Happy Friday, newsletter readers. Editress Nicole MacAdam here, pinch hitting for Shari. For your pre-long weekend pleasure, we check in with company boards about how their handling the #MeToo movement, plus the latest on the trade war, Shaw, Enbridge and a fight for control of Detour Gold.
#METOO IN THE BOARDROOM
The wave of sexual impropriety accusations that created the #MeToo movement has also swept through corporate boardrooms in Canada, leaving directors wondering whether they have put the right measures in place to protect employees and shareholders.“When you see all these events piling up and you see the impact of what’s happened, you can’t help but say there but for the grace of God go I,” said one director, who spoke to the FP’s Barbara Shecter on condition that he would not be identified.
A NOTE OF CAUTION
“It could go into a tailspin in a very quick manner,” says the head of a Surrey, B.C.-based company that imports rebar used in residential construction, referring to the trade spat between the U.S. and Canada that is currently simmering. A group of of steel companies is urging Ottawa to back off of retaliatory measures aimed at the Trump administration, writes Jesse Snyder, arguing the move will dramatically increase input costs and have a ripple effect across the broader Canadian economy. Meanwhile, Ottawa is set to offer $800 million in aid to companies affected by the tariffs.
CAN YOU HEAR ME NOW?
Wireless continues to be a bright spot for Shaw, which nonetheless posted a quarterly loss as it wrote down its stake in Corus Entertainment. The owner of Freedom Mobile added 54,000 wireless customers on contracts, reports Emily Jackson, up from 20,000 a year ago. “We’re not pleased with the overall execution within our wireline business,” chief executive Brad Shaw told analysts.
PIPELINE TO CONTROVERSY
Enbridge’s Line 3 expansion appears to be close to approval as regulators in Minnesota spoke in support of the project at a hearing, despite controversy over the project’s final route. “I think it’s clear where we’re all going,” Commissioner John Tuma said. “It’s just a matter of working out the details.” The existing pipeline’s age — it was built in the 1960s — and concerns over safety, were cited as a major factor. Indigenous opponents reacted angrily to the panel’s comments.
The battle between the head of one of the world’s best-known hedge funds, John Paulson, and Toronto-based Detour Gold, is heating up. Paulson has threatened to replace the board of directors for ignoring purchase offers amid a slumping stock price, writes Gabriel Friedman. The threat comes the same day as management released a new plan for its flagship mine in northeastern Ontario, one of the largest in the world.