NCB's TRIP gets overwhelming endorsement of government and tourism interestsSunday, June 20, 2021
BY DURRANT PATE
NCB Capital Market's creative tourism alternative financing product TRIP has got overwhelming endorsement from the Government and tourism interests.
Officially launched last Thursday, the Tourism Response Impact Portfolio (TRIP) alternative financing plan is one of the Stratus Alternative Funds, managed by NCB Cap Markets. The fund is designed to meet specific needs of businesses that operate in the tourism sectors within the region by designing bespoke financing solutions for various stakeholders in the industry.
TRIP aims to provide tourism players with creative funding solutions needed for retooling and sustaining their operations while facilitating broader investor participation in the fund. Keynote speaker at the launch, Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett, cited TRIP as a well-needed creative alternative funding source, which will undoubtedly aid in the recovery of Jamaican's tourism sector from the novel coronavirus pandemic.
Manufacturing and agricultural sector needs financing
He pointed to the vast opportunities being opened up in the manufacturing and agriculture sector, arguing that these opportunities cannot be exploited if the banking sector is focused more on providing loans for consumer durables and motor vehicles.
Minister Bartlett argued that many great ideas on new and innovative tourism services are contending but lacks creative financing to bring them into operation, calling for more creative financing such as TRIP. Highlighting the need to incentivise great ideas into solid businesses requires a new creative and alternative funding solutions, the tourism minister credited TRIP as one such alternative financing option, which needs to be exploited by tourism sector interest.
In concluding, Minister Bartlett told the gathering at the official launch that greater partnership is what is needed in tourism in the region pushing the idea of “coopetition” rather than competition, which is designed to bring about greater visitior arrivals.
Two existing players in the industry gave their overwhelming support to TRIP during a panel discussion at the launch, citing the necessity for such funding source for the industry to recover much stronger.
CEO of Chukka Caribbean Ventures Marc Melville and CEO of Couples Resorts Glenn Lawrence shared their excitement about TRIP. Melville remarked that, “such a funding scheme is long welcomed; it is well needed.”
He made the point that such a create alternative funding arrangement as TRIP assisted his company through the current pandemic noting that outside of the Dominican Republic, Jamaica is on the cutting edge in the creative funding solutions such as TRIP.
As for Lawrence, he drew reference to the struggles encountered by Couples, following 9/11, which was saved by creative funding solutions such as TRIP, which, he described, as flexible and able to meet clients' needs, especially during times of crisis.
In his presentation, NCB Cap Market CEO Steven Gooden remarked that, “there is the need for the tourism sector to have deeper linkages with other sectors within our economy. The impact that the downturn of the tourism sector has had on the economy has reignited the debate on how entrenched the sector is in the overall performance of our economy.”
In concluding, Gooden stressed that, “regardless of where on the fence you sit, we can agree that the linkages need to be deepened. We need to have serious and frank conversions about our competitive advantages, where we place our efforts, and just about getting things done.”
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