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Investment trust investors turn to 'dividend heroes' to plug income gap – Money Observer



Income investors facing the challenge of finding reliable sources of income have turned to some of the dividend hero” investment trusts to plug the gap, in the hope that boards will continue to increase income payments to maintain their reliable dividend records.

Of the 11 trusts that have increased dividends for 40 years or more, the majority have moved to trade on a premium or a small discount to their net asset value over the past couple of weeks.

City of London, which earlier this month took steps to reassure shareholders that it is in a position to increase its dividend in July for the 54th consecutive year, is trading on a premium of 5.9%. Over the past year, the trust has traded on a premium of 1.7%.

A higher premium of 7.4% is attached to Scottish American. The Baillie Gifford managed trust is 11th in the dividend hero rankings complied by the Association of Investment Companies (AIC), having increased payouts for 40 years.

Two other trusts on course to raise their dividends for 54 years on the trot are Bankers and Alliance Trust. Bankers is currently trading on a small premium of 1.7% and Alliance Trust a small discount of -4%.

Other trusts that have increased dividends for four decades or more and have low discounts include JPMorgan Claverhouse (-2.8%) Murray Income (-3.6%) and Brunner (-4.2%).

According to Numis, the low discounts, in particular for the UK equity income trust sector, are “reflecting investor hopes that dividends can be maintained using revenue/capital reserves”.

It adds: “We expect most boards to be faced with the decision of whether to use reserves to pay an uncovered dividend in 2020. Ultimately, we believe it makes sense to support dividends with revenue reserves if the shortfall is expected to be relatively short-lived, and there is an expectation of returning to full cover. We expect more reticence about distributing from capital reserves, but the line between capital and income is increasingly blurred.”

Numis further adds: “We would expect numerous investment trusts to be keen to continue their records of multi-decade years of consecutive dividend.”

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Analysis at the end of March by the investment companies team at Investec Securities found that all 17 UK equity income investment trusts it analysed (although there are 24 in the sector as a whole) would be able to endure a 30% fall in dividend income from their underlying holdings over the next year, and still pay a progressive dividend (it modelled a 3% rise). The 30% figure was used because this is the dividend decline that is being priced in by the futures market.

– The UK equity income investment trusts in the best position to retain or increase dividends

However, given the increasingly challenging backdrop for dividends, some trusts in other sectors have already made adjustments. For example, BMO Commercial Property has suspended its monthly dividends, while Invesco Smaller Companies investment trust has removed its 4% dividend target yield.

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Canadian athletes' return to training aided by $5M investment – Toronto Sun



As Canadian high-performance athletes return to training, the way will be paved in part by a $5-million investment from the Canadian Olympic Committee, Canadian Paralympic Committee and Own the Podium.

The three organizations made the funding announcement Monday morning in a news release.

“The investment, made possible by the support of respective stakeholders, will be directed to areas where there is the greatest need as identified by the Return to Sport Task Force,” the release stated. “The priority is to optimize safe and healthy environments for athletes to return to high-performance sport.”

The 27-member task force, chaired by OTP’s CEO Anne Merklinger, developed a national framework that focuses on the reintroduction of sport activity in a responsible manner; offering guidelines for athletes, coaches, administrators and facility operators.

“A return to high-performance sport does not happen overnight, nor is there a one-stop solution,” said David Shoemaker, CEO of the COC. “As Canada’s high-performance athletes and coaches will soon return to training in pursuit of their Olympic and Paralympic dreams, we want them to be able to do so in a manner that is safe for them, their families, and their communities.

“Our focus currently is on investing in measures that optimize a healthy and safe return to training.”

Karen O’Neill, CEO of the CPC, echoed those sentiments.

“The financial investment is a great first step forward in the recovery plan, and we will continue to work towards a return to sport based on expert recommendations, with a clear priority of ensuring our athletes, coaches, and support teams are in a safe and healthy environment for themselves and their families.”

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Fax Capital Announces Additional Investment in Hamilton Thorne Ltd., Files Early Warning Report – GlobeNewswire




TORONTO, June 01, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — FAX Capital Corp. (FAX or the Company) (TSX: FXC & FXC.WT) is pleased to announce that it has acquired ownership of an additional 3,182,000 common shares (the Shares) of Hamilton Thorne Ltd. (Hamilton Thorne) (TSXV:HTL) through a non-brokered private placement transaction which closed on May 29, 2020 (the Private Placement).  The Shares were acquired at an average price of $1.10 per Share and an aggregate purchase price of $3,500,200.  Immediately prior to the closing of the Private Placement, the Company owned 12,574,700 Shares, representing 9.5% of the issued and outstanding Shares. Following the completion of the Private Placement, FAX now owns 15,756,700 Shares, representing 11.4% of the total number of issued and outstanding Shares of Hamilton Thorne. Pursuant to applicable securities laws, the Shares acquired through the Private Placement are subject to a hold period of four-months plus one day from the date of closing.

FAX’s investment presentation in respect of Hamilton Thorne will be available on the Company’s website at  The Company currently has no plans or intentions with respect to the acquired Shares of Hamilton Thorne and the Shares are being held for investment purposes. In the future, the Company may acquire additional Shares, or dispose of its holdings, both as investment conditions warrant.  

“We are pleased to add to FAX’s investment in Hamilton Thorne, a well managed company with a solid track record serving an important need in a large and growing industry,” said Blair Driscoll, FAX’s Chief Executive Officer. “The global In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) and fertility market is a recession resistant industry with expected market growth of up to 10%, driven by secular tailwinds such as rising maternal age of first pregnancy, broader insurance reimbursements, a rising middle class, and technological advancements to support increasing IVF success rates.”

“As one of the market leaders, Hamilton Thorne is well positioned to benefit from this growing market,” added Marc Robinson, FAX’s Managing Director and co-head of the Company’s Investment Team. “The company has a proven management team and sustainable competitive advantages driven by regulatory protection and high customer switching costs. Financially, the company has a 10-year track record of sales growth that has been accelerating, has margin expansion opportunity, and has a strong balance sheet and free cash flow generation to facilitate further organic growth and M&A within a consolidating industry.”

Hamilton Thorne is a Boston, Massachusetts based manufacturer, marketer and distributor of equipment, precision instruments, consumables, software and services to the global Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART) market. The company’s products, marketed under the Hamilton Thorne, Gynemed, Embryotech and Planer brands, are cleared for sale in the US, Europe, China, and Canada and are sold to a customer base that includes pharmaceutical and biotech companies, fertility clinics, research centers and others. The head office of Hamilton Thorne is located at 100 Cummings Centre, Suite 465E, Beverly, MA, 01915, U.S.A.

The Company has today filed an early warning report under National Instrument 62-103 – The Early Warning System and Related Take-Over Bid and Insider Reporting Issues in respect of the Private Placement.  A copy of the early warning report will be available under Hamilton Thorne’s profile on SEDAR at, or may be obtained by contacting Ryan Caughey, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary at (647) 696-4679.  The Company is a corporation incorporated under the laws of Canada and its head office is located at TD Tower West, 100 Wellington Street West, Suite 2110, Toronto, Ontario, M5K 1H1.

About FAX Capital Corp.

The Company is an investment holding company with a business objective to maximize its intrinsic value on a per share basis over the long-term by seeking to achieve superior investment performance commensurate with reasonable risk. The Company intends to invest in equity, debt and/or hybrid securities of high-quality businesses. The Company initially intends to invest in approximately 10 to 15 high-quality small cap public and private businesses located primarily in Canada and, to a lesser extent, the United States.  Further information about the Company is available at

For additional information please contact:

Investor Relations
Sophia Tang, Investor Relations
Telephone: (416) 860-6108

Media Relations
Tim Foran
Telephone: (416) 986-8515

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Information

This press release contains forward-looking information. Such forward-looking information or statements (FLS) are provided for the purpose of providing information about management’s current expectations and plans relating to the future. Readers are cautioned that reliance on such information may not be appropriate for other purposes. Any such FLS may be identified by words such as “proposed”, “expects”, “intends”, “may”, “will”, and similar expressions. FLS contained or referred to in this press release includes, but is not limited to, the Company’s continuing views on Hamilton Thorne’s operations and the prospects of its associated industry; the Company’s expectations in respect to the acquisition or disposition of Shares or other securities of Hamilton Thorne and the Company’s continued intentions in respect of the Company’s Shares of Hamilton Thorne currently held. 

FLS is based on a number of factors and assumptions which have been used to develop such statements and information, but which may prove to be incorrect. Although the Company believes that the expectations reflected in such FLS is reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on FLS because the Company can give no assurance that such expectations will prove to be correct. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those described in such FLS include, but are not limited to, the timing and terms associated with any further potential investment opportunities in Hamilton Thorne and other identified companies, the continued impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) on targeted investments, the economy and markets generally, as well as the identified risk factors included in the Company’s public disclosure, including the annual information form dated March 26, 2020, which is available on SEDAR at and on the Company’s website at The FLS in this press release reflect the current expectations, assumptions, judgements and/or beliefs of the Company based on information currently available to the Company, and are subject to change without notice.

Any FLS speaks only as of the date on which it is made and, except as may be required by applicable securities laws, the Company disclaims any intent or obligation to update any FLS, whether as a result of new information, future events or results or otherwise. The FLS contained in this press release are expressly qualified by this cautionary statement.  For more information on the Company, please review the Company’s continuous disclosure filings that are available at

No securities regulatory authority has either approved or disapproved of the contents of this news release. The Toronto Stock Exchange accepts no responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. 

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Xebec and Fonds de solidarité FTQ launch an investment fund to increase renewable natural gas production in Québec – GlobeNewswire



MONTREAL, June 01, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Xebec Adsorption Inc. (TSXV: XBC) (“Xebec”), a global provider of clean energy solutions, and Fonds de solidarité FTQ (the “Fonds”) are proud to announce the creation of the GNR Québec Capital L.P. investment fund. With an initial capitalization of $20 million, this new investment vehicle aims to increase renewable natural gas (RNG) production in Québec. Partners, particularly from the agricultural and municipal sectors, will have access to the capital and expertise needed to develop and operate efficient facilities to treat organic waste. The creation of a fund of this type for renewable natural gas projects is a first in Québec.

Xebec and the Fonds will each initially invest $10 million into the partnership. Over time, Xebec and the Fonds expect that the partnership could receive an aggregate $100 million in equity capital from Xebec, the Fonds and other investors. Xebec and the Fonds’ initiative could, with a 75:25 debt to equity ratio, fund 12 to 15 renewable natural gas projects in Québec with an aggregate investment of $400 million over the next decade. The general partner, GNR Québec Capital Management Inc., overseen by a Board of Directors nominated by Xebec and the Fonds will be managing the partnership.

“We’re proud to once again partner with Xebec to increase the Fonds de solidarité FTQ’s impact in the fight against climate change. Renewable natural gas can accelerate the decarbonization of sectors such as transportation, home heating and industry, by supporting the circular economy through organic waste responsive management activities. This initiative also meets the Fonds’ objectives for a just energy transition by creating jobs and supporting local economies with additional revenue streams for farmers, municipalities, and industry. Xebec is a worldwide leader in renewable gases, and we are excited to have them as a partner in this project for the large-scale rollout of renewable natural gas facilities in Québec,” says Dany Pelletier, Vice President for Investments – Structuring Capital, Energy and Environment, Fonds de solidarité FTQ.

Our partnership with the Fonds de solidarité FTQ is a great demonstration of how local players can work together to foster the development of the renewable natural gas industry. When we launched this initiative a few years ago, we realized the need for new and better adapted structures to co-invest, develop and operate these facilities in a professional manner. Quebec has become a leading RNG province in Canada and currently has several RNG facilities in operation. Considering that new government regulations, such as the Clean Fuels Standard, will soon come into force and that the need for a higher renewable natural gas content will increase over the next few years, particularly in the utilities sector, we are pleased to partner with the Fonds de solidarité FTQ to accelerate the deployment of renewable gas infrastructures. Going forward, Xebec will seek to create more of these valuable financial partnerships in the field of RNG waste-to-energy conversion in Canada and will continue its mission to bring leading-edge technologies to the sector,” said Kurt Sorschak, President and CEO of Xebec Adsorption Inc.

A first-of-its-kind investment vehicle for renewable natural gas projects in Canada
This partnership is an innovative initiative that brings together industry participants (waste management companies, gas utilities, farmers, municipalities) and major financial institutions with a clear mandate to invest in organic waste treatment facilities for the production of renewable natural gas. The market for renewable natural gas in Canada is still in its infancy. In this context, Xebec and the Fonds de solidarité FTQ view this partnership as an essential step to develop and promote the expertise and efforts needed to accelerate the replacement of fossil fuels while supporting sustainable and responsible long-term investment in a waste-to-renewable gas economy in Canada.

GNR Quebec Capital: in line with government objectives for GNR production and greenhouse gas emissions reduction
GNR Quebec Capital L.P. believes that it could play a significant catalyst role in helping to meet government objectives of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and increasing the use of renewable natural gas, while supporting existing developers.

Last March, the Quebec government’s 2020-2021 budget allocated $70 million to support RNG production and distribution up to 2022. This measure follows the passing, in March 2019, of regulations mandating the minimum quantity of RNG to be delivered by natural gas distributors at 1% in 2020, and 5% in 2025.

For its part, the Government of Canada announced on April 24, 2020 an updated timeline for the introduction of the Clean Fuels Standard (CFS). The objective of this standard is to achieve an annual reduction in greenhouse gas emissions of 30 million tons by 2030. It will do so by stimulating investment and innovation in low-carbon-intensity fuels while enabling cost effective compliance. Xebec expects that the implementation of the ASC will create significant opportunities for the Canadian renewable gas industry over the next decade.

Xebec to host Webinar on the Partnership
On June 2, at 11:00 a.m. EDT (8:00 a.m. PDT), Xebec management invites shareholders, analysts, investors, media representatives and other stakeholders to participate in a webinar on this innovative partnership. For the occasion, Kurt Sorschak, Xebec’s President and CEO, will be joined by Louis Dufour, Xebec’s Chief Financial Officer, and Prabhu Rao, Xebec’s Chief Operating Officer. The presentation will be followed by a question period.

To Register:

Media inquiries:
Public Stratégies et Conseil
Harold Fortin, Corporate communications and Public affairs strategist
+418 572 4356

Fonds de solidarité FTQ
Patrick McQuilken, Media Relations
+514 703 5587

Investor relations:
Xebec Adsorption Inc.
Brandon Chow, Investor Relations Manager
+450 979 8700 ext 5762

About the Fonds de solidarité FTQ
The Fonds de solidarité FTQ is a capital development fund that channels the savings of Quebecers into investments. With $16.7 billion in net assets as at November 30, 2019, the Fonds has helped create and protect more than 215,000 jobs. The Fonds has over 3,100 partner companies and upwards of 700,000 shareholders-savers.

About Xebec Adsorption Inc.
Xebec is a global provider of gas generation, purification, and filtration solutions for the industrial, energy and renewables marketplace. Well-positioned in the energy transition space with proprietary technologies that transform raw gases into clean sources of renewable energy, Xebec’s 1500+ customers range from small to multi-national corporations, governments and municipalities looking to reduce their carbon footprints. Headquartered in Montréal, Quebec, Canada, Xebec has several Sales and Support offices in North America and Europe, as well as two manufacturing facilities in Montréal and Shanghai. Xebec trades on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol XBC.

Cautionary Statement
Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release. This news release contains forward-looking statements and forward-looking information (together, “forward-looking statements”) within the meaning of applicable securities laws. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, are forward-looking statements, and subject to risks and uncertainties. Generally, forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of terminology such as “plans”, “seeks”, “expects”, “estimates”, “intends”, “anticipates”, “believes”, “could”, “might”, “likely” or variations of such words, or statements that certain actions, events or results “may”, “will”, “could”, “would”, “might”, “will be taken”, “occur”, “be achieved” or other similar expressions. Forward-looking statements, including statements concerning future capital expenditures, revenues, expenses, earnings, economic performance, indebtedness, financial condition, losses and future prospects as well as the expectations of management of Xebec with respect to information regarding the business and the expansion and growth of Xebec operations, involve risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual results, performance, prospects and opportunities to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are subject to business and economic factors and uncertainties, and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements, including the relevant assumptions and risks factors set out in Xebec’s public documents, including in the most recent annual management discussion and analysis and annual information form, filed on SEDAR at Furthermore, should one or more of the risks, uncertainties or other factors materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described in forward-looking statements or information. These risks, uncertainties and other factors include, among others, the uncertain and unpredictable condition of global economy, notably as a consequence of the Covid-19 pandemic, Xebec’s capacity to generate revenue growth, the ability of Xebec and the Fonds to identify additional partners, the ability of the partnership to raise additional capital investment, the development of the renewable gas market in Canada, the capacity for the partnership to identify valuable renewable gas projects to invest in, the ability of the partnership to contribute to the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, price of raw material, Xebec’s capacity to meet all its other commitments and business plans, Xebec’s limited number of customers, the potential loss of key employees, share price volatility, and other factors. Although Xebec believes that the assumptions and factors used in preparing the forward-looking statements are reasonable, undue reliance should not be placed on these statements, which only apply as of the date of this news release, and no assurance can be given that such events will occur in the disclosed times frames or at all. Except where required by applicable law, Xebec disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

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