An Ontario court has appointed a receiver to take over the affairs of portfolio manager and exempt market dealer Bridging Finance Inc. (BFI) amid an ongoing investigation by the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC).
Following a hearing on April 30, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice appointed PricewaterhouseCoopers Inc. receiver and manager for BFI and various investment vehicles controlled by the firm, which collectively represented approximately $2 billion in assets as of Dec. 31, 2020.
The court order was made in response to an application from the OSC, citing an ongoing “investigation into the business activities of BFI and certain of its directors and officers.”
The OSC’s application for a receiver indicates that its investigation has focused on potential conflicts of interest in connection with $100 million worth of loans, fund mismanagement and misappropriation.
In its application, the OSC said it has uncovered evidence of numerous breaches of securities law. However, the regulator hasn’t made any formal allegations against the firm at this point and nothing has been proven.
BFI has yet to respond to requests for comment.
The OSC said that it sought the appointment of a receiver “to ensure BFI’s affairs are managed in the best interests of unitholders” while its investigation continues.
The OSC also issued an order to temporarily cease trading of BFI funds and suspend the registration of the company’s CEO, David Sharpe.