Wed | Aug 16, 2017

Proven to raise $2b

Published:Friday | December 2, 2016 | 12:00 AMSteven Jackson
Johann Heaven, vice-president of investments, Proven Management Limited.

Proven Investments Limited is seeking $2 billion from the market via an issue of preference shares later this month.

Proven wants to raise the funds to finance a regional acquisition and payout its previous preference offer which is about to mature.

The investment outfit is offering the preference shares at $5 per share, at 8.25 per cent interest. It's the same rate that another stock market company, Eppley Limited, is offering on its prefs, which were floated at $6 per share and aimed at raising around $384 million.

Proven plans to acquire an undisclosed financial entity in the Caribbean, according to Johann Heaven, chief investments officer at Proven Management Limited. Proven Management is the management company for Proven Investments.

"We are raising $2 billion," said Heaven. "There is considerable demand for Proven instruments in the market and right now we are raising these funds to further build out the company."

Proven got shareholder approval to make the preference share offer at its annual general meeting in September in St Lucia. The offer is being arranged by Proven Wealth Limited and NCB Capital Markets.

Proven's Investment's last preference offer in 2011 was priced at 8 per cent.

Eppley's current offer was extended a week from December 1 to December 8. The prefs will mature in 60 months ending November 2021. This will be its third preference float since the financing company made its market debut in 2013.

Eppley creates and purchases loans, leases and other forms of credit. The funds it raises are expected to finance its operations.

In its insurance premium financing portfolio, Eppley provides credit to thousands of clients annually, allowing policyholders to insure property and motor vehicles. In its lease and commercial loan portfolios, the company is a financier of medium and large businesses, the company stated.

Eppley made $61.3 million net profit after tax for the first nine months of 2016 compared to $41.8 million a year earlier.

"The directors consider that the significant growth in profitability of the company is attributable mainly to the profitable deployment of the remaining capital it raised in its late 2014 preference share issue and its ordinary share rights issue in the second quarter of 2016," stated the prospectus for the 2021 preference offer.

steven.jackson@gleanerjm.com