Wisp Internet Services, a Port Perry, Ontario-based internet service provider, filed an NOI on August 29, listing $8.5 million in liabilities. Focusing on providing high-speed internet services to thousands of residents in rural Ontario, the company attributes its financial difficulties to heavy storm damage to its tower network that caused internet service outages. This in turn led to a loss of customers and costly repairs to its tower network. The company intends to file a proposal to its creditors in the coming months which includes a restructuring of its operations. Dodick Landau was appointed proposal trustee.
3070 Ellesmere Developments, an Ontario corporation that owns a vacant parcel of land municipally known as 3070 Ellesmere Road, Scarborough, Ontario, filed an NOI on August 20, listing $29.4 million in liabilities. The property was purchased in January 2014 with the intention of developing a 26-storey residential condominium tower. Within 6 months, the company had sold 80% of the units and needed a partner who could assist in implementing the planning and construction aspects of the project. A joint venture agreement was struck with 2518358 Ontario Inc. ("Rise"). The company's relationship with Rise has broken down, with the company alleging that Rise failed to inject the necessary equity and failed to advance the project, including securing construction financing and commencing construction. The company also alleges that Rise has blocked the company's attempts at advancing joint venture discussions with alternative partners. The company intends to sell the property through a stalking horse sales process while under creditor protection. Co-Stone Development and Campus Suites together are acting as the stalking horse purchaser. Crowe Soberman was appointed proposal trustee. FAAN Advisors is the proposed Chief Restructuring Advisor. Cassels Brock is counsel for the company.
Groupe Capitales Médias, a Quebec City, Quebec-based media company, filed an NOI on August 19, listing approximately $25.9 million in liabilities, including $8.0 million to Investissement Québec. The company was created in 2015 to purchase all the daily newspapers outside of Montreal that were at the time owned by Gesca, a Power Corporation entity. The newspapers are Le Soleil (Québec), Le Quotidien (Saguenay), Le Nouvelliste (Trois Rivières), La Tribune (Sherbrooke), La Voix de l'Est (Granby) and Le Droit (Ottawa). The sole shareholder is Martin Cauchon, a former Federal Minister of Justice. Attributing its financial difficulties to an erosion of advertising revenue to global digital players such as Facebook and Google, and to a lesser extent lower circulation, the company has been unprofitable in the past three years and has run out of cash. PwC is the proposal trustee and interim receiver and will be launching a sales process for the business in September. Counsel is Stikeman Elliott for IQ, DS Avocats for the company and McCarthy Tétrault for PwC.
Yukon Zinc, a Vancouver, British Columbia-based company that owns the Wolverine Mine in the Yukon Territory, filed an NOI on July 31, listing $16.4 million in liabilities. The NOI filing comes a day before the hearing of the Government of Yukon's petition to appoint a receiver over the company. The Government of Yukon has grown increasingly concerned about the continually deteriorating condition of the mine site, as well as the company's failure to pay approximately $25.0 million in security outstanding since May, 2018. Over the company's objections, the court has granted a limited lifting of the stay to allow the Government of Yukon to proceed with its application to appoint a receiver. Alvarez & Marsal is the proposal trustee. PwC is the proposed receiver. Counsel is Fasken for the company, BLG for the proposal trustee and Dentons for the proposed receiver.
Carrot Insights, a Toronto, Ontario-based technology company that has developed the popular Carrot Rewards app, filed an NOI on July 11, listing $11.4MM in liabilities. Launched in 2015, the company grew to over one million registered users and won numerous awards and recognition, including the 2017 Canadian App of the Year by MobileSyrup. Users earned points from loyalty reward programs such as Aeroplan and Scene Points for attaining walking goals and completing surveys. Despite growing revenues to approximately $6.7MM in 2018, the company was not yet profitable and began to face funding challenges in the late summer/early fall of 2018. Attempts to raise capital were unsuccessful, and in March 2019, the company engaged EY Orenda to attempt to market its business for sale. In June 2019, to conserve cash, the company ceased operating the app and laid off all of its employees. While under creditor protection, the company will continue with the sale process, albeit in a more stabilized environment. EY is the proposal trustee. Counsel is Loopstra Nixon for the company and DLA Piper for the proposal trustee.
VistaCare Communications, a Bedford, Nova Scotia-based telecommunication infrastructure service provider, filed an NOI on June 19. Employing approximately 350 full time employees, the company experienced exponential growth between 2015 and 2018, with revenue growing from $24.0MM to $50.6MM. In 2018, it was discovered that the company's financial results had not been properly recorded which resulted in an adjusted revenue value which was lower than expected, while the company's cost base remained high. The company responded by immediately replacing certain management positions and working to implement operational improvements, but the company's financial position has remained a challenge. The company's loan with BMO is currently $6.0MM out of margin and the company has made the decision that a formal restructuring is required. Grant Thornton is the proposal trustee. Counsel is Stewart McKelvey for the company and Cox & Palmer for BMO,
Argex Titanium (TSX:RSX), a Laval, Quebec-based company that is developing an innovative and environmentally sustainable technology for producing high-grade titanium dioxide pigment, filed an NOI on June 18, listing approximately $4.7MM in liabilities. Still in the research and development stage, the company has been unable to raise the capital necessary to complete construction of a production plant. PwC was appointed proposal trustee and will be conducting a stalking horse sales process for the company's assets. Stikeman Elliott is counsel for the company.
OrbCare, a Toronto, Ontario-based technology company that operates a cloud-based SaaS platform for healthcare professionals, filed an NOI on May 27, listing $927.4M in liabilities, including $775.0M to CRA. Founded in 2013, the company has developed software that merges the information doctors use and patients provide from a host of systems in order to streamline clinic operations and patient care. The filing comes less than 3 months after the company announced the completion of a $2.0MM seed financing round led by iGan Partners. MNP is the proposal trustee.
OSSimTech, a Montreal, Quebec-based technology company that designs, manufactures and sells virtual reality open surgery simulators, filed an NOI on May 27, listing approximately $3.8MM in liabilities, including $2.2MM to Investissement Quebec and $466.8M to CAE Capital. Deloitte was appointed proposal trustee. Davies is counsel to the company.
Soliman & Associates Law Corporation dba Lonsdale Law, a North Vancouver, British Columbia based law firm, filed an NOI on March 25, listing 658.5M in liabilities, including $332.5M to TD and $185.7M to CRA. Bowra Group is the proposal trustee.