Canadian-owned CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank announced last Friday that it has begun the transfer of its clients to the Bank of St Vincent & Grenadines Limited and the St Kitts, Nevis Anguilla National Bank after receiving approval for sale of operations from the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB).
In a release CIBC FirstCaribbean said the transfer of assets to the two indigenous banks, which include branches in St Kitts and St Vincent, should take several months.
According to CIBC FirstCaribbean CEO Colette Delaney, "We are pleased at the approval of the sales in St Vincent and St Kitts. This helps us deliver on our strategy of simplifying our business. It's a complex set of transactions and it will be some months before we complete the transfer of client accounts over to the purchasing banks."
She added: "In the interim, we will continue to provide our clients with first-class service through a modern, everyday banking experience and our employees with the best possible work experience."
The bank has further indicated that its head office in Barbados will work closely with the purchasers to ensure a smooth transition for clients in the coming months. Following the conclusion of the transactions, CIBC FirstCaribbean will surrender its licences in St Kitts and Nevis and St Vincent and the Grenadines.
Back in October 2021, CIBC FirstCaribbean announced the sale of its operations to a consortium of banks in St Vincent, Grenada, St Kitts & Nevis, and Dominica. It also disclosed the sale of its operations in Aruba, which it finalised earlier this year.
On Friday, however, the bank noted that with regard to Grenada, "the parties continue to discuss and negotiate key aspects of the transaction in the proposed sale of CIBC FirstCaribbean's assets to Grenada Co-operative Bank Limited".
In the meantime, the National Bank of Dominica has indicated a change in its strategic direction that does not include an acquisition at this time.
Commenting on the negotiations in the Eastern Caribbean, consortium lead and managing director of The Bank of St Vincent and the Grenadines Limited Derry Williams said the group has "made considerable progress having received approval of the acquisition of CIBC FirstCaribbean's businesses in St Vincent and the Grenadines and St Kitts and Nevis.
"Our efforts are ongoing to complete the Grenada transaction and we support the decision made by the National Bank of Dominica Limited and CIBC FirstCaribbean in relation to the branch and operations in Dominica", he said.