19 Jun TMX Group
TMX Group operates global markets and builds digital communities and analytic solutions that facilitate the funding, growth, and success of businesses, traders, and investors. TMX Group’s key operations include Toronto Stock Exchange, TSX Venture Exchange, TSX Alpha Exchange, The Canadian Depository for Securities, Montréal Exchange, Canadian Derivatives Clearing Corporation, and Trayport which provide listing markets, trading markets, clearing facilities, depository services, technology solutions, data products, and other services to the global financial community. TMX Group is headquartered in Toronto and operates offices across North America (Montréal, Calgary, Vancouver, and New York), as well as in key international markets including London and Singapore.
In 2021, we undertook a crucial internal exercise to define our corporate culture with employee participation from across the company. The output from this initiative included a new TMX Group ED&I strategy and operational plan, with a commitment to fostering a fair, diverse, and inclusive workplace. Our culture work also included the development of a new purpose statement – a TMX rallying cry, or reason for being. And that is: “We make markets better and empower bold ideas.”
TMX’s purpose encompasses all we do for clients and stakeholders across the markets we serve to ensure Canada’s public markets remain fair and transparent, liquid and globally competitive. But importantly, ‘making markets better’ also means doing everything we can to be a people-first organization with a meaningful, positive impact. That includes finding ways to be more inclusive – enabling groups, like Indigenous entrepreneurs and businesses, more access and better opportunities to participate in our markets.
We want to bring more investment to Indigenous-owned businesses; lower barriers for Indigenous companies to become publicly traded, and make it easier for investors to find companies that uphold reconciliation within their corporate practices. within our own company, we want to develop internal ED&I programs, including those that encompass current and prospective Indigenous employees.
On September 30, we commemorated National Day for Truth and Reconciliation in Canada with a special market open ceremony at Toronto Stock Exchange and held our first cultural education workshop: an interactive session to build employee awareness about:
- the history of residential schools,
- the health and education of Indigenous Peoples, and
- the priorities of the various communities.
Employee response to this powerful and moving session was unprecedented. Attendance was best-ever for an educational event at TMX. Almost 600 people from our offices across Canada, and around the world, making time to participate in an elementary step in our learning journey. Earlier this year, we began listing Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business PAR-certified and PAR-committed companies on TMXmoney.com, spotlighting companies on our Exchanges that have committed to Indigenous reconciliations. We are also working together with CCAB’s Progressive Aboriginal Relations – or PAR – program, to put TMX on a path to developing our own reconciliation action plan.
We recognize that some groups, including racialized and Indigenous people, have faced, and continue to face, persistent barriers that impede their ability to participate in our capital markets ecosystem. We want to work with Indigenous businesses and entrepreneurs to find solutions that spark growth in the Indigenous economy. We know building trusting relationships takes time.
With the growth of the Indigenous economy, we see opportunities to increase Indigenous participation in Canada’s capital markets. As an example, we’ve got a unique vehicle for companies to go public on TSX Venture Exchange called the Capital Pool Company (CPC) Program. It connects a growth company with experienced corporate directors that can be long-term investors and directors for the company, and that will help bridge the company to the public markets.This is a vehicle that could be utilized for Indigenous entrepreneurs. It is the most common way that companies go public on TSX Venture Exchange – our junior exchange – and the program has an incredible track record.
TMX is committed to finding real-world, long-term solutions and setting an example for our broader stakeholder community across the country.Reconciliation is the responsibility of all Canadians and building an understanding is a crucial step to taking informed and effective action.
Our advice to other companies is that it’s important to engage with Indigenous communities, business leaders, and organizations and to take the time to find out what problems exist and what solutions are needed from the communities themselves before embarking on your own solutions.
As the Indigenous economy develops we hope to see Indigenous entrepreneurs leverage mechanisms such as the CPC program to access capital via our capital markets; mentorship and education programs for Indigenous entrepreneurs; more education for Non-Indigenous companies on reconciliation and inclusion; and as we continue our reconciliation journey, it would be great to see other companies in corporate Canada, develop their own reconciliation plans and include that in their public disclosures.