Aaron J. Atkinson

Partner

Aaron J. Atkinson

Aaron J. Atkinson

Partner

Clients trust Aaron to deliver strategic solutions for their critical business transactions.

Aaron’s practice focuses on public and private mergers and acquisitions, capital markets and securities, and corporate governance. Canadian and international businesses, underwriters and investors spanning a wide range of industry sectors – including mining, life sciences and financial services – count on Aaron for his business-minded and results-oriented approach to their complex legal issues.

A seasoned and strategic practitioner, Aaron has advised on some of the country’s most high-profile domestic and cross-border transactions, including contested matters such as unsolicited takeover bids and proxy contests, as well as financing transactions, negotiated acquisitions, joint ventures and partnerships.

Well versed in corporate governance, Aaron is regularly called upon to advise boards and board special committees on transactional matters as well as internal investigations and complex governance issues.

Aaron J. Atkinson

Partner

Clients trust Aaron to deliver strategic solutions for their critical business transactions.

Aaron’s practice focuses on public and private mergers and acquisitions, capital markets and securities, and corporate governance. Canadian and international businesses, underwriters and investors spanning a wide range of industry sectors – including mining, life sciences and financial services – count on Aaron for his business-minded and results-oriented approach to their complex legal issues.

A seasoned and strategic practitioner, Aaron has advised on some of the country’s most high-profile domestic and cross-border transactions, including contested matters such as unsolicited takeover bids and proxy contests, as well as financing transactions, negotiated acquisitions, joint ventures and partnerships.

Well versed in corporate governance, Aaron is regularly called upon to advise boards and board special committees on transactional matters as well as internal investigations and complex governance issues.

Cornerstone Capital Resources Inc.

Acted for Cornerstone Capital Resources Inc. in its successful defence of the hostile bid launched by SolGold plc for Cornerstone, including Cornerstone's proposed requisition of a meeting of SolGold to change the board of SolGold.

SEMAFO Inc.

Acted as counsel to SEMAFO Inc. in its US$2.1-billion business combination with Endeavour Mining Corporation by way of plan of arrangement under the Business Corporations Act (Québec).

Roxgold Inc.

Acting for Roxgold Inc. in its C$1.1-billion business combination with Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. to create a premier growth-oriented global intermediate gold and silver producer.

Rothschild & Co.

Advising Rothschild & Co. in its provision of a long form fairness opinion to the special committee and board of directors of GT Gold Corp. in GT Gold's acquisition by Newmont Corporation for approximately $456 million.

Aleafia Health Inc.

Advised the board of directors of Aleafia Health Inc., a Canadian cannabis company, in connection with an agreement between Aleafia and shareholders representing 15.6% of the shares to appoint two directors and enter into customary standstill and voting covenants.

Jefferies LLC

Acting for Jefferies LLC, as financial advisor to Aphria Inc., in the merger of Aphria and Tilray, Inc. to create the world's largest global cannabis company based on pro forma revenue.

Special Committee of RIV Capital Inc. (formerly Canopy Rivers Inc.)

Acted as counsel to the special committee of RIV Capital Inc. (formerly Canopy Rivers Inc.), a venture capital firm specializing in cannabis, in its plan of arrangement with Canopy Growth Corporation, involving the collapse of its dual-class share structure and the transfer of three of its portfolio assets for a total transaction value of approximately $297 million.

Glanbia plc

Acted for Glanbia plc, a global nutrition group, in its acquisition of Foodarom Group, a Québec-based specialist flavours solutions business.

Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd.

Acted for Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd. in connection with Pentwater Capital Management's activist campaign and proxy contest with respect to Turquoise Hill's contested 2020 annual and special meeting.

BMO Capital Markets

Acted for BMO Capital Markets, in its fairness opinion to the board of directors of Equinox Gold Corp., regarding its plan of arrangement with Leagold Mining Corporation.

Guide

Davies Governance Insights 2020, contributor

Oct. 05, 2020 - Davies Governance Insights 2020 provides a comprehensive analysis of the trends and developments that have shaped the corporate governance landscape and those that are expected to define the next decade. Against the backdrop of the COVID-19 crisis, this year’s report explores key issues...

In the News

Aaron Atkinson Discusses the Future of Hostile Bids with The Globe and Mail

June 18, 2020 - Following the recent publication of Davies’ report, The Hostile Bid Is Dead. Long Live the Hostile Bid?, The Globe and Mail featured partner and author Aaron Atkinson for his insights on what lies ahead for Canadian public M&A activity in the post-pandemic world. The Davies report...

Guide

The Hostile Bid Is Dead. Long Live the Hostile Bid?

June 15, 2020 - With much of the world focused on the immediacy of the COVID-19 pandemic, including its heavy human and economic toll, we have cast our eyes optimistically on the (near, we hope) future when companies regain sufficient confidence to re-enter the public M&A market in large numbers. Although...

Speaking Engagement

Osgoode Professional Development, Advising the Public Company Board of Directors, “Shareholder Activism & Engagement: Strategies and Approaches”; Toronto, ON

Oct. 22, 2019

Guide

Davies Governance Insights 2019, contributor

Oct. 03, 2019 - Davies Governance Insights 2019 is a comprehensive report that analyzes the governance trends and issues most important to Canadian public companies. Now in its ninth edition, Governance Insights is designed to be a playbook for navigating the diverse and complex challenges facing...

Speaking Engagement

Osgoode Professional Development, Intensive Course in Canadian Securities Law and Practice, “Mergers & Acquisitions—The Essentials and Emerging Issues”; Toronto, ON

June 12, 2019

Chambers Canada: Canada’s Leading Lawyers for Business—Corporate/Commercial: Ontario

IFLR1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms—Mergers and Acquisitions

The Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada—Corporate Commercial Law; Corporate Finance & Securities; Mergers and Acquisitions

Lexpert Special Edition: Agribusiness and Cannabis

Lexpert Special Edition: Finance and M&A

Lexpert Special Edition: Health Sciences

Lexpert Special Edition: Mining

Lexpert Special Edition: Technology

The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory—Corporate Commercial Law (Most Frequently Recommended); Corporate Finance and Securities (Most Frequently Recommended); Mergers and Acquisitions (Most Frequently Recommended); Corporate Mid-Market; Mining; Private Equity

The Best Lawyers in Canada—Corporate Governance Practice; Mergers and Acquisitions Law; Securities Law

Lexpert Rising Stars: Leading Lawyers Under 40

Who’s Who Legal: Canada—Capital Markets

Bar Admissions

Ontario, 2001

Education

University of Windsor, LLB (Gold Medallist), 1999
University of Windsor, BA (Hons), 1996

Teaching Engagements

Aaron is an adjunct professor at Osgoode Hall Law School where he teaches the Advanced Business Law Workshop. He has served as a lecturer in Osgoode’s Corporate Remedies LLM course and taught “Mergers and Acquisitions: Emerging Strategies and Regulatory Issues” for the Intensive Course in Canadian Securities Law and Practice, part of Osgoode’s Professional Development Program. Previously, Aaron taught Corporate Finance and M&A for eight years at the University of Windsor Faculty of Law.

Clients trust Aaron to deliver strategic solutions for their critical business transactions.

Aaron’s practice focuses on public and private mergers and acquisitions, capital markets and securities, and corporate governance. Canadian and international businesses, underwriters and investors spanning a wide range of industry sectors – including mining, life sciences and financial services – count on Aaron for his business-minded and results-oriented approach to their complex legal issues.

A seasoned and strategic practitioner, Aaron has advised on some of the country’s most high-profile domestic and cross-border transactions, including contested matters such as unsolicited takeover bids and proxy contests, as well as financing transactions, negotiated acquisitions, joint ventures and partnerships.

Well versed in corporate governance, Aaron is regularly called upon to advise boards and board special committees on transactional matters as well as internal investigations and complex governance issues.

Cornerstone Capital Resources Inc.

Acted for Cornerstone Capital Resources Inc. in its successful defence of the hostile bid launched by SolGold plc for Cornerstone, including Cornerstone's proposed requisition of a meeting of SolGold to change the board of SolGold.

SEMAFO Inc.

Acted as counsel to SEMAFO Inc. in its US$2.1-billion business combination with Endeavour Mining Corporation by way of plan of arrangement under the Business Corporations Act (Québec).

Roxgold Inc.

Acting for Roxgold Inc. in its C$1.1-billion business combination with Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. to create a premier growth-oriented global intermediate gold and silver producer.

Rothschild & Co.

Advising Rothschild & Co. in its provision of a long form fairness opinion to the special committee and board of directors of GT Gold Corp. in GT Gold's acquisition by Newmont Corporation for approximately $456 million.

Aleafia Health Inc.

Advised the board of directors of Aleafia Health Inc., a Canadian cannabis company, in connection with an agreement between Aleafia and shareholders representing 15.6% of the shares to appoint two directors and enter into customary standstill and voting covenants.

Jefferies LLC

Acting for Jefferies LLC, as financial advisor to Aphria Inc., in the merger of Aphria and Tilray, Inc. to create the world's largest global cannabis company based on pro forma revenue.

Special Committee of RIV Capital Inc. (formerly Canopy Rivers Inc.)

Acted as counsel to the special committee of RIV Capital Inc. (formerly Canopy Rivers Inc.), a venture capital firm specializing in cannabis, in its plan of arrangement with Canopy Growth Corporation, involving the collapse of its dual-class share structure and the transfer of three of its portfolio assets for a total transaction value of approximately $297 million.

Glanbia plc

Acted for Glanbia plc, a global nutrition group, in its acquisition of Foodarom Group, a Québec-based specialist flavours solutions business.

Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd.

Acted for Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd. in connection with Pentwater Capital Management's activist campaign and proxy contest with respect to Turquoise Hill's contested 2020 annual and special meeting.

BMO Capital Markets

Acted for BMO Capital Markets, in its fairness opinion to the board of directors of Equinox Gold Corp., regarding its plan of arrangement with Leagold Mining Corporation.

Guide

Davies Governance Insights 2020, contributor

Oct. 05, 2020 - Davies Governance Insights 2020 provides a comprehensive analysis of the trends and developments that have shaped the corporate governance landscape and those that are expected to define the next decade. Against the backdrop of the COVID-19 crisis, this year’s report explores key issues...

In the News

Aaron Atkinson Discusses the Future of Hostile Bids with The Globe and Mail

June 18, 2020 - Following the recent publication of Davies’ report, The Hostile Bid Is Dead. Long Live the Hostile Bid?, The Globe and Mail featured partner and author Aaron Atkinson for his insights on what lies ahead for Canadian public M&A activity in the post-pandemic world. The Davies report...

Guide

The Hostile Bid Is Dead. Long Live the Hostile Bid?

June 15, 2020 - With much of the world focused on the immediacy of the COVID-19 pandemic, including its heavy human and economic toll, we have cast our eyes optimistically on the (near, we hope) future when companies regain sufficient confidence to re-enter the public M&A market in large numbers. Although...

Speaking Engagement

Osgoode Professional Development, Advising the Public Company Board of Directors, “Shareholder Activism & Engagement: Strategies and Approaches”; Toronto, ON

Oct. 22, 2019

Guide

Davies Governance Insights 2019, contributor

Oct. 03, 2019 - Davies Governance Insights 2019 is a comprehensive report that analyzes the governance trends and issues most important to Canadian public companies. Now in its ninth edition, Governance Insights is designed to be a playbook for navigating the diverse and complex challenges facing...

Speaking Engagement

Osgoode Professional Development, Intensive Course in Canadian Securities Law and Practice, “Mergers & Acquisitions—The Essentials and Emerging Issues”; Toronto, ON

June 12, 2019

Chambers Canada: Canada’s Leading Lawyers for Business—Corporate/Commercial: Ontario

IFLR1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms—Mergers and Acquisitions

The Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada—Corporate Commercial Law; Corporate Finance & Securities; Mergers and Acquisitions

Lexpert Special Edition: Agribusiness and Cannabis

Lexpert Special Edition: Finance and M&A

Lexpert Special Edition: Health Sciences

Lexpert Special Edition: Mining

Lexpert Special Edition: Technology

The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory—Corporate Commercial Law (Most Frequently Recommended); Corporate Finance and Securities (Most Frequently Recommended); Mergers and Acquisitions (Most Frequently Recommended); Corporate Mid-Market; Mining; Private Equity

The Best Lawyers in Canada—Corporate Governance Practice; Mergers and Acquisitions Law; Securities Law

Lexpert Rising Stars: Leading Lawyers Under 40

Who’s Who Legal: Canada—Capital Markets

Bar Admissions

Ontario, 2001

Education

University of Windsor, LLB (Gold Medallist), 1999
University of Windsor, BA (Hons), 1996

Teaching Engagements

Aaron is an adjunct professor at Osgoode Hall Law School where he teaches the Advanced Business Law Workshop. He has served as a lecturer in Osgoode’s Corporate Remedies LLM course and taught “Mergers and Acquisitions: Emerging Strategies and Regulatory Issues” for the Intensive Course in Canadian Securities Law and Practice, part of Osgoode’s Professional Development Program. Previously, Aaron taught Corporate Finance and M&A for eight years at the University of Windsor Faculty of Law.