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Top Stories

The end of coal?

Face it. Even putting a question mark on that headline is just a technicality. As long as the world needs steel, there will be a cyclical market for metallurgical coal. But when it comes to the business of mining, moving and burning coal for energy, its demise is no longer a matter of if, but when
By John Greenwood
March 4th, 2016

It had been a brutal quarter for Teck Resources Ltd. (TSX:TCK.B) and Don Lindsay, the chief executive, speaking on a scheduled earnings call with analysts in late October was doing his best to put a bright face on things. Although … Continue reading

Move mountains? Easy. Boost diversity? Oof!

It’s proxy season for many Canadian issuers, and that means the second year of “comply or explain” disclosure on diversity. In year one, mining companies lagged with the most male-only boards. Will anything change in year two?
By Brenda Bouw
March 4th, 2016

Alex Johnston has seen a dramatic change in the conversations she’s been having about the lack of women leaders in the mining industry. Five or six years ago, when the now former executive director of women’s advocacy group Catalyst Canada … Continue reading

Five ways to someday

Even as the mining industry languors, change is afoot. And when the next rally is in high gear, it’s a sure bet some companies, practices and even conventional mining logic will have changed. We’ll still need a commodities comeback to make it happen, but it won’t be a carbon copy of the last boom. Here’s our look at five areas of fresh thinking that will define the next cycle
By Jim Middlemiss
March 4th, 2016

Michael Johnston says one thing he has learned in his 20-plus years of mining is that “you can’t manufacture grade. The ore body is what it is. Generally, it is something you have very little control over.” But what mining … Continue reading

In vogue for 2016? Pay cuts

Their share prices have been falling for years. Now more mining boards, having signed off on cuts to everything else, are wondering if it’s time executive pay followed suit
By Paul Brent
March 4th, 2016

Mining companies are accustomed to working with long lead times: potential plays can take years to assess, mines can take a decade to develop and operate for decades more while commodity cycles rise and fall. This year, as those companies’ … Continue reading

An uneasy duty

It’s been 12 years since the landmark ruling that established the Crown’s “duty to consult” with aboriginal groups. Most mining and resource projects navigate this process, but it’s hardly routine. More than growing pains, industry says governments aren’t doing their job
By Kerry Banks
March 4th, 2016

In November 2015, closing arguments were heard in a lawsuit that may have important consequences for the Canadian mining industry. Northern Superior Resources Inc. (TSX-V:SUP), a Sudbury, Ont.-based junior exploration outfit, is seeking $25 million in compensation from the Ontario … Continue reading

It’s buying time [again]

Insider: Ross Beaty
March 4th, 2016

Who: Ross Beaty, founder and chairman of Pan American Silver Corp. (TSX:PAA), founder and executive chairman of renewable energy company Alterra Power Corp. (TSX:AXY) and a lauded geologist and lawyer with 40-plus years of mining industry experience. Involvement: Beaty has … Continue reading

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Ticker

After the IPO

Congratulations, you’ve gone public. It only gets harder from here
By Listed staff
October 10th, 2015

It’s been a good year for initial public offerings on the Canadian markets. But now that means there are a lot of management teams and newly minted boards learning on the fly what it’s like to run a public company. … Continue reading

Whose company is it, anyway?

In the U.S., it’s been a big year for proxy access—a process allowing shareholders to nominate directors on equal terms with the board and CEO. Now the Canadian Coalition for Good Governance and its members want to make it the norm here
By Robert Thompson
July 24th, 2015

Stephen Erlichman says he doesn’t understand the controversy, but he fully recognizes it is there nonetheless. In May, the Canadian Coalition for Good Governance, a lobby group that Erlichman leads as executive director, published a report [pdf] insisting shareholders should … Continue reading

Pushing the envelope

Another annual meeting, another say-on-pay setback for the board of Barrick Gold. But this time, unlike 2013, it’s not the only big target for dissatisfied institutional funds
By Paul Brent
May 14th, 2015

For long-time shareholders of Barrick Gold Corp. (TSX:ABX), this spring’s annual meeting likely had a bizarre feeling of déjà vu to it. The question now is, how will the aftermath compare? Yes, company founder and chairman Peter Munk is one … Continue reading

Mining slump now an endurance test

The rough ride continues for commodities and the companies that mine them. Strong firms are still coping, but the casualty rate is on the rise
By Jim Middlemiss
February 27th, 2015

From energy to interest rates, there haven’t been a lot of bright spots in the economy in 2015. But leave it to metals and mining, a sector now almost four years removed from the dizzying heights of its last cyclical … Continue reading

Oil prices: each day brings more drama

Contained caution in Canadian energy and economic circles has given way to increasing alarm as oil prices—off about 40% from June through November—head towards New Year's in a nose dive
By Paul Brent
December 19th, 2014

The last few months have been a tough time for peak oil doomsayers, OPEC oil sheiks, petroleum executives as well as finance ministers from Edmonton to Ottawa and as far east as St. John’s. Their common and constant migraine, of … Continue reading

M&A rules get an overhaul

The Canadian Securities Administrators, with unanimous provincial support, is proposing new rules on takeover bids. Target boards and shareholders will get more leverage, bidders will need to rethink strategy
By John Greenwood
October 30th, 2014

Big changes often start imperceptibly until suddenly they become fact, part of the landscape. That’s a good description for the Canadian Securities Administrators’ recently proposed changes to regulations on takeover bids and shareholder rights plans which, assuming they’re adopted, will … Continue reading

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Views

Dilution for a rainy day

The more commodities drop, the clearer it is which companies factored the strategic risk of a slump into their actions back in the boom. Those that contained costs, built reserves and used equity for expansion then, are riding high today riding out the gloom
By John Caldwell
March 6th, 2016

On September 26, 2012, gold was trading at US$1,778.00 per ounce, close to its all-time high. That same day, silver was at US$33.93 an ounce and a pound of copper was US$3.74. Fast-forward 39 months to the start of this … Continue reading

Parents’ subsidiary liabilities hit home

Hudbay, Nevsun, Chevron...multiple Canadian resource companies are now facing suits in Canadian courts for the actions of their offshore subsidiaries. It’s time other firms took steps to address their own risk
By Poonam Puri
March 6th, 2016

In 2013, a group of indigenous Guatemalan plaintiffs commenced legal proceedings against Canadian mining giant Hudbay Minerals Inc. (TSX:HBM), alleging that security personnel hired by Hudbay’s wholly owned subsidiary in Guatemala perpetrated violent human rights abuses when carrying out security … Continue reading

Looking back on the year ahead

Wherein we embark on a short, time-traveling leap to the end of 2016 to take a look back at what went down—or up—in the mining sector in the year that was...or soon might be
By Robert Olsen
March 6th, 2016

Have you had enough of bad news in the mining sector and predictions for more of the same for the rest of 2016? Ever find yourself wishing you could just hit a switch and fast-forward another year? You’re not alone. … Continue reading

Getting boards engaged with shareholders

The practice of investor relations is beginning to reach beyond the corporate office and into the boardroom. How and when should directors meet with the Street?
By Chaya Cooperberg
December 15th, 2015

Long the domain of corporate executives, investor relations is starting to extend beyond the C-suite into boardrooms as shareholders seek access to independent directors and a clear process for interaction on issues of governance. Some of the world’s largest institutional … Continue reading

Successful M&A hinges on board discipline

A rigorous framework for board oversight of M&A can help companies boost their chances of dealmaking success—and, just as importantly, steer clear of flawed transactions that leave acquirers in the hole
By John Caldwell
December 15th, 2015

“Opportunity,” “uncertainty” and “risk” are three words that go hand-in-hand when considering a mergers and acquisition strategy. While acquisitions can offer unique opportunities for growth and add significant long-term value, they are by nature complex and fraught with risk. Typical … Continue reading

Board reform: the writing on the wall

Provincial securities regulators are calling out boards for their inadequate response to new policies on diversity and term limits. Directors can keep doing nothing, but they shouldn’t be surprised by what happens next
By Richard Leblanc
December 15th, 2015

When a regulator advises corporate directors that progress on gender diversity is “simply not good enough,” as OSC chair Howard Wetston did this summer, that is code that the status quo will not continue, and that more regulation may result. … Continue reading

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Features

The end of coal?

Face it. Even putting a question mark on that headline is just a technicality. As long as the world needs steel, there will be a cyclical market for metallurgical coal. But when it comes to the business of mining, moving and burning coal for energy, its demise is no longer a matter of if, but when
By John Greenwood
March 4th, 2016

It had been a brutal quarter for Teck Resources Ltd. (TSX:TCK.B) and Don Lindsay, the chief executive, speaking on a scheduled earnings call with analysts in late October was doing his best to put a bright face on things. Although … Continue reading

Five ways to someday

Even as the mining industry languors, change is afoot. And when the next rally is in high gear, it’s a sure bet some companies, practices and even conventional mining logic will have changed. We’ll still need a commodities comeback to make it happen, but it won’t be a carbon copy of the last boom. Here’s our look at five areas of fresh thinking that will define the next cycle
By Jim Middlemiss
March 4th, 2016

Michael Johnston says one thing he has learned in his 20-plus years of mining is that “you can’t manufacture grade. The ore body is what it is. Generally, it is something you have very little control over.” But what mining … Continue reading

An uneasy duty

It’s been 12 years since the landmark ruling that established the Crown’s “duty to consult” with aboriginal groups. Most mining and resource projects navigate this process, but it’s hardly routine. More than growing pains, industry says governments aren’t doing their job
By Kerry Banks
March 4th, 2016

In November 2015, closing arguments were heard in a lawsuit that may have important consequences for the Canadian mining industry. Northern Superior Resources Inc. (TSX-V:SUP), a Sudbury, Ont.-based junior exploration outfit, is seeking $25 million in compensation from the Ontario … Continue reading

M&A 2015: Canada shops the world

It’s been a banner year in Canadian M&A, especially for Canadian companies and pension funds buying abroad. That, plus a hot IPO market and strong private equity showing, have made up for some lacklustre action at home
By Jim Middlemiss
December 14th, 2015

The 2015 Canadian mergers and acquisitions market will be remembered as a year when domestic organizations went on an international buying spree, despite a dollar that was less than robust. Everyone from retailers to banks and real estate firms to … Continue reading

Deal of the Year: Toronto two-step

Raising $2.8 billion for an unspecified transaction got Steve Hudson the inside track on GE’s market-leading North American fleet operations. A smart European side deal and an $8.5-billion credit facility via his hometown bankers did the rest
By Robert Thompson
December 14th, 2015

It’s about the relationships. Like a good marriage or a long-standing friendship, Steve Hudson says his business was developed over dinners and over coffee. It is about keeping his financiers attuned to how his plans are developing, and how he’s … Continue reading

Our Deal of the Year short list

Only one company can claim Deal of the Year. But in 2015 you could also make a case for any of these three additional short-list contenders. Here’s why they were considered and then didn’t make the cut
December 14th, 2015

First runner-up: Brookfield Asset Management If you’re judging a body of work, Brookfield’s hard to beat. Led by CEO Bruce Flatt, no other company, or group of companies, did more big deals in 2015. Five transactions larger than $1 billion … Continue reading

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The Director's Chair

Jim Carter: Do you buy value, or build it?

In The Director’s Chair with David W. Anderson: Jim Carter may sit on four boards, in different sectors, but when it comes to creating value and long-term success, his measuring stick stays the same: get the culture right and results will follow
March 4th, 2016

Mining executives and directors, Jim Carter feels your pain. The former president of Syncrude Canada, now a director on four corporate boards—Finning International, Brand Energy, Alberta Treasury Branch Financial and Irving Oil—has navigated his share of industry slumps, and his … Continue reading

Helen Kearns: Purpose, process…results

In The Director’s Chair with David W. Anderson: An accomplished wealth manager, financial markets executive and veteran director, Helen Kearns has relied on a disciplined, strategic, long-term approach to create lasting value in every role
December 14th, 2015

With an exemplary career in wealth management and capital market finance, Helen Kearns, president and CEO of Bell Kearns & Associates Ltd., not only knows as much as anyone about making and managing money, but also how to anticipate and repel setbacks … Continue reading

Mike Wilson: Out of the fray, still in the fire

In The Director’s Chair with David W. Anderson: He had a long executive career, culminating in a decade as president and CEO of Agrium. Now Mike Wilson is bringing it as a non-executive director on four boards
October 10th, 2015

If you need any testimony to Mike Wilson’s knowledge, experience, boardroom savvy and the high esteem in which he’s held by his peers, consider that within a year of retiring as president and CEO of Agrium Inc. at the end … Continue reading

Bill Achtmeyer: Artisan of the deal

In The Director’s Chair with David W. Anderson: A conversation with Boston-based Bill Achtmeyer serves up an advanced class in M&A strategy and execution
July 26th, 2015

After decades of M&A advisory experience, first with Bain & Co., then as founder, chair and managing partner of the Parthenon Group, plus a distinguished director career, Bill Achtmeyer has an acute, board’s-eye view of M&A. Here, in conversation with … Continue reading

Paul Myners: The issue is ownership

In The Director’s Chair with David W. Anderson: As one of the UK’s most influential leaders on corporate governance, Paul Myners has a challenge for his peers: why haven’t their many reforms penetrated practice?
May 13th, 2015

Paul Myners has résumé enough for three or four successful careers. One-time publisher of The Guardian newspaper, former City Minister in the government’s finance ministry, current fund company chair and partner as well as chair of the Court and Council … Continue reading

Rob McEwen: A sense of purpose

In The Director’s Chair with David W. Anderson: For Rob McEwen, it’s not only about knowing where you want to go, but figuring out the best way to get there
February 27th, 2015

Rob McEwen has been a dominant presence in gold mining since he founded and, as chair and CEO, built Goldcorp—now among the world’s largest gold companies—into an industry leader. Today he’s chair, CEO and 25%-owner of McEwen Mining, a TSX- … Continue reading

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Handbook

Boards must re-up on responsibility

Most Canadian mining management has kept pace with corporate responsibility’s growth and complexity. But the makeup of mining boards has not. To help: a look at the new skills required and how to find directors that have them
By Craig Ford
March 6th, 2016

In the business of mining resource development, the past decade has seen a dramatic rise in the scope and complexity of corporate responsibility issues. This has been driven by two primary factors. First, societal expectations of business and especially resource … Continue reading

Will the giants inherit the earth?

Grim as the economics of mining and minerals are for everyone right now, looking ahead, things are lining up strongly in favour of the industry’s biggest players. Expect them to dominate increasingly large swaths of the business for years to come
By Ian McGugan
March 4th, 2016

After four years of relentlessly bad news, the one bright spot for the mining industry in 2016 is that there are no high hopes left to disappoint. The compelling question that hangs over the sector is no longer how bad … Continue reading

In vogue for 2016? Pay cuts

Their share prices have been falling for years. Now more mining boards, having signed off on cuts to everything else, are wondering if it’s time executive pay followed suit
By Paul Brent
March 4th, 2016

Mining companies are accustomed to working with long lead times: potential plays can take years to assess, mines can take a decade to develop and operate for decades more while commodity cycles rise and fall. This year, as those companies’ … Continue reading

Buying trouble: data, corruption risks in M&A

Most boards are learning, in general, to pay plenty of mind to cybersecurity and corruption risks. But special care is needed when it comes to M&A targets and processes
By Ken Mark
December 15th, 2015

Uneasy lie the heads of those who sit on corporate boards. And their anxiety is rising with every CEO who decides their company can boost profits faster through mergers and acquisition than through organic growth. Ensuring effective due diligence on … Continue reading

How our new PM can help grow the economy

Generations of rhetoric notwithstanding, Canadian prime ministers don’t have that many tools at their disposal to boost economic growth. So here are three ideas to get Justin Trudeau started
By Ian McGugan
December 15th, 2015

You should feel sorry for federal politicians—at least during elections and just afterward. It’s then that these would-be leaders are forced to stand up and pretend they possess the magic formula to generate prosperity. Of course, their hopeful rhetoric often … Continue reading

Three mistakes in CEO succession planning

Your board can spend a lot of time on CEO succession and still get it wrong. Here’s a look at three big pitfalls and how to avoid them
By Beverly Behan
December 15th, 2015

CEO succession is an area where most boards feel they could raise their game. PwC’s 2015 study of nearly 800 U.S. public company directors, released in October, revealed that less than half feel their board spends sufficient time on CEO … Continue reading

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Economy

Will the giants inherit the earth?

Grim as the economics of mining and minerals are for everyone right now, looking ahead, things are lining up strongly in favour of the industry’s biggest players. Expect them to dominate increasingly large swaths of the business for years to come
By Ian McGugan
March 4th, 2016

After four years of relentlessly bad news, the one bright spot for the mining industry in 2016 is that there are no high hopes left to disappoint. The compelling question that hangs over the sector is no longer how bad … Continue reading

How our new PM can help grow the economy

Generations of rhetoric notwithstanding, Canadian prime ministers don’t have that many tools at their disposal to boost economic growth. So here are three ideas to get Justin Trudeau started
By Ian McGugan
December 15th, 2015

You should feel sorry for federal politicians—at least during elections and just afterward. It’s then that these would-be leaders are forced to stand up and pretend they possess the magic formula to generate prosperity. Of course, their hopeful rhetoric often … Continue reading

Global economy down, but far from out

Regional gridlock and wobbles in China prompt legitimate fears. But when the two biggest inputs for business—money and energy—are as cheap as they are today, growth should prevail
By Ian McGugan
October 10th, 2015

Let’s acknowledge the obvious. With Canada at least technically in a recession, China slowing and Europe trapped in political gridlock, business leaders in this country have good reason to be worried about the outlook for the world economy over the … Continue reading

Chasing prosperity? Or votes?

Why is a balanced federal budget like a picnic? Because neither is responsible for what their promoters promise—be it economic well-being or a sunny, summer day
By Ian McGugan
July 24th, 2015

Balanced budgets are what pass for sexy among a certain swath of the electorate—most notably the part that votes Conservative. Hence it’s no big surprise that the federal Tories pulled out all stops this spring to announce their first balanced … Continue reading

Low rate rendezvous

Outside the U.S., interest rates are trending down, not up. For the Bank of Canada, the goal is a lower dollar that boosts exports. But if you’re counting on that for your business, here are a few thoughts to keep in mind
By Ian McGugan
May 15th, 2015

Beware falling interest rates. They’re evidence of how desperately most countries want to goose their underperforming economies and mark down their currencies. Since the oil price crash last year, roughly two dozen central banks around the world have eased back … Continue reading

Is your barrel half empty or half full?

Everybody’s talking about the impact of plunging oil prices on petro regions and energy producers—but what about the mining sector? Our correspondent sees a range of consequences, many of them good
By Ian McGugan
February 27th, 2015

The unexpected and still largely unexplained plunge in the price of oil is enough to throw a scare into any commodity producer. When the world’s most vital and heavily traded raw material can lose half its value in six months—for … Continue reading

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Insider

It’s buying time [again]

Insider: Ross Beaty
March 4th, 2016

Who: Ross Beaty, founder and chairman of Pan American Silver Corp. (TSX:PAA), founder and executive chairman of renewable energy company Alterra Power Corp. (TSX:AXY) and a lauded geologist and lawyer with 40-plus years of mining industry experience. Involvement: Beaty has … Continue reading

Growing public

Insider: Anton Rabie
December 14th, 2015

Who Anton Rabie, co-CEO Spin Master Corp. (TSX:TOY), a Toronto-based children’s toys, games and entertainment company. Spin Master’s best-known brands include Bakugan and Air Hogs; its latest TV series, Paw Patrol, is broadcast in over 160 countries. Rabie co-founded Spin … Continue reading

ROI meets ESG

Insider: Michael Jantzi
October 10th, 2015

Who Michael Jantzi, CEO of Sustainalytics, a leading Amsterdam-headquartered, global ESG and corporate governance research, ratings and analysis firm. Jantzi founded Jantzi Research in Toronto in 1992 and merged it with Sustainalytics in 2009. Involvement In August, Sustainalytics announced a … Continue reading

Leading in

Insider: Linda Hasenfratz
July 24th, 2015

Who Linda Hasenfratz, chief executive officer and a director of Linamar Corp. (TSX:LNR) of Guelph, Ont., a position she has held since 2002. Linamar, ranked 31st among the top 100 automotive parts suppliers in North America, also has operations in … Continue reading

Who is seeing i2i?

Insider: Stephen Davis
May 12th, 2015

Who Stephen Davis, associate director of the Harvard Law School Programs on Corporate Governance and Institutional Investors and a senior fellow at the Program on Corporate Governance. Davis is also a nonresident senior fellow in governance at the Brookings Institution … Continue reading

Nickeled and primed

Insider: David Pathe
February 26th, 2015

Who David Pathe, president and CEO, Sherritt International Corp. (TSX:S), a major Canadian producer of nickel and oil with operations in Western Canada, Madagascar and, most notably, Cuba, where it has mining, energy and power interests. Involvement Pathe has been … Continue reading

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