Letter: The contributions of Nick Duggan

I am pleased to see mention of Nick Duggan, one of Cayman’s pioneer bankers, who was immensely appreciated by businessmen in the early 70s and thereafter. The emergence of Butterfield Bank as a major Cayman bank is an interesting story. Whilst they came to Cayman in the late 60s, it was as a Class B bank. At the same time Washington Bank was a retail Class A bank managed by Nick, with a sister company in the Bahamas both being owned by a U.S. group.

At that time both Washington Bank and Butterfield Bank were audited by Coopers and Lybrand. Hence I got to know Nick very well.

As time went by, he felt that the business he was managing really required a stronger presence and owner. Arising from that, Nick and I discussed for hours as to the suitability of a new owner, and having looked at a list of over 300 Cayman banks, finally settled on two contenders with Butterfield being the front runner. Subsequently we suggested a merger of the two banks to the senior partner of Coopers and Lybrand, Bermuda, Kirk Cooper and the rest, as they say, is history.

Nick was one of Cayman’s finest bankers, whose foresight led to Butterfield’s playing such a major role in the progress of the Cayman Islands and its residents. The recent 50th anniversary of the bank is a reminder of this gentleman, and one of Cayman’s finest citizens.

Chris Johnson

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