Canada's M&A Market Off to Record $44.7 Billion Start in 2016

  • Largest deal is Fortis' $6.9 Billion takeover of ITC Holdings
  • Early transactions worth more than three times 2015 totals

Mergers and acquisitions involving Canadian firms are off to a record start in 2016 as companies search for ways to boost earnings amid weak economies.

A total of $44.7 billion worth of transactions have been announced this year through Feb. 10, more than three times the $14.6 billion in the same period of 2015 and 41 percent above the previous peak of $31.6 billion in 2007. The dealmaking carries on the momentum that saw Canadian mergers and acquisitions hit an eight-year high last year.

Barclays Plc, Morgan Stanley, Bank of Nova Scotia, JPMorgan Chase & Co., and Lazard Ltd. were the top financial advisers on those deals announced through Feb. 10.

The largest deal so far in 2016 was Fortis Inc.’s $6.6 billion purchase of power-line operator ITC Holding Corp., which includes the assumption of an additional $4.4 billion in debt bringing the total transaction value to $11 billion.

That transaction is followed closely by Waste Connections Inc.’s reverse takeover of Progressive Waste Solutions Ltd. for $6.9 billion, which, including debt, was worth $8.9 billion.

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