Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 8th 2015 Contents JANUARY 2015 • WEEK TWO www.guardian.co.tt BUSINESS GUARDIAN
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Sagicor s group president,
Dodridge Miller, has confirmed
that the company has decided
to move the parent company of
the regional financial services
provider out of Barbados, where it has had its
head office since 1840.
He told the Business Guardian that Sagicor
would not be moving its basic insurance oper-
ations out of Barbados and that Port-of-Spain
was one option for the relocated parent com-
"The entity that is rated and the corporate
structure supporting that will be domiciled
in a different location," but nothing else will
change, the Sagicor president said.
Speaking from Miami on Tuesday, Miller
said: "The board has agreed on a recommen-
dation from the management, that Sagicor
Financial Corporation has to re-domicile from
Barbados to a jurisdiction that is rated invest-
ment grade or higher and where access to
capital would be reasonably easy and flexi-
Miller said the board of the company was
completely onside with regard to the decision,
which he said was unanimous.
The Sagicor president provided more colour
to a statement issued by the company on
Tuesday that addressed the decision by the
rating agency Standard and Poor s to down-
grade Sagicor as a direct result of a similar
action on Barbados.
In the statement, Sagicor referred to S&P s
analysis that the financial services company
could be upgraded if the company completes
"its plans to relocate its country of domicile
to a country with at least investment grade
ratings, strong regulations and adequate access
to funding," as well as maintaining the positive
trend in its operating performance and ade-
quate capitalisation levels commensurate with
the "BBB" benchmark.
Miller explained that Sagicor acquired the
S&P rating back in 2006 when it raised a ten-
year, US$150 million bond on the US market,
which will need to be refinanced.
Back in 2006, he said, the Government of
Barbados was rated as an investment-grade
sovereign with a BBB+ rating, which meant
that Sagicor Financial Corporation also got a
rating of BBB+, which was capped by the sov-
ereign rating of Barbados at the time.
Miller said: "Over the years and through
the financial crisis, the credit rating of the
government of Barbados consistently went
down, it was downgraded, and we for some
time have been contemplating whether it is
strategic, from a long-term perspective, to
remain domiciled in a jurisdiction with the
rating susceptibility that Barbados experi-
He said that means that when Barbados is
downgraded, Sagicor is downgraded "and the
likelihood of it being upgraded in the short
term is pretty remote."
In the context of the continuing downgrades
of the Barbados sovereign, the Sagicor president
said the company had been looking at the
issue of redomiciling its parent company for
Miller said: "As you know, we are listed on
the Barbados Stock Exchange with secondary
listings in London and Port-of-Spain. We have
to evaluate where is the right place to re-
domicile to and when.
"The most recent downgrade has triggered
in our mind that we cannot now wait, we have
to move with some haste.
"We expect that the decision on where we
are going to re-domicile to will be taken early
in the year."
He said while the decision on the new loca-
tion of Sagicor s parent company will be taken
"early in 2015," the process of moving will
take some time to be completed.
"We are hoping that this would be done by
the end of 2015," said Miller.
One of the issues in the relocation of the
head office is what Miller called the context
of re-domicile, by which he meant that various
jurisdictions have different requirements in
terms of how the head office of a company
"For example, there are companies that are
domiciled in the Cayman Islands, which would
be a paper domicile rather than an active
"There is a difference in jurisdictions in
terms of how active the head office needs to
be for domicile purposes and that will come
out in the evaluation exercise, which would
then influence how we staff and structure the
office" said Miller.
T&T an option for Sagicor head office
Questioned about the options for the loca-
tion of Sagicor Financial Corporation in the
future, Miller noted the company s listings in
London and Port-of-Spain and its "fairly sub-
stantial" operations in the US.
"If I had to throw what would be in the
pot, it would be London, Port-of-Spain and
the US. But of course the analysis may very
well throw up other places and we are getting
legal guidance on that."
The Sagicor group president said that the
issue of relocating the office of the parent
company will have to be voted on by the share-
holders of Sagicor Financial at a special meet-
"Once we have done the evaluation, and
are ready to make a recommendation, we will
have to take it to the shareholders. The normal
rules of a special meeting would apply," said
Asked whether the shareholders would be
required to vote on the three options being
explored by the company or one option decided
by the board, Miller said: "I think we would
have to say to the shareholders where we are
recommending to re-domicile to and what is
the rationale for doing so.
"We are in the early stage, so I would have
to be advised by the technical people who
would say how it needs to be structured. But
the resolution may very well say that we are
recommending, for these reasons, the re-
domicile from Barbados to X location and ask
for a vote."
Although it is now based in Barbados, a
majority of Sagicor s shareholders are resident
According to the company s 2013 annual
report, Sagicor shareholders residing in T&T
owned 156.8 million out of a 303.9 million
shares in issue. That means that 51.6 per cent
of Sagicor s common shares are held by people
resident in T&T. The next largest group of
shareholders, by country of residence, lived
in Barbados and held 101.1 million shares or
33.28 per cent of the company.
Barbados woes impact
Sagicor's decision to relocate
Continued on page 5
Sagicor's T&T office at Queen's
Park West In Port-of-Spain.
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