GCR 100 - 13th Edition

Blake Cassels & Graydon LLP

05 December 2012

Canada

Blake Cassels & Graydon continues to house the top competition practice in Canada. The Blakes team was the first – and sometimes the only – firm mentioned by rivals when asked about their most formidable competition in the Canadian market. Led by Who’s Who Legal nominees Brian Facey and Calvin S Goldman QC, the Blakes competition group consistently wins work on the country’s most contentious deals – so much so that the firm has created an entire new group to deal with document production related to supplementary information requests (SIRs) in high-stakes mergers. The group has handled at least four SIRs this year and close to 20 over the two-plus years they’ve been in existence, building unmatched expertise in the market. The contentious side of the practice has been equally as impressive. Fellow Who’s Who Legal nominees Jason Gudofsky, Randall Hofley, Robert E Kwinter and Julie Soloway highlight a 16-partner team.

Facey describes 2012 as the “year of the Bell” in the Blakes group, as he and his merger team have guided the Canadian telecoms heavyweight through a handful of contentious deals. The Bell/Astral merger is the headliner, but the group also acted for Bell in its joint venture with rival Rogers to take over Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment and in the company’s acquisition of Q9. Elsewhere on the merger front, the team is acting for Nexen in its cross-border deal with China National Offshore Oil Company; Maple Group in its contentious deal with TMX; Outokumpu in its purchase of Inoxum; and several others.

On the litigation side, the team has acted for companies involved in arguably the three most high-profile Competition Bureau challenges over the past year or so. The Blakes group is acting for Visa in the bureau’s interchange fees case, and United in the bureau’s challenge of its metal-neutral joint venture with Air Canada. The team also acted for a complainant in the bureau’s CCS merger challenge. In class actions, Blakes is working for Microsoft in its software class action and Samsung in the Quebec DRAM case – two of the three matters the Supreme Court will use to decide whether indirect purchasers can sue for antitrust damages in Canada. The firm’s list of cartel cases and follow-on class actions is long; it includes the Quebec retail gas case, chocolate, air cargo, DRAM, hydrogen peroxide and numerous others.

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