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Medical Associates Hospital & Knutsford Court Hotel To Be Transformed Into A State-Of-The-Art Health District – Part 4 The Business Opportunity – Medical Tourism Expansion



JAMPRO, the Jamaican Government’s investment agency, is seeking international collaborations in order to improve medical infrastructure and services in the island with the aim of climbing in the rankings for medical tourism.

Medical tourism is the industry which seeks to encourage people who reside in other countries to come to the island both for excellent medical care in a range of specialties, as well as sun, sea, sand and the warmth of the people of the island.

A PWC report forecast that the medical tourism market would value US$125 billion by 2021 while the wellness market could reach US$808 billion. Internationally, Thailand and India are renowned medical tourism destinations, with millions travelling annually for affordable medical care.

Three known participants in the Jamaican medical tourism industry are the Heart Institute of the Caribbean (HIC), Prosurgicare Services Limited and the Carnegie Hand Institute.

Heart Institute of the Caribbean is described as the first and only premier cardiovascular hospital in Jamaica and the Caribbean at large, which also offers telemetry service with various branches across Jamaica.

HIC is a full diagnostic centre and medical clinic which aims to provide fast, effective, and affordable treatment for all cardiac and cardiac-related illnesses that need urgent treatment by certified specialists. It has an 11-bed intensive care unit. HIC has practice partners across the Caribbean.

Prosurgicare Services Ltd, which is located in Kingston, is a plastic and aesthetic surgery practice headed by Dr Jan Hoctritt. Dr Hochtritt is a German board-certified double specialist with over 20 years of experience. As a general and plastic surgeon, he specialises in aesthetic surgery, breast reconstruction including modern microsurgical techniques, as well as hand and wrist surgery. His skills have assisted a broad range of patients — from cancer survivors and deformed persons to aesthetic patients seeking to augment their beauty.

The Carnegie Hand Institute located in Kingston is headed by Dr Cecil Aird and provides specialised services in the diagnosis, surgical treatment and rehabilitation of the hand and wrist.

JAMPRO notes that there are also investors in the area of medical training for the industry.


In international medical tourism rankings Jamaica is highly rated for the beauty of the island, but scores low overall on medical infrastructure.

The Medical Tourism Index 2020-2021, which provides a comprehensive analysis of the medical travel industry, ranks American perceptions of 46 international health-care destinations, providing insight into how consumers view 41 criteria across three primary dimensions including destination attractiveness, safety, and quality of care.

For the destination criterion, Jamaica ranks 33rd out of the 46 destinations. For the medical tourism industry, it ranks 25. For quality of facilities and services it ranks 44 out of 46 destinations.

Carol Straw, manager of tourism & services at JAMPRO, informed that policy is being developed around which industry expansion can occur.

She stated, “Jamaica, with its established infrastructure for tourism and its highly qualified medical personnel, is well-placed to take advantage of the opportunities afforded by medical tourism. To enable the destination to improve its rankings internationally, there are several actions that are happening or will be taking place,” including liaising with international experts.

Straw said that, with regards to developing the ecosystem for medical tourism to thrive, “we will continue our efforts to identify more local and international players in the medical tourism field who can help the country to grow its own infrastructure. A medical tourism policy has also been drafted for discussion by the Government; this will contribute to creating the necessary framework for medical tourism to grow in Jamaica”.

At the same time, she outlined that the island will see accreditation from new bodies. She said, “While the facilities that are in Jamaica are good, it is important to secure international accreditation to gain the confidence of the medical tourist. The popular accreditation is offered by the Joint Commission International, however, there are other accreditation options available.”

One such option is Temos International, a European accreditation body that provides a more cost-effective option than the Joint Commission International (JCI) accreditation.

Straw said, “This agency has facilitated several sessions (webinars and face to face sessions) with the Jamaican medical community to formally introduce accreditation via this body. Through our work with Temos, we have focused on continuous quality improvement (CQI) in providing high-quality, safe, and competent care for patients, with the best available standards and the best-expected outcomes.

The JAMPRO executive expressed a concern about financing for industry development. She told the Business Observer, “A large part of developing the industry is in the financing. This will enable our doctors to take advantage of the accreditation processes and the opportunities that present themselves in the sector, and develop support personnel such as specialised nurses who help with the delivery of health care. JAMPRO is actively seeking donors who are willing to establish partnerships with local investors.”

At the same time, Straw stated that it is also critical to facilitate investment in health-care workers. Specialist doctors need the support of nurses, laboratory workers and other specialist staff in the build out of their operations.

She concluded that JAMPRO continues to work with local investors who are operating pre-med schools or who are in the process of formalising and building out their operations.


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Tropical Battery Acquires California-Based Rose Batteries



Tropical Battery Company Limited (JSE:TROPICAL), a leader in innovative energy solutions, is pleased to announce the strategic acquisition of Rose Electronics Distributing Company (Rose Batteries), based in San Jose, California, in the heart of Silicon Valley.

Founded in 1963, Rose Batteries is a manufacturer of specialized batteries for high value industries requiring critical power, including healthcare and aerospace. The company has built a solid reputation for the customized design and assembly of highly reliable batteries providing essential power and charging solutions to a broad range of B2B customers.

The company’s strength lies in its ability to cater to original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), offering customized solutions that supply continuous power in challenging environments. Rose’s approach in providing tailor-made contract manufacturing solutions has redefined industry standards and garnered a loyal customer base supporting stable, recurring revenue streams.

The acquisition of Rose Batteries represents a significant milestone in Tropical Battery’s strategy of diversification into new complementary product lines, market segments and geographies, and reaffirms the company’s commitment to technological innovation and growth in the global energy market. The acquisition was completed through Tropical’s US subsidiary Tropical Battery USA LLC. The purchase price is subject to strict non-disclosure restrictions, however the price significantly exceeds 50% of the market capitalisation of Tropical.

The integration of Rose Batteries into the Tropical Battery group of companies represents much more than simply an expansion into the world’s largest economy; it’s a significant step forward in boosting technological capabilities, innovation potential, and key financial indicators. The acquisition is projected to materially enhance Tropical Battery’s free cash flow, improve its cash conversion cycle, and increase the return on capital, thereby enhancing shareholder value and financial strength.

Rose CEO Itamar Frankenthal, an influential shareholder who has led the company since 2016, will join Tropical Battery as a shareholder and board member, continuing his focus on growth opportunities in the United States. His extensive experience, shaped by his Harvard MBA journey, along with his transformative leadership at Rose, underscores the expertise and visionary approach he will bring to the Tropical Battery group of companies. Rose COO Chris Wunderlich will become the new CEO of Rose Batteries, bringing a rich blend of experience in management, engineering, operations, and technology.

Following the acquisition of Dominican Republic-based KAYA Energy Group in 2023, and now, the acquisition of Rose, Tropical Battery will focus on integrating and harmonizing these three dynamic organizations to leverage synergies, optimize costs, and explore new growth opportunities across various markets.

“This acquisition reaffirms our commitment to transforming Tropical Battery into a multinational organization at the vanguard of innovative growth in emerging segments driving the transition to more sustainable energy solutions,” commented Tropical Battery Managing Director Alexander Melville.

“The integration of Rose Batteries will position the Tropical Battery group of companies to offer even greater value to our customers and stakeholders than ever before. We are reinvigorated by this next chapter in our growth and passionate about enabling a more sustainable, technologically driven future in the energy sector, while strengthening our financial performance with the support of pioneers in the Caribbean financial services ecosystem like Sygnus Capital, which served as lead arranger in this transaction.”

“Sygnus Capital’s partnership with Tropical Battery for this transformative acquisition reinforces our commitment to delivering innovative solutions that drive the growth of medium-sized businesses throughout the Caribbean,” noted Gregory Samuels, Senior Vice President & Head of Investment Banking at Sygnus Capital Limited. “We believe in empowering local companies to acquire overseas assets, thereby boosting our country’s foreign exchange inflows. This move aligns with our focus on impactful and sustainable investments, while also deepening our longstanding relationship with a valued client, namely Tropical Battery’s holding company, Diverze Assets. Together, we pave the way for growth, innovation, and financial resilience in the energy sector,” Samuels added.

About Tropical Battery Company

Established in 1950, Tropical Battery has become a household name in premium energy solutions in the Caribbean. Listed on the Jamaica Stock Exchange in 2020, the company has diversified beyond its core car battery business into automotive care products, renewable energy and electric mobility as part of its transformation into a diversified energy group enabling sustainability with innovation, technology and exceptional service delivery.

About Rose Batteries

With over 60 years in business, Rose Batteries has emerged as a leading contract manufacturer of specialized batteries for high growth industries driving the adoption of cutting-edge technologies. The company’s dedication to innovation and sustainable practices has positioned it as a vital partner across several sectors, including healthcare, robotics, aerospace and telecommunications.

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Sagicor Group Jamaica Expands Operations in Latin America through Joint Venture Acquisition of Sagicor Panama



Sagicor Group Jamaica Limited (SGJ) is thrilled to announce the Group’s further expansion into the Latin American market, effective January 1, 2024. This strategic move is made possible through a joint venture with our Costa Rican partners (Capital & Advice Inc), for the acquisition of Sagicor Panama from Sagicor Life Inc. in Barbados. Having received no objections from both Jamaican and Panamian regulators, our joint venture will embark on this new journey, expecting to replicate the success of our existing Sagicor Costa Rica joint venture.

“The acquisition of Sagicor Panama is a key step in our strategic objective of regional expansion”

Christopher Zacca, President and CEO of SGJ, expressed that this is a tremendous achievement for the company, stating, “The acquisition of Sagicor Panama is a key step in our strategic objective of regional expansion. We are confident that our expertise in and commitment to providing insurance solutions will add value to clients across Latin America as we move forward into new markets over the next few years.”

Sagicor Panama currently offers a range of products including Group and Individual Life insurance, Group and Individual Health insurance, and Personal Accident insurance. With this venture, Sagicor Group Jamaica aims to further diversify its product offerings in the Latin American market.

This expansion marks a major achievement for Sagicor Group Jamaica as it increases its presence in the Latin American market.

Zacca further stated that the Sagicor team “is excited about the opportunity to serve new markets and position SGJ for continued growth.” Outside of its Jamaican-based companies, Sagicor Group Jamaica also comprises of Sagicor Life of the Cayman Islands, Sagicor Investments Cayman and Sagicor Costa Rica as part of its group structure.

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Mergers and acquisitions

iCREATE In Agreement For Sale Of Interest In Visual Vibe.Com Limited



iCreate Limited (“iCreate”) is pleased to announce that it has entered into an Agreement for Sale of a thirty percent (30%) interest in Visual Vibe.Com Limited (“Visual Vibe”) to a strategic investment group led by Mr. Anthony Dunn.

By virtue of this strategic investment, all obligations due and owing to the original owners of Visual Vibe have been addressed. Upon all conditions of this transaction being satisfied, Mr. Dunn will be appointed to the Board of Directors of Visual Vibe and will play a leading role in spearheading strategic plans that will ultimately unlock value for the shareholders of Visual Vibe and iCreate.

Mr. Anthony Dunn.

In commenting on the transaction, Mr. Dunn stated: –
“We welcome the opportunity to partner with iCreate on this acquisition. Visual Vibe is the brainchild of former owner, Mr. Ali McNab and we saw significant value in positioning Visual Vibe for further growth and value creation. Mr. McNab and the team have done a great job in growing the company and we believe the timing is good to further scale and unlock value from this great company for the benefit of all stakeholders.”

Mr. Tyrone Wilson, Executive Chairman of iCreate, has commended that: –
“We have been diligently working on this partnership, and I am delighted for this announcement. The planned infusion of funds from this strategic group is timely as it now paves the way for the accelerated growth of Visual Vibe and will allow the company to expand its client base and digital offerings with a greater footprint. As we move forward, we are exploring several strategic initiatives that we believe in the medium term will be in the best interest of our shareholders.”

As part of the arrangement, Mr. Dunn has been appointed a Director of the Board of Directors of iCreate and a member of its Audit Committee. He has also committed to supporting iCreate to ensure the company can return to its core operations of unlocking value through the digital and creative industries. This strategic partnership marks a pivotal moment in the trajectory of both iCreate and Visual Vibe, setting the stage for innovation, expansion, and increased shareholder value.

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A.S. Bryden & Sons Holdings Limited Lists On The JSE’s Main Market And USD Equities Market



A.S. Bryden & Sons Holdings Limited, a Trinidadian company acquired by Seprod Limited, officially listed its ordinary shares on the Main Market of the Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE) and its Class A Preference Shares on the JSE USD Equities Market on November 10, 2023, by Introduction. The Company being the first to list on the Main Market and USD Equities Market of the JSE in 2023. The Company commenced trading of the ordinary shares under the short name ASBH at a price of JA$22.50 on the Main Market and the Preference Shares under the short name ASBH6.00 at a price of US$1.00 on the USD Equities Market.

ASBH is the 52nd company to list on the JSE’s Main Market, 14th company on the USD Equities Market and the 102 company listed overall on the JSE. The listing of A.S. Bryden & Sons Holdings Limited has increased to twelve (12), the new securities that are listed on the JSE since January 2023.

“The total money raised on the market shows that equity capital is the way to finance your business, especially during a high interest rate regime, said the delighted Group Business Development Manager of the Jamaica Stock Exchange, Mr. Andre Gooden, in his welcoming remarks at the Listing Ceremony. He informed the audience that the market capitalization of ASBH at $31.27 billion had increased the market capitalization of the Main Market to over $1.61 trillion and the overall market capitalization of the JSE’s combined markets to $1.8 trillion. Mr. Gooden added that since the start of the year, a total of JA$18.74 billion (approximately US$122.12 million) was raised by way of Initial Public Offers (IPOs), Additional Public Offer (APO) and private offers.

Describing the JSE as the most vibrant stock exchange in the Caribbean in which to participate, Mr. Richard Pandohie, Chief Executive Officer of A.S. Bryden & Sons Holdings Limited, in his remarks to the audience revealed that the Bryden Group which had been in private hands for 99 years, as part of its 100th year Anniversary, was allowing investors to participate in its journey. He also described the Company as being part of the fabric of Trinidad and Tobago and noted with satisfaction that 54% of the employees had chosen to buy shares in the Company.

“Today we are witnessing a major milestone in the evolution of the Seprod Group allowing investors to participate in its journey,” said Mr. Pandohie. He said that ASBH is the biggest acquisition in the history of the Seprod Group and added that the public and investors across the Caribbean can anticipate more big plans from the Company. He disclosed that the Company was in the process of building a US$30m distribution centre in Trinidad and will be expanding its footprints in Guyana and Barbados. Mr. Pandohie further explained that the current listings of shares on the JSE was not about raising funds at this time but to position the Company to efficiently access capital if the need arises. In highlighting the growth of the Company since its acquisition by Seprod Limited, Mr. Pandohie stated that ASBH workforce had expanded from 1,263 to 1,565. He gave huge thanks to the employees, JSE, Financial Services Commission, NCB Capital Markets Limited (broker), the professional service providers, business partners, investors and customers for the unwavering support given to the Company.

In his remarks, Mr. Alex Johnson, Manager – Origination & Structuring at NCB Capital Markets Limited, the broker of the listing, congratulated ASBH for successfully listing on the JSE and for choosing NCB Capital Markets Limited as their broker. He further remarked that it was fitting that the JSE was chosen as the platform to go public as the Company commemorates its 100th year anniversary. He further tipped the audience that Seprod Limited had been consistent in paying dividends and hence he sees current and future new investors also receiving significant benefit from investing in ASBH’s shares, its newest subsidiary.

About A.S. Bryden & Sons Holdings Limited (ASBH)
A.S. Bryden & Sons Holdings Limited was incorporated in Trinidad and Tobago on July 1, 1999. The Company serves as the non-operating parent company of the Bryden’s Group of Companies. A.S. Bryden & Sons Holdings Limited (“A.S. Bryden”) is a consumer products distributor in Trinidad and distributes food, pharmaceuticals, hardware, houseware and industrial equipment. It is a partner of choice for global principals and has its own brands. It has significant market share in Trinidad with smaller presence in Barbados and Guyana. A.S. Bryden operates through three principal operating subsidiaries A.S. Bryden & Sons (Trinidad) Limited (“ASBT”), Bryden pi Limited (“Bryden pi”) and F.T. Farfan Limited (“F.T. Farfan”).
Seprod Limited is the majority shareholder.

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GraceKennedy Strengthens Foothold In The Jamaican Spring Water Market With Successful Acquisition Of UNIBEV



GraceKennedy Limited (GK) has announced the successful completion of its acquisition of Unibev Limited, a Jamaican manufacturing company specializing in fully integrated beverage solutions. The strategic transaction firmly cements GK’s position as a leader in the Jamaican spring water market.

Unibev is now GK’s sixth manufacturing facility in Jamaica and is involved in the entire beverage production process, spanning from raw material sourcing to packaging.

Commenting on this significant milestone, Group CEO Don Wehby expressed, “The acquisition of Unibev represents a pivotal move in GK’s pursuit of our 2030 vision, especially as it relates to advancing our presence within the growing Jamaican spring water market. We are strategically building upon our previous investments in this sector, such as our acquisition of the 876 Spring Water brand and our increased stake in Catherine’s Peak, to fortify our supply chain and bolster this vital segment of our business.”

Wehby elaborated, “We are excited about the myriad possibilities this new venture opens up for innovation, including new beverage product lines and alternative packaging solutions.”

Frank James, CEO of GK Foods ‐ Domestic, underlined the strategic significance of this expansion, stating, “We are actively capitalizing on opportunities to grow our beverage brands. Beyond the advantages for our spring water business, this acquisition aligns seamlessly with our manufacturing transformation strategic plan, aimed at strengthening our competitive edge and positioning GK as a regional leader in food and beverage manufacturing.”


GraceKennedy Advances Position In Local Spring Water Market With Acquisition Of Beverage Manufacturer Unibev Limited

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