November 30, 2020

The Editor Speaks: Cayman Finance rebuttal

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We received a copy of a statement from Cayman Finance dated 13th January (headed Cayman Finance refutes conference snub) sent via Tower Marketing their media contact in response to my editorial last Friday (13). My editorial centred on David Marchant, the owner of Offshore Alert, who asserts that Cayman Finance were invited to speak and make agenda suggestions back in July 2011 at their 2012 10th Annual OffshoreAlert conference in Miami, Florida commencing on April 29th. Mr. Marchant claims that Cayman Finance never received an acknowledgement nor reply to his request. My editorial’s thrust was the rudeness in the no response and Cayman Finance had missed a perfect opportunity where they could have showcased the many positive attributes the Cayman Islands has in its offshore business. The statement we received is two thirds ‘gobbledygook’ stating the mission of Cayman Finance (you can read this on their website) and they are a confirmed sponsor of the 2012 Caribbean Regional Compliance Association Conference. “The organisation also intends to undertake major sponsorship this year at the STEP Caribbean conference and will again exhibit at the annual IMAC conference.  Locally, the organisation exhibited at Cayman Islands Chamber of Commerce Business Expo last October, and is a major supporter of the Chamber’s Career Expo in February.”

Very nice and noteworthy but nothing to do with my editorial. However, there are three paragraphs of note and as requested by M/s Lynne Byles of Tower Marketing I set them out below as written:

“Cayman Finance has rejected suggestions that it failed to respond to an invitation to participate in the 2012 Offshore Alert annual conference.

“Mr Richard Coles, Chairman of Cayman Finance, said that neither he or either of the organisation’s two communications companies  – both who are clearly listed on the Cayman Finance website – were ever contacted in relation to participating in the 2012 conference.

“It is disappointing to read such statements as Cayman Finance regularly participates in both local and international finance conferences and events,” he said. “In addition, we were never contacted by [mention of another media house] prior to this claim being published which would have resulted in a more balanced article.”

At the end of the statement Mr. Coles says each request for sponsorship and related marketing activities (and they get a lot of such requests) are “carefully assessed to determine if it meets our sponsorship, marketing and community objectives, and obviously budgetary constraints also limit the number of opportunities that we can undertake.”

This again is another piece of standard phraseology that has nothing to do with my editorial. Mr. Coles then says, “If Offshore Alert were to contact us regarding sponsorship, the opportunity would be evaluated on its own merit and would be given serious consideration.”

I didn’t think OffshoreAlert was asking for sponsorship? Or have I missed something here?

The last paragraphs of the statement are again placed as written:

“Cayman Finance has in the past participated in the Offshore Alert conference having had representatives attend, speak on panels, been a paid sponsor and assisted by promoting the event to its members.

“We were involved in the 4th, 5th, 6th and 7th annual conferences so to say we are, or have, snubbed the event is just untrue,” Mr. Coles said.

I am awaiting OffshoreAlert’s response and I have asked M/s Byles if she can confirm OffshoreAlert has never contacted them in any capacity regarding their conference and if they have, had they responded. I also asked if they will be sending anyone to the conference.

I am puzzled as to why Offshore Alert would invite someone from the Cayman Islands Judiciary (Judge Charles Quinn is attending) and not even contact Cayman Finance. I will keep you informed to any answers I receive as the mystery deepens.

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