Barita considers rights issue

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

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Barita Investments Limited (BIL) will consider and if thought fit, recommend a rights issue to BIL's ordinary shareholders during a Board of Directors meeting scheduled for Thursday, December 13, 2018.

The announcement, which was posted on the Jamaica Stock Exchange, will allow existing shareholders to purchase additional shares in the company at a discounted to the current trading price.

If the issue is approved by the Directors, Barita could use the money raised to fund investment in the 41-year-old company.

Barita's consideration of a rights issue comes months after Cornerstone United Holdings Jamaica Limited (CUHJL) investment arm incorporated in St Lucia, Cornerstone Investments Holdings, acquired 75 per cent stake in the company for over $3 billion.

CUHJL is now poised to expand its portfolio companies Barita Investments and MF&G Merchant Bank after raising $8 billion in the local capital market.

Following the acquisition, the Barita board now includes Restaurant's of Jamaica and CUHJL's boss, Mark Myers as chairman and Paul Simpson as deputy chairman. Barita's current managing directors include Ian McNaughton, Duncan Stewart, Robert Drummond, Carl Bruce, Rita Humphries, James Godfrey and Carl Domville.

For year ended September 30, 2018, Barita reported growth of 84.2 per cent in net profit to $374 million. The company attributed the growth to higher net interest income and non-interest income stream.

“We recorded significant gains in most of our key drivers, namely fee and commission income, foreign exchange gains and dividend income. As it relates to the September 2018 quarter, we realized a 314.6 per cent improvement in net profit to $193.4 million when compared to the corresponding three-month period for 2017,” the company said.

Total assets of Barita climbed to $19 billion versus $17.2 billion as at June 2018 and $15.8 billion as at the September 2017 year end.

Barita Investments is a primary dealer and a cambio dealer operating with a staff of more than 80 from offices in New Kingston, Mandeville and Montego Bay.

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