Fasken seals second merger in two months

Canadian firm Fasken Martineau DuMoulin secured its second merger in as many months last week after agreeing terms with Ottawa-based Johnston & Buchan.

Johnston is a 13-lawyer firm focused primarily on communications law. Founded in 1980, the 11-partner outfit is well regarded for advising on a range of communications-related issues, including public regulation of telecoms, broadcasting, radiocommunication and copyright.

The firm also has a growing trade law practice, which covers agricultural trade law, import and export controls and advising clients on World Trade Organisation and North American Free Trade Agreement-related issues.

“Merging with Johnston & Buchan allows Fasken Martineau to bring a highly respected Ottawa practice on board that offers our clients expertise in communications and trade law and an intimate knowledge of the federal government and the regulatory environment,” said David Corbett, managing partner at Fasken. “Johnston & Buchan was identified as the best fit with our existing practice and this partnership enhances our ability to serve our federally-regulated clients in both official languages.”

The deal comes just six weeks after Fasken sealed its merger with London-based Stringer Saul. That merger created the first full-service Canadian-UK law firm and catapulted the London firm into the international arena, with offices across Canada as well as in New York and Johannesburg.

The continued attraction of AIM was highlighted by both Fasken and Stringer as the main rationale for the deal. Fasken is known for its mining strength, an area that covers the single largest sector of companies listed on AIM.

Stringer managing partner Norman Ziman said at the time that the deal with Fasken made it “well placed to reap the benefits of the continued stream of instructions in this area”.

The past year saw around 80 new admissions to AIM, 44 of which were from Canada. Stringer has taken more than 100 companies to AIM since its inception.