What would have happened to TMX Group – which notably oversees the Toronto Stock Exchange, the Montreal Stock Exchange and the TSX Venture Exchange – if the proposed merger with the London Stock Exchange Group had gone ahead as planned? in 2011 ? Luc Bertrand, who built and led the Maple Group to frustrate that deal and complete the acquisition of TMX Group in 2012, believes history has proven them right.

Luc Bertrand was president of the Montreal Stock Exchange from 2000 to 2009 and carried out the merger with the Toronto Stock Exchange in 2008 to form TMX Group, before orchestrating the takeover of TMX Group in 2012 when it planned to be bought out by the London Stock Exchange (LSE) Group.

The one who has been vice-chairman of the National Bank since 2011 will step down on May 1 to become chairman of the board of TMX Group on May 2.

Supported by major institutions such as the Caisse de dépôt, Teachers, the Canada Pension Plan and by four major Canadian banks – Scotia, TD, National Bank and CIBC – Luc Bertrand founded the Maple Group in March 2011. , which failed the transaction with the LSE.

“What would have happened if we hadn’t done anything?” That’s a good question, says Bertrand. Look at the London Stock Exchange Group, they just completed the acquisition of Refinitiv, the global financial data and infrastructure provider [a $27 billion deal]. »

“They had to sell the Milan Stock Exchange to complete this acquisition. The weight of the TMX Group in this entity would simply be nil today. This is without counting all the problems that the LSE Group has encountered with Brexit and the rise of the Euronext stock exchange into a much more unified common market”, underlines the career financier.

Luc Bertrand continues by wondering what would have been the future of the TSX Venture Exchange, whose profitability is variable, but whose existence is essential for the Canadian financial system, because this Venture Exchange brings water to the mill by producing the big companies of tomorrow.

The next Chairman of the Board of TMX Group also underlines the vital economic role that an exchange like the TMX plays in the Canadian financial system.

“There may be fewer listings from issuing companies, but it’s a pendulum. Investment firms that buy companies rely on the stock market to eventually monetize their investment,” he observes.

Luc Bertrand’s career has always been linked to the development of Montreal’s financial sector. He joined the board of the Montreal Stock Exchange in 1992 and was its chairman when the institution specialized in derivatives in 1998; he became its CEO in 2000.

“The weight of Montreal is more important today than at the time, but we are less visible. Our expertise in data management means that Montreal is responsible for data management of all markets, both the Venture Exchange and derivatives,” he explains.

In the early 2000s, the Montreal Exchange acquired 40% of BOX, the Boston Options Exchange, of which Luc Bertrand was chairman of the board. Today, the TMX Group is the majority shareholder of this platform, which is 48% owned by major American brokers.

Montreal is also where the Canadian Derivatives Clearing Corporation manages all traded derivatives and other bespoke financial instruments for all of Canada.

Luc Bertrand, who has served on the TMX Group Board since 2012, will therefore become its Chairman with the main mandate of ensuring sound governance at a time when ESG (environmental, social and governance) factors are becoming increasingly important. importance, while maintaining rigorous governance of business strategy and acquisitions.

Luc Bertand will continue as Chairman of 5N Plus, a Montreal-based producer of high-quality metals and compounds. He will leave his position as vice-chairman of the board of the National Bank because the articles of the TMX Group require that the chairman of the board be independent of a broker or a bank.

Between leaving the Montreal Stock Exchange in 2009 and becoming Vice-Chairman of the National Bank in 2011, Luc Bertrand was responsible for the acquisition of the Montreal Canadiens by the Molson family in 2010. He is part of the group of owners associated with the family and he was chairman of the board of the Canadiens from 2010 until last December.

How does he rate the club’s chances of becoming competitive again?

Luc Bertrand tries to dodge by demanding confidentiality (off the record…) before agreeing to get wet.

“I endorse the leadership of the team 100%. We have a core of very talented young players and a very high level management team. We’ve been affected by injuries throughout the year, but we’ve had some great games this year, it’s promising”, he agrees to answer, in a very “corporate” way…