Partner and Chief Operating Officer
Frédéric Despars is a Partner and Chief Operating Officer at Fiera Comox. Frédéric is involved in all investment transactional aspects including leading structuring, legal and tax. He is responsible for the firm’s overall operations and compliance.
Prior to Fiera Comox, Frédéric spent six years with PSP Investments where he last was Senior Vice President and Chief Legal Officer overseeing a team of 35 people. Prior to his nomination as CLO, Frédéric lead a team of transactional lawyers advising PSP’s natural resources, private equity, private debt, and infrastructure asset classes representing C$24 billion of net assets. He was also a senior member of the team that formed the Private Debt group at PSP Investment and was a member of PSP’s Private Debt Investment Committee.
His expertise in the debt space includes representing corporate and public borrowers in relation to several Canadian, U.S. and European public and private financings in excess of C$20 billion, including credit facilities, MTNs, high yield notes, convertible debentures, preferred shares and securitization programs, as well as working on more structured instruments (CLOs and credit risk insurance programs) for large European financial institutions.
Before joining PSP, he occupied the top legal position for a Montreal-based pharmaceutical company and held senior legal positions within the Quebecor group of companies. He started his career in private practice with Fasken Martineau (Montreal) and Clifford Chance (Paris). In 2005, he was recognized as one of Canada’s “Top 40 under 40” in-house counsel by Lexpert and the National Post. Over the years, Frédéric worked on transactions in more than twelve countries, including setting up JVs in the UK, NZ, Australia, Brazil, Italy and Egypt.
Frederic received a MBA from Université Laval, a LL.L and LLB from University of Ottawa and a B.B.A. from HEC Montréal.