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Jamaica’s Unemployment Rate Fell To A New Record Low Of 6.2 Per Cent In January 2022.



This, according to the Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) Labour Force Survey for the month, is a 0.9 percentage point lower than the figure recorded in October 2021.

It is also 2.6 percentage points below the out-turn for the January 2021 Survey, Director General, Carol Coy, has said.

She was speaking during STATIN’s digital quarterly media briefing, on Thursday (April 21).

Ms. Coy informed that the male unemployment rate decreased from 7.6 per cent to 4.8 per cent, while the female equivalent declined by 2.5 percentage points to 7.9 per cent.

She also advised that the youth unemployment rate fell by 5.1 percentage points to 17.7 per cent for the review period, relative to January 2021.

The Director General pointed out that the male and female out-turns decreased by approximately five per cent, with the latter recording the larger decline.

“Male youth unemployment was 14.5 per cent, while for the females, it was 21.8 per cent,” she indicated.

Meanwhile, the overall number of individuals employed in January 2022 rose by 4.8 per cent or 57,800 persons to 1,257,100, compared to the corresponding period last year.

Ms. Coy said females recorded the larger increase – 5.5 per cent – compared to 4.3 per cent for their male counterparts.

She indicated that the overall labour force climbed by 24,800 persons, or 1.9 per cent, to 1,340,600 in January.

“There was a larger increase of females in the labour force. While the male labour force increased by 9,200 persons to 721,400, the female labour force increased by 15,600 persons to 619,200. The increase in females represented 62.9 per cent of the total increase,” Ms. Coy pointed out.

Meanwhile, the number of persons classified as being outside the labour force (neither employed nor unemployed) stood at 755,600 in January.

“Males outside the labour force declined by 8,000, while females declined by 14,400,” Ms. Coy told journalists.

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Businessuite News24

Corporate Movements – August 2023




The Board of Agostini’s Limited wishes to advise that Mr. Anthony Agostini will retire as Managing Director on January 31, 2024, at the conclusion of the Company’s annual general meeting. Mr. Agostini has been on the Board of Agostini’s for the past 33 years and has been the Managing Director for the past 18 years. The Board is also pleased to announce that Mr. Barry Davis will be appointed CEO Designate effective September 1, 2023 and will replace Mr. Agostini on February 1, 2024. Mr. Davis is currently the Finance Director of Agostini’s, a post he has held for the past three and a half years, and which he will continue to hold until he assumes the CEO position. Prior to this, Mr. Davis was a non-executive director of Agostini’s for twelve years, while he was the Financial Controller at Atlantic LNG.

National Flour Mills Limited (NFM) wishes to advise of the following changes to its Board of Directors effective August 18th, 2023:
(i) The reappointment of Ms. Joanne Salazar as a Director; and (ii) The appointment of Mr. Varun Maharaj and Mr. Sanjiv Anant Sookoo as Directors

Prestige Holdings Limited wishes to advise on the following changes to the Executive Team.
Ryan Deans, currently Operations Manager, KFC, has been appointed Vice President, TGI Fridays designate with an effective date of December 1, 2023.
Kerri Hosein-Khan, currently Vice President, Starbucks and TGI Fridays will cease responsibility of overseeing TGI Fridays on November 30, 2023 after the transition period ending November 30, 2023.

Business executive Phillip Armstrong has been promoted to second in command of Pan Jamaica Group, which was formed earlier this year from a merger between Jamaica Producers Group and Pan Jam Investments. Armstrong has been appointed chief operating officer (COO), effective September 1, serving under Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Hall. Prior to his appointment as COO, Armstrong served as the group’s chief strategy officer. He is a former deputy CEO and executive director of Sagicor Investments Limited. Armstrong has also held the positions of executive vice-president of strategy and innovation, and chief technology officer of Sagicor Group Jamaica. He is a member of the board of directors of a number of prominent corporate companies in Jamaica, such as Kingston Wharves Limited, Sagicor Group Jamaica, Sagicor Investments, Sagicor Bank Jamaica, Sagicor Investments, Sagicor Life Jamaica and British Caribbean Insurance Company. Armstrong holds a BSc in avionics technology and has completed the Harvard Business School’s Advance Management Programme and the Harvard Business Analytics Programme.

iCreate Limited (ICREATE) announces the resignation of Founder Tyrone Wilson as its President & CEO, and a Director. Mr. Wilson notified the company of his resignation and the Board of Directors met and accepted, effective immediately.
Concurrently, the following interim leadership appointments have been made:
Ivan Carter will serve as Interim Chairman of the Board of Directors.
Arlene Martin will serve as Interim President & CEO.
The Board of Directors expresses sincere gratitude to Wilson for his visionary leadership and dedicated service as President & CEO, and Director. Going forward, he will be an available resource to the company. iCreate remains committed to its customers, subsidiary companies, employees, strategic partners, and other obligations and responsibilities as a publicly-traded company

The Board of Directors of The Limners and Bards Limited is pleased to announce the appointment of Kareem Tomlinson as Director effective August 15, 2023

The Limners and Bards Limited is pleased to announce that Mrs. Wendy- Ann Smith Anderson has been appointed as the Chief Financial Officer effective August 14 2023 . Mrs. Wendy- Ann Smith Anderson replaces Ms. Kimala Bennett who was the acting CFO.”

PJAM has advised that Mr. Allan Ward was appointed to the Board of Directors effective 11 August 2023.

JMMB Group Limited advise that Mr. Dereck Rajack has tendered his resignation as Group Chief Risk Officer, effective October 31, 2023. Dereck has taken the difficult decision to leave his JMMB family to pursue other opportunities.  Dereck assumed the role of Group Chief Risk Officer in April 2019, having initially joined the organisation as the Chief Risk Officer of JMMB Bank (Trinidad & Tobago) in August, 2016. We thank him for his invaluable contribution to the Group, wish him continued success, as he takes this next step in further pursuit of his dreams.

Kingston Wharves Limited (KW) has advised that at a board meeting held on August 10, 2023, its Board of Directors appointed Mr. Philip Armstrong as a Non-Executive Director of Kingston Wharves Limited, effective August 10, 2023.

The Board of Directors of tTech Limited is pleased to announce that at the Board meeting on July 27, 2023, the decision was taken to appoint Norman Chen as the Company’s Chief Executive Officer. Norman has served in several management and executive roles at tTech since joining the Company and has deep knowledge of the Company’s operations and the industry. He was appointed Acting CEO in December 2022. Since then, he has led a turnaround of the Company, with Year-to-date revenues up 27.5% over 2022 and reversing a Year-to-date loss of $12.1 million to a profit of $12.7 million. The Directors are confident that under Norman’s leadership, tTech will move into a new growth phase while continuing to deliver the excellent customer experience that the Company is known for.

Guardian Holdings Limited (“GHL”) wishes to advise that at a meeting of the Board of Directors held on 4th August, 2023, Mr. Robert Almeida was appointed Chairman of GHL’s Board of Directors effective 4th August, 2023. Mr. Almeida joined the Board in 2019 as an Investor, Business Executive and a Director. As an investor, he is a Founding Partner of Portland Private Equity, a leading manager of private equity funds focused on the Caribbean and Latin American region and a Director, Senior Vice President and Portfolio Manager at Portland Investment Counsel Inc., which is a regulated Investment Fund Manager in Canada. Mr. Almeida succeeds Mr. Patrick Hylton and the Group wishes to take this opportunity to profoundly thank the former Chairman, Mr. Hylton, for his invaluable contribution during his tenure. It is with great pleasure that we welcome Mr. Almeida as the Chairman of Guardian Holdings Limited.


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Corporate Movements

Corporate Movements – July 2023



iCreate Limited (“iCreate”) wishes to advise of the departure of Mrs. Toni Cooke, Deputy Chief Executive Officer & Chief Operating Officer effective June 30, 2023. iCreate wishes to wholeheartedly thank Mrs. Cooke for her invaluable contribution and the positive impact she has made on the Company in a very short time. She has been pivotal and instrumental in streamlining the operations of Visual Vibe.Com Limited. The Board of Directors expresses heartiest well wishes to Mrs. Cooke in her future endeavours.

Dolla Financial Services Limited (Dolla) is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Kenroy Kerr to the position of Deputy Chief Executive Officer effective July 1, 2023. Mr. Kerr previously held the position of Chief Operations Officer at Dolla. Dolla looks forward to the new role Mr. Kerr will play in the further growth and development of the Company.

Dolla Financial Services Limited (Dolla) wishes to advise that Mr. Kenroy Kerr, the current Deputy Chief Executive Officer, has been appointed as the Interim Chief Executive Officer for Dolla as the current Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Kadeen Mairs, has tendered his resignation and commences his garden leave today, July 28, 2023.

Carreras Limited (CAR) wishes to advise that Ms. Imega Breese McNab will be joining Carreras Limited in the of role of Legal & External Affairs Manager effective August 8, 2023.

Dolla Financial Services Limited (“Dolla”) wishes to advise that Mr. Xesus Johnston, who is currently the Chief Executive Officer of Supreme Ventures Gaming Limited, and Ms. Andrea Whittaker, who is currently the Chief Operating Officer of Mayberry Investments Limited, have been invited to join Dolla’s Board of Directors subject to the approval of the Bank of Jamaica in accordance with the Microcredit Act of Jamaica.

The Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE) has advised that the Board of the Jamaica Stock Exchange, at its Board Meeting held on July 19, 2023 appointed Mrs. Sabrina Cooper as a Director effective July 19, 2023. Sabrina Cooper was appointed Senior Vice President of Wealth Management at Scotia Group Jamaica. She will also hold the post of CEO of Scotia Investments Jamaica. Ms. Cooper assumed the role effective January 4. She will be responsible for growth and profitability of the wealth and asset management businesses.

Derrimon Trading Company Limited (DTL) wishes to advise of the resignation of Mr. Craig Robinson from the post of General Manager for Sampars, effective July 7,2023. Derrimon takes this opportunity to thank Mr. Robinson for his dedicated years of service and commitment to the company and wish him much success in his new endeavour.

JFP Limited Announces The Resignation Of Chairman Ian Levy And The Appointment Of New Chairperson Lisa Simone Bell Effective June 30, 2023.

Scotia Group Jamaica advises of the Appointment of Sheila Segree-White, Vice President Human Resources effective August 1, 2023. Mrs. Segree-White is a seasoned banker with 20 years’ experience in operations, customer experience and general management in the financial services and banking industries. Throughout her career she has held multiple senior leadership positions in high impact roles where she led very large teams in a complex work environment, across jurisdictions, multiple stakeholders internally and externally. She obtained her MBA from Nova Southeastern University in Florida and her BSc in Management
Studies from the University of the West Indies.

The Jamaica Stock Exchange Limited (JSE) has advised that at a meeting of their Board of Directors held on June 22, 2023 Mr. Julian Mair was re-elected as Chairman of the Board and Mr. Steven Whittingham was re-elected as Deputy Chairman of the Board.

The Board of Directors of Supreme Ventures Limited is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. The Hon. Usain Bolt, OJ as a Director of the Company effective June 16, 2023. The Board welcomes Dr. Bolt to the Supreme Ventures family and looks forward to his invaluable contribution to the Company.

iCreate Limited (“iCreate”) wishes to announce the departure of Mr. Dwight Burchell as Group Chief Financial Officer (“CFO”) effective April 23, 2023. Mr. Burchell occupied the position of Group CFO at a time when the company was aggressively undertaking several mergers and acquisitions in an effort to realise its continued growth, development and diversification. His timely and impactful contribution cannot be adequately expressed in words. Suffice to say, Mr. Burchell’s departure is not related to any disagreement in respect of the standard accounting principles. The Board of Directors of iCreate wishes to thank Mr. Burchell for his yeoman service and extends best wishes in his future endeavours.

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Corporate Movements

Corporate Movements at Barita Investments



The Board of Barita Investments Limited (“Barita” or the “Company”) has advised of senior management changes in keeping with the Company’s succession planning programme. The changes are meant to further strengthen Barita’s organizational structure, risk management and governance, significantly bolster executive leadership of the core business, and deepen sales and service capabilities. The Company has been deliberate with its talent acquisition strategy over the last three (3) years with a focus on talent who are able to take on various roles within the Barita group. These changes augur well in advancing the initiatives aimed at continuing to challenge the status quo in the capital markets to ultimately create and sustain stakeholder value.

Accordingly, Mr. Dane Brodber will be appointed as Interim Chief Executive Officer with effect from May 7, 2022. Dane was appointed Chief Risk Officer of the Cornerstone Group effective November 1, 2019, and has had oversight responsibility for the risk function of Cornerstone and its subsidiaries inclusive of the Barita group.

Dane has over 18 years of experience in the financial services industry, with expertise in risk management, strategy, business intelligence, and financial analysis. Dane previously served as Regional Director, Market Risk Management with Scotia Bank where he worked for over 12 years. Dane earned undergraduate degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Economics & Business from Lafayette College and an MBA from the University of New Orleans. He also holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA), and the Financial Risk Manager (FRM) designations. Dane is the current President and founding Vice President of CFA Society Jamaica.

Effective May 7, 2022, Mr. Stephen Phillibert, Chief Financial Officer of the Cornerstone Group, will assume responsibility for Barita’s Operations function in addition to his existing oversight of the Finance function of the Cornerstone Group. Mr. Phillibert has over 25 years combined experience in the areas of finance, strategy, general management, and mergers and acquisitions. He holds an MBA from the University of Toronto, an undergraduate degree in Accounting from the University of the West Indies as well as the Chartered Financial Analyst designation.

Mr. Ramon Small-Ferguson, who was recently promoted to Executive Vice President consistent with the Company’s succession planning programme, will take on an expanded role in support of the incoming Interim CEO. Effective May 7, 2022, Ramon will have oversight of the revenue generating arm of the business; to include asset management and research, investment banking, treasury management, and alternative investments.

Ramon has extensive experience in investment management and prior to joining Barita, he held the position of Chief Investment Strategist and Head of Research at the Jamaica National Group. Ramon holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst (CAIA), and Financial Risk Manager (FRM) designations. He also holds a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA), Finance & Marketing (Hons) from the University of Technology, Jamaica and is currently a Graduate Student at NYU Stern Business School where he is pursuing a Master of Science in Quantitative Management.

Mrs. Paula Barclay, General Manager of Barita, has tendered her resignation effective May 6, 2022, after a 3-year tenure with the organization. On joining Barita, Paula initially had responsibility for driving the Company’s business development and customer experience strategies and initiatives. In December of 2019, she assumed responsibility as head of business and in her expanded role she oversaw a period of significant development of the Company. Under her leadership, Barita registered transformational growth in its market share across several business lines including investment banking, asset management, stockbrokerage services, and cambio trading.

The foregoing key achievements were enabled by the significant strengthening of the depth of human capital across the organization, the establishment of best-in-class policies and an enterprise risk management framework, streamlining of key processes and structures across the business, and the re-imagining of the marketing and business development thrust of the Company that has revolutionized the presence, appeal, and connection of the market with Brand Barita. The Chairman, Board, management and staff of the Company would like to extend their thanks and appreciation to Mrs. Barclay for her stellar stewardship, and wish her all the very best as she embarks on the next phase of her journey.

Mr. Junior Graham, Vice President Information Technology, has tendered his resignation effective April 30, 2022. Mr. Dave Dixon joined Barita on February 28, 2022 from Scotia Bank as Senior Vice President, Sales and Services, and has taken on the mantle from Mrs. Barclay with regards to executive responsibility for retail sales, including the Company’s branch network together with overall customer experience oversight. Mr. Dixon is a Retail and Investment Banking professional with over twenty (20) years of experience in the financial services sector.

Ms. Sancia Thompson, formerly of the NCB Financial Group, joined Barita on February 28, 2022 as Vice President, Premium Wealth and Corporate Solutions. These roles previously reported in to Mrs. Barclay. Ms. Thompson has over 20 years of experience as a finance professional with a solid history of success in delivering results through consultative sales processes and financial advice.

Mr. Nigel Sinclair, formerly of the GraceKennedy Group, joined Barita on January 17, 2022 as Head of Asset Management. In that capacity, Nigel has taken over executive leadership of the fiduciary management aspects of the business, to include the investment management oversight of the suite of unit trust and pension products offered by the Company.

The Chairman and Board welcome the new appointees and look forward to the management and staff continuing to create sustainable value for all our key stakeholders.

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Businessuite News24 International

Tight Labour Markets Around The World Forcing Companies To Hike Wages.



Tight labour markets around the world are forcing companies to hike wages. U.K. companies are raising starting salaries at the quickest pace on record to compensate for the fastest inflation in three decades. Walmart, the world’s largest retailer, is lifting pay for new truckers to up to $110,000 as the U.S. continues to grapple with a shortage of drivers. And applications for the country’s state unemployment insurance fell last week by more than forecast, adding further evidence that the labor market remains scorching hot.


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NCB Financial Group Announces Leadership Development At Major Subsidiary



NCB Financial Group Limited (NCBFG) announces the resignation of Mr Ravi Tewari – the Group Chief
Executive Officer (CEO) of its major Trinidad and Tobagonian subsidiary, Guardian Holdings Limited (GHL).
Mr Tewari has been instrumental in leading the transformation of the Guardian Group over the past eight
Mr Tewari will demit his post as Group CEO by the end of 2022. He remains excited about the prospects
of the Guardian Group and will continue to play a part as a director on the GHL Board as well as the boards
of certain GHL subsidiaries.
The Board of NCBFG wishes to thank Mr Tewari not only for his expert stewardship over his tenure as
GHL’s Group CEO but also for his unstinting devotion and indelible contribution to the Guardian Group
spanning his career with the Guardian Group of almost 30 years.

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