Groupe Sélection: the Fonds de solidarité FTQ “will not lose money”, says its CEO

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Selection Group: the Solidarity Fund QFL “”won’t lose money”, says its CEO

Janie C. Béïque is the President and CEO of the QFL solidarity.

The Solidarity Fund “is not afraid of losing money” due to the difficulties of Groupe Sélection, assures the president and chief executive officer of the labour-sponsored funds, Janie C. Béïque.

The Solidarity Fund is a partner of the operator of residences for seniors in three real estate development projects.

It's a completely different dynamic [from that of shareholders or creditors], she explained during a press scrum on Monday, on the sidelines of a speech to the Canadian Club of Montreal.

These are very promising projects. If they are not there [Selection Group], there is someone else who will take their place. We are very confident.

Ms Béïque says that the Fund has already seen that these projects are attracting interest from investors. Already the phone rang. There are people who said to us: “If they are not here, we will take their place”.

Groupe Sélection filed for protection under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) on November 14. Its bankers, to whom the company owes $272 million, say they have lost faith in the management team.

Testimony before the Superior Court of Quebec has allowed to learn that the company had been in default of payment with partners, in particular the Fonds de solidarité FTQ, because it was unable to honor a call for funds of 1 $.8 million.

The FTQ fund would also have paid $2 million to Groupe Sélection on the condition that the money be used to repay certain debts. The company would have pocketed the money instead, according to the lenders' motion in court.

“ We are not afraid of losing our money. The way it's structured, there's someone else who's going to replace him. So we won't waste our money. These are very good projects. »

—  Janie C. Béïque, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Fonds de solidarité FTQ

The Superior Court entrusted the monitor of the lenders, PricewaterhouseCoopers, with the financial recovery of Groupe Sélection, which wanted rather than the operation being carried out by the firm FTI Consulting. Groupe Sélection intends to appeal this decision and is asking for a stay.

During her speech, Ms. Béïque reiterated the objective, announced last June, that the share of her portfolio linked to sustainable development will reach 12 billion dollars within five years. As of May 31, the net assets of the Solidarity Fund were 17.4 billion.

The fund also wants to convince 100,000 people without a pension plan or with a salary of less than $55,000 to contribute to the Fonds de solidarité FTQ within five years.

The leader is concerned about the fate of retirees in Quebec who are poorer than those in other provinces. The average income of Quebec seniors is approximately $9,000 lower than that of Ontario ($40,000 compared to $49,000).

Thousands of workers not saving enough in a rapidly aging society is a social and financial time bomb, she said .

The Solidarity Fund must present its next results on December 23 for the period which includes the months of June to November.

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