A seasoned senior executive with significant experience in structuring and funding major transactions with both a legal and financial services background in Canada and Asia; significant experience in natural resources, infrastructure and technology and involvement in major international transactions, particularly in Canada, Australia and Greater China.
1978 Admitted to the Ontario Bar
1976 JD, University of Ottawa
1972 B.A., University of Western Ontario
April 2001 to Present
From May 2006 until November 1, 2015, Mr. Betts served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Sunwah International Limited (previously Kingsway International Holdings Limited). He is presently Executive Director and remains involved in the operations of the Group on a day to day basis
From April 2001 to May 2006, Mr. Betts served as Managing Director of North America at Kingsway International Holdings Limited and President and Chief Executive Officer of Kingsway Capital of Canada Inc., a subsidiary of Kingsway International Holdings Limited. In this capacity Mr. Betts was responsible for implementing the business strategy for Kingsway International in North America and its positioning as a major conduit for business transactions between China and Canada.
During this period of time as CEO of Kingsway Canada, Mr Betts oversaw the creation of, and served as the initial Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer, Golden China Resources Corporation, a strategic investment of Kingsway Canada. As a Chinese focused gold company, Golden China acquired two public companies both also focused on development and production assets in China and grew to be one of China’s largest gold producers. He guided the team that saw the Company sold to Sino Gold in 2007, which in turn was ultimately acquired by Eldorado Gold Corporation.
October 1997 to March 2001
Mr Betts was co-founder and Managing Director of Borealis Funds Management Ltd. As Managing Director of Borealis, Mr. Betts had responsibility for sourcing and structuring transactions for investment by the Borealis Infrastructure Fund. In the position of Managing Director, Mr. Betts has been actively involved in transportation projects energy projects including both distribution and generation; education in both the Province of Ontario and Nova Scotia and several telecommunications projects. The Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement Board established Borealis as an investment vehicle to invest in infrastructure, primarily in Canada. During his tenure, the Borealis Funds grew from a start-up to become one of the largest infrastructure funds in North America.
May, 1976 – October 1, 1997
Partner with Torys LLP, a major Canadian law firm with offices in Toronto, New York and Hong Kong where he practiced commercial law with a particular emphasis on international finance transactions, securities and real estate.
Mr. Betts has been involved in international business transactions in Asia for more than a decade. Mr. Betts’ experience in Asia includes the formation of joint ventures with Asian partners, and direct investment into Canada.
Mr. Betts has served on numerous other public and private Boards. He is, and has been, a member of many professional associations, including the Canadian Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong, the Canadian Bar Association, and the Law Society of Upper Canada, the International Bar Association and the Inter Pacific Bar Association. Previously he has been a member or director of
The Canada China Business Council, the Canadian Council of Public/Private Partnerships, the Conference Board of Canada.
Mr Betts is a Canadian citizen and resident of Hong Kong SAR; born in London, Ontario on 10 June 1950, and is married with four grown children. His personal interests include flying, hiking, skiing, kayaking and canoeing. Mr Betts holds a commercial pilot’s license, Class1 instrument rating endorsed for both land and sea (non Current).