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Gavyn Backus advises clients on mergers and acquisitions, going public transactions and corporate finance matters. His industry knowledge encompasses highly regulated sectors such as clean energy, technology, cannabis and biotech.

With insight into the financial and legal challenges facing businesses in the public and private spaces, Gavyn finds practical solutions to day-to-day securities and commercial challenges, including ongoing compliance with Canadian securities and corporate laws, and commercial arrangements.

Gavyn frequently advises on cross-border transactions involving emerging and more established companies, specifically in relation to structuring and implementing strategic relationships, and providing regulatory guidance for companies operating in the Canadian cannabis space.



Representative Matters

‘Going Public’ Transactions (IPOs, RTOs, and Qualifying Transactions)

  • Counsel to a Canadian private issuer in connection with its acquisition of an e-gaming and high-performance computing issuer, and subsequent IPO (special warrants offering) and listing on the Canadian Securities Exchange (2019).
  • Counsel to a Canadian private issuer in connection with its acquisition of a licensed California cannabis issuer and subsequent IPO (non-offering prospectus) and listing on the Canadian Securities Exchange (2018).
  • Counsel to a Canadian reporting issuer in connection with its delisting from the TSX Venture Exchange, change of business to become an organic tobacco producer, and listing on the Canadian Securities Exchange (2018).
  • Counsel to various Capital Pool Companies and businesses in completing “qualifying transactions” pursuant to the TSX Venture Exchange CPC program.

Mergers and Acquisitions

  • Fury Gold Mines Limited in its approx. $350 million comprehensive reorganization transaction and acquisition of Eastmain Resources Inc. (2020).
  • Advantage Lithium Corp. in its C$69 million acquisition by Orocobre Limited by way of plan of Arrangement (2020).
  • Aurora Cannabis Inc. in its C$63.4 million acquisition of Hempco Food and Fiber Inc. by way of a plan of arrangement (2019).
  • Aurora Cannabis Inc. in its C$290 million acquisition of ICC Labs Inc. by way of a plan of arrangement (2018).
  • Aurora Cannabis Inc. in its C$1.1 billion successful unsolicited takeover bid for CanniMed Therapeutics Inc. (2017).

Corporate Finance

  • Aurora Cannabis Inc. in its US$750 million mixed shelf offering of equity, debt and convertible securities (2019).
  • Canadian counsel to private blockchain issuer in connection with its Series A financing of debt and equity (2019).
  • Canadian counsel to a technology and e-waste issuer in connection with its C$10,050,000 brokered and non-brokered private placement of units (common shares and warrants) on the Canadian Securities Exchange (2018).

Regulatory Compliance and Corporate Governance

  • Advise public issuers on compliance with continuous disclosure obligations under Canadian securities laws and stock exchange rules.
  • Experience in drafting continuous disclosure documents, including: management information circulars, annual information forms, management discussion and analysis, material change reports and press releases.
  • Advise public and private Canadian cannabis issuers on Canadian cannabis laws.
  • Advise public issuer board of directors and senior management on regulations and corporate governance best practices, including board and committee charters and operating guidelines.

Directorships & Affiliations

  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Vancouver Bar Association

Education & Admissions

2018
Called to the British Columbia Bar
2017
JDUniversity of Alberta
2012
B.Sc. (Honours Specialization in Biology) Western University

Insights by Gavyn B. Backus (3 Posts)

Changes Expected to Lead to Renewed Interest in TSXV’s Capital Pool Company Program

Dec 2, 2020

On December 1, 2020, the TSX Venture Exchange (TSXV) announced changes to its Capital Pool Company (CPC)
program to become effective on January 1, 2021.

How Are CBD Products Regulated Under Canadian Cannabis Law?

Mar 13, 2019

In the wake of Canada’s initial legalization of cannabis for adult recreational use, a number of impactful global regulatory changes and discussions have followed.