NCB Foundation spends $1.9 billion over 16 years

NCB Foundation spends $1.9 billion over 16 years

Business reporter

Wednesday, January 22, 2020

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The National Commercial Bank (NCB), through its corporate social responsibility arm, the NCB Foundation, is informing that since they started operations, 16 years ago, a total of $1.9 billion has been spent in assisting with several philanthropic activities nationally.

Speaking at this week's Jamaica Observer Monday Exchange, representatives from the foundation said: “Since we formalised in 2003 up to the ending of the 2018/2019 financial year—we are at $1.9 billion. For the 2019/2020 financial year, our approved budget is $276 million, which we will spend over this financial year, and come September 30, we will be over the $2 billion mark,” shared Jamilia Crooks-Brown, programmes administrator of the Foundation.

She further disclosed that funding from the NCB Group that is invested in the foundation represents about one per cent of the financial conglomerate's net profits.

“We don't raise funds on our own, so we benefit from the profits of the bank, which last year saw an increase. We now get one per cent of the National Commercial Bank Financial Group (NCBFG) prior year profit. So, we now have more funds to allocate to our areas of remit to assist more Jamaicans and to advance the nation,” she further told the Business Observer.

Late last year, the NCBFG reported that the 2018/2019 financial year saw the group net profits soaring to some $30.7 billion and its asset base climbing to $1.6 trillion.

NCB Group's Chief Financial Officer and Deputy Chief Executive Officer Dennis Cohen in reporting on the company's success at the time said that the year was a pivotal one for them, which also carried milestone achievements.

“The positive performance for the financial year ended September 30, was bolstered by three main extraordinary items; firstly the divestment of associate interest JMMB Limited, which resulted in a $3.3 billion gain from the disposal, as well as the sale of Advantage General Insurance Company at the end of the fourth quarter, realising a gain of $2.6 billion. This was complemented by a $2.3- billion provisional gain on the revaluation of the associate interest in Guardian Holdings Limited (GHL) following the acquisition of the majority interest in the third quarter,” he said at a quarterly press briefing held in November.

About 60 per cent of the 16-year-old foundation's resources are channelled into funding educational initiatives ranging from their adopt-a-school project to the more popular tertiary scholarship programmes, among several others.

Nadeen Matthews Blair, chief executive officer (CEO) of the NCB Foundation, in adding to the discussion, said that her company over the last couple of years has undertaken a new strategy in terms of how they will use the funds to support their beneficiaries. She stated that the new approach focuses on building out a path that looks at ultimate empowerment and not just those that are geared towards the attainment of tertiary level education.

“We want to become the most impactful foundation in the area of education. Not just looking at tertiary education, we also want to look at how we provide young adults with education and training to enable them to get to the next level,” she said.

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