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H&R REIT and a consortium led by KingSett Capital acquired Primaris Retail REIT, owner of such properties as Kelowna, B.C.’s Orchard Park Shopping Centre, the biggest M&A deal in Canada in 2013, as of May 1.

Canaccord Genuity leads Canada's investment banks in mergers and acquisitions so far this year, boosted by a couple of billion-dollar deals.

The bank advised on eight M&A transactions valued at $8.2-billion dollars in the year to May 1, according to Thomson Reuters.

The biggest deal was the purchase of Primaris Retail Real Estate Investment Trust by H&R REIT and a consortium led by KingSett capital. Primaris manages 26 major shopping centres and other properties across Canada. The top four banks in the chart all advised on this deal.

It has been a blockbuster year for REITs, income-generating real estate offerings that are popular with yield-chasing investors in this low interest rate environment. But M&A in other resource sectors such as mining, oil and gas also appeared near the top. Canaccord Genuity advised on the $1.3-billion purchase of the remaining stake in Uranium One Inc. by Russian state-owned uranium firm ARMZ, for example.

In total, $23-billion worth of M&A deals were done by the banks in the period.