Jul/Sept 2018 Articles

Unleashing the power of the stock market will drive wealth creation by funding ventures that local banks are not inclined to support adequately.


Economic transformation requires shared national vision and leadership from all sectors and institutions regardless of which party holds the reins of power.

This article discusses the business models of two mutual firms in Jamaica with a view towards answering one critical question: What strategy should Jamaican mutual firms adopt to avert or reverse declining financial health? Observations span a period of nine years to obtain a long-term picture of financial performance. The firms examined are the Community & Workers of Jamaica Cooperative Credit Union Ltd. (C&WJ) and the Jamaica National Building Society (JNBS).

The IDB says crime and corruption cost the Jamaican economy some four percent of GDP so any talk about serious economic growth must address this issue squarely.

The vision of economic independence is not unattainable. Jamaica, over the last decade, has made some strong structural, fiscal and monetary transformation towards building a stronger and more resilient economic system.


Substantial funding is available for social enterprises but many of them are not cashing in because they lack the capacity to absorb and use the funds properly.

For some time now traditional financial institutions have been facing disruptions in their business model as new technologies facilitate major changes in customer perceptions and expectations. How are the banks responding?

Business executives increasingly consider information to be one of their most important competitive weapons, but few organisations have any sense of the value of their Data & Information assets.

Local Business News

SUPREME audit institutions have an essential role to play in securing government accountability in the massive fiscal response to the novel coronavirus pandemic. In January 2021 the International Monetary Fund reported that the global fiscal response by governments to the pandemic was US$14 trillion, and counting.

AYANNA Samuels has a lot on her plate. She is an aerospace engineer, technology policy specialist, gender advocate and international development professional. She has also run a consultancy practice for over 17 years. Her practice focuses on: the use of ICTs and technology policy as enablers of access to basic human rights, socio-economic empowerment and poverty eradication, gender equity in STEM, the role space technology can play in realising the UN's Sustainable Development Goals, and bridging the digital divide.All of that rests on a solid academic foundation.

Sagicor Financial Company debt offer oversubscribedSagicor Financial Company's (SFC) issuance of 2028 senior notes at 5.30 per cent garnered interest of US $1.25 billion despite only seeking US$400 million. This was done in conjunction with SFC's cash tender for some of its 2022 senior notes which saw holders surrender about U $130.2 million for a pay out of US$134.4 million. SFC will save about US$7.2 million per year in interest expenses with its debt costs coming down from 8.875 per cent to 5.30 per cent.

Jamaicans are being warned to brace for further increases in the price of chicken as global volatility in grain prices, among other factors, continues to be felt locally.Pointing to the price movements Dave Fairman, vice-president of Jamaica Broilers' Best Dressed Chicken Division noted that there are a number of variables which go into the cost of chicken meat locally."You have grain prices, you have exchange rate, and other cost elements," said Fairmain as he noted the big jump in grain prices as well as the increase in the cost of containers and freight.The price of corn increased by 59 pe

New features are coming to the Facebook stable, including Instagram and Messenger . Among them, knowing if the person you recently messaged has seen your direct message (DM), making it easier to find out if your friend or online crush is ghosting you. Facebook Messenger is adding a "swipe to archive" gesture to make hiding old chats easier. At the same time it will be less cumbersome to revisit those same conversations. No need to search for them anymore.

AS part of expanding its insurance business scope, GraceKennedy Limited (GK) has acquired an additional 8.35 per cent of the now-profitable Key Insurance Limited which reported its third-consecutive quarter of profits since being acquired in March 2020.The insurance company, which was a perennial loss-maker, executed a successful rights issue in January which saw Key raise $668 million in fresh equity capital.

The Jamaica Broilers Group (JBG) last week officially launced its new No Antibiotics Ever (NAE) line of products under The Best Dressed Chicken brand. NAE means that no bird, from hatchery or birth, till slaughter is treated with antibiotics.President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of JBG Christopher Levy said the move to NAE was influenced by the drive to provide healthier products to consumers, especially against the backdrop of the novel coronavirus pandemic."We asked ourselves, how can we develop a healthier product to our consumers?

Local start-up chemical manufacturer Uelen Chemicals has partnered with Jamaican distribution company Viomark Trading to distribute locally its retail brands of hand sanitiser products.The deal will see Viomark take on retail distribution of Uelen's flagship "Glan" range of products, which include hand sanitiser gel, hand sanitiser spray and rubbing alcohol.Viomark Trading, which currently distributes a range of products for a number of international brands, including Libman, which is the second highest selling producer of cleaning tools in the United States.Viomark, which is based in New King

HOW about a life without passwords? To mark World Password Day, Google announced a very bold move for account security. "Soon," the company says, it will start "automatically enrolling" users in 2FA or two-factor authentication. Director of user security at Google Mark Risher has pledged to work towards solutions that remove passwords entirely.

In an effort to supply companies and retail outlets in need of medical equipment and sanitation products during the present COVID-19 pandemic, Manpower and Maintenance Services Limited Group (MMS) last week opened its new product sales and distribution centre.

From Harvard Business Review

But their ventures are less likely to succeed. New research looks at why.
When attracting talent, a collective mission is more important than job descriptions and compensation packages.
New data from Ernst & Young suggests it will be an important part of the consumer experience — but not everything.
A conversation with HBS associate professor Leslie John about how to best take credit for your wins, large and small.

Executive Insights

October 9, 2018

Several conversations surrounding different aspects of climate change have been top of the news over the last week. These include: changing hurricane patterns; sea temperatures warming; overall global warming; earthquakes and powerful tsunamis; polar melts; coral reef destruction; dangers of extinction of certain species that are important to agriculture, among others.

June 12, 2018

In just one week and two airplane rides, the media, the speculators, the “expert” analysts, and the political spin doctors are up at full speed. Contradictions of opinions, historical precedencies, former diplomatic maneuvers, and fairly obscure academics are having their one minute soundbites that will give rise to yet another book.

June 8, 2018

Barbados has a historical reputation (similar to Jamaica) of punching above its fighting weight. Who can forget the famous telegram supporting Britain in the Second World War: “Go ahead, Barbados is behind you”, this as Britain declared war on Germany and Hitler’s 3rd Reich. It was more than a statement; it was an AUDACIOUS statement from “Bimshire”

Letters to the Editor

MSBM Review invites your views on any issue of interest to you. Submissions must include your name and email address and should be kept to 300 words or less. We may use letters in either the Print or Web edition of the Magazine.


September 30, 2016

Of the five priority Action Areas emerging from the deliberations at the successful IODC 2015 in Ottawa, Canada (i.e., The Charter, Standards, Capacity Building, Measurement, Innovation), the latter—Innovation, otherwise described as the “Problem-Solving” Action Track — is perhaps, the most eclectic and least structured of the areas.

September 15, 2015

No matter what source you subscribe to, the numbers are staggering, when one considers the potential economic value of open data. The McKinsey Global Institute estimates approximately US$3 trillion value potential across 7 domains. The Warsar Institute for Economic Studies projects a contribution of €205 billion annually to the European Union. An Omidyar Network study suggests open data impact for the G20 countries could be US$2.6 trillion per annum or 1.1% of GDP. What does this mean for small developing countries like Jamaica?..

March 10, 2014

The expression "Innovation at the periphery", has become more popular in the last few years and perhaps even over-used in several contexts. It describes technological innovations in seemingly remote geographical regions. It promotes the "skunkworks" innovation that takes place within an enterprise, but outside of mainstream R&D centres. It highlights indigenous frugal innovations that emerge out of developing country contexts, whose global adoption reverse the accepted convention of North-South technology transfer.