By Scott Armstrong ~ Guardian Business Editor ~ email@example.com
Bahamian investors with more modest sums in their pockets
should not be barred from enjoying a flutter on their favorite
tipple, one leading advisor has insisted.
Kenwood Kerr, Providence Advisors' chief executive, today
toasted the news that Heineken is set to completely take over
the reigns at Commonwealth Brewery and Burns House Group, after
the deal was confirmed on Monday afternoon.
Part of the takeover will see Bahamians offered the chance to
purchase 25 percent of the company in an Initial Public Offering
(IPO) - suggested to be worth some $60 milllion - which bosses
hope to proceed to by the end of this year.
Speaking to The Nassau Guardian, Kerr said: "We haven't had
an IPO on the local market since say 2000, that might have been
for a number of reasons including the appetite for risk.
"But to have a prospect like this with a globally recognized
brand such as Heineken is quite a landmark.
"You could call it a watershed moment and it is an excellent
opportunity for Bahamians to become shareholders with a partner
who is as recognizable to us as Anheuser Busch is to Americans.
"This will be positive for the market and is a long-term
opportunity for Bahamians to participate in, combined with the
Arawak Cay port deal this could jump-start the equity market.
"I think allowing the individual access to this deal is
"Yes there are the institutional investors who will be
gearing up for this and getting their cash ready but there
should be the chance for people to invest $100 as opposed to a
minimum of $10,000.
"That will mean that those average Heineken drinkers get the
chance to invest their money. The structuring will be critical
and I hope the deal will be accessible and the financial bar set
low enough for that."
Heineken and the Associated Bahamian Distillers and Brewers
Limited (ABDAB) finally announced they signed the deal for the
takeover on Monday after months of negotiations
In a joint statement the parties confirmed that Heineken now
has 18 months in which to sell a quarter of the business to the
public, but bosses insisted they would strive to do it by the
end of the year. Any unsold shares from that quarter stake will
be purchased instead by the Government.
The deal sees the shares owned by the ABDAB - controlled by
Sir Garet 'Tiger' Finlayson and his son Mark - finally transfer
into the Heineken's ownership.
The deal is one of the most highly anticipated deals on the
market with some investment analysts calling the share issue a
'license to print money'.
The Nassau Guardian revealed last week that the deal had
received Government approval with Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham
saying it helped broaden ownership of wealth to ordinary
Wednesday May 19, 2010