Elisa K. Kearney

Elisa Kearney is a partner in the Competition & Foreign Investment Review, Investigations & White Collar Defence, Technology, Communications & Media and Retail practices. She advises clients on Canadian competition law and a range of regulatory matters, including mergers, foreign investment review, misleading advertising, telecom and broadcasting, as well as foreign corrupt practices and criminal conspiracy investigations (price-fixing).

Elisa has had significant experience in securing regulatory approval of numerous acquisitions before the Canadian Competition Bureau including, most recently, seeking approval for US Airways proposed merger with American Airlines, the proposed sale by Google Inc. of the Motorola Home business to Arris Group Inc., Corus Entertainment Inc.’s acquisition of certain radio and television assets from Bell and the sale of Consorcio Comex S.A. de C.V. to The Sherwin Williams Company. Elisa is acting for the Commissioner of Competition in the most significant proceeding before the Competition Tribunal in recent years, the challenge against Visa and MasterCard’s Merchant Rules. In addition to these public matters, Elisa has represented a number of domestic and international companies in alleged cartel investigations by the Competition Bureau and has particular experience responding to searches and “dawn raids”, conducting interviews and negotiating and securing leniency or immunity agreements. She also routinely counsels clients on contests, misleading advertising and promotional practices as well as pricing and distribution laws in Canada. She has also acted as external counsel to the CRTC.

Elisa is a member of the firm's Student Committee and Knowledge Management Committee.

Representative Work

  • Acting for Corus Entertainment Inc. with respect to the regulatory aspects of its acquisition from Bell Media of interests in certain TV (Teletoon, Historia & Séries+) and radio assets in Ottawa currently held by Astral Media, Inc. The combined acquisition price for these assets is $494 million.

  • Acted for Google Inc. in connection with the regulatory aspects of the sale of its Motorola Home business to Arris Group, Inc. for $2.35 billion in a cash-and-stock transaction.

  • Acted for US Airways Group, Inc. in connection with the competition law aspects of its merger with AMR Merger Sub, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of American Airlines, Inc. The combined equity value will be is approximately US$11 billion.

  • Acted for the Commissioner of Competition, the head of the Canadian Competition Bureau, in the first challenge ever brought under the civil price maintenance provisions of the Competition Act alleging that the merchant rules applied by Visa and MasterCard are anti-competitive. This was the most significant proceeding before the Competition Tribunal in recent years.

  • Acting as Canadian counsel for Consorcio Comex, S.A. de C.V. with respect to regulatory matters in connection to a proposed acquisition of Consorcio Comex, S.A. de C.V. by The Sherwin Williams Company for approximately US$2.34 billion.

  • Acted for Square, Inc. in connection with the expansion into Canada of its electronic payment service that allows users to accept credit card payments through their mobile devices.

  • Acted for Westerkirk Capital Inc. in its acquisition of Vista Broadcast Group Inc., the parent company of Vista Radio Ltd. which holds 38 broadcast licences serving 50 communities throughout British Columbia, Alberta and the Northwest Territories.

  • Acted as Canadian counsel to Google Inc. on competition and other regulatory matters in connection with its US$12.5 billion acquisition of Motorola Mobility Holdings, Inc.

  • Acted as Canadian counsel for Google Inc. with respect to competition and regulatory matters in connection with its acquisition of ITA Software.

  • Acted for George Weston Limited in connection with the acquisition of ACE Bakery Limited in a deal valued at $110 million.

  • Acted for Shaw Communications Inc. in its $2-billion acquisition through Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act proceedings of the conventional and specialty television business of Canwest Global Communications Corp., now known as Shaw Media.

  • Acted as Canadian counsel to The Black & Decker Corporation with respect to regulatory matters in connection with the acquisition of The Black and Decker Corporation by The Stanley Works in a deal valued at US$4.5 billion.

  • Acted as external counsel to the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission with respect to its ownership and control review of Globalive Wireless Communications Inc. ("Wind Mobile").

  • Acted for TSX Group Inc. in its acquisition of Bourse de Montréal Inc. in a transaction valued at $1.3 billion which created TMX Group Inc., a leading integrated multi-asset stock exchange group.

  • Acted as Canadian counsel for Reuters Group PLC in its dual-listed company merger with The Thomson Corporation to create Thomson-Reuters in a transaction valued at US$17.6 billion, creating the first Canadian dual-listed company structure.

  • Acted for Australia-based Amcor Limited in the sale of its White Cap business in Europe, Asia, Brazil and the US to Silgan Holdings Inc. for a base price of $230 million.

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  • Recognized by The Best Lawyers in Canada in the area of Competition/Antitrust Law.
  • American Bar Association, Section of International Law, 2012 Outstanding Volunteer Award

Professional Affiliations

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Co-Chair, International Antitrust Committee, Section of International Law, American Bar Association

Chair, Foreign Investment Review Committee, National Competition Law Section, Canadian Bar Association

American Bar Association, Section of Antitrust Law

Board Memberships

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Community Involvement

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Teaching Engagements

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Guest lecturer, Advanced Corporate Law, Queen's University Faculty of Law

Guest lecturer, Advanced Corporate Transactions, University of Toronto Law School

Speaking Engagements

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Elisa spoke on Pricing and Distribution: New Challenges and Opportunities at the Osgoode Professional Development's Competition Law Essentials for Corporate Counsel, Business Lawyers and Executives program in Toronto on December 3rd, 2013.

Elisa spoke on Regulatory Compliance in Business Deals at Home and Abroad at Insight's Law and Practice (March 2012). Elisa spoke at the Canadian Bar Association's 2011 Annual Fall Competition Law Conference on From Rebates to Social Networks: Ten Challenges for Canadian Advertisers and at the CBA's 2011 National Competition Law Section Foreign Investment Review Committee mini-conference on Investment Canada Act: The times they are a-changin'.

Elisa also spoke at the American Bar Association Section of International Law Spring Meeting 2010 in New York on Technology and Innovation: Regulation in the High-Tech Economy and Networking and Business Development for Women (and Men!); the American Bar Association Section of International Law Spring Meeting 2009 in Washington, D.C. on Breaking Through the Glass Ceiling – Successful Women in their Field; and at the American Bar Association Section of International Law Fall Meeting 2008 in Brussels on Criminalization of Antitrust: The New Consensus?

Elisa Kearney
Elisa K. Kearney
Bar Admissions:

Solicitor, England and Wales, 2013

New York, 2010

Ontario, 2004


New York University, LL.M., 2009

Osgoode Hall Law School, LL.B., 2003

McGill University, B.A. (Honours) (History/Political Science), 2000