including acting as Chair of the Silver Ball Gala, which aims to raise over $1 million annually in support of the foundation.
Nadim holds an MBA from Dalhousie University and is a Fellow of the Institute of Canadian Bankers.
Nadim HirjiExecutive Vice President & Head Canadian Commercial Banking, BMO
John Caggianiello, CPA, CA, is a Managing Director with MNP’s Corporate Finance group in Toronto. With many years of experience, John specializes in assisting mid-sized entrepreneurial private and public companies and institutional investors with their due diligence and transaction advisory requirements.
Drawing on his investigative and advisory expertise working with private equity firms, alternative lenders, lawyers and bankers, John provides comprehensive due diligence solutions to help his clients accurately assess risks associated with their investment decisions. He also works closely with his clients in Canada, the U.S. and abroad to improve clarity on both financial and operational aspects of target acquisitions. He has extensive
experience assisting his corporate clients with business consulting, assurance engagements and tax preparation. John works with clients in various industries, including health care, agri-food, technology, construction, retail, consumer packaged goods, manufacturing, distribution and services. His expertise and insights have been shared through many published articles and speaking engagements at various events focused on transaction best practices and trends.
John is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CA). He earned a Bachelor of Commerce degree (BComm) from Ryerson University and also completed his Canadian Securities Course (CSC) and Exempt Market Products Course (EMP). He is member of CPA Ontario and has presented at numerous professional development seminars. John volunteers his time and expertise as an active member on committees of the Canadian Venture Capital Association (CVCA) and is on the Board of Directors of the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG).
John CaggianielloManaging Director, MNP Corporate Finance
Amar has over fourteen years of consulting experience delivering revenue uplift, cost reduction and risk avoidance engagements to clients across industries by leveraging process improvement and data analytics. Amar has experience serving clients in telecommunications, utilities, government, banking, and transportation sectors, among others.
He has a unique mix of IT and performance improvement experience, which allows him to drive operational efficiencies through the use of technology, process improvement techniques, and the application of benchmarking and best practices. Prior to joining RSM Canada, he worked for a global management consulting firm and a Big Four firm in their consulting practice. With a sound understanding of the challenges and risks in performance management and transformational projects, Amar is sought after for his communication and analytical skills and his ability to manage relationships at senior levels within organizations.
Amar JoshiDirector, Management Consulting, RSM Canada
Pascal de Guise
Pascal de Guise is a partner and a member of BLG’s Private Equity, Corporate Finance and M&A Steering Committees. He is recognized for his extensive expertise in M&A, venture capital and private equity, public offerings, going-private transactions, and corporate governance and compliance. Pascal acts for reporting issuers on the Toronto Stock Exchange and TSX Venture Exchange as well as private companies, promising start-ups, underwriters and investors.
Pascal de GuisePartner, BLG LLP
Kathy Le is an Associate in the Toronto office of Dickinson Wright. Her practise includes a variety of corporate and commercial matters with a focus on domestic and cross-border mergers and acquisitions, corporate structuring and restructuring, commercial agreements and corporate governance.
Kathy articled with the firm prior to becoming an associate.
Kathy LeAssociate, Dickinson Wright
Simon’s practice concentrates on technology outsourcing, other complex services arrangements and procurement. He advises enterprises whose businesses rely on technology and complex services. He also advises technology suppliers ranging from large established software providers to early stage technology companies. Simon has been lead counsel on projects in the banking, pension, investment, healthcare, energy and other sectors. His practice includes FinTech, data agreements, outsourcing arrangements, software licensing, government contracting, e-commerce and payment systems. Simon is a member of the FinTech Working Group for the Ontario Ministry of Finance, a team comprised of leading ﬁnancial services and technology experts appointed by the Ministry to shape Ontario’s FinTech strategy. Simon writes and lectures on various areas of technology law, both in public forums and client education venues.
Simon is a past President of the Canadian Information Technology Law Association (IT.Can).
Simon HodgettPartner, Technology, Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP
Stewart Sutcliffe is Head of the Private Equity and Private Mergers & Acquisitions Groups in the Toronto office. He has a diversified corporate practice, focusing on domestic and cross border private and public mergers and acquisitions and private equity investments, including PIPE transactions. Stewart is recognized for his expertise by numerous directories, including Chambers Canada: Canada’s Leading Lawyers for Business, Chambers Global: The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business, International Financial Law Review’s IFLR1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms and The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory, among others.
Stewart SutcliffePartner, Stikeman Elliott LLP
Sean joined Persistence Capital Partners in 2010 and is currently responsible for all aspects of the investment process from sourcing, evaluating and executing on investment opportunities to managing existing investments.
Sean is an accomplished investor and healthcare entrepreneur. Prior to joining PCP, he was with Monitor Group, working with global leaders in healthcare service, hospital operations, pharmaceuticals, healthcare policy and biotechnology. He also worked with Monitor Clipper, where he helped develop a MENA focused Healthcare fund. Sean founded, developed and commercialized a company focused on insulin digital injection delivery systems, which he sold in 2011.
Sean KaramchandaniPartner, Persistence Capital Partners
Andrew Willis is a business columnist for the Report on Business at The Globe and Mail, based in Toronto.
He has been in business communications and journalism for three decades. From 2010 to 2016, he was senior vice president of communications for Brookfield Asset Management, a leading global alternative asset management company.
Andrew’s career in journalism included stints at a number of publications, including writing the Streetwise column at the Globe and Mail from 1995 to 2010. He also worked at The Financial Post, The Financial Times of Canada, Dow Jones/Wall Street Journal, and Maclean’s magazine.
Andrew co-wrote a book, The Bre-X Fraud, with Report on Business colleague Douglas Goold.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Western Ontario and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from University of King’s College, Halifax.
Andrew WillisBusiness Columnist, The Globe and Mail
A serial entrepreneur Elaine has successfully built teams and realigned business strategies for over 15 years. She recently launched Disruption Ventures, a Venture Capital fund that invests in female founded and managed companies. This was a natural progression for Elaine as she has spent the past 6 years consulting and advising start-ups and early stage companies, helping them reach their goals and access financing. Prior to consulting, she was CEO of B5Media. The company was sold to Alloy Digital in April 2012. Elaine was also the CEO of Ziplocal which was sold to Canpages in 2009.
Elaine KundaFounder, Managing Partner, Disruption Ventures
George Rossolatos has over 20 years’ experience as an investor, entrepreneur, and leader. At CBGF, he is responsible for the strategic direction and management of the Fund.
George joined the CBGF as its founding CEO in 2018, bringing a passion to help entrepreneurs across Canada grow their companies and ‘think bigger’. Before joining the Fund, George was CEO of Avante Logixx Inc. (TSXV:XX) from 2010 -2017. As an investor and operator at Avante, his mandate was to determine the company’s strategic direction and vision and execute the go forward plan which included an operational turnaround.
Prior to Avante, George worked in the private equity industry for 10 years. He was a partner and co-founder of TorQuest Partners Inc. a mid-market Canadian private equity fund from its inception in early 2002 until 2010. George’s previous roles included experience as an investment principal at Harrowston Inc., a publicly traded merchant bank, and five years with Ernst & Young LLP managing a group focused on middle market companies.
As a Chartered Public Accountant (CPA – Ontario), George holds an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and a B.Com. (Honours) from Queen’s University. He was recognized in 2007 as one of Canada’s Top 40 under 40 and is a member of the Young Presidents’ Organization.
George RossolatosChief Executive Officer, Canadian Business Growth Fund (CBGF)
Rich leads the TELUS Ventures team to source, structure and optimize strategic growth platform investments. TELUS Ventures is Canada’s most active corporate venture capital fund over last 5 years and Rich was named one of the Top 100 Corporate Venture Capital Investors in the world by Global Corporate Venture Magazine in 2018 and 2019.
His board responsibilities include AlayaCare, Beacon, Fortius, Integrate.AI, League, Moj.io, Right Health/Akira and Vision Critical.
Before joining TELUS Ventures in 2016, Rich was the founder and Managing Partner of RecapHealth a leading venture investor in North American health care companies. Previously he was a Partner in both a mid-market Private Equity fund and a Canadian VC fund investing in US and Canada. He started his career as an entrepreneur in the enterprise software sector.
Rich is a strong believer in using financial tools to effect positive social change. He is the founder of one of Canada’s first social impact funds, BC Social Venture Partners and was an investor in Canada’s first health focused social impact bond. He is an LP and advisor to a number of venture and private equity funds, an Associate at CDL, a Board Member at LifeSciences BC and Age-Well and an angel investor in over 20 companies across Canada, the US and the UK.
Rich earned degrees at UBC and Queen’s University and has completed Executive Leadership courses at Harvard.
Rich OsbornManaging Partners, TELUS Ventures
Aly joined ONCAP in 2012. Previously, he worked at Callisto Capital in Toronto, which is known as Clearspring Capital. Aly focuses on ONCAP’s origination, due diligence and portfolio company development efforts in Healthcare and Environmental and Engineering. Aly holds an undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Waterloo and MBA from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business.
Aly HadibhaiPrincipal, ONCAP Management Partners
Charles Brown is President and CEO of LifeLabs, Canada’s largest medical laboratory and leading diagnostics and health technology provider. Since joining LifeLabs in 2018, Charles has worked to evolve LifeLabs into a commercially driven organization that brings customer-centred value to market that will improve health outcomes for Canadians.
As part of his leadership at LifeLabs, Charles has been developing a transformational growth strategy to reshape the company’s culture and focus while ensuring that LifeLabs continues to play a pivotal role in the health eco system. Charles has introduced new discipline and rigor to LifeLabs’ business processes, resulting in an improved patient experience, strengthened operations, and higher value innovation.
Before joining LifeLabs, Charles served as President of The Source, Canada’s largest consumer electronics and mobile retailer. Charles led The Source to impressive results and growth by building an exceptional customer experience.
Prior to leading the Source, Charles served as Executive Vice President of Strategic Initiatives at Bell, where he led the delivery of Bell’s telecommunications at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. He brings more than 25 years of experience as an innovative technology leader, from entrepreneurial start-ups to large corporate entities, including serving as President and CEO of Wave Wireless and Chief Information Officer of Clearnet.
Charles’ passion for community service extends to various roles on Boards and Executive Committees. Currently, he serves as the Chair of Kids Help Phone, Canada’s only national 24-hour, bilingual and anonymous counseling service for youth. He is also a past member and long-time supporter of the United Way of Toronto and York Region’s Campaign Cabinet. Charles holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Toronto and a Master of Business Administration from the Ivey School of Business at Western University.
Charles BrownPresident & CEO, LifeLabs
Lisa Melchior, founder of VERTU Capital, a technology private equity fund targeting high potential Canadian businesses, is a 20+ year private equity professional.
Over the course of her career, she has invested nearly $1.4B in over 20 companies across various sectors through multiple cycles. Her technology sector experience spans application software, HCIT, cleantech, tech-enabled services and industrial technology.
Prior to founding VERTU, Lisa was a Managing Director at OMERS Private Equity, where she led the North American Technology group. She started her career at CIBC World Markets.
Lisa holds an MBA from York University’s Schulich School of Business and a Bachelor’s Degree in Economics from the University of Western Ontario.
Lisa MelchiorFounder & Managing Partner, VERTU Capital
Since joining Onex, Seth has led a number of private equity acquisitions, including the acquisition and subsequent realizations of BC Sugar, Spirit AeroSystems, Allison Transmission and Tomkins. Currently he is Chair of the Onex Partners Investment Committee and oversees Onex’ institutional capital raising, wealth management division, Gluskin, Sheff + Associates, and Onex Credit Partners. Seth has served on numerous portfolio company boards during his career at Onex. He also serves on the board of Village Community Schools. Prior to joining Onex, Seth was Senior Vice-President, Corporate Banking, at Bank of Nova Scotia. Seth holds a B.S. in Accounting and Philosophy from the University of Delaware.
Seth MerskySenior Managing Director, ONEX
Former Managing Director at OTPP and head of the firm’s private equity investing efforts in the Financial Services vertical; joined OTPP in 2005.
Started his career at Bain & Company and held numerous operating roles at Delano Technology Corporation.
B. Comm (1st Class Honours) from Queen’s University and MBA (High Distinction) from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth. Graduate of the Institute of Corporate Directors.
Avid endurance athlete (multiple Ironman, Ironman 70.3, marathon, and half marathon finisher).
Mike MurrayManaging Partner, Peloton Capital Management
Terry Power is the Chief Executive Officer of Medisys Health Group, Canada’s largest provider of preventive health services to corporations and individuals across the country. Medisys Health Group is Canada’s leader in executive health services, virtual care, occupational health, employee health & wellness, and individual preventive health services. In July of 2018 the Medisys Health Group proudly joined the TELUS Health family.
Terry builds on two decades of leadership experience across diverse industries. He led the creation of Canada’s largest HR solutions and staffing company and was instrumental in the formation of Medisys Health Group as the former CEO Horizon Occupational Health Solutions, a division of Medisys Health Group. Terry has held a number of not-for-profit leadership roles, with specific focus on furthering Canada’s technology industries as well as enhancing the lives of under resourced children. Terry is a graduate of the College of the North Atlantic and the Richard Ivey School of Business Leadership Program.
Terry PowerChief Executive Officer, Medisys Health Group
Arif is the co-founder, Chief Executive Officer, Managing Director, and a member of the Credit Committee of Third Eye Capital (“TEC”). TEC was formed in 2005 and currently manages $2 Billion in private debt investments for institutional investors, large family offices, and high net-worth individuals. TEC provides good Canadian companies that are undergoing change or growth events with customized financing and expertise to accelerate business performance and create value. Arif has been investing in private markets for approximately 30 years, initially as an entrepreneur in several industries including computer services, automotive, and construction, and then as co-founder and head of the Canadian office of California-based Pinnacle Investments, an early stage and specialty venture capital firm. Arif received a Master of Business Administration from Queen’s University, completed post-graduate studies at Harvard Business School, and holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation.
Arif BhalwaniChief Executive Officer & Managing Director, Third Eye Capital
He previously held the position of Executive Vice‐President, Digital Excellence and Technology Advisor, for Canadian Tire Corporation (CTC).
Eugene started his career in telecommunications and has worked for Nortel Networks Corporation, Bell Canada Enterprises Inc., and Open Text Corporation. In progressively senior technology and business roles in Canada, the U.S. and the U.K, Eugene was responsible for integrating critical technology and business processes to better deliver innovative programs. He has also led efforts to increase productivity and improve performance in order to deliver current and ‘next generation’ services more efficiently within a large organization.
He holds a Master’s Degree in Administration, Bachelor’s Degree in Economics, is a Certified Management Accountant, and is a recent graduate of the Institute of Corporate Directors program. He is a frequent speaker on “The Future of Digital Content” and was recently appointed as a Distinguished Senior Fellow at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto, where he will continue his outstanding work in advancing innovation in Canada.
In 2015, Eugene was named CIO of the Year by RIS News and Canada’s CIO of the Year (Private Sector) by Information Technology Association of Canada. He is currently executive in residence for AI at the Schulich Business School and is on the board of governors of York University.
He continues advising promising mid stage companies on innovation through intelligent automation via his consulting firm Design.ai Ltd.
Eugene Roman retired from a full time career January 1, 2019.
Eugene RomanPrinciple, Design.ai Ltd
Aly joined DW Healthcare Partners in April of 2014. He has over 15 years of merger and acquisition experience. Aly leads DW Healthcare Partners behavioral health investing initiative. Aly currently sits on the board of five portfolio companies, including multiple in the behavioral health space: 360 Behavioral Health (a leading provider of autism therapy in California), EHE (an executive health exam provider), SoClean (automated CPAP cleaning device), Caregiver (a residential and day rehabilitation provider in Texas, Tennessee, Ohio and Indiana) and is a past board member of Canadian Addiction Treatment Centre (largest methadone maintenance treatment company in Canada). Aly is responsible for deal sourcing, due diligence, strategic initiatives and exits for portfolio companies.
Previously at Clairvest Group (Private Equity), he supported activities in domain research, new investment origination, structuring and execution. Before joining Clairvest, Aly worked as a management consultant for Oliver Wyman and as an investment banker at BMO Capital Markets.
Aly was raised in Toronto, Ontario. He earned his Honours Business Administration degree from the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario.
Aly ChampsiManaging Director, DW Healthcare Partners
David Nowak is a Managing Partner in Brookfield’s Private Equity Group, responsible for investment origination, analysis and execution across North America.
Mr. Nowak has deep experience in principal investing and the execution of mergers and acquisitions. Prior to joining Brookfield in 2011, he was a Managing Director at Westerkirk Capital where he invested in private equity and real estate and was actively involved with the investee management teams as a member of the portfolio companies’ board of directors.
Mr. Nowak holds a Bachelor of Laws from the Western Ontario and an MBA from Duke University where he graduated as a Fuqua Scholar.
David NowakManaging Partner, Brookfield Asset Management
Brent Belzberg is the Founder and Senior Managing Partner of TorQuest Partners Inc., one of Canada’s leading mid-market private equity firms with in excess of $3B under management. He formed TorQuest in 2002 following the 2001 sale of Harrowston, Inc., a publicly traded investment fund he founded in 1992 to invest in and build businesses. Outside TorQuest, Brent serves as a Director of CIBC. He is Chairman of Sinai Health Systems and a member of its foundation. He is also a member of the University of Toronto’s Investment Advisory Committee. Mr. Belzberg’s previous outside directorships include O&Y REIT and Four Seasons Hotels. Mr. Belzberg was President of First City Financial Corporation from 1991-1993. Mr. Belzberg received a B.Comm. (Honours) from Queen’s University in 1972 and a J.D. from the University of Toronto in 1976. Mr. Belzberg received the Arbor Award from the University of Toronto, the Canada 150 Commemorative Medal from the Senate of Canada, and the Sovereign’s Medal for Volunteers from the Governor General. In December 2018 Mr. Belzberg was awarded the Order of Canada as a Member (C.M.).
Brent BelzbergSenior Managing Partner, TorQuest Partners Inc.
John co-founded Birch Hill and prior to that was President of TD Capital and Vice Chair, Investment Banking, TD Securities. John is Chairman of CCM Hockey and HomeEquity Bank and, has served as a Director on many private and public companies.
Outside of Birch Hill, John serves on the Board of YMCA Toronto, is the Chair of Our Children’s Medicine, an Indigenous employment program, and is Honorary Lieutenant Colonel of the 48th Highlanders of Canada.
John is a Fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario, a Chartered Business Valuator and a Queen’s University B. Comm.
John MacIntyrePartner, Birch Hill Equity Partners
Nathaniel is the vice president of Canada for Spring Lane Capital, a private equity group focused on financing sustainable projects in energy, waste, food and water. Before joining Spring Lane, Nathaniel worked both developing and advising on infrastructure projects in emerging markets, primarily in the renewable energy space. Nathaniel has an MBA from Cambridge University and an MA in International Affairs from Carleton University.
Nathaniel Lowbeer-LewisVice President, Canada, Spring Lane Capital
Pascal Tremblay holds a Bachelor in Business Administration from the University of Sherbrooke, Quebec and an MBA from McGill University, Montreal, Quebec.
Pascal Tremblay is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Novacap and Managing Partner of the TMT Group. With assets under management of over $3.3 billion, Novacap has consistently been recognized as one of the leading private equity firms in Canada since 1981. Prior to joining the Novacap group in 2003, Mr. Tremblay was a partner at Argo Global Capital. His prior experience also includes working at the Caisse de Dépôt et Placement du Québec. Prior to entering the private equity field, Mr. Tremblay was the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Laserpro. Mr. Tremblay seats on numerous boards.
Pascal TremblayPresident & Chief Executive Officer, Novacap
Peter is the Canadian M&A Advisory Leader at Deloitte. Peter has over 22 years of professional and financial services experience which includes business development roles, risk management roles, and more traditional merger and acquisition advisory roles.
Within the firm, Peter has primarily supported private equity clients with their growth and succession objectives across a broad range of industries which include business services, transportation and logistics, distribution services, retail healthcare, financial services, IT and software service providers. Key roles and responsibilities included advising clients with respect to deal execution, negotiation and financial due diligence. Peter also led the Canadian firm’s participation in the global development of iDeal, Deloitte’s M&A Analytics platform.
Peter is a Chartered Accountant with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales. He obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Accounting and Economics from the University of Reading, UK
Peter SozouCanadian M&A Advisory Leader, Deloitte LLP
Scottie Wardell is a Managing Partner and co-founder of Integrity Growth Partners. Prior to founding Integrity, Scottie’s experience included both private equity and debt investing, as well as operating roles at two growth-stage tech-enabled companies (Sakara and Beachbody). Scottie’s operating experience comprised general management, big data analytics and visualization, corporate strategy and innovation, marketing, operations, finance, and HR. Before taking on these operating roles, Scottie was an investment professional at Kayne Anderson. Prior to joining Kayne, Scottie held roles at Fortress Investment Group and Lehman Brothers. Scottie graduated with a B.A. in Economics and Psychology from Cornell University.
Scottie WardellManaging Partner & Co-Founder, Integrity Growth Partners
Andrea Nickel has worked with entrepreneurial and growth companies in a wide range of industries as an investor, CFO and M&A Advisor. She recently joined the family office, Celina Capital, to lead private equity investing after more than fifteen years as a partner at Beringer Capital, a private equity fund focused on the media and marketing industries. She was also a strategy consultant at Bain & Company and co-founded an e-commerce business during the dotcom boom.
Andrea NickelManaging Director, Celina Capital
Richard P. Prestegaard joined High Road in 2007 and leads the Firm’s dedicated deal sourcing effort. Prior to joining High Road, Rich was an investment banker in the consumer products and retail industry group at Barclays Capital. Rich is an experienced corporate finance and business development professional and an active member of the ACG New York chapter (Association for Corporate Growth). Rich received a B.A. in Sociology from the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, in 1991 and an M.B.A degree in Finance and Accounting from the Stern School of Business at New York University in 1996.
Richard PrestegaardPartner, Business Development, High Road Capital Partners
Elmer is currently the Chief Investment Officer of the Hyatt Family Office in Toronto (“HFO”). HFO is an investor in a variety of asset classes through fund managers and through direct investments. In this role, he is responsible for all aspects of strategic asset and risk allocation, manager selection, due diligence and investment management.
Elmer has a held a variety of senior entrepreneurial investment roles in both privately held companies and large financial institutions. He was Senior Vice President of Whitecastle Investments Limited, a privately held investment company, Managing Director of Whitecap Venture Partners, Co-Founder and Managing Director of Whitecastle Private Equity Partners, Managing Director of Roynat Equity Partners and Vice President of Growth Equity, BDC Capital.
Elmer has been an active investor in high growth companies since 1995. He has served on a number of private and public company boards and currently serves on the board of large companies such as the Bid Group Inc., an international engineering services and products company with more than 1,500 skilled employees serving the forestry industry and highly technical earlier stage companies such as Innerspace Inc. an early stage company selling an indoor people traffic management software platform.
Elmer is also Special Advisor to RC Morris & Company a, special opportunity debt fund based out of Vancouver and an Advisor to Group RMC, a New York based real estate fund with more than 15 million square feet of office space in Midwest USA.
Elmer is a CPA, CA (1989) and is a graduate of the University of Toronto (1987).
Elmer KimChief Investment Officer, Hyatt Family Office
Jamie Windle is a Director in the Transaction Advisory Services practice at BDO in Toronto specializing in transaction support and due diligence services including buy-side and sell-side diligence assistance as well as several special projects. Jamie has a proven track record spanning over 15 years supporting domestic and foreign financial and strategic acquirers in their investment decisions and has significant experience in identifying and resolving critical deal issues.
Prior to joining BDO in 2015, Jamie was with Ernst & Young, LLP’s Transaction Support practice for 9 years providing buy-side and sell-side diligence assistance, and the Assurance practice for 6 years in Ottawa, Ontario and Southamption, England providing audit services to a range of private mid-mart and public companies.
Jamie is a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA, CA), and a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) from Illinois and obtained his Honors Bachelor Business Administration from Wilfried Laurier University.
Jamie WindlePartner, National Due Diligence Leader, BDO
Prior to joining Fiera Private Debt in July 2019, Mr. Deacon had worked at Integrated Asset Management Corp. with the Private Debt Group Team since 2016. His responsibilities included loan origination, negotiation and structuring, due diligence and loan portfolio management. Jeff Deacon came to Integrated Asset Management from Roynat Capital. He has more than 15 years of experience in financial services in Canada, the U.K. and Australia. He was a member of the Varsity golf team at Roanoke College. B.B.A., Roanoke College (Virginia).
Jeff DeaconManaging Director, Fiera Private Debt
Michael is a Director, Private Equity at Northleaf Capital Partners, a global private markets investment firm with more than $13 billion in private equity, private credit and infrastructure commitments under management. Michael focuses on the origination, evaluation and monitoring of private equity co-investments and direct secondary investments.
Prior to joining Northleaf in 2016, Michael was a Vice President, Corporate Development at Brookfield Global Integrated Solutions, where he was responsible for developing and leading all strategic acquisitions and development of internal Brookfield Asset Management account relationships. Previously, Michael spent four years at Centric Health Corporation where he was a Vice President, Operations of the Western Surgical Division and a Director, Business Development Mergers & Acquisitions. Michael began his career in PricewaterhouseCoopers’ audit and assurance group in 2004. Michael received an Honours Economics degree from Queen’s University and completed the Masters of Management and Professional Accounting (MMPA) program at the Rotman School of Business. He holds the Chartered Professional Accountant designation.
Michael BowmanDirector, Private Equity, Northleaf Capital Partners
Cheryl Strom originates investments for The Riverside Company, a global private equity firm with nearly $9 billion (USD) in assets under management across many fund strategies. Riverside is an excellent partner to entrepreneurs who wish to remain active in their business and share in ownership with an experienced equity partner. The firm made 24 investments in Canadian companies. Cheryl finds businesses seeking an investor or buyer, evaluates the match with Riverside’s investment criteria and engages a Riverside team to pursue the most viable investments. Before joining Riverside in 2006, Cheryl worked on senior debt transactions. Cheryl earned her MBA from the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University, and BA from John Carroll University.
Cheryl StromPrincipal, Origination, The Riverside Company
Ryan joined HKW in early 2018. His primary responsibility on the Sourcing team is to manage business development and deal sourcing efforts of the firm, including the initial evaluation of acquisition opportunities
and coordination of the deal flow process.
Prior to joining HKW, Ryan developed and led the deal generation function at HBM Holdings Company, a middle-market private equity firm based in St.Louis, MO. Ryan earned his MBA from The University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business and a finance degree from The University of Kentucky.
Ryan lives in Louisville, KY with his wife, Lynn, and their two children. When not in the office, Ryan is an avid golfer and relentless Kentucky Wildcats fan.
Ryan SuppleVice President, Deal Generation, HKW
As Managing Director and Head of Roynat Equity Partners, Mark is responsible for leading all aspects of the investment process, including sourcing, transaction execution and portfolio oversight. His mandate is to focus on opportunities across Canada and ensure that both Roynat Equity Partners’ and its portfolio companies’ goals are met.
Mark has extensive experience with investments and operations in small and medium sized businesses. Prior to joining Roynat, he was the head of Mergers and Acquisitions at Lynx Equity, a Toronto-based diversified private equity firm focused on acquiring small and medium-sized businesses. At Lynx, Mark was responsible for sourcing and executing new acquisitions, monitoring and overseeing existing portfolio companies, and developing the firm’s strategic direction. During his tenure at Lynx, the portfolio grew to 45 operating businesses with revenue in excess of $400M CAD.
Prior to working at Lynx, Mark was the CEO and founder of OutdoorPartnerMedia which grew to be a publicly-traded company with a market capitalization of $60 million and displays in major cities in the United States. Prior to founding OutdoorPartner, Mark worked as an investment banking professional at Salomon Smith Barney in New York, and a corporate lawyer at Heenan Blaikie in Toronto.
Mark received an LL.B/MBA from the University of Toronto, where he won the Hewlett Packard Award for top performance in Finance. He also graduated with honours from the University of Western Ontario with a B.A. in social science and statistics.
Mark BrodkinManaging Director, Roynat Capital
Pamela initiates origination, execution and portfolio management, as Director at First West Capital. She is an expert in structuring flexible junior capital thanks to her solutions-focus outlook and keen sense for business.
Pamela has 15+ years of experience in finance including corporate and junior lending, hedge funds, private equity, audit and accounting. She is a CPA, CA holder and has an honours degree in Business Administration from the Schulich School of Business at York University. Pamela is also a mentor to women led businesses with Forum for Women Entrepreneurs and is an active member of the Association of Corporate Growth and Canadian Women in Private Equity.
Pamela MirandaDirector, First West Capital
Based in Vancouver, BC, Pierre Morisset has been with Wells Fargo Capital Finance for over seven years, with responsibilities in Western Canada, Ontario, and previously in the Pacific Northwest. As a Managing Director, he works closely with financial sponsors, advisors, and clients to provide asset-based lending (ABL), lender financing, factoring, and customized solutions for the healthcare and technology sectors.
Prior to Wells Fargo, Morisset was Head of Corporate Accounts and Western Canada at CIBC Asset-Based Lending. Morisset’s career began more than 20 years ago at GE in Montreal and subsequently lead to his founding of GE Capital’s corporate lending practice in Vancouver. Morisset has a Masters in Finance (MBA) from Laval University, Quebec City.
Pierre MorissetManaging Director, Business Development Officer, Wells Fargo
For more than 20 years, Kevin has been working with clients and advisors to structure creative financing solutions. They appreciate his ability to quickly understand their unique situations, looking beyond the numbers to understand the real story behind them.
As Vice President for TSX listed Accord Financial, he is a known and trusted product expert in Asset-Based Lending, Receivables Financing, Trade Finance and Purchase Order Finance.
Prior to rejoining Accord in January of this year, he has worked with a number of institutional and entrepreneurial lenders, including businesses he has built and successfully sold.
Kevin graduated from York University with a degree in economics.
Kevin WestfallVice President, Accord Financial
Patrick Allen is a managing director in the healthcare investment banking group at Piper Jaffray. With more than 20 years of experience, Allen has significant expertise in healthcare finance, mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, joint ventures, valuations, fairness opinions and related healthcare financial services. Allen’s experience spans the healthcare landscape where he has completed multiple transactions representing not-for-profit and for-profit providers, as well as private equity firms. His experience spans a range of transaction types and structures including joint ventures, minority interests, change of corporate member, joint operating agreements, non-profit to for-profit conversions and a variety of other minority and majority interest transactions.
Allen is a frequent speaker and author on the healthcare industry, with topics including partnership structuring, evolving healthcare services models and consolidation trends. Allen has published numerous articles in industry journals and white papers. He is a regular speaker at industry events and conferences, including The Governance Institute, American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE), HFMA and The Society for Healthcare Strategy and Market Development (SHSMD).
Prior to joining Piper Jaffray & Co., Allen was an investment banker at Kaufman Hall where he led the mergers & acquisitions practice and previously worked for UBS in their corporate finance group as a director.
Allen earned his Master of Business Administration degree in finance from Loyola University of Chicago and his bachelor’s degree in political science from Santa Clara University.
Patrick AllenManaging Director, Healthcare Investment Banking, Piper Jaffray & Co.
Bruce holds a Bachelor’s of Arts degree from the University of Toronto. After spending the last 25 years defining, building and driving business and technical vision, Bruce discovered a gap in the technology services world. He aimed to fill that gap by founding the Narrative Group, an action based, driven, and visionary digital transformation firm. Narrative Group goes beyond the initial implementation of technology, it also increases agility, frees up capital, and increases leverage on balance sheet.
Bruce FairleyCEO & Founder, Narrative Group
Warda joined OMERS Growth Equity in 2019. As Director, she is focused on assisting in leading the team on all aspects of the investment process and asset management within the Growth Equity portfolio.
Prior to joining OMERS, Warda worked at Canada Pension Plan Investment Board’s Thematic Investing team. Previous to that role, she was with Point72 Asset Management in New York; Bain and Company in London and Chicago; and Deutsche Bank in London.
Warda holds a BESc in Mechanical Engineering and HBA in Business Administration from Western University and the Richard Ivey School of Business, respectively. She also holds an MSc in Financial Economics from the University of Oxford.
In her free time, Warda loves to go explore new travel destinations, experiment with new cooking recipes, and binge-watch Netflix with her husband.
Warda ShaheenDirector, OMERS Private Equity
Nicole Musicco leads IMCO’s private markets area, including the private equity, real estate and infrastructure teams. She is a former senior executive at Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan where she held various roles, including leading the Private Equity Fund & Co-investment program; establishing OTPP’s office in Hong Kong; and most recently as Senior Managing Director, Public Equities at OTPP.
Nicole graduated from the HBA and MBA programs at the Richard Ivey School of Business, and from the Bachelor of Science Kinesiology program at Western University.
Nicole MusiccoSenior Managing Director, Private Markets, IMCO
James leads the Financial Institution & Financial Sponsors team within the National Accounts Group of TD Bank. The team is responsible for meeting the corporate banking needs of a diverse set of financial companies including retail and institutional asset managers, mortgage and trust companies and private equity funds. Prior to joining TD Bank in 2013, James was at another Canadian bank working in various roles in corporate banking, risk management, and the capital markets group. In addition to acting as a senior lender, James worked in a financial advisory capacity focused on project and infrastructure financing assisting sponsor and developers raise financing in the bank and capital markets for the financing of airports, toll and availability highways, courthouses, hospitals, hydroelectric, utilities and real estate. James has a Bachelor of Arts from Western University and an MBA from McMaster University.
James O’SheaVice President, Financial Institutions Group, TD Commercial Banking
Olivia is responsible for the execution of new investment opportunities along with asset management activities for existing investments. Prior to joining BDC, Olivia was a part of the OMERS Growth Equity team where she focused on investments in the healthcare, technology, energy and consumer sectors. Previously, Olivia worked at Deloitte in the Business Valuations group in Financial Advisory, where she provided valuation services for mergers and acquisitions, board advisory services, corporate restructurings, litigation and financial reporting. Olivia is a Chartered Accountant, Chartered Professional Accountant (CA, CPA) and a Chartered Business Valuator (CBV). She has an Honors Business Administration degree from the Ivey Business School at Western University.
Olivia AylonAssociate Principal, Growth Equity, BDC Capital
Stephen Smith is an accomplished senior executive with extensive experience in the North American senior debt and asset based lending environments. As a proven leader in corporate finance and business development, he has been responsible for the start- up and business launch of several U.S. organizations as they have expanded into Canada. As an effective team builder and market platform developer, he has consistently delivered results by introducing U.S. based lending practices into the Canadian middle market.
Stephen’s area of expertise primarily resides within structured and difficult financing solutions for the less than ordinary or “vanilla” debt transactions. From spearheading the sales effort for Canada’s largest Debtor in Possession loan to working with private equity firms on mergers and acquisitions, he has originated and structured some of the most complex mid-market transactions in Canada. Working primarily with companies and investors that have a senior debt requirement that range from $15 million to $1 billion, either uniquely in Canada or on a global basis, he has experience structuring and supporting complex transactions. These transactions include bankruptcies, restructurings, recapitalizations, divestitures, bridge loans, mergers, ESPOS and leveraged buy-outs.
In addition to serving on various trade association boards and working tirelessly for a few prominent benevolent causes, Stephen is also extremely active in networking amongst various professional groups within the Canadian mid-market. This has contributed significantly to the consistent deal flow which Stephen brings to any organization.
Stephen SmithSales Director, Canada, Vistra
Tim is a managing director with Worximity, a leading provider of agile smart factory solutions for mid-market manufacturing businesses. Tim leads business development and execution efforts for the firm’s US based clients focused on family, entrepreneur, and sponsor-owned companies in industries including food & beverage, plastics and metals processing, packaging, building products and pharmaceuticals.
Tim has over 25 years corporate finance and business strategy experience and has spent the past ten years advising management teams on the use of Industry 4.0 analytical solutions that drive profitable revenue growth, efficiency improvement and accelerated shareholder value.
Tim began his career as a trainee chartered accountant with Arthur Andersen, moved to New York to join Barclays Capital and subsequently spent ten years with Ernst & Young’s Corporate Finance & Restructuring practice.
Tim earned his B.A. Honors in History form the University of London.
Timothy RavenManaging Director, Worximity Technology Inc
Loren has close to 15 years of experience in private equity, capital markets, leveraged finance and operations. He has an extensive Canadian network and a global orientation having worked and lived in North America, Europe and Asia.
Before joining BDC, Loren was a Principal at VERTU Capital, a technology-focused private equity firm, where he evaluated growth equity and buyout investment opportunities. He also worked on a number of strategic and operational initiatives as Special Assistant to the President at Kerr Industries. Having helped build two independent Canadian private equity firms from inception, Loren is well equipped to provide strategic insight into company growth and expansion.
As an INSEAD MBA graduate and CFA charterholder, he has an entrepreneurial mindset and the ability to simplify complex financial data.
Loren RafesonPartner, Growth Equity, BDC Capital
Kurt specializes in mergers and acquisitions, private equity and joint ventures. He advises buyers, sellers and targets on domestic and cross-border mergers and acquisitions; private equity investors and sponsors on buy-outs, investments and exits; and businesses across various industries on complex joint ventures and strategic corporate and commercial matters.
Kurt SarnoPartner, Toronto, Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP
JP co-leads the Firm’s Private Equity Group. He works with technology companies, investment banks and other corporate finance professionals in relation to financing and M&A matters, and private equity funds (including buyout, infrastructure and venture capital funds) and their portfolio companies in investment, add-on, recapitalization and exit transactions.
John-Paul BogdenPartner, Vancouver, Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP
Patrick’s practice focuses on acquisitions and divestitures, corporate finance, securities regulation and corporate law. He advises clients in a variety of industries in connection with a broad range of matters, including the negotiation of commercial agreements, the preparation of continuous disclosure documents, corporate governance practices and securities regulatory compliance.
Patrick MendaPartner, Montreal, Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP
Usman has over 16 years of diverse and in-depth work experience in the financial services industry. He has over 7 years of Audit and Risk advisory experience with the Big Four (PwC & Deloitte) while his last 9 plus years have been spent in Fund Administration, working for Fund Administrators (State Street Alternative Investments and Citco Fund Services) based in Singapore.
Usman has a wealth of experience dealing with a wide variety of Fund clients ranging from Private Equity, Real Estate, Venture Capital, Fund of Funds, Infrastructure, Endowment Funds and Hedge Fund clients. In terms of size, he brings invaluable experience dealing with small start-ups under the size of USD 5 million as well as mega Funds with over billions in commitment across multiple jurisdictions. He has experience partnering with numerous Fund Managers to provide seamless and effective back end solutions from a Fund Administration perspective.
Usman TariqDirector, Fund Services, Alternative Investments, Vistra
Check out who spoke at the 2018 Conference here!