Savvas Kotsopoulos is a real estate lawyer who focuses on acquisitions, dispositions, development, and commercial leasing. He has extensive expertise in structuring and settling various joint venture structures and associated agreements (in particular, co-ownerships and limited partnerships). He also has expertise in the associated development and property management agreements for these structures across all asset classes including, retail and commercial, industrial and office, multi-residential, hospitality, and entertainment properties. Savvas represents a broad client base including private developers, investors, public and private institutional investment companies, and real estate investment trusts.
Savvas also practises extensively in the area of commercial leasing. He has particular expertise in complex leases including design-build and build-to-suit leases, ground leases, and large office, retail, and industrial anchor tenancies. His practice is evenly balanced between representing landlords and tenants.
In support of his real estate practice, Savvas has developed particular expertise in the retail industry. He advises U.S. and international retailers seeking to expand their business in Canada, either organically through “greenfield” development or through acquisitions of existing businesses or real estate portfolios. He is a national leader for retail services at Miller Thomson, providing domestic and international retailers with representation in connection with all facets of the establishment and undertaking of their businesses in Canada.
Professional achievements & leadership
- The Best Lawyers in Canada, Commercial Leasing Law; Real Estate Law, 2014 – 2019
- The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory, Property Leasing, 2015 – 2019
- Selected by Lexpert Magazine as part of the 2013 Class of Rising Stars, Top Lawyers in Canada under 40 years old
Transactional real estate:
- an institutional developer and landlord, ranking as one of the largest real estate companies in the world, in connection with their acquisition of development sites for new shopping centre development and negotiating associated anchor and CRU leases for new development and redevelopment projects in Canada totalling over 2 million square feet.
- numerous private investors and developers (including condominium developers) in connection with their joint-venture ownership structures and the acquisition and redevelopment/re-positioning of infill and other development sites across the GTA.
- a Canadian upscale grocery chain in connection with their acquisition of joint venture interests in premiere regional shopping centres across Ontario and associated joint venture agreements, anchor leases and transaction documentation.
- an investment fund in connection with the acquisition of existing and development of new long term care and retirement home facilities in Ontario.
- a global hotel and hospitality chain in connection with all real estate related matters concerning their Canadian portfolio.
- a prominent Canadian junior department store chain in the sale of a majority of its leasehold interests in premises across Canada to a US retailer, transacted at well over a billion dollars.
- a US home improvement retailer in a variety of mandates in connection with its Canadian expansion, including regulatory advice, the securing of sites and the development of large format retail stores.
- a renewable power generation company in its acquisition and retrofitting of a hydroelectric dam in Northern Ontario and related project finance transaction.
- leading Miller Thomson’s Retail Group in connection with the delivery of legal services (including store and distribution facility leases) to numerous renowned international retailers in connection with their expansions into Canada, including luxury brands, fast fashion retailers and other consumer goods retailers.
- a publically traded US technology company in connection with a design-build lease and associated construction contracts for a 425,000 square foot, 3- building complex comprising their new Canadian research and development headquarters.
- a mid-market REIT in connection with the negotiation of anchor leases as part of the repositioning/redevelopment of regional shopping centres in Canada.
- an international professional services firm in connection with their office leasing across Canada.
- a fitness chain in connection with all facets of their real estate portfolio, including ground leasing of sites for new gyms as they continue their aggressive expansion plan across Canada.
- “Real Estate Investment in Canada“, Expert Guides, 2017
- Lease Transfer Provisions & Corporate Tenant, Leasing Times, July 2013
- Canada Remains Fertile Ground for US Retailers, The Lexpert/American Lawyer Guide to the Leading 500 Lawyers in Canada, 2013
- Laying the Foundation for a Build-to-Suit Lease, Leasing Times, December 3, 2012
- Transfers of Retail Leases – Issues and Pitfalls, Leasing Times, March 1, 2012
- Canadian Bar Association
- Ontario Bar Association
- International Council of Shopping Centres (ICSC)
- National Association of Office and Industrial Properties (NAIOP)
- the Urban Land Institute
- Hellenic-Canadian Board of Trade
Bar admissions & education
- Ontario Bar, 2003
- LL.B., Osgoode Hall, York University, 2002
- B.A. (political science and law and society), York University, 1999