Sagicor Group to make second dividend payment to small shareholders

Sagicor Group Jamaica Limited (SGJ) advised that its board has declared a second interim dividend of $0.4461 per stock unit payable on November 18, 2020.

The dividend is payable to shareholders on record at the close of business on October 28, 2020, but the group states that it is keeping to Bank of Jamaica guidelines regarding the suspension of dividends.

Accordingly, dividends will be made only to eligible shareholders who hold one per cent or less of the shares in the company.

The payment to small shareholders will also require the company obtaining the consent of the large shareholders holding more than a per cent of the company’s shares as at the record date. The ex-dividend date is October 26, 2020.

In April 2020, the central bank instructed local financial holding companies and deposit-taking institutions to suspend the distribution of dividends for the 2020 financial year.

The Bank of Jamaica in downtown Kingston, Jamaica (Photo: Jamaica Observer)

The central bank said the suspension was being done with a view to conserving capital and further enhancing licensees’ lending and loss-absorption capacities.

The BOJ supervises commercial banks, merchant banks and building societies, which it classifies as deposit-taking institutions.

Financial holding companies typically engage in banking-related activities.
Following the BOJ’s statement on April 2, Sagicor Group Jamaica in a release said it has “acceded to the request by the Bank of Jamaica, despite the fact that our funding and liquidity position would have comfortably allowed us to support the previously announced dividend.”

Sagicor’s chairman, Peter Melhado ,said then that the company regretted the short-term impact on shareholders, but that the decision was  aligned with the BOJs  wishes and “represents our commitment to Jamaica and the financial sector in light of the global COVID-19 pandemic.”