June 20, 2019
Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE) held its Annual General Meeting today, June 20, 2019, at Jamaica Stock Exchange. Opening remarks were made by the Chairman, Mr. Ian McNaughton.
Mr. Ian McNaughton highlighted that Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE) was ranked on 2018 Bloomberg as “the World’s Best-Performing Stock Market”. He also outlined that there has been improvements in Jamaica’s macroeconomic environment which has boosted business confidence leading to an increase in the number of listings and a growth in the amount of capital raised on the JSE. The Wigton Windfarm initial public offering was tremendous and allowed for many “ordinary Jamaicans” to participate. With more divestments of Government assets on the way, JSE projects more “ordinary Jamaicans” to participate in the listings. The JSE launched, in January, their Jamaica Social Stock Exchange to aid those who cannot help themselves. Ms. Street stated that, “by boosting the social it will in turn boost the financials”.
Managing Director, Mrs. Marlene Street Forrest highlighted the overall performance for the company for the year ended 2018. She stated that there has been a continuous increase net profit over the past five years attributable to their diversification strategy. Also, there has been a continuous increase in market capitalization attributable to the value of transactions and positive performance of the stock. Mrs. Marlene Street Forrest outlined the 2018 deliverables as follows:
- Major Market thrust- Building Awareness (E.g. Wigton Windfarm Investment has over 31, 000 investors participating)
- Commenced Development of new trustees, products
- Commenced Activities for implementing of new trading and surveillance platform to improve regulation
- Changed pricing strategy to encourage more small investors and new investors
- Commenced activities for digital assets platform using Block Chain technology
- Launch of the Mobile App using Apple device.
- Upgraded financial systems
Mrs. Marlene Street Forrest, also, demonstrated that from the online trading platform was launched in 2018, the persons especially the youths have been gravitating to this platform.
The JSE recorded revenues of $1.4 billion for FY2018, an increase of $399.70 million on 2017’s $991.15 million. Expenses for FY2018 amounted to $817.4 million over the $668.2 million in FY2017 due to an increase in expansion. Consolidated Net Profit for FY2018 was $413.10 million surpassing FY2017 by 87.2% attributable to Cess and fee revenue.
According to the Management, The JSE will continue to implement the infrastructure necessary to attract new business and retain the market they currently have by:
- “Collaborations with DBJ to assist SMEs to list on the Junior Market”
- “Partnerships with Small Business Association of Jamaica (SBAJ) and Caribbean Enterprise Network to prepare and list companies on the Junior Market.”
- “Through these initiatives, the JSE is expecting to broaden the listing on the Junior Market and ensure that companies maximize their full potential”
Mrs. Marlene Street Forrest outlined that the JSE’s strategic steps for 2019 and beyond are as follows:
- Celebrate the 50th Anniversary with focus on market education and awareness
- Develop new markets, new products (list more GOJ securities, more Corporate securities, other fixed income instruments.
- Launch of the Jamaica Social Stock Exchange (JSSE)
- To build capacity, competence and resilience, JSE intends:
- Continuous infrastructure upgrade
- Enhance Software (Website)
- Training and Succession planning
- Business Process Improvement and documentation (digitization)
- Implement the Nasdaq trading platform in November 2019.