Several local players have welcomed the new cable television channel Caribbean Business Exchange (CBX).
The CBX, which is a division of the Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE), will provide round-the-clock news and comprehensive information on local, regional and global business, financial markets and capital developments to more than 30 countries in the Caribbean.
The channel, which was officially launched on Wednesday August 24 by JSE Chief Executive Dr Marlene Street Forrest in a semi-virtual ceremony at the entity’s offices in downtown Kingston, will broadcast on the channel 143 on the Flow network and 28 on Digicel.
Outgoing Jamaica Chamber of Commerce (JCC) President Lloyd Distant Jr., who spoke at the launch, said CBX content will serve to expand investors’ access to information and provide more in-depth information that will allow them to make more informed decisions about potential investments and investments.
“What I see this platform being able to do is provide clearer insights into current operations and the future direction of our industries and businesses as well. This increased access to information…is basically about the provision and improvement of transparency, which, it should be noted, is one of the core values of the JSE and one of the first of its listed objectives,” he stressed.
Mr. Distant Jr. said that given the platform’s opportunity to improve financial literacy, the JCC “expects it to go far in bringing a new set of investors into the bosom”.
“We consider this platform much needed, and we praise the JSE; we see this as… a monumental initiative. The JCC hopes that as more information becomes available, more companies will consider using the exchange as an approach to raising capital as well as streamlining and growing their businesses,” he added.
Chief Operating Officer (COO) of NCB Capital Markets Limited, Tracey-Ann Spence, described CBX as a “game changer”.
She noted that information remains an essential and necessary tool for day-to-day decision-making at all levels of the investment space.
“By launching the CBX, the JSE aims to strengthen the expansion of access to vital information that will benefit all stakeholders in the financial ecosystem. It is this type of cross-sharing of information that will bridge the regional connectivity gap,” she added.
Ms Spence said the evolution of technology over the years has created a level of access to information “never seen before”.
This, she pointed out, has significantly increased the investor base as well as the number of companies seeking funding, through the JSE.
The COO noted, however, that while the public has “infinite choices” when it comes to the data provided and consumed, the information may not [always] be accurate or be presented in a format that is difficult to understand.
She said this poses a risk to investor education and financial literacy, overall, in the region.
Therefore, the COO added, the need for credible sources, such as the CBX, has proven to be “quite essential.”
“The CBX represents an excellent platform for market data and other information to be presented in a way that… resonates with its target audience,” she added.
Ms Spence said NCB Capital Market congratulates the JSE on its latest move and anticipates the “incredible outlook” for CBX.
“The JSE has our commitment to continue collaboration for the advancement of the Caribbean [business and financial] industry,” she said.
Barita Investments Limited Acting Managing Director Dane Brodber said it was “refreshing” to have a channel that “speaks directly to us in the broker and analyst community in the region and to the regional investment community. at large”.
“When I think of the Caribbean Business Exchange, I imagine this is the outlet that investors connect to when actively participating in the stock market, at all levels…from those who are just learning …just trying to understand how it works and what different companies are about…to seasoned investors looking for specific targeted information to build their next strategy or advance their portfolios and, of course, to our fund managers,” he added.
Mr Brodber said in what he described as a “rapidly emerging” business environment space, “I really look forward to the [CBX] establish oneself as authority”.
Chairman and CEO of the Fosrich group of companies, Cecil Foster, said CBX’s offers are welcome because, “for companies like [ours]the Caribbean means a lot.
He noted that when the JSE presented the CBX concept to Fosrich just over a year ago, “we never hesitated [to endorse it]“, adding that” we are committed to being on the platform immediately with the sponsorship [among other things]”.
“At Fosrich, we take our hat off to the wonderful work of the Jamaica Stock Exchange, led by Dr. Marlene Street Forrest and her team. We are fully committed to being part of it. I think with everyone looking and needing financial information, this channel is going to be a huge hit and is much needed. I wish the JSE all the best as we move forward in changing the way business is done in the Caribbean region and beyond,” said Mr. Foster.
Dr. Street Forrest, in his remarks, said CBX is committed to providing market news, daily updates and programs “reflecting our regional business realities in a timely manner”.
“In fact, I believe that this network will be a tool to build regional commercial and financial development,” she added.
Dr Street Forrest said the JSE was encouraged by the support already provided by the business community in the form of sponsorships, among other arrangements.
Other participants, she informed, include Bank of Jamaica (BOJ), Development Bank of Jamaica (DBJ), Kingston Properties Limited, Jamaica Deposit Insurance Corporation (JDIC), Scotiabank, Caribbean Flavors and Fragrances, Courts , Jamaica Teas Limited, and JMMB, adding that “we are all proud that they came on board.”
Dr Street Forrest also thanked the JSE Board of Directors for “having the confidence in the team to reach this milestone (the launch of CBX), and all those who have dedicated their time to advancing the development of the concept to completion”
The Caribbean Business Exchange will broadcast under the slogan – ‘Your Region, Your Business, Your Source’.