- May 22 2021
- 7:00 pm - 12:00 am
- A. L. Thompson’s Purchases Cox Lumber to Expand the Leading Building and Home Improvement Store with Caymanian Values at its Core
With the purchase of Cox Lumber, A. L. Thompson’s will continue its focus on serving the community by offering value-driven products and services for Cayman Islands homeowners and contractors. George Town, Grand Cayman (Friday, 15 September 2023): A. L. Thompson Building Supplies Ltd. (“A. L. Thompson’s”) today announces the purchase of Cox Lumber Ltd. (“Cox Lumber”), bringing the two family-run companies – and their values of excellence, integrity and customer satisfaction – to even more customers while maintaining 100 percent Caymanian ownership of the businesses. A. L. Thompson’s, owned and operated by the Thompson family, is acquiring Cox Lumber’s Cayman Islands business which includes the Bodden Town retail store and George Town contractor yard. All Cox Lumber employees will be retained. The Tibbetts family, of Cox Lumber, will retain Tibbetts Lumber Co. and Tibbetts International operating in the United States. The purchase of Cox Lumber by A. L. Thompson’s will allow A. L. Thompson’s to better serve an enlarged customer base of Cayman Islands homeowners and contractors through a combined 150 years of retail experience, as well as leverage the companies’ unparalleled networks of suppliers to offer an increased range of products at the best available price points. It will allow Cayman Islands homeowners and contractors to benefit from increasing purchasing power and an expanded product selection whilst receiving the same level of personalised customer service they’ve come to know and expect. “Bringing A. L. Thompson’s and Cox Lumber together allows us to evolve to meet the demands of the people of the Cayman Islands, by combining our Caymanian values and commitment to our customers to create an even better offering,” said Al Thompson, President, A. L. Thompson’s. “I would like to sincerely thank all staff at both businesses for their ongoing efforts to serve our customers over the last 75 years, and I look forward to welcoming our new colleagues from Cox Lumber and expanding the A. L. Thompson’s family further.” Mr. Thompson, along with Director, Berna Cummins (née Thompson), MBE, will continue to lead the business through this ongoing transformation and integration and will be supported jointly by A. L. Thompson’s and Cox Lumber’s existing leadership teams. “The two businesses are highly complementary, bringing together Cox Lumber’s traditional focus on building materials and supplying contractors and A. L. Thompson’s on home improvements and a wider retail selection,” said Kyle Hooker, Executive Chairman, Cox Lumber Ltd. “We are confident the business built by my grandfather, the late Mr. Linton N. Tibbetts, OBE, will continue to grow and prosper under the Thompson family’s leadership. We are excited that the legacy will continue as a wholly owned Caymanian company, a factor that was incredibly important to me in this decision. I personally would like to thank our dedicated team and customers for their unwavering support over the past three decades in the Cayman Islands and I am honored to hand Cox Lumber Ltd. over to Mr. Thompson and entrust our customers and team to his service level and care.” There are no immediate plans to bring the two Cox Lumber locations under the A. L. Thompson’s brand, and Mr. Thompson stressed that there will be no changes to their day-to-day operations, staffing and customer accounts. To learn more about the history and evolution of these two Caymanian household names, visit www.althompson.com and www.coxlumberltd.com.
- Resilience Cayman partners with Caribbean Utilities Company, Ltd (CUC) to implement the Cayman Home Energy Retrofit (CHEER) Programme.
Resilience Cayman partners with Caribbean Utilities Company, Ltd (CUC) to implement the Cayman Home Energy Retrofit (CHEER) Programme. Resilience Cayman proudly announces its collaboration with Caribbean Utilities Company, Ltd. (CUC) for the implementation of the Ministry of Sustainability & Climate Resiliency’s Cayman Home Energy Retrofit (CHEER) Programme. Launched in July 2023, the CHEER Programme is being delivered through a contract with Resilience Cayman. The CHEER Programme provides energy-saving retrofits for lower-income families residing in smaller homes with a specific focus on prioritizing the elderly, families with children, and individuals with diagnosed health conditions. CUC will offer 28 home energy monitors and conduct comprehensive energy audits for selected homes to identify necessary energy improvements. These audits will provide individualised insights into homeowners’ energy usage patterns, accompanied by customised recommendations for enhancements. Furthermore, as an integral part of the program, CUC will equip eligible homes with state-of-the-art electronic monitors, enabling seamless tracking of energy consumption. These audits are the beginning of a service offering CUC hopes to launch soon. Resilience Cayman Chairperson Jan Gupta said: “With the escalating cost of living, and the prohibitive cost of energy upgrades such as energy efficient ACs, the families that could benefit the most from better insulation and new ACs are the ones with the lowest financial means to do so on their own. This is where the CHEER programme comes in. Once we were selected by the Ministry of Sustainability and Climate Resiliency to deliver the programme, we reached out to CUC whom we have worked with previously for other community initiatives. I am grateful for CUC’s support as they have offered to provide complimentary energy audits and energy monitors for this programme. CUC will assist us in identifying the sources of energy wastage in homes, and we can then work with our suppliers and contractors to replace or repair these appliances. CUC will also assist us to monitor the improvement in energy consumption for the months following the energy upgrades and we will be able to capture and share the impact of the CHEER programme with the Ministry.” Sacha Tibbetts, Vice President Customer Services & Technology, added: “CUC is fully supportive of the CHEER programme and its efforts to raise awareness for energy monitoring and efficiency. Our Company piloted an energy audit programme and has seen how it can improve the lives of our customers and provide them with the tools to manage their energy consumption and lower their energy bills. The Company continues to be a supporter of energy saving tactics and we are committed to finding solutions to lower energy costs and consumption for all of our customers.” The efforts demonstrated by Resilience Cayman and CUC embody their shared commitment to community well-being and environmental stewardship. Through this joint effort, the programme seeks to address the dual challenges of escalating energy costs and environmental concerns by promoting energy efficiency practices among Caymanian households and the installation of the energy monitors is underway. For further information about the programme and access to the application page, kindly visit: www.resilience.ky/energy.
- Honorable Minister Jay Ebanks Celebrates Program Success and Student Commitment at the Construction Trades Training Centre 2023-2024 Orientation
George Town, 8 September 2023 – The Honorable Minister Jay Ebanks, surrounded by eager students, dedicated faculty members, and distinguished guests, marked a momentous occasion at the Orientation for the Construction Trades Training Centre’s new 2023-2024 cohort. Under the guidance of Hon. Jay Ebanks Ministry, this orientation celebrated the ongoing triumphs of the world-class apprentice training programme at the Public Works Department (PWD). The program commenced in 2014 and this class will mark the 10-year anniversary, 2014-2024. Gracefully introduced by PWD Senior Manager, Tanisha James, Minister Jay Ebanks, began by expressing his wholehearted commitment to the program, stating, “In the midst of our busy schedule at the Government Building, I assured everyone that I’d be right back! I’ve never missed an orientation, and I certainly didn’t plan to miss this one.” Through the Ministry and the leadership of Director Troy Whorms, the Public Works Department’s Construction Trades Training apprentice program has continued to excel and attract new students, reaching a total enrollment of 35 participants this year. This remarkable cohort comprises 21 new enrollees and 14 dedicated students advancing to their next level of study. The group showcases the program’s inclusivity, with 33 determined young men and 2 remarkable young women. This internationally accredited programme not only provides students with an outstanding education, it offers a holistic approach, with comprehensive learning and mentorship, covering all aspects of a student’s life, personally and professionally, and work placement. The potential of a position in either the private sector or government upon a student’s successful completion. Dr. Andre Francis, Centre Manager, was emphatic in his address to the students, stating “This program is genuinely world-class. Once you graduate, you’ll be licensed to work anywhere globally. Nevertheless, Our goal is that our talented graduates will choose to stay and contribute to our beloved Cayman Islands.” Troy Whorms, Director of the Public Works Department, also extending a warm welcome to the students, praised their decision to join the programme. “I stand as living proof of the program’s success,” he remarked, reflecting on his journey as a participant in the program’s inaugural year in 2014. “Through my personal journey, I continued to grow and succeed, and today, I serve as the Director of the Public Works Department. I encourage all of you to persist in adding to your greatness and embracing your mentors.” The Minister addressed the 21 new Caymanian students embarking on their journey into the construction trades industry, underscoring the pivotal role of the PWD in shaping the lives of young Caymanians through technical and vocational education and training (T-VET) programs. He acknowledged familiar faces among the students, expressing his delight in seeing them, urging them to stay the course and reaffirming his commitment to monitoring their progress closely. “I have always advocated for the expansion of technical and vocational training across our islands,” he stressed. “We are resolute in providing the necessary resources for you not only to succeed but to excel in your chosen field. I am dedicated to safeguarding this program and ensuring it perpetually receives the resources it requires. We are consistently here to support you throughout your journey.” The presence of the Minister, who was joined by Chief Officer, Eric Bush and Deputy Chief Officer, Andrea Fa’amoe from the Ministry, significantly demonstrates the importance of Public Works Department to the Ministry and its influential role in shaping the lives of young Caymanians. The event concluded with the Minister eagerly anticipating the incredible future of possibilities which lie ahead for the students, while also expressing his sincere gratitude to all those present for their unwavering dedication to the Construction Trades Training programme and bright future of the construction and trades industry.
Grand Cayman, 4 September 2023 – A delegation from the Americas Joint Group (Joint Group), a sub-working group of the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF) International Co-Operation Review Group (ICRG), completed its onsite visit to the Cayman Islands on Friday, 1 September. The onsite visit marked a significant milestone in the Cayman Islands’ ongoing efforts to demonstrate the effectiveness and sustainability of its anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) framework in combatting financial crimes. The Joint Group completed a comprehensive review of the final three recommended actions of the FATF’s action plan for Cayman. Engaging in discussions with Cayman Islands Government officials, regulatory authorities, and private sector entities, the delegation gained valuable insights into the country’s resolute AML/CFT framework, the rules that underpin it, and the practices deployed to operate it effectively. Importantly, during the visit, FATF Joint Group members met with Her Excellency the Governor, Jane Owen; Premier, the Hon. Wayne Panton; Deputy Governor, the Hon. Franz Manderson; Commissioner of Police for the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service, Mr Derek Byrne; the Attorney General, the Hon. Samuel Bulgin, KC; and Minister for Financial Services and Commerce, the Hon. André Ebanks to discuss the Government’s continuing high-level political commitment to maintain FATF standards. Mr Bulgin noted the visit was an important part of the Cayman Islands’ unwavering commitment to combatting financial crimes. “The Cayman Islands remains dedicated to upholding the integrity of its financial services system and will continue to strengthen its AML/CFT framework to safeguard against illicit activities. We appreciate the FATF delegation’s thorough review process. We will continue to engage with international partners to guarantee a healthy and safe global financial services system,” Mr Bulgin said. Minister Ebanks noted the visit was a consequential step in the final stage of the process for Cayman Islands to be removed from the FATF’s grey list, and expressed gratitude to all those involved. “We appreciate the FATF authorising the visit and Joint Group members travelling to the Cayman Islands to verify our progress and learn more about our country and its financial services system. We applaud the collaborative efforts of our local stakeholders who took part in organising and participating in the visit, including representatives from the private sector. Their collective commitment and conduct were instrumental in having an efficient and compelling visit,” Minister Ebanks said. The visit concluded with a reception hosted by Government and Governor Owen at Government House. The Joint Group will now prepare an on-site visit report, which will be presented at the upcoming FATF Plenary next month – at which point the Cayman Islands will receive confirmation as to whether it will be removed from the FATF’s grey list.
New ongoing series of tech community meetups supports collaboration, professional development, and peer-to-peer networking within an innovative tech ecosystem. George Town, Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands (1 September 2023) – Enterprise Cayman is inviting computer science professionals at all levels to take part in an ongoing series of tech community meetups. The CyberSandbox sets out to foster a vibrant computer science community that encourages collaboration, professional development, and peer-to-peer support within an innovative tech ecosystem. “Our goal is to further develop and support a dynamic cyber community that provides learning, networking, and even philanthropic opportunities for industry professionals and enthusiasts at all skill levels,” said Charlie Kirkconnell, CEO at Cayman Enterprise City (CEC) and Director at Enterprise Cayman. The initiative aims to progress 8-10 young adults and career changers from beginner level to intermediate/senior level coders by supporting their portfolio development and by helping them to grow their professional networks by tapping into the CEC ecosystem. The CyberSandbox will also help to engage and attract a diverse network of industry professionals by providing unique programming, challenges, and opportunities to give back to local charities and organisations. CyberSandbox meetups are free to attend and there is no cost to register, thanks to sponsorship from Chainlink and programming support from CEC and The Cayman Islands Computer Science Society (CICSS). Curriculum, agendas, collaborations, and programme guidance will be developed and led by CICSS who will be supported by volunteer “Enterprise Cayman Ambassadors”, young professionals embarking on tech careers within the Cayman Islands digital sector. “We’re thrilled to be a part of Cayman’s dynamic tech community and to support the CyberSandbox initiative that’s promoting personal and professional growth, fostering confidence amongst young adults, and enabling professionals to stay on top of emerging tech trends and best practices,” said Yaroslav Pshenitsyn, Managing Director for Chainlink. CyberSandbox meetups take place every second and fourth Wednesday of the month beginning in September 2023. The first session, titled “Mini Tech Expo” and moderated by Alee Fa’amoe, takes place on Thursday, 14 September 2023 from 5:30pm to 7:30pm and will include activities such as showcasing software and projects participants have been working on, some speed networking, and icebreaker challenges. This meetup is meant to be interactive for participants to get to know fellow computer science and students residing in Cayman, who share a passion for the field. Participants will be able to learn from one another, expand their knowledge and get the opportunity to work on projects together or individually, from this meetup onwards. Meetups take place in the CEC Innovation Room, located on the Ground Floor at Strathvale House – 90 North Church Street, George Town. Individuals at all skill levels are welcome to attend. Participants must be 18 years or older to participate. To learn more about the CyberSandbox and to register to become a member, please visit https://www.enterprisecayman.ky/cybersandbox.
The Cayman Islands Monetary Authority (CIMA) recently released licensing statistics for 2Q 2023 which demonstrate the continued strength of the jurisdiction’s insurance industry. Between April and June 2023, CIMA issued licenses to eight new captive insurance companies — four B(i)s and four B(iii)s — and three new portfolio insurance companies. In addition, CIMA issued one license for a Class D commercial reinsurer. With the addition of these new licensees there are now 675 Class B, C and D insurance companies licensed in Cayman, with approximately $22bn in premiums written and $71bn in total assets. Howard Byrne of Aon Cayman advised, “interest in Cayman captives — direct and reinsurance — remains very strong. Aon has already established direct healthcare and affiliated non-life reinsurance licensees in 2023, and has a number of additional applications either with CIMA under review or pending submission.” Byrne added, “The industry appreciates CIMA’s continued support, responsiveness and engagement, especially considering the large number of applications and diverse structure and client types involved.” Based on discussions with a number of its member insurance managers, the Insurance Managers Association of Cayman (IMAC) considers the business development pipelines for the industry to be very healthy. A number of Class D, open market reinsurers are expected to launch before the end of 2023. Ian Bridges from Global Captive Management (GCM) confirmed the expectation of additional growth, commenting that GCM “continues to see interest in medium size single parent captives plus a continued growth in new group captive formations and a growth in existing group captives.” IMAC encourages anyone who would like to learn more about Cayman Islands captives to register for this year’s Cayman Captive Forum being held at the Ritz Carlton from the 28th to 30th November. Early bird registration remains open until 1st September.
The Cayman Islands is advancing its AML/CFT regime whilst reinforcing its commitment to global efforts in combating money laundering and terrorist financing with the introduction of the Beneficial Ownership Transparency Bill, 2023. This Bill, published late yesterday, aligns with the enhanced Recommendation 24 of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) global standards, ensuring that competent authorities have access to adequate, accurate and current information on beneficial owners of companies. The FATF, an international organisation dedicated to combating unlawful activities and their negative impact on society, establishes the benchmark for countering global money laundering and terrorism financing. The Bill will play a crucial role in maintaining the Cayman Islands’ adherence to these evolving international standards. Beneficial ownership refers to individuals who ultimately own or control an entity. The Bill consolidates the beneficial ownership rules in the Companies Act, Limited Liability Companies Act, and Limited Liability Partnership Act into a single Act. This consolidation streamlines the beneficial ownership framework, bringing ease of use to industry participants and public authorities. Minister for Financial Services, the Hon. André Ebanks, explained that the Bill will reinforce the Cayman Islands’ reputation as a trusted financial services centre. “The introduction of the Beneficial Ownership Transparency Bill, 2023, demonstrates the Cayman Islands’ commitment to upholding global standards, as they evolve, in the fight against money laundering and terrorist financing. By enhancing transparency and ensuring access to accurate information, the Cayman Islands solidifies its position as a trusted global financial centre of excellence dedicated to combating financial crimes. Furthermore, the Bill will proactively assist the Cayman Islands in preparation for the 5th Round of the FATF evaluation process which will commence in 2025,” Minister Ebanks said. Over the last two years, there has been extensive consultation with industry stakeholders, members of the public, government partners, and international entities. The feedback gained throughout these discussions was critical in shaping the creation of the Bill, which has overall garnered positive comments from stakeholders. In addition, to take account of the 2019 commitment made by the Cayman Islands to the UK concerning the introduction of public registers of beneficial ownership information, the Bill contains a clause that would enable Cabinet to make regulations to provide public access to specified beneficial ownership information. However, before public access can move forward, Parliament must approve such regulations at a future meeting of Parliament. Importantly, this will not take place until discussions with the UK and other Overseas Territories, as well as Crown Dependencies, relating to necessary privacy safeguards have concluded in view of the landmark judgement issued by the European Court of Justice in November 2022. The judgement struck down public access for beneficial ownership registries in the EU on the basis of their interference with privacy and data protection rights. Minister Ebanks is expected to present the Bill at a meeting of Parliament anticipated for the fourth quarter of this year. If the Bill is passed, the existing legal obligations will remain in place until the new provisions are introduced in a phased approach. The Ministry of Financial Services and Commerce is also working on developing accompanying regulations and guidance, which will undergo consultation with industry members in due course.
HSM Partner and Immigration Expert, Nick Joseph, has written an article, ‘Schrödinger’s Caymanians” which explores the question “Who is Caymanian?” A summary of the highlights is given below. The question was recently highlighted during one of the Chamber’s focus group sessions, where one of the participants identified a potential issue in relation to the Caymanian status of the children of residents, and whether they have to apply for Caymanian status after their eighteenth birthday. “A longstanding issue is the simple question of “who is a Caymanian?” With many different options and processes for achieving Caymanian status, widespread confusion has caused whole aspects of the Immigration (Transition) Act to be almost incapable of proper application. This was not created by the present Government, or the present Department of Workforce Opportunities & Residency Cayman (WORC). The solution however lies in their hands.” The full article can be found here: https://hsmoffice.com/law/schrodingers-caymanians-the-gap-confronting-most-persons-who-are-caymanian-by-entitlement-7511/