Tue | Sep 27, 2022

JFP growing through Caribbean alliance

Published:Wednesday | July 6, 2022 | 12:09 AM
Metry Seaga, CEO of JFP Limited.
Metry Seaga, CEO of JFP Limited.

The initial plan was to literally go door to door in the wider Caribbean in search of business, but furniture manufacturer JFP Limited has changed course and is partnering instead with office furniture company Total Office Limited as a supplier of...

The initial plan was to literally go door to door in the wider Caribbean in search of business, but furniture manufacturer JFP Limited has changed course and is partnering instead with office furniture company Total Office Limited as a supplier of furniture, cabinetry and other related products.

JFP will serve Total Office’s clients across the region, including places such as Antigua, Suriname, Guyana, Barbados, and Trinidad & Tobago. The company already has a presence in Trinidad, but JFP Managing Director Metry Seaga says the new deal will not affect those ongoing arrangements.

“We do quite a bit of business there, but our existing business will not be a part the agreement. We feel that they (Total Office) can bring us new business that we would otherwise find hard to get,” Seaga said.

Seaga adds that his recently listed company is taking full advantage of its non-tariff status in the Caricom free trade area to go after business in the region.

“Prior to COVID, it was our intention to go ourselves throughout the region, going door to door, seeing the bigger clients. COVID put a halt to that, but with this opportunity we are ahead, in that there are no duties, and shipping is fast and inexpensive,” he said.

The opportunity came, he added, from JFP’s raised profile during its listing on the Jamaica Stock Exchange.

“When we went public, this company saw us, liked what we were offering and forged the relationship,” Seaga said.

He declined to comment on the expected addition to the company’s revenue resulting from the deal that will run for two years at the outset, citing non-disclosure clauses in the agreement.

JFP is in the process of adding staff to its current workforce of 75 to take on the additional work.

“We’re currently in the process of recruiting as we speak, and we hope to add between 20 to 30 per cent to our present complement,” said the JFP head.

JFP, which was formerly known as Jamaica Fibreglass Products Limited, was listed in mid-March on the junior market of the exchange.

For the first-quarter ending March, the company reported a 70 per cent rise in revenue, from $64.7 million to $110.2 million. Its profit quadrupled from $8 million to $34.9 million.

neville.graham@gleanerjm.com