It is Me Eleni Yiannakis who takes the reins today.  Photos: City of Montreal, BIXI and IMK websites

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It is Me Eleni Yiannakis who takes the reins today. Photos: City of Montreal, BIXI and IMK websites

The city council adopted Wednesday the authorization of an expenditure of 200,000 dollars in order to mandate the firm IMK, specialized in litigation, reveals the Metro Journal.

IMK is the third firm hired by the City in this file, the city administration having abandoned Gowlings in 2017 to engage with Blake, Cassels and Graydon, which offered them a lower hourly rate.

This is Me Eleni Yiannakis, Bar 2000, which today takes the reins.

In total, nearly $ 1.5 million in legal costs have already been incurred by the City in this case.

A saga that stretches

The Self-Service Bicycle Company (SVLS), which launched BIXI in 2009, went bankrupt in 2014 despite a loan of 37 million granted by the municipal administration in 2011. The City then took over the local assets of the company and sold the international assets for $ 16 million, recouping part of its investment.

SVLS’s creditors then sued the City in Superior Court, contesting the validity of the loan, and won. The Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court then upheld this verdict. Montreal would have violated the Law on the prohibition of municipal subsidies by financing a commercial establishment. In 2020, it therefore received the order to repay 16 million to creditors.

The City has also been sued by six SVLS suppliers since 2014. They are claiming $ 4.2 million from it, considering that it is responsible for their losses since it controlled SVLS. These proceedings are adjourned until the final settlement of the bankruptcy of SVLS.

On the other hand, the Court of Appeal authorized the City to register as a creditor in an attempt to recover nearly $ 40 million, but the bankruptcy trustee refused the evidence provided by the administration. municipal government, arguing that Montreal should never have given the company a loan.