Howard M. Drabinsky 

Partner, Business Law and M&A
Co-Chair, Entertainment, Gaming and Sports
Toronto  t: 416.307.4033  |  e: howard.drabinsky@mcmillan.ca

Howard M. Drabinsky

Toronto
Brookfield Place, Suite 4400
181 Bay Street
Toronto, Ontario M5J 2T3

t: 416.307.4033
e: howard.drabinsky@mcmillan.ca

aperçu

Howard Drabinsky has been a partner at the firm since 1987 and is a recognized leader in the corporate community, serving as an officer and director of public and private companies.

McMillan LLP has a broad gaming law practice, of which Howard is Co-Chair, covering all segments of gaming and casino operations and currently acts as counsel to gaming companies and gaming supply and support companies in a wide range of matters.

Howard's particular expertise is in mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance and regulatory matters. He works with publicly and privately owned clients in a wide range of industries, including information technology, entertainment, gaming, manufacturing, transportation, consumer products and financial services. A particular strength of Howard's transactional practice is the ability to facilitate cross-border business combinations, asset purchases and sales and distribution arrangements. He is well versed in all sources of public and private transactional financing and his comprehensive guidance from start to finish in a deal can include everything from entity structure and governance to regulatory approvals.

Howard also advises Boards and senior management on commercial matters including corporate governance, regulatory compliance and shareholder relations, including controversial shareholder litigation. Because he frequently deals with owner-managed businesses, he is familiar with the special challenges involving relationships among business partners and family members. In all aspects of his counsel to senior executives, Howard takes a wide-ranging perspective that extends beyond the immediate transaction or controversy, as he works to ensure that the results reflect the company's broad strategic objectives and business goals.

Because he deals with the most sensitive financial and governance issues, Howard's tact and discretion are appreciated by all of his clients. He is attuned to the differing perspectives of multinational participants at the bargaining table. Howard's extensive service as a corporate officer and director gives him a unique perspective on the concerns and responsibilities of senior management, allowing him to work closely in partnership with them as a seasoned counselor, advisor and colleague.

Representative Matters

  • Led a team in advising SG Canada Acquisitions, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Scientific Games Corporation, in acquiring all of the outstanding common shares of DEQ Systems Corp. for a cash payment of CDN$0.38 per common share. 
  • Advises Scientific Games Corporation, an international gaming supply and support company providing gaming solutions to lottery and gaming organizations worldwide on a variety of issues including licensing, registration and other regulatory matters.
  • Advises Tabcorp Inc., an Australian based worldwide leading sports wagering, racing media and Keno operator, on a variety of issues including licensing, registration and other regulatory matters.
  • Advisor to Quebec Jockey Club.
  • Acted for Mirvish Productions in the purchase of Toronto's Canon (now "Ed Mirvish") and Panasonic Theatres from Key Brand Entertainment
  • Acted for Deluxe Vancouver Ltd., a division of the Deluxe Entertainment Services Group Inc., when it acquired Rainmaker Entertainment Inc., a division of Rainmaker Income Fund, along with Visual Effects UK Limited, Rainmaker's visual effects operation in London, England, for approximately C$31 million
  • Advisor to U.S. and Canadian film production corporations regarding such matters as production and transaction financing, licensing, distribution and related contractual arrangements
  • Advisor to Mirvish Productions and other theatrical production corporations regarding such matters as production financing, licensing and related contractual arrangements
  • Acted for Mylan Inc. when it completed its US$6.8 billion acquisition of Merck KGaA's generics business to become one of the largest quality generics and specialty pharmaceuticals companies in the world
  • Acted for VoiceGenie Technologies Inc., a Canadian developer of speech recognition software products, in its sale to Alcatel
  • Other significant clients include public and private companies, owner-managed businesses doing business in domestic and international markets throughout the world. Services include guidance on raising capital through debt and equity financing, entity formation, corporate governance, and structuring of mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures and other transactions within and across national borders
  • Advises foreign corporations with respect to expansion into Canada, providing assistance with commercial bank lending and other financing sources, regulatory approvals, and identification of marketing and distribution opportunities
  • Advisor on financial restructurings and contentious shareholder disputes involving public and private corporations. Counsels directors and officers on their fiduciary responsibilities and advises on related regulatory approvals and public communication concerns
  • Advisor to the insurance industry in connection with acquisitions, divestitures, licensing, policy development, policy interpretation, the legal and business aspects of marketing insurance products, including distribution agreements and all aspects of marketing and regulatory compliance

Publications

News

Les avocat.e.s de McMillan obtiennent 41 classements dans 10 domaines de pratique dans l'édition de 2021 du guide IFLR1000 en droit financier et en droit des affaires
Les avocat.e.s de McMillan obtiennent 41 classements dans 10 domaines de pratique dans l'édition de 2021 du guide IFLR1000 en droit financier et en droit des affaires
22 avocats de McMillan classés dans le guide IFLR1000 Financial and Corporate Guide de 2020
Les avocats de McMillan obtiennent 41 classements dans 23 catégories dans le guide Chambers Canada de 2020
23 avocats de McMillan figurent dans le répertoire IFLR1000 Financial and Corporate Guide de 2019
Les avocats de McMillan sont bien représentés dans le guide Chambers Canada de 2019
Les avocats de McMillan sont bien représentés dans l'édition 2018 du guide de Chambers Canada
Les avocats de McMillan classés dans le répertoire IFRL1000 Financial and Corporate Guide de 2018
Conseiller canadien de Refresco Group N.V. dans le cadre de son acquisition de Corporation Cott pour 1,25 G$ US
Conseiller canadien de Refresco Group N.V. dans le cadre de son acquisition de Corporation Cott pour 1,25 G$ US

Education

  • McGill University, BCL and LLB - 1980

Year Of Call

  • Barreau de l'Ontario - 1982

Practices

acquisitions et désinvestissements
jeux et loteries
divertissement et médias
financement des entreprises
capital d'investissement
technologies
opérations négociées
gouvernance d'entreprise

Industries

médias, communications et divertissement
capital d'investissement et capital de risque
technologies
transports
industries manufacturières, distribution et commerce du détail

Directorships and Professional Associations

  • Canadian Bar Association
  • Carthew Bay Technologies Inc.
  • Volunteer Director, Integrative Management Challenges Course, University of Toronto, Joseph L. Rotman School of Management.

Awards & Rankings

  • 2020 IFLR1000 Financial and Corporate Guide - Notable Practitioner in Gaming, Entertainment, Sport
  • 2019 IFLR1000 Financial and Corporate Guide - Notable Practitioner in Gaming, Entertainment, Sport
  • 2019 Chambers Canada: Recognized Practitioner of Gaming & Licensing
  • 2018 Chambers & Partners – Canada: Recognised Practitioner, Nationwide - Canada, Gaming & Licensing
  • 2018 IFLR 1000 Financial and Corporate Guide - Notable practitioner: Gaming Entertainment, Sport 
  • Received a "BV" Peer Rating from Martindale-Hubbell
vcard

Howard Drabinsky has been a partner at the firm since 1987 and is a recognized leader in the corporate community, serving as an officer and director of public and private companies.

McMillan LLP has a broad gaming law practice, of which Howard is Co-Chair, covering all segments of gaming and casino operations and currently acts as counsel to gaming companies and gaming supply and support companies in a wide range of matters.

Howard's particular expertise is in mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance and regulatory matters. He works with publicly and privately owned clients in a wide range of industries, including information technology, entertainment, gaming, manufacturing, transportation, consumer products and financial services. A particular strength of Howard's transactional practice is the ability to facilitate cross-border business combinations, asset purchases and sales and distribution arrangements. He is well versed in all sources of public and private transactional financing and his comprehensive guidance from start to finish in a deal can include everything from entity structure and governance to regulatory approvals.

Howard also advises Boards and senior management on commercial matters including corporate governance, regulatory compliance and shareholder relations, including controversial shareholder litigation. Because he frequently deals with owner-managed businesses, he is familiar with the special challenges involving relationships among business partners and family members. In all aspects of his counsel to senior executives, Howard takes a wide-ranging perspective that extends beyond the immediate transaction or controversy, as he works to ensure that the results reflect the company's broad strategic objectives and business goals.

Because he deals with the most sensitive financial and governance issues, Howard's tact and discretion are appreciated by all of his clients. He is attuned to the differing perspectives of multinational participants at the bargaining table. Howard's extensive service as a corporate officer and director gives him a unique perspective on the concerns and responsibilities of senior management, allowing him to work closely in partnership with them as a seasoned counselor, advisor and colleague.

  • Led a team in advising SG Canada Acquisitions, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Scientific Games Corporation, in acquiring all of the outstanding common shares of DEQ Systems Corp. for a cash payment of CDN$0.38 per common share. 
  • Advises Scientific Games Corporation, an international gaming supply and support company providing gaming solutions to lottery and gaming organizations worldwide on a variety of issues including licensing, registration and other regulatory matters.
  • Advises Tabcorp Inc., an Australian based worldwide leading sports wagering, racing media and Keno operator, on a variety of issues including licensing, registration and other regulatory matters.
  • Advisor to Quebec Jockey Club.
  • Acted for Mirvish Productions in the purchase of Toronto's Canon (now "Ed Mirvish") and Panasonic Theatres from Key Brand Entertainment
  • Acted for Deluxe Vancouver Ltd., a division of the Deluxe Entertainment Services Group Inc., when it acquired Rainmaker Entertainment Inc., a division of Rainmaker Income Fund, along with Visual Effects UK Limited, Rainmaker's visual effects operation in London, England, for approximately C$31 million
  • Advisor to U.S. and Canadian film production corporations regarding such matters as production and transaction financing, licensing, distribution and related contractual arrangements
  • Advisor to Mirvish Productions and other theatrical production corporations regarding such matters as production financing, licensing and related contractual arrangements
  • Acted for Mylan Inc. when it completed its US$6.8 billion acquisition of Merck KGaA's generics business to become one of the largest quality generics and specialty pharmaceuticals companies in the world
  • Acted for VoiceGenie Technologies Inc., a Canadian developer of speech recognition software products, in its sale to Alcatel
  • Other significant clients include public and private companies, owner-managed businesses doing business in domestic and international markets throughout the world. Services include guidance on raising capital through debt and equity financing, entity formation, corporate governance, and structuring of mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures and other transactions within and across national borders
  • Advises foreign corporations with respect to expansion into Canada, providing assistance with commercial bank lending and other financing sources, regulatory approvals, and identification of marketing and distribution opportunities
  • Advisor on financial restructurings and contentious shareholder disputes involving public and private corporations. Counsels directors and officers on their fiduciary responsibilities and advises on related regulatory approvals and public communication concerns
  • Advisor to the insurance industry in connection with acquisitions, divestitures, licensing, policy development, policy interpretation, the legal and business aspects of marketing insurance products, including distribution agreements and all aspects of marketing and regulatory compliance
10 Octobre 2016
Speaker's Corner: Fantasy sports perfectly legal(seulement disponible en anglais)

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