Skip to main content

Bets on blockchain and cannabis are paying off for GMP Capital Inc., the investment bank that has moved beyond energy, where it sees “major” roadblocks for investment.

Chief executive Harris Fricker said his Toronto-based firm is “on the right path” by diversifying beyond energy and resources into cannabis and new areas of technology. GMP’s first-quarter earnings proved his point, with investment-banking revenue nearly doubling to $30.2-million.

“Leading the way in investment banking was significant client engagement from our cannabis and blockchain franchises,” Mr. Fricker said on Thursday in a statement after the firm posted first-quarter results. “An explicit element of our strategic agenda has been to diversify and further strengthen the non-commodities portion of our franchise and, we believe, our result this quarter evidences we are on the right path.”

Story continues below advertisement

GMP posted a profit of $4.1-million, up 17 per cent from a year ago, led by investment banking. Mr. Fricker said during an earnings call that he sees a “fairly constructive” market for investment banking for most industries with one exception – energy.

“In energy, a lack of hard timelines and a regulatory process that has been subject to dithering and near endless legal challenges will continue to be the major stumbling block for domestic and international investor confidence,” Mr. Fricker said.

Mr. Fricker’s comments come a month after Kinder Morgan Inc. halted most of its work on its Trans Mountain pipeline expansion amid opposition from British Columbia’s provincial government, Indigenous and environmental groups. Efforts by energy producers to get oil and gas out of Alberta’s landlocked oil sands have been stymied by public opposition, legal challenges and political wrangling, hampering pipeline plans such as TransCanada Corp.’s Energy East and Enbridge Inc.’s Northern Gateway.

“International capital has little confidence that large-scale projects can be completed in Canada,” Mr. Fricker said, adding that “the pain is largely self-inflicted.”

Report an error
Tickers mentioned in this story
Unchecking box will stop auto data updates
Comments

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • All comments will be reviewed by one or more moderators before being posted to the site. This should only take a few moments.
  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

Comments that violate our community guidelines will be removed. Commenters who repeatedly violate community guidelines may be suspended, causing them to temporarily lose their ability to engage with comments.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.
Cannabis pro newsletter