About

Our Team

The Gravitas Team

Gravitas is made up of a cross-disciplinary group of professionals whose industry experience has relevance and value for our clients. We are a bottom-up business, built on the strength of our individual members and the synergy of our team. Together we foster a culture of inclusion and a process of collaboration fueled by honest, independent thinking.

  • PRIVATE WEALTH ADVISORS
  • INVESTMENT BANKING TEAM
  • SENIOR MANAGEMENT
Blayne Creed, CIM
President, Chief Executive Officer, Head of Investment Banking
READ BIO
Kia Besharat, MSc
Consultant, Investment Banking
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Nima Besharat, LLB (Hons), LLM
Director, Investment Banking
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Raphael Yeung, CFA
Senior Vice President, Investment Banking
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Toronto

Blayne Creed, CIM®
President, Chief Executive Officer, Head of Investment Banking
Evan Warsh
Portfolio Manager

Alberta

Darren Slade, CFP®, BA
Investment Advisor
265N – 8500 MacLeod Trail SE, Calgary, Alberta T2N 2N1
Jasen Boyko, BEd, CFP®
Investment Advisor
327 Bulyea Road, Edmonton, Alberta T6R 1W5
Jennifer Slade, CFP®, CIM®
Investment Advisor
265N – 8500 MacLeod Trail SE, Calgary, Alberta T2N 2N1
Ted Fiks
Investment Advisor
327 Bulyea Road, Edmonton, Alberta T6R 1W5
Blayne Creed, CIM
President, Chief Executive Officer, Head of Investment Banking
READ BIO
Leo Ciccone, CPA, CA
Risk, Governance & Compliance Specialist
READ BIO
Rajendra Prasad
Chief Financial Officer
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Dillon Braman
Vice President, Operations
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Ruth Ann Companion
Director, Compliance
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The Gravitas Culture

Considering a new challenge?

We attribute our successes to the quality, diversity and dedication of our teams.
If you are interested in learning more about our firm culture or employment opportunities, visit our careers page.

Blayne Creed, CIM

President, Chief Executive Officer , Head of Investment Banking

(416) 639-2096 | BCreed@GravitasSecurities.com

Blayne Creed joined the senior management team at Gravitas Securities to officially kick off and lead the company’s 2.0 initiative, bringing a tremendous amount of business experience and expertise to the organization. He has diligently advised both private and institutional clients for over a decade, holds the Chartered Investment Manager designation (CIM) and is a registered Investment Advisor and Portfolio Manager.

Prior to joining Gravitas Securities in 2016, Blayne spent several years as a Financial Advisor at a large Canadian investment firm, where he built a sizable practice. By understanding and appreciating his individual clients’ objectives, he was able to establish and carry forward long and prosperous relationships.

Blayne has been involved in the business world for much of his life, having grown up with a family and network of successful businessmen and women. Fair business ethics and proper corporate governance values were instilled in him at an early age, and this has empowered him to navigate many difficult situations, mindfully considering all internal and external variables on the way to the most positive outcomes.

Throughout his career, Blayne’s focus has always been achieving and maintaining the highest level of client satisfaction while producing superior returns. His affinity for financial markets, his proven track record and his history of developing rapport with high-net-worth clients and partners has helped to distinguish him in the industry today. He is well regarded by his peers for his ability to intimately familiarize himself with the companies he invests in, especially early-stage and small cap companies where market values and fundamentals are not yet fully understood by the broader investment community.

At Gravitas, Blayne leverages the tremendous amount of knowledge and opportunity available through his vast network, to his investors’ advantage. He is also continuously thinking as a leader and guiding others with inspiration and compassion. This approach promotes the stellar service, advice and performance Blayne’s clients have come to expect over the years.

This individual is a registered officer.

Kia Besharat, MSc

Consultant, Investment Banking

(778) 837-5474 | KBesharat@GravitasSecurities.com

Kia Besharat has over 15 years of extensive private equity, investment banking, and directorship experience, including as former Managing Director at Ubequity Capital Partners, a leading global merchant and investment bank.

Kia acts exclusively as a consultant to Gravitas Securities Inc., where he helps with the advisory, restructuring, corporate finance, and mergers and acquisitions mandates across the firm’s platform, with a recent focus on the following industry groups: consumer/retail, natural resources, internet/new media, technology, and healthcare. While at Gravitas Securities as a Senior Managing Director of Investment Banking, Kia played a pivotal role in establishing Gravitas Securities as one of the top boutique investment banks in Canada. His transactions have totaled in excess of $1 billion at Gravitas Securities and more than $4 billion over the span of his career.

Kia’s entrepreneurial ability and relationship management skills allow him to work closely with and support earlier stage companies. As such, he has personally invested in and helped grow hundreds of public and private companies.

Throughout his career, Kia has always demonstrated strong leadership and a commitment to his community. Kia has supported numerous charitable organizations such as the Daily Bread Food Bank, Sick Kids Hospital Foundation, the Royal Columbian Hospital, and the Merry Go Round Children's Foundation.

Kia holds a Bachelor of Arts (Economics with a minor in Management) from McGill University as well as a Master of Science (Finance and Investment) from the University of Edinburgh. He was also one of Canada’s top tennis players, having competed as a professional in tournaments around the world and at the NCAA Division 1 level. In 2018, Kia was recognized by the Investment Industry Association of Canada (IIAC) as a Top 40 Under 40 Award Nominee.

This individual is not a registered officer.

Nima Besharat, LLB (Hons), LLM

Director, Investment Banking

(416) 479-4342 | NBesharat@GravitasSecurities.com

As a Director of the Investment Banking Group at Gravitas Securities, Nima Besharat has extensive private equity, merchant banking and directorship experience.

Nima has wealth management experience from his time at two major Canadian banks, and has held legal roles in asset management, structured and asset finance, corporate finance and private equity at BNP Paribas, Allen & Overy and Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner. He also articled with Oxford Properties Group, the real estate investment arm of one of Canada’s largest pension plans, OMERS.

Nima holds a BA in Economics and History from Western University, a Bachelor of Laws (Hons.) from the University of Sheffield, a Master of Laws in International Business Law from King’s College London, University of London (Dr. Peter Dyne Scholar), and a Postgraduate Diploma in Legal Practice (Corporate Finance) from the University of Law. He is called to the Ontario Bar.

This individual is not a registered officer.

Raphael Yeung, CFA

Senior Vice President, Investment Banking

(778) 327-6863 | RYeung@GravitasSecurities.com

Raphael Yeung is a passionate supporter of exceptional Canadian growth stage companies across both private and public markets. His capital markets and advisory experience ranges from mergers and acquisitions to multiple financing structures across diversified industries. This enables him to provide value-added insights to corporate clients at Gravitas Securities Inc.

Prior to joining Gravitas, Raphael was an investment banking analyst at BMO Capital Markets, where he specialized in transactions in the metals and mining, technology, and diversified industries. His aggregate closed value totalled in excess of $2 billion.

Raphael holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation and earned a Bachelor of Commerce degree with a major in Finance and minor in Economics from the University of British Columbia. He is also on the executive team for the Vancouver chapter of Young Canadians in Finance, a professional network founded by Paul Desmarais III that connects professionals in disciplines including finance, law, accounting, business and more.

This individual is not a registered officer.

Blayne Creed, CIM

President, Chief Executive Officer , Head of Investment Banking

(416) 639-2096 | BCreed@GravitasSecurities.com

Blayne Creed joined the senior management team at Gravitas Securities to officially kick off and lead the company’s 2.0 initiative, bringing a tremendous amount of business experience and expertise to the organization. He has diligently advised both private and institutional clients for over a decade, holds the Chartered Investment Manager designation (CIM) and is a registered Investment Advisor and Portfolio Manager.

Prior to joining Gravitas Securities in 2016, Blayne spent several years as a Financial Advisor at a large Canadian investment firm, where he built a sizable practice. By understanding and appreciating his individual clients’ objectives, he was able to establish and carry forward long and prosperous relationships.

Blayne has been involved in the business world for much of his life, having grown up with a family and network of successful businessmen and women. Fair business ethics and proper corporate governance values were instilled in him at an early age, and this has empowered him to navigate many difficult situations, mindfully considering all internal and external variables on the way to the most positive outcomes.

Throughout his career, Blayne’s focus has always been achieving and maintaining the highest level of client satisfaction while producing superior returns. His affinity for financial markets, his proven track record and his history of developing rapport with high-net-worth clients and partners has helped to distinguish him in the industry today. He is well regarded by his peers for his ability to intimately familiarize himself with the companies he invests in, especially early-stage and small cap companies where market values and fundamentals are not yet fully understood by the broader investment community.

At Gravitas, Blayne leverages the tremendous amount of knowledge and opportunity available through his vast network, to his investors’ advantage. He is also continuously thinking as a leader and guiding others with inspiration and compassion. This approach promotes the stellar service, advice and performance Blayne’s clients have come to expect over the years.

Leo Ciccone, CPA, CA

Risk, Governance & Compliance Specialist

(416) 367-0999 ext. 225 | lciccone@gravitassecurities.com

As Chief Compliance Officer, Leo is responsible for the governance and compliance systems at Gravitas.

Previously he was the CCO at a large independent full-service investment dealer, including both its Canadian and US subsidiaries. He has managed legal and regulatory relationships for firms, assisting other investment dealers, mutual fund dealers and money services businesses in reviewing all aspects of risk management and governance to ensure both current and future compliance challenges are properly addressed and resourced. He also has experience with assisting executive management in managing client-facing aspects of the business and in the implementation of new business lines and products.

Leo has served on several IIROC regulatory panels, including the Conduct, Compliance and Legal Advisory Section - Executive Committee, and been a guest speaker at several IIROC-sponsored industry education sessions. He continues to play an active role in the Canadian regulatory oversight process.

Rajendra Prasad

Chief Financial Officer

rprasad@gravitassecurities.com

Rajendra is a highly motivated and results-oriented finance professional with over 30 years of experience in the area of finance and accounting. He has a proven ability to deliver results both through a hands-on approach and by building motivated teams focused on achieving corporate objectives. He currently provides part-time CFO services to several domestic and international corporate clients in the financial services sector. These services include financial, accounting, and regulatory and management reporting consultancy services in the Canadian financial services industry. Rajendra is a subject matter expert in all regulatory matters relating to Canadian brokerages and the investment services industry.

Dillon Braman

Vice President, Operations

(416) 238-6840 | dbraman@gravitassecurities.com

Dillon joined Gravitas in 2013. He has over 10 years in the financial services industry with experience in operations, retail, credit, and customer service. Dillon is responsible for coordinating and overseeing the operational staff and activities at Gravitas. Throughout his career, he has proven to be a strong leader, with an ability to successfully manage a variety of projects effectively.

Ruth Ann Companion

Director, Compliance

(416) 639-2095 | rcompanion@gravitassecurities.com

Ruth Ann joined Gravitas Securities in 2020, bringing over three decades of experience in the financial services industry and specifically the compliance area. As the Director of Compliance, she supports both the retail and investment banking divisions, ensuring that we meet our compliance obligations and that industry and regulatory changes are addressed on a timely basis.

Ruth Ann has experience working in small independent firms as well as large institutional and wealth management organizations. From her very first position in compliance, she learned to seek solutions to enable businesses to succeed while staying within regulatory frameworks, and now has a proven track record of aligning business objectives with compliance standards and requirements. As well as building successful relationships with stakeholders, she has managed and mentored employees in both branch and head office environments, seeing collaborative relationships as the key to building an environment of investment compliance.

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