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Stikeman Elliott

Founded in 1952 as a tax boutique in Montreal, Stikeman Elliott has since gone from strength to strength; it is now among the leading full-service firms in Canada and one of the so-called “Seven Sisters”. The firm, at the forefront of globalisation, was the first Canadian firm to open offices in London and New York, and is the only firm to boast a presence in Australia. As such, it provides its clients with access to localised knowledge in many of the world’s key jurisdictions. The breadth of the firm’s expertise is evident in the firm’s listings across 23 chapters in this year’s edition, highlighting the depth in quality and the comprehensive service that the firm is able to offer clients. As attested by our research, the firm is particularly recommended in the areas of energy, M&A, capital markets and real estate.


 The firm boast an excellent crop of lawyers with considerable experience advising clients on the full gamut of issues relating the Canadian oil and gas, electricity and renewable energy industries with top tier practitioners in both eastern and western Canada. In the firm’s Calgary office, Christopher Nixon heads the firm’s China coverage group and is a securities specialist with a proven track record representing oil and gas exploration entities, oilfield services corporations and investment dealers in North America, Europe and Asia. Recently, for example, Nixon took the lead representing Gran Tierra Energy Inc in its US$525 million acquisition of PetroLatina Energy Ltd and the simultaneous PPO of subscription receipts in the value of US$173.5 million to partially fund the transaction. Chipman Johnston is an expert adviser servicing both domestic and international clients active in the energy industry on M&A transactions and capital markets financings. Notable matters that Johnston has acted on include Teine Energy Ltd’s C$975 million acquisition of Penn West Petroleum Ltd’s oil producing assets in Saskatchewan. Chrysten Perry co-chairs the firm’s energy group and is a strong name in the market thanks to over 25 years of industry-specific corporate and commercial experience. In the firm’s Toronto office, energy practice co-chair and project development and finance group head James Harbell is a highly visible name in the market acting for developers, investors, municipalities and public agencies in energy-related projects.

Stikeman Elliott is recognised as a major force in the Canadian market for domestic as well as inbound and outbound M&A transactions, with a reputation for providing innovative services to their clients in a wide range of transactions, including those involving strategic, private equity, sovereign wealth fund and state-owned enterprise buyers. Firm chair William Braithwaite is a prominent figure in the market with a well-established practice advising market leading players in the natural resources and infrastructure sectors including Royal Dutch Shell, China National Offshore Oil Company and Canada Pension Plan Investment board. In Toronto, John Ciardullo heads the corporate department and is known for advising clients on the structuring and acquisition side of complex M&A transactions and ensuring that all aspects of deals comply with fiduciary duty. Brian Pukier is an authority on cross-border M&A and is noted for taking a leading role on the firm’s large mandates including counselling Ciena Corporation in the acquisition of the optical networking and carrier Ethernet assets of Nortel Network Corporations subsidiary, Metro Ethernet Networks business, in a deal totalling US$512 million.

As reflected in this year’s capital markets chapter, Stikeman Elliott’s corporate finance and securities group is highly impressive. National practice co-chair Joel Binder regularly advises issuers and investment dealers in the full range of capital markets transactions and recently acted for the underwriters in the US$2.2 billion offering by Emera Inc and the subsequent US$10.4 billion acquisition of TECO Energy utilising those funds. Simon Romano is a longstanding fixture in the market with considerable experience representing clients in capital markets transactions; Romano acted for the underwriters in CanWest MediaWorks Income Fund’s $550 million IPO and the concomitant go-private transaction of the fund. Meanwhile, Jeffrey Singer is recognised for his cross-border experience in corporate finance and securities work.

The real estate practice at the firm shines with a number of key players, including Eric Carmona. A senior partner in the firm’s real estate group, Carmona’s practice focuses on all aspects of real estate transactions for both private and public companies as well as REITs and he has played a key role on transactions for Morguard REIT, Elad Canada Inc and Electro Group among others. Douglas Klaassen co-heads the firm’s structured finance and financial products group and specialises in leasing, commercial mortgage lending, realisation and securitisation. In Calgary, real estate group head and co-chair of the firm’s national real estate practice Greg Plater is a big name with significant expertise offering advice on a wide range of real estate law and transactional issues in British Columbia and Alberta.

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Nominees have been selected based upon comprehensive, independent survey work with both general counsel and private practice lawyers worldwide. Only specialists who have met independent international research criteria are listed.

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87 Lancaster Road, London
W11 1QQ, UK