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Our roundup of Canadian small-caps of between $100-million and $2.5-billion in market capitalization making news and on the move today.

Catalyst Capital Group Inc. has launched a bid for shares in Hudson’s Bay Co. (HBC-T) to rival a contentious $1-billion privatization offer from the department store chain’s executive chairman.

Under the proposal, Catalyst, led by Toronto financier Newton Glassman, plans to offer $10.11 a share in an effort to secure a majority of the shares not controlled by a group led by Richard Baker, HBC’s chairman. Catalyst will offer up to $150-million for as many as $14.8-million shares, it said in a statement.

In June, Mr. Baker announced he was leading a group offering $9.45 to take the company private. It is best known for its namesake department stores across Canada and the Saks Fifth Avenue banner in the United States. It has been restructuring its operations by selling properties and closing unprofitable stores in Europe and North America.

Mr. Baker has said he has the support of 57 per cent of HBC shareholders, including such investors Rhone Capital LLC and office-sharing company WeWork Property Advisors. A special committee of HBC’s board is currently evaluating Mr. Baker’s offer along with financial and legal advisers. A takeover circular has yet to be filed.

HBC stock closed at $9.90 on the Toronto Stock Exchange on Monday, as investors wagered a higher bid could be in the offing. Catalyst announced its proposal after the market closed.

- Jeffrey Jones


SSR Mining Inc. (SSRM-Q; SSRM-T) announced that it will acquire the remaining 25-per-cent interest in Puna Operations Inc. from Golden Arrow Resources Corp. (GRG-X) for $34-million.

"This is a positive deal for both parties, in that it allows SSR Mining to consolidate our ownership in Puna Operations and streamline our reporting structure, while benefiting Golden Arrow by providing funding to pursue its exploration projects, eliminating its debt obligation to us, and cancelling our shares in Golden Arrow," stated CEO Paul Benson. "The Transaction provides SSR Mining with near-term low-risk silver production growth, while allowing Golden Arrow shareholders liquidity and exposure to both Puna Operations and our diversified asset portfolio through ownership of SSR Mining shares."


CannTrust Holdings Inc. (TRST-T; CTST-N) announced it agreed to waive the exclusivity provision under the brokerage agreement with Kindred Partners Inc., “after months of discussions.” The company said the revised arrangement “will over time allow CannTrust to reduce the expenditures incurred by CannTrust under the brokerage agreement.”


Just Energy Group Inc. (JE-T) announced that it expects an incremental impairment of Texas residential accounts receivable of approximately $45-million to $50-million as of June 30, 2019. The company said the impairment is the result of a previously announced strategic review process where management identified customer enrolment and non-payment issues, primarily in Texas, over the past 12 months. “As management identified these issues, more robust operational controls were put in place, culminating in numerous improvements being implemented during June and July 2019,” the company stated.

“The enrolment and non-payment issues have been remediated and management is confident in the business and operational controls currently in place. These issues will not have a continuing effect on future cash flows,” said Rebecca MacDonald, Just Energy’s executive chair.


Mainstreet Equity Corp. (MEQ-T) announced third-quarter rental revenues increased 18 per cent to $34.7-million, compared with $29.3-million a year ago. Net operating income increased 17 per cent to $21.3-million, and increased 6-per-cent to $18.4-million on a same-asset basis. Funds from operations increased 29 per cent to $9.3-million, compared with $7.2-million. FFO per basic share increased 21 per cent to 99 cents, compared with 82 cents a year ago.

CEO Bob Dhillon said the third-quarter results are "an indication of a gradual shift in the macroeconomic climate in Alberta and Saskatchewan. Added Mr. Dhillon: “This substantial achievement is the direct result of our counter-cyclical strategy, stretching over the past four years, to create value for shareholders during periods of slow economic growth.”


NorthWest Healthcare Properties Real Estate Investment Trust (NWH.UN-T) announced German acquisitions, financing activity, and a $1.6-billion expansion of its Australian healthcare joint venture.

The REIT announced the acquisition of a German medical office building and a rehabilitation hospital for a combined purchase price of approximately $61.5-million. It also reached an agreement in principle to increase the size of its existing Australian healthcare joint venture by $1.6-billion of debt and equity bringing the total JV commitment to $3.4-billion.

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