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Sagicor Group Jamaica enters agreement to buy Alliance Financial Services Limited

Published:Wednesday | February 9, 2022 | 4:04 PM
President and CEO of Sagicor Group Jamaica Limited, Christopher Zacca. -File photo

Sagicor Group Jamaica today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement for the purchase of 100% of the shares in Alliance Financial Services Limited (AFSL).

The deal is subject to due diligence and regulatory approval.

Sagicor says it has already commenced the process of applying for a cambio licence and a remittance licence from the Bank of Jamaica.

“The acquisition of AFSL is aligned to the group's overall strategy for growth as it will allow the company to move into new business segments and expand our product offerings to our clients,” said Sagicor Group Jamaica President and CEO, Christopher Zacca, in a statement.

 Zacca argued that the deal augurs well for Jamaica's economy, the financial sector, AFSL's employees, agents, clients, and other stakeholders, as well as the public confidence in the financial market, as it will ensure that the company resumes normal operations as soon as possible.

“Our commitment to the growth and development of Jamaica and in particular the smooth functioning of the foreign exchange market, which is vital to our economy, is evident in this transaction,".

In December, businessmen Peter Chin and Robert Chin, the principals of Alliance Investment Management Limited (AIML) and Alliance Financial Services Limited were slapped with several charges for alleged breaches of the Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) Act, the Banking Services Act and the Proceeds of Crime Act.

Alliance Finance Limited and Peter Chin were charged with carrying on the business of lending foreign currency without being an authorised dealer in relation to more than 20 foreign currency loans, totalling approximately US$8 million, to various entities.

Robert and Peter Chin are jointly charged for alleged breaches of the Banking Services Act for accepting deposits without the requisite licence from the BOJ relating to a series of deposits in excess of US$7.5 million over a three-year period from 2014 to 2017.

Additionally, AIML was charged with failure to file threshold transaction reports as mandated under the Proceeds of Crime Act for transactions of, or exceeding, US$15,000 (or its equivalent in any other currency) to the Financial Investigations Division (FID).

The BOJ had suspended AFL's authorisations to operate cambio and remittance businesses and to operate in the BOJ Fintech Regulatory Sandbox.

Last month, Alliance Finance pleaded guilty to 34 counts of financial crimes in the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court and is to be sentenced on March 3.

Robert Chin entered the plea on the company's behalf.

*NOTE: This article was updated to make it clear that action was taken against Alliance Finance Limited whose principals are the same as those of Alliance Financial Services Limited.

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