“Derek is client-oriented and responsive. We’d trust him on any file.”
Client – Chambers Canada 2023
Derek positions his clients for success with his extensive experience litigating a wide range of complex commercial disputes, including mining, telecommunications, fraud and securities cases, class actions, competition and product liability cases. They praise his skills as “exemplary”, “top-class” and “impressive”. (Chambers Canada 2023)
He has been lead counsel on several trials, appeals and motions before a variety of courts and tribunals across Canada, including trial and appellate courts in various provinces, the Ontario Securities Commission and the Competition Tribunal. These have included numerous precedent-setting motions, trials and appeals for high-profile corporations. Derek also has extensive experience in commercial arbitration, both domestically and internationally.
Derek is the sole representative for Toronto of ICC FraudNet, an invitation-only global network of fraud and asset recovery legal specialists administered by the International Chamber of Commerce. He is also a frequent author and speaker for continuing education programs on commercial litigation and advocacy.
Shaw Communications Inc.
Successfully acted for Shaw Communications Inc. in a landmark trial before the Competition Tribunal and subsequent appeal before the Federal Court of Appeal challenging the company’s C$26-billion merger with Rogers Communications Inc. This was the largest case ever heard by the Tribunal and the first pre-closing merger challenge to go to trial before the Tribunal. This case won Commercial Litigation Team of the Year at the 2023 Canadian Law Awards and was named the #1 business decision of 2023 by Law360 Canada..
Acting for the claimant in a C$1.1-billion ICC arbitration regarding a major Canadian infrastructure project.
Elliott Investment Management L.P.
Acted for Elliott Investment Management L.P. in its accumulation of a material stake in Suncor Energy and subsequent engagement with Suncor culminating in an agreement (i) to appoint three new directors immediately with a potential fourth to be added depending on Suncor's performance against its peers, (ii) to participate on Suncor's CEO search committee, and (iii) to form a board committee to conduct a strategic review of Suncor's downstream retail business.
Centerra Gold Inc.
Acted for the special committee of independent directors of Centerra Gold Inc. in successfully obtaining approval of a contested plan of arrangement under the Canada Business Corporations Act in relation to the global arrangement agreement between Centerra, Kyrgyzaltyn JSC and the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic.
Saline Investments Ltd.
Acting for Saline Investments Ltd. in enforcement proceedings commenced by the Ontario Securities Commission alleging violations of the Securities Act (Ontario) in respect of certain short selling and securities lending transactions.
Hostess Brands LLC
Acting for Hostess Brands LLC in pursuing claims valued at approximately C$109 million arising from its C$425-million acquisition of Voortman Cookies Limited in 2020.
Acted for TransAlta Corporation in defending an oppression action brought by Mangrove Partners, a minority shareholder. Mangrove sought to set aside a $750-million strategic transaction entered into between TransAlta and Brookfield Renewable Partners.
Willoughby Asset Management Inc.
Acting for Willoughby Asset Management Inc., a large unitholder, in connection with Bridging Finance Inc.'s court-appointed receivership proceedings amidst allegations of fraud and misconduct.
Vale Canada Limited
Acting for Vale Canada Limited in a proceeding before the Ontario Superior Court of Justice (Commercial List) involving claims for damages by Vale of more than $650 million in connection with alleged breaches by Solway Group, an Eastern European mining company, of various royalty agreements relating to a nickel mining project in Guatemala.
The Federal Republic of Nigeria
Acting on behalf of the Federal Republic of Nigeria in Canadian proceedings involving the country's efforts to recover assets, including a private jet, from the key figure in the "Malabu Oil Scandal," one of Africa's biggest corruption cases.
Acting for a large international bank in connection with an alleged global price-fixing conspiracy related to supra-sovereign, sovereign and agency bonds (SSA bonds).
Acted for TransAlta Corporation in defending successfully "public interest" proceedings initiated against TransAlta by Mangrove Partners before the Ontario Securities Commission and Alberta Securities Commission in respect of the election of Directors of TransAlta at its Annual Meeting on April 26, 2019, and concerning a $750 million financing transaction entered into between TransAlta and Brookfield Renewable Partners.
American International Group Inc.
Acted for a subsidiary of American International Group Inc. in successfully defending a court application brought by The Walt Disney Company regarding the arbitration of a substantial insurance coverage dispute.
Vale Canada Limited
Acted for Vale Canada Limited and its affiliates in defending contractual claims before the Supreme Court of Newfoundland and Labrador in an amount of almost $500 million that were asserted by the Plaintiff under an Option Agreement pertaining to the Voisey's Bay Nickel Project. This case was settled in September, 2018, at the end of the first week of a four month trial that would have involved dozens of lay and expert witnesses. This was the first "hybrid trial" and first electronic trial ever conducted in the Province of Newfoundland and Labrador.
Acted for a blockchain company in connection with confidential enforcement matters before Canadian securities authorities.
Giant Tiger Stores Limited
Acting for Giant Tiger Stores Limited in its defence of multiple class proceedings commenced across Canada (including Ontario, British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Alberta, Manitoba, Québec and the Federal Court) relating to alleged price-fixing of commercial bread products in Canada at the wholesale and retail levels.
Khan Resources Inc.
Acted for Khan Resources Inc. in proceedings before the Ontario Superior Court of Justice and Court of Appeal in connection with a C$200-million claim related to the expropriation of Khan's uranium mining interests in Mongolia.
Zimmer Biomet Holdings, Inc.
Acting for Zimmer Biomet Holdings, Inc. in defending class action proceedings in the Superior Court of Ontario concerning alleged defects in Biomet's metal-on-metal hip replacement and resurfacing devices.
Acted for Staples, Inc. in connection with the Competition Bureau's challenge to its proposed $6.3 billion acquisition of Office Depot, Inc.
Nevsun Resources Ltd.
Acted for Nevsun Resources Limited in defending cross-border securities class actions in Canada and the United States. This litigation was resolved successfully following mediations in New York and Los Angeles.
National Energy Corporation
Acted for National Energy Corporation (operating as National Home Services) with respect to a private action before the Ontario Superior Court concerning allegations of misleading advertising contrary to the Competition Act. The claim was brought by Reliance Comfort Limited Partnership, a competitor to National and a respondent in proceedings before the Competition Tribunal in one of Canada's significant abuse of dominance cases.
Stingray Group Inc.
Acted for Stingray Group Inc. in a $50-million claim against its franchisor in a fast-tracked action before the Commercial List of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice.
Syndicate of underwriters
Acted for a syndicate of underwriters in defending a securities class action in the Superior Court of Ontario arising from the IPO of Zungui Haixi Corporation, a China-based issuer.
Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation
Acted successfully for Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation and the operators of Fallsview Casino in obtaining summary judgment dismissing a $14 million claim alleging irregularities with the roulette gaming at Fallsview Casino.
Domino's Pizza of Canada Ltd.
Acting for Domino's Pizza of Canada Ltd. in connection with various matters, including a precedent setting motion concerning discovery rights.
Acted for Coventree Inc. in defending enforcement proceedings brought against Coventree and two of its officers by Staff of the Ontario Securities Commission following the collapse of the $35-billion asset-backed securities market in August 2007. A number of allegations made against Coventree were dismissed following a lengthy trial at the OSC. This was the only matter that proceeded to trial following the collapse of the ABCP market in 2007.
MI Developments, Inc.
Acted for MI Developments, Inc. (MID) in its successful defence of applications made by minority shareholders of MID to the Ontario Securities Commission by seeking orders denying MID the use of various securities law exemptions and seeking to require MID to obtain minority shareholder approval before proceeding with proposed related party transactions with Magna Entertainment Corp.
Barrick Gold Corporation
Acted for Barrick Gold Corporation in defending successfully claims asserted against Barrick by Newmont Mining Corporation (now known as Newmont Goldcorp Corporation) and St. Andrew Goldfields Ltd. in respect of royalty and other agreements entered into in conjunction with the sale of a sizeable operating mine in Northern Ontario. The claims asserted against Barrick were dismissed following a highly expedited trial in the Superior Court of Ontario that was conducted in the absence of pleadings and discoveries.
Acted for Eugene Melnyk, the founder of Biovail and the owner of the Ottawa Senators, in defending enforcement proceedings before the Ontario Securities Commission arising from an "earnings warning" issued by Biovail in 2003. This case resulted in a lengthy trial before the OSC, following which many of the allegations made against Mr. Melnyk were dismissed.
Merrill Lynch Canada Finance Company
Acted for Merrill Lynch Canada Finance Company in its renewal of its $5-billion medium term note program.
Acted for BHP Billiton in connection with its $274-million all-cash acquisition of Anglo Potash Ltd. by way of a plan of arrangement.
Pioneer Metals Corporation
Acted in the successful representation of Pioneer Metals Corporation (a wholly owned subsidiary of Barrick Gold Corporation) in connection with a dispute over a multi-billion dollar mining project at Galore Creek, one of the largest undeveloped copper-gold-silver projects in North America.
MI Developments Inc.
Acted for a subsidiary of Magna International Inc. in defending successfully a precedent-setting oppression application brought against it before the Ontario Superior Court by Greenlight Capital Corporation and its founder, David Einhorn. Magna prevailed at trial, as well as on appeal in the Divisional Court of Ontario and Ontario Court of Appeal.
Acted for Xstrata plc in its unsolicited takeover bid for Falconbridge Ltd. valuing Falconbridge at $24.1 billion. At the time of announcement, this transaction was the largest unsolicited takeover bid ever made in the global mining sector and its successful completion made Xstrata the world's fifth-largest mining company.
Québec Court Tackles Novel Issues During Approval of the Second Remediation Agreement (a.k.a. Deferred Prosecution Agreement) Under the Canadian Criminal Code
May 23, 2023 - The Superior Court of Québec recently published its reasons1 approving Canada’s second remediation agreement under the Criminal Code, Canada’s version of a deferred prosecution agreement (DPA). In his reasons, Justice Marc David expanded on the principles applicable to Canada’s...
Davies Governance Insights – September 2022, contributor
Sept. 06, 2022 - Davies Governance Insights analyzes the top trends and issues most important to Canadian public companies and provides practical guidance for boards to meet these challenges head on. In this edition: Ten Regulatory and Judicial Developments That GCs and Boards Need to...
If It Ain’t Broke… Davies Comments on Draft Capital Markets Act
Feb. 25, 2022 - Davies has submitted a comprehensive comment letter on a new Capital Markets Act (CMA) proposed by the Ontario Ministry of Finance, on the recommendation of the Capital Markets Modernization Taskforce, to replace the Ontario Securities Act. Although some modifications to Ontario...
OECD Report: The Role of Corporations in Fighting White Collar Crime Enablers
Apr. 12, 2021 - The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) published a report in February 2021 titled “Ending the Shell Game: Cracking Down on the Professionals Who Enable Tax and White Collar Crimes” (Report), which highlights the role that “professional enablers” play in the commission of...
The Advocates’ Society, “Top Cases in Commercial Litigation”; Webcast
Feb. 25, 2021
Buyer Beware: In Canada’s First COVID-19 “Busted Deal” Decision, Court Finds That Duo Bank Cannot Terminate Its Acquisition of Fairstone Financial
Dec. 15, 2020 - The economic dislocation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has led to an uptick in “busted deal” litigation in M&A transactions in the United States and Canada.1 The crux of the litigation is whether the buyer may abandon the transaction without penalty on the basis of allegations that...
Davies Highlights Concerns with Proposals to Modernize Ontario’s Capital Markets
Sept. 09, 2020 - Davies has submitted a comprehensive comment letter to the Capital Markets Modernization Taskforce (Taskforce) in response to the consultation report published by the Taskforce on July 9, 2020 (Report). The Taskforce was formed by the Ontario government in February 2020 with a mandate to review...
Top Court Expands Scope of Potential Liability in Price-Fixing Class Actions
Sept. 24, 2019 - The Supreme Court of Canada has released its long-awaited decision in two companion appeals that have significant implications for class actions alleging conduct that contravenes the criminal provisions found in Part VI of the Competition Act (Act). In its decision in Pioneer...
Not All Customers Are the Same: Top Court Rules Business Customers Cannot Join Consumer Class Action
Apr. 09, 2019 - In its recent ruling in TELUS Communications Inc. v Wellman, 2019 SCC 19 (Wellman), the Supreme Court of Canada held that business customers of TELUS that entered into mandatory arbitration agreements cannot seek relief in court by participating in a class action together with...
Speaker and Demonstrator, The Advocates’ Society, “Evidence for Litigators”; Toronto, ON
Nov. 29, 2018
Speaker, The Advocates’ Society, “Top Commercial Cases of 2017”; Toronto, ON
Mar. 07, 2018
The Meaning of “Existence”: Wrestling with “Some Basis in Fact” and Common Issues After Pro-Sys
Apr. 20, 2017 - For 15 years, the standard of proof applied on certification motions in class actions has been the “some basis in fact” standard. However, the concept of “some basis in fact” is ill-defined, easier to describe in the negative and nearly impossible to delineate with certainty. While fraught with...
In the News
Rising Stars on Video
Dec. 21, 2016 - Davies partners Jennifer Grossklaus and Derek Ricci were recently recognized as Lexpert Rising Stars: Leading Lawyers Under 40. Both earned this award for their legal talent, business acumen, major accomplishments, community participation and interpersonal skills, and for being highly respected by...
Speaker, Toronto Lawyers’ Association, “Corporate Transactions: Drafting to Minimize Litigation Risks”; Toronto, ON
Mar. 31, 2016
Speaker, The Advocates’ Society, “Top Cases in Commercial Litigation”; Toronto, ON
Mar. 01, 2016
Speaker, Ontario Bar Association, “The Protections Against Self-Incrimination in Civil and Regulatory Proceedings”; Toronto, ON
Nov. 24, 2014 - Download the presentation.
Speaker, Ontario Bar Association, “Your First Collection II Deadbeat. Dilemmas: How to Get Paid”; Toronto, ON
Nov. 19, 2008
The Case for Mills Injunctions
July 15, 2006 - Advocates Quarterly, Vol. 31, No. 3
The Oppression Remedy and the Duty to Maximize Shareholder Value
Apr. 28, 2006 - Various Publications
Chambers Canada: Canada’s Leading Lawyers for Business—Litigation, General Commercial: Ontario
Litigation Counsel of America, Fellow
Lexpert Rising Stars: Leading Lawyers Under 40
Benchmark Litigation Canada Awards—Emerging Talent of the Year Award (2018)
Benchmark Litigation Canada Awards—Impact Case of the Year (2019, 2023)
Benchmark Canada: The Definitive Guide to Canada’s Leading Litigation Firms & Attorneys—Commercial (Litigation Star); Securities (Litigation Star)
The Canadian Law Awards—Commercial Litigation Team of the Year (2023)
The Best Lawyers in Canada—Class Action Litigation; Corporate and Commercial Litigation
The Legal 500 Canada—Dispute Resolution: Ontario (Leading Individual)
Lexpert Special Edition: Litigation
Lexpert Special Edition: Mining
Telfer School of Management—Young Achievers Award (2019)
The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory—Class Actions; Litigation: Corporate Commercial; Litigation: Securities
Who’s Who Legal: Commercial Litigation—Future Leaders; Who’s Who Legal: Canada—Commercial Litigation
Law360 Canada—Top Business Decision (2023)
Chambers Canada Award—Litigation Firm of the Year (2018)
Chambers Canada: Canada’s Leading Lawyers for Business—Litigation, General Commercial Department: Ontario (Band 1 for firm)