(Photo: CNC3)

Republic Bank named Bank of the Year for the Caribbean

(Photo: CNC3)

LatinFinance — a regional publication that provides updates on financial markets and economies in Latin America and the Caribbean — has named Republic Bank Limited the Bank of the Year for the overall Caribbean, as well as for the territory of Trinidad.

In addition, the publication also named National Commercial Bank (NCB) the Bank of the Year for Jamaica.

“This year’s winning institutions achieved outstanding performance in retail, commercial and investment services in a region that is in constant transformation. The winners were determined by LatinFinance’s editorial staff based on an exhaustive selection process involving examination of data and in-depth feedback and discussions with market participants,” LatinFinance stated on its website.

Regional acquisitions

Both financial institutions have been engaged in noteworthy acquisitions within the Caribbean region.

Republic Financial Holdings has so far secured approvals for the acquisition of Scotiabank operations in seven Caribbean territories.

Trinidad and Tobago-based Republic Financial Holdings (RFH), the parent company for Republic Bank, announced in November last year that it had entered into an agreement to acquire Scotiabank’s banking operations in nine Caribbean territories.

Last Thursday, October 31, RFH disclosed that it has so far received approvals from the Central Bank of Trinidad and Tobago, The Eastern Caribbean Central Bank, and the Central Bank of Sint Maarten and Curacao for the acquisition of Scotiabank’s operations in seven territories. They include Anguilla, Dominica, Grenada, St. Kitts & Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Maarten, and St. Vincent & the Grenadines.

However, the governments of Guyana and Antigua and Barbuda — the other two markets in which RFH is seeking control of Scotiabank operations — have challenged the acquisition and have not approved the transactions.

With the acquisition in the other territories, Republic Group will add 350 staff members and increase its total assets by US$1.5 billion. Analysts also estimate that Republic Group’s net profits will increase by US$20 million to reach US$260 million.

In relation to NCB, the Jamaica-based financial group announced earlier this year, in May, that it had reached an agreement with shareholders of Trinidad and Tobago-headquartered Guardian Holdings Limited to secure a 62 per cent stake in the company. After 17 months NCB finally got the approval of the Trinidad and Tobago Securities and Exchange Commission to complete the transaction.

In May, Jamaica’s National Commercial Bank received approval from the Trinidad and Tobago Securities and Exchange Commission to secure majority shares in Guardian Holdings Limited. (Photo: LinkedIn @GuardianHoldings)

This year’s awards were revealed during LatinFinance‘s Latin America Banking Leadership Dinner at Mandarin Oriental, Miami.