Business News Summary Headlines

Company releases, economic news, and business coverage.

Tim Hortons faces U.S. franchisee lawsuit alleging 'fraudulent' business scheme

TORONTO - Franchisee unrest has hit Tim Hortons again, this time from its U.S. members, who are accusing the company of engaging in an "illegal and fraudulent business scheme."

A lawsuit from the Great White North Franchisee Association USA Inc, a group claiming to represent most American Tim Hortons franchisees, alleges the company, its parent, its affiliates and former president Elias Diaz Sese have used provisions in agreements to charge Tim Hortons franchisees as much as 50 per cent above what competitors pay for supplies like coffee, baking goods, meat and paper products.

Friday, February 28, 2020 | 03:21 PM

Event organizers cancel conferences, grapple with coronavirus outbreak

TORONTO - Organizations across the country are cancelling conferences, fretting about whether to forge ahead with events and considering more health-conscious policies as concerns grow over the recent outbreak of a novel form of coronavirus.

Ottawa-based e-commerce giant Shopify Inc. announced Friday that it had made the "hard but necessary" decision to cancel its annual Unite conference that was set to be held in Toronto on May 7.

Friday, February 28, 2020 | 03:16 PM

Geneva auto show, other big events cancelled amid virus fears

GENEVA - The Geneva auto show was cancelled after the Swiss government put an immediate ban Friday on all large events in order to halt the spread of the new coronavirus.

The Swiss ban on public and private events involving more than 1,000 people will last until at least March 15. The move highlights the growing impact of the virus on daily lives and livelihoods, as governments try to fight an outbreak that has infected more than 82,000 people and killed over 2,700 worldwide.

Friday, February 28, 2020 | 02:54 PM

Lawsuit over African mine can be heard in British Columbia: Supreme Court

OTTAWA - A human-rights lawsuit against a Canadian mining company can be heard in British Columbia, even though it involves events in Africa, the Supreme Court of Canada says in a potentially path-breaking decision.

The high court ruled Friday against B.C.-based Nevsun Resources (TSX:NSU), which had argued the claim should not proceed because a Canadian court could not decide the legality of acts by foreign states.

Friday, February 28, 2020 | 02:50 PM

TMX exchanges operating normally Friday after glitch forced halt a day earlier

TORONTO - TMX Group says trading activity is operating normally on its exchanges after a malfunction Thursday forced it to close trading early amid a major market selloff.

With trading resumed Friday, the Toronto Stock Exchange was trading down about 3.7 per cent in mid-afternoon trading amid concerns about the coronavirus, worse than U.S. markets which had a steep late-day selloff a day earlier.

Friday, February 28, 2020 | 02:38 PM

Onex Corp. reports US$187M profit, says virus impact so far minor for businesses

TORONTO - Private equity firm Onex Corp. says it had net earnings of US$187 million in the fourth quarter compared with net earnings of US$88 million a year earlier when it reported under a different reporting standard.

The firm says that at the start of 2019 it determined it met the definition of an investment entity and so has changed its reporting accordingly, and so cautions against direct quarter-to-quarter comparisons.

Friday, February 28, 2020 | 02:25 PM

Vancouver founder of meme-friendly White Claw on bringing the drink to Canada

A tsunami of social media hype and celebratory trend pieces have already made White Claw a sensation in the United States. And so the hard seltzer's long-awaited Canadian debut this weekend comes with no shortage of expectations for similarly effervescent fortunes.

Its Vancouver-born creator Anthony von Mandl, CEO of the Mark Anthony Group, says he's bewildered by the stunning rise of the low-cal drink previously only available to cross-border shoppers and tourists.

Friday, February 28, 2020 | 02:20 PM

Statistics Canada says economic growth slowed to 0.3% annual pace in Q4

OTTAWA - Economic growth in Canada slowed over the last three months of 2019 for its worst quarter in three years, limping into 2020 and facing headwinds from trade uncertainty and the novel coronavirus outbreak.

Statistics Canada said Friday growth in the fourth quarter came in at an annualized rate of 0.3 per cent, its worst showing since the second quarter of 2016 when the economy contracted.

Friday, February 28, 2020 | 12:10 PM

Federal government runs $11-billion deficit for April-to-December period

OTTAWA - The federal government ran a deficit of $11.0 billion over the first nine months of its 2019-20 fiscal year.

The result compared with a surplus of $324 million for the same period of its 201819 fiscal year.

Friday, February 28, 2020 | 11:32 AM

Laurentian Bank reports Q1 profit down from year ago, misses expectations

MONTREAL - Laurentian Bank Financial Group missed expectations as it reported its first-quarter profit fell to $32.2 million compared with $40.3 million in the same quarter a year earlier.

The bank says the profit amounted to 68 cents per diluted share for the quarter ended Jan. 31 compared with a profit of 88 cents per diluted share a year earlier.

Friday, February 28, 2020 | 08:26 AM