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Barita unit trust portfolio grows to $6b, adds new products

Published:Friday | May 1, 2015 | 12:00 AM

Barita Unit Trusts Management Company has launched two new products, the FX Growth Portfolio and Real Estate Portfolio, growing the number of funds under management to six.

FX Growth US dollar-denominated equity portfolio is primarily invested in ordinary and preference stock that trade in countries within the Commonwealth, Caricom and the United States, and may also extend to other jurisdictions.

The minimum investment is 100 units at US$1 each.

The Real Estate Portfolio is a Jamaican dollar fund invested in commercial or residential buildings for lease or sale. Enith Williams, director of Barita Investments Limited - parent company of Barita Unit Trusts - said the fund may also become financiers of real estate property developments and/or participate in construction or financing of such structures.

Barita is already invested in 138 Student Living Jamaica Limited, a start-up real estate development company that was floated on the Jamaica Stock Exchange in December and is already engaged in the development of more than 1,500 student dorms at the University of the West Indies.

Williams also sits on the board of 138 Student Living.

"Our promise to you is that we will seek out these types of early-stage investment opportunities that are not commonly known and say 'what can we bring to the table that will benefit our clients," said Williams at Tuesday's launch of the two unit trust funds.

Barita Unit Trusts now has $6.2 billion of funds under management, which translates to just over five per cent market share, says Managing Director of Barita Investments, Ian McNaughton. The new funds launched this week are projected to grow the overall portfolio by about 75 per cent within twelve months.

The real estate fund is positioned for institutional investors, such as pension funds. The minimum purchase is 100 units at an opening price of $5,000 per unit.

Barita's other funds are Barita Capital Growth, a mix of equity and fixed assets; and Barita Money Market, Barita Income Portfolio and Barita USD FX Bond Portfolio - all invested in fixed-income securities. The latter two funds were introduced a year ago in April 2014.

neville.graham@gleanerjm.com