For the second time around Barita celebrated its anniversary with a Bellringing ceremony at the Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE). This occasion marks Barita 45th anniversary and 5 years after its acquisition by Cornerstone Investments Limited.
Speaking at the Event, the JSE Managing Director Dr. Marlene Street Forrest told the audience that the JSE was indeed grateful for Barita’s membership on the Exchange as it was during Dr. Rita Humphries-Lewin’s tenure as Chairman of the JSE that it moved from the Bank of Jamaica and took up residence at 40 Harbour Street on October 2, 1996. It was also during this period that the Exchange achieved several other critical milestones:
1. On February 25, 1997, the JSE placed its website on the worldwide web.
2. On June 1, 1998, the Jamaica Central Securities Depository (JCSD) was established and began to formalize back-office operations.
3. In February 2000, the JSE’s fully automated trading system, Sunrise was implemented.
Dr. Street-Forrest said “We were not surprised when in 2009, the Company signaled its intention and listed on the main market of the Exchange and in Barita’s true style, it did not list one security but two. Since listing Barita’s stock price has appreciated in value by over 3000%.”
Mr. Dane Brodber, Interim CEO of Barita, told the audience that the Cornerstone Group promised Mrs. Rita Humphries-Lewin that they will not change Barita’s focus on taking care of the ordinary man. He pledged that this 45th year and beyond Barita will continue the effort to democratize wealth and to ensure that the ordinary man can have a share in the wealth of the country.
Mrs. Barbara Hume, CEO of Cornerstone Trust and Merchant Bank told the audience that “Cornerstone acquired MF&G before acquiring Barita, but with the acquisition of Barita we were able to make a significant impact on the economy and we are going to make an even greater impact when we launch our bank, which will be the first fully digitalized bank in Jamaica and possibly the Caribbean. This bank will be customer-focused and will take care of the needs of the different segments of the population.”
Mr. Jason Chambers in closing, stated that Barita has made a significant impact on the economy of Jamaica in its 45 years journey by having several groundbreaking firsts. The first stockbroker in Jamaica and the first female Chair of the Exchange. He said that Barita will continue to break down barriers in Jamaica. He reminded the audience that Barita combines good customer service with great alliances to deliver first-class services to its customers and that it will continue to do this in the foreseeable future.