2017 Certified Trade Mission to Montréal, Canada — May 16 – 17, 2017

2017 Certified Trade Mission to Montréal, Canada
for Private Equity, Private Debt, Venture Capital, Hedge Fund, Real Estate and Infrastructure Fund Managers

Tuesday May 16 to Wednesday May 17, 2017

An opportunity to meet active, screened and interested LPs from Canada‘s leading institutional and family office investors.


  • Minimum of 25 one-on-one personal meetings with Montréal’s leading institutions and family offices
  • Focused, structured, organized and pre-arranged private meetings
  • Convened by the U.S. Embassy
  • No placement agency fees or commissions
  • Full contact information and background provided to GPs prior to all meetings
  • Promotion of your firm to 100+ local institutional investors, and single- and multi-family offices


Bernice Miedzinski, BA, FCSI
Founder and President, StarBridge Capital Ltd

Bernice’s experience spans 30+ years in capital markets and she is currently President of StarBridge Capital Ltd. Prior to founding StarBridge in 2012, Bernice was Managing Director, Institutional Sales for Man Investments Canada Corp. From 2004 to 2007, she was Managing Director of York Investment Strategies Inc., an alternative investment advisory firm. Bernice’s expertise in alternative investments includes hedge funds, insurance­‐linked securities, private equity, real estate, and farmland. Bernice started her career in the early 1980s in South Africa in corporate treasury. Upon immigrating to Canada in the mid-1980s, she spent several years on trading desks at two leading Canadian and U.S. banks. Bernice then spent over a decade as an independent investment consultant. Bernice is a Fellow of the Canadian Securities Institute (FCSI).

Brian Beams
International Trade Specialist, U.S. Department of Commerce

A veteran of the United States Air Force and graduate of Central Florida University, BS Finance, Brian’s private sector career began at International Assets Advisory as a Registered Representative (Series 7, 63, 65, & FL-215). After some years at the boutique firm, he joined the U.S. Department of State, Office of Foreign Missions – USUN. Where his focus was diplomacy and national security.

Brian joined the U.S. Commercial Service in September 2013 as an International Trade Specialist for the Northern New Jersey Export Assistance Center. He counsels U.S. businesses that wish to begin exporting or increase their exports throughout the global marketplace. He is the area sector coordinator for financial services and energy to list a few. Lastly, he is the Deputy Team Leader for USCS’s Global Finance Team where he leads the financial services subsector. He was born and raised in Northern New Jersey, has lived in Germany, France, and Bosnia, and traveled to 23 additional countries.

Jean-Guy Talbot

Jean-Guy Talbot’s financial experience with prominent financial institutions spans more than 30 years. It includes various leadership roles in Corporate and Investment Banking and in Investment Management. He established Credit Suisse’s banking presence in the Eastern Canadian Market, leading several high-profile transactions over a 15-year period. Thereafter, he joined the Caisse de Dépôt et placement du Québec (la Caisse) as a Senior Vice President. His various roles at la Caisse led him to play a pivotal role in bringing to fruition several large corporate transactions.

In 2004, he created Presima as a subsidiary of la Caisse. Presima is a global investment management firm specializing in real estate securities portfolio management. As Presima’s President he oversaw its strategic development, its corporate activities and the promotion of its global activities. In his 10-year tenure at Presima, he participated in numerous international industry panels and developed a broad network of national and international contacts. More recently, he has used his excellent grasp of complex financial concepts and products to help corporations and organisations in various strategic initiatives.


  • Canada is the one of the largest investors in the U.S., and has invested billions of dollars with U.S. alternative investment managers since the 2008-9 financial crisis.
    • For example, see here for the Foreign Investment Survey (2010-2014) from the Association of Foreign Investors in Real Estate (AFIRE).
  • Canada has some of the largest institutional investors globally including:
    • Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB)
    • Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (La Caisse)
    • Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan (OTPP)
    • Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments)
    • Alberta Investment Management Co. (AIMCo)
    • Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System (OMERS)
  • These large pension funds all invest across the full range of alternative investments, and are leaders in investing globally.

  • Total Canadian pension fund assets are ~10% of total U.S. pension fund assets; However, the vast majority (>90%) of Canadian pension fund assets are in Defined Benefit (DB) Plans, with the balance of pension fund assets (<10%) in Defined Contribution (DC) Plans.
    • See here for the Canadian Institutional Investment Network’s Chronicle: An Overview of Pension Plans in Canada 2014.
    • See here for the Pension Investment Association of Canada’s Asset Mix Report for 2014 for both DB Plan Sponsors and DC Plan Sponsors, respectively.
  • Over the past decade from 2004-2014:
    • The medium-sized Canadian DB Plans (and a select group of foundations and endowments) have decreased their Canadian equity allocations and increased their allocations to alternative investments, with a focus on real estate, infrastructure and private equity;
    • The small-sized Canadian DB Plans (and most foundations) have been slow to diversify into alternative investments, but recognize the need to do so.
    • See here for an overview by Greenwich Associates of the Canadian Institutional Investor Dynamics from 2004-2014.


In cooperation with the U.S. Department of Commerce International Trade Administration, U.S. Commercial Service, and the U.S. Embassy and Consulates in Canada, you are invited to apply to join this Certified U.S. Trade Mission. The Mission will introduce a small, select group of U.S. private equity, private debt, venture capital, hedge fund, real estate and infrastructure fund managers to meet pre-screened Canadian pension funds and other institutional investors, as well as single- and multi-family office investors. The Mission is certified by the U.S. Department of Commerce, and organized by Katsof Consulting.

The Certified U.S. Trade Mission is not a conference. Rather, it is a tightly structured and focused fund-raising event, designed to provide U.S. alternative investment managers the opportunity to meet potential LPs in Canada from institutional investors and family offices. Certified U.S. Trade Missions and similar events supported by the U.S. Commerce Department have attracted top funds from the U.S. Click here to see some of the funds that have attended in the past.

GP Delegate Selection Criteria

Attendees must be invited to participate in this Mission. Invitees represent a select group of top U.S. private equity, private debt, venture capital, hedge funds, real estate and infrastructure fund managers. The group will consist of senior executives and have a mix of GPs with diverse investment strategies, sector focuses, and geographic preferences.

Attendance in the Certified U.S. Trade Mission to Montréal, Canada is limited to 12 U.S. Funds and a maximum of 18 participants from these Funds, to maximize the level of overall access and one-on-one meeting opportunities with the investor attendees. Based on past interest and participation, we expect demand to be very high. Attendees will be accepted on a rolling basis up until the deadline of April 15, 2017.

Alternative investment firms will be selected according to the following criteria:

  • Minimum AUM of $50 million
  • Diverse investment strategies, sector focus, and/or geographic preferences.
  • Industry-leading performance history.
  • Sound management and institutional-quality best practices.

The Mission will provide:

  • A broad range of U.S. alternative investment fund offerings to Canadian LPs.
  • An opportunity to meet Canadian institutional LPs from pension funds, endowments and foundations, as well as family offices.
  • A forum to exchange ideas and strategies with Canadian investors, other U.S.-based fund managers, and policy-makers from both Canada and the U.S.
  • Opportunities for intimate interaction between U.S. GPs and Canadian LPs (i.e., one-on-one meetings).

Benefits to Fund Managers

  • Exposure to top-level Canadian investors in an exclusive setting.
  • Opportunity to gain knowledge about Canadian investors’ specific needs.
  • Serve as a delegate in a U.S. government initiative aimed at promoting the nation’s leadership in alternative investments to foreign institutional investors.
  • Showcase your firm’s investment expertise directly to interested investors.


Tuesday May 16, 2017

Arrival in Montréal, Canada

Over night at the deluxe Hôtel Le Crystal. Check in as of 3:00 PM


Wednesday May 17, 2017
Certified Trade Mission

8:30 – 9:00 Registration for U.S. GPs and Canadian LP Investors

9:00 – 12:30 One-on-one meetings: Members of the U.S. delegation will meet in one-on-one meetings with Investment Professionals from Canadian institutional investors and family offices

12:30 – 1:30 Buffet lunch and informal discussion continues with U.S. Fund Managers and Limited Partner Investors

2:00 Departure

NOTE: The U.S. Government, particularly the U.S. Department of Commerce and the U. S. Embassy is not involved in selecting or recruiting for this mission. Such selection and recruitment is strictly left to the mission organizer. The U.S. and foreign commercial service supports the goals of this event, but does not endorse the specific products or views of the participating organization.