Business in brief

Digicel

Mobile operator Digicel Group reported 16 per cent growth to US$1.24 billion in the first six months of its financial year ending 30 September, 2011. The group’s earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation was up 15 per cent.

Digicel, which operates in 30 markets in the Caribbean, Central America and the Pacific region, increased its number of subscribers by 14 per cent to 11.1 million year on year.

The company added 830,000 subscribers in Haiti alone in the first six months of the financial year.

Revenue earned from value-added-services like Internet browsing and messaging, was up 47 per cent year on year, helped by strong demand for smartphones.

Digicel Group CEO Colm Delves said, “I am pleased to report that we have seen growth across the board and are also continuing to diversify our revenue mix with significant increases in value added services.”

Digicel has also refinanced and upsized its senior credit facility, which will see $282 million in new funds committed. The refinancing was well supported, Mr. Delves said, and will provide Digicel with further balance sheet flexibility.

During the first half of its financial year, Digicel launched 4G services based on HSPA+ technology across the Cayman Islands and the Dutch Caribbean. The firm also expanded in Haiti to a total of 3.4 million subscribers at the end of the September. In addition, the company sold Digicel Honduras to America Movil and acquired Claro Jamaica, although the transaction took effect after the half year end.

Fidelity

Fidelity has announced Reina Jefferson and Jerry Harper as the winners of the Fidelity Citizenship Award and awarded each with $1,000. Brett Hill, president and chief executive officer of Fidelity Bank (Cayman) Limited said, “The award committee is looking for those people who exemplify the characteristics of philanthropy and volunteerism, community-mindedness and dedication. Both Mrs. Jefferson and Mr. Harper go above and beyond what is expected in order to help those less fortunate, or to support noteworthy causes and are therefore worthy recipients of this award.”

Mr. Harper has served the Cayman Islands sporting community for more than 25 years and still organises many of the running events in the Cayman Islands. Mrs. Jefferson, an advocate for literacy and Early Childhood Education Care, has worked as a teacher and principal and also opened her own facility, Reina’s Childhood Development Centre.

She was a founding member and first president of the Cayman Islands Early Childhood Association and went on to serve on the boards and councils of a number of charities in Cayman, including the Education Council, the National Council of Voluntary Organisations, the Red Cross, Beaver Scouts and Pines Retirement Home and Cub Scouts. She also was a member of the Kiwanis Club.

Scotiabank

Scotiabank has been named “Bank of the Year” in the Cayman Islands by financial magazine The Banker. Scotiabank received the award at a ceremony in London, England on 30 November, 2011. The winning banks were selected for their ability to deliver shareholder returns and to gain strategic advantage. All entries were judged by The Banker’s editorial team.

H&J Corporate Service

Campbell Law has joined H&J Corporate Services as corporate manager. Mr Campbell has more than 15 years experience in providing corporate services and was most recently the vice president of Corporate Services for Goldman Sachs (Cayman) Trust Ltd. He has experience in company formation, limited partnership, trust management and administration, due diligence and compliance and is well versed in all Cayman Islands regulatory requirements. He will be responsible for managing all aspects of H&J Corporate Services (Cayman) Ltd. including the review of fund set up documentation, handling the client and funds counsel regarding all ongoing requirements, as well as attending to shut down/liquidation procedures.

Harneys

Law firm Harneys has published a textbook ‘British Virgin Islands Commercial Law’ which focuses exclusively on BVI law and practice. Written by Harneys lawyers and published by leading legal publishers Sweet & Maxwell, the practitioner’s textbook features chapters on company law, credit and security, law of property, financial services law, investment funds, insolvency law, dispute resolution and trusts.

“We are proud to be the recipient of this award and we want to thank The Banker magazine for recognising Scotiabank’s success,” said Doug Cochrane, Scotiabank Cayman’s Country Head. “Our continued strength in the Caribbean is a result of the Bank’s dedication to continually improving customer service across the region and providing our customers with quality products with the goal of helping our customers become financially better off.”

Cayman Enterprise City

Cayman Enterprise City has hired local attorney Rachel Smyth as business development manager.

As one of CEC’s growing team of business development managers, Ms Smyth will work with the Cayman based business development department and CEC’s Dubai based office. As part of her role she will among other present the Cayman Islands as the perfect jurisdiction for ICT, media and biotechnology companies to establish an office to target the North and Latin American markets.

Diamonds International

Diamonds International Watch and Design are hosting a Business After Hours Event on 8 December, 2011 from 5.30pm to 7.30pm at their Watch and Design location at 8 North Church Street in George Town – across from the Royal Watler Cruise Terminal. The Chamber of Commerce networking and social event will feature a special Chamber member prize drawing from the Diamonds International Luxury Jewellery collection.