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FirstCaribbean has a change of heart about NYSE listing

From Barbados Today

In a surprise development today, FirstCaribbean International Bank Limited (FCIB) said it had withdrawn its recent public offering made in the United States and is currently no longer pursuing a listing of its shares on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

Back in December 2017, the Barbados-based regional financial institution announced that it had filed a registration statement with the US Securities and Exchange Commission relating to the proposed initial public offering (IPO) in the US of FCIB’s common shares in addition to seeking a listing on the NYSE under the symbol “FCI”.

However, in a brief statement today the company said that “in view of market conditions” it would no longer pursue the US public offering and NYSE listing at this juncture.

No details were given.

However, the latest development comes on the heels of a recent announcement by its parent company  – the Canadian Imperial bank of Commerce (CIBC) – that it was pulling out of Barbados and the rest of the region.

CIBC, which on October 14, 2002 joined with the London-based Barclays Bank PLC and combined their retail, corporate and offshore Caribbean banking business to launch CIBC FirstCaribbean, said it had decided to sell its 91.5 per cent shares in the regional operations on the North American market.

In confirming the move earlier this month, Debra King, the director of corporate communications with the Barbados-based subsidiary, had sought to explain that even though CIBC, a Toronto-headquartered financial entity, was a respected name in the market, it was not critical to FCIB’s brand presence over the long run.

However, she had made a direct link between the NYSE listing and the CIBC pullout, saying that “in the event that FCIB proceeds with the listing, [the parent company’s] intention would be to subsequently reduce its stake in FCIB as it makes sense to do so.

“The IPO of FCIB will allow CIBC to reallocate capital and senior management focus to areas of growth for them,” King had also stated at the time.

It therefore remains to be seen what impact the latest withdrawal will have on FCIB’s overall operations.

CIBC FirstCaribbean is the largest regionally-listed bank in the English and Dutch-speaking Caribbean. It has over 2,700 staff, 58 branches, 22 banking centres, and seven offices in 17 regional markets.

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LOGO: CIBC First Caribbean Bank


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