Evening Update: Celebrities Including Drake Join Wealthsimple Funding Round, Bringing Valuation to $ 5 Billion; University of Alberta forges close research ties with China despite intelligence warnings


Good night, let’s start with today’s best stories:

Latest COVID-19 Developments: Provinces Expand Vaccine Eligibility, Ontario LTC Minister Promises Changes, More

Immunization updates: In Ontario, residents 18 years of age or older living in 114 sensitive neighborhoods were able to start making appointments this morning. Health Minister Christine Elliott said more than 73,000 appointments had been made by mid-morning, despite the frustrations described by some social media users. She also said that expected additional vaccine supplies could lead the province to shorten the four-month interval between the first and second vaccines.

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Meanwhile, Quebecers aged 45 and over became eligible today to book vaccine appointments, as public health orders were relaxed in some cities, including Montreal. And Manitoba has expanded its program to include all aboriginal adults.

You can find out if you or your loved ones are eligible for a vaccine now with our province-by-province explanation here.

SLD: Ontario Long-Term Care Minister Merrilee Fullerton has pledged to adopt several recommendations made by an independent commission that examined the devastating effects of the coronavirus on nursing homes across the province.

Notice: Fixing long-term care in Ontario seems increasingly hopeless André Picard

Trial of the pastor of Alberta: The trial of James Coates, the pastor of GraceLife Church in the Edmonton area, charged with violating the Public Health Act, began today. Officials say his services said they ignored measures relating to capacity limits, physical distance and masking. You can read more about this story and other COVID-19 news today here.

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Wealthsimple Announces Landmark $ 750 Million Funding From Investor Group Including Drake and Ryan Reynolds

Some of Canada’s most famous celebrities have joined in landmark funding for Canadian online banking challenger Wealthsimple Technologies, which today announced a $ 750 million transaction backed by some of the major venture capital funds of the Silicon Valley. The deal also includes celebrities such as Drake, Michael J. Fox and Ryan Reynolds.

The announcement confirmed many details first reported by The Globe. The funding values ​​Wealthsimple at $ 5 billion, making Toronto-based online banking one of Canada’s top-rated private tech companies.

University of Alberta forges close research ties with China despite warnings from intelligence agencies

The University of Alberta has extensive scientific collaboration with China that includes the sharing and transfer of research in areas of strategic importance such as nanotechnology, biotechnology and artificial intelligence. In some cases, professors and researchers have created companies in joint ventures with Chinese companies and state institutions to commercialize technologies developed in Canada.

The university declined to discuss its research activities with China except to say that “we have not received any directives relating to China” from the federal government to end its engagement with Chinese institutions.

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The Canadian Security Intelligence Service and US intelligence agencies have warned that Chinese companies and academics are forced to share the work they have done with Western researchers with China’s military, security and industrial apparatus. .

Real estate sales tactics under fire as house prices in Canada spiral out of control

Blind auctions, where potential buyers don’t know what their competition is offering and the winners often go over budget and the second highest bid is accused of driving up prices. The same is true of the practice of setting an artificially low price to attract crowds of hopeful buyers, increase the number of bids, and raise the price of the bid. Economists – and even real estate agents – are calling for reform.

More from our real estate series:


Bill and Melinda Gates divorce: Billionaire Bill Gates and Melinda Gates announced in a joint statement that they have made the decision to end their marriage.

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Prize for the Globe VanderKlippe: Globe and Mail Asia correspondent Nathan VanderKlippe received a Press Freedom Award for his work on how China treats its Uyghur minority. He shares the award with Sarah Cox of Narwhal for her coverage of the British Columbia Site C hydroelectric project.

Buffett’s alleged Canadian heir: Warren Buffett ended long-standing speculation about his successor at Berkshire Hathaway today, saying Edmonton-born Greg Abel, who oversees his non-insurance business, would become managing director if he was no longer in charge. You can follow the Berkshire Weekend Virtual Annual Meeting here, Robinhood’s feedback on Buffett’s comments here, and the headwinds the company faces here.

Mike Weir wins the golf tournament: Canadian Masters champion Mike Weir won his first PGA Tour Champions event yesterday, as he remained stable with pairs throughout the straight in the Insiderity Invitational. It was his first win on a tour since 2007.

RIP Bobby Unser: Bobby Unser, three-time Indianapolis 500 winner and one of the only couple of brothers to win “the greatest racing spectacle” has died at 87.


The TSX, S&P 500 and Dow indexes ended higher today amid a largely bullish earnings season, while the Nasdaq was pressured by declines from some high-end growth stocks, as the rotation to cyclical actions and “reopening” continued.

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 238.38 points or 0.7% to 34,113.23, the S&P 500 climbed 11.49 points or 0.27% to 4,192.66 and the Nasdaq Composite slipped 67, 56 points or 0.48% at 13,895.12.

The Toronto Stock Exchange’s S & P / TSX Composite Index added 104.83 points or 0.55 percent to close at 19,213.16.

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Ottawa’s lobby game to get all provinces to buy into its child care plan

“This means bringing in some provinces quickly, with the promise that their constituents will see a significant reduction in child care costs starting next year.” Premiers who do not register will find their constituents wondering if they will not participate. ” Campbell Clark

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Old Trafford football riot marks new stage of unrest

“It is a movement against internationalism. It goes way beyond who bought what last transfer window before. This struggle is economic, political and philosophical. It is a highly flammable substance. And the message delivery system – football – translates into all languages. ” Cathal kelly


In his first-person essay, Eric Bombicino pays tribute to his 95-year-old Nonno, who taught him a lot about how to live, even during their last week together: “I now realize that I had more to do with it. gain from our relationship than him. did. He taught me to be vulnerable – and to love well without fear. … Find the elderly in your life and bond with them. You will not regret it.”


Don’t expect the pandemic’s spectacular remote shift to be permanent

A recently sold house in Picton, Ontario.

Fred Lum / The Globe and Mail

The dunes and vineyards of Prince Edward County have drawn Toronto weekends for decades. Sharon Armitage has often been their real estate agent. She sold to political scientist David Frum and restaurateur Jamie Kennedy.

But she has never seen anything like the “avalanche” of city dwellers that has occurred over the past 12 months. It is no longer just a question of aspiring wine tycoons (“grapers”) or wealthy retirees. Young families who can work remotely during the pandemic have pushed up house prices – by more than 30% since last year.

The question now is whether the flight from the cities and the corresponding housing boom in the newly advantaged neighborhoods will last. As vaccination brings Canada closer to the end of the pandemic, despite a crushing third wave, some economists and planners are skeptical. They believe we’ve already reached the pinnacle of remote working, and some flashbacks are inevitable as offices reopen and people remember the joys of city life after the pandemic. Read Eric Andrew-Gee’s full story here.

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