Honey Bun, GraceKennedy top JSE Best Practices Awards
The 18th staging of the Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE) Best Practices Awards Ceremony, by way of a banquet, unfolded inside The Jamaica Pegasus hotel on the evening of Wednesday, December 7.
It was not a night of long speeches, but there was much screaming, cheers and celebrations from the awardees and their enthusiastic friends, supporters, and associates. Besides the top awards, there were many second - and third-place recognitions, whose announcements evoked as much fanfare as for those who won the top awards.
In the category of Main Market and Junior Market Listed Companies, the night belonged to GraceKennedy and HoneyBun 1982 Ltd, respectively. GraceKennedy pocketed the Annual Report Award, PSOJ/JSE Corporate Governance Award and the Governor General’s Award for Excellence. The other winners in this category were Carreras Group (Best-Performing Company Award), NCB Financial Group (Corporate Disclosure and Investor Relations Award), and JMMB Group (Website Award).
Honey Bun 1982 Ltd was the recipient of the Corporate Disclosure and Investor Relations Award, the PSOJ/JSE Corporate Governance Award, and the Governor General’s Award for Excellence. It also got a few of the lesser awards. Other winners in the Junior category were Lasco (Annual Report Award) and Fosrich Limited (Website Award). JMMB Group (Investor Relations Stockbrokerage; Website) and NCB Financial Group Ltd (Revenue Generation and Market Activity and JSE Chairman’s Top Member Dealer awards) share the honours in the Member Dealers category.
The objectives of the awards are to provide an avenue to recognise listed companies and stockbrokers in the securities industry who uphold best-practice standards; to enhance the relationship between the JSE and its stakeholders; and to create an awareness of the standards for the best practices in the areas being judged.
In her welcome and opening remarks, Dr Marlene Street Forrest, managing director of the JSE, said, inter alia, “As we near our 20th anniversary, it is more than fair to say we have been successful. Successful because even as the economic landscape has changed since our first edition, we have kept abreast with these changes in the measurement and inclusion of best practices. It is therefore only fitting we are here tonight ... once again, to celebrate those companies who have embraced, and who have led the way in their best practices.”
In direct reference to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, she said, “Best practice matters in great times, but more so in challenging times, as it is these excellent practices which ground organisations, and will propel a company through stormy waters … . You are not destitute or daunted. It is no accident that we have been the best performing stock exchange in the world. You, your companies, have risen to the occasion every time the global economy surprises us, and you have learnt to adapt and overcome challenges.”
Professor Neville Ying, chairman of the JSE Best Practice Awards Committee, was present, but in his prerecorded message he said he wanted “to convey in his sentiments” that “it is those who grasp opportunities and take calculated risks in the midst of challenges that will be competitive, resilient and successful in a sustained manner”.
“The successful operation of all our companies, in the spectrum from microbusiness to large conglomerates, is of critical importance to the economic and social development of our nation. This is so specifically when Jamaica, as a vulnerable, small, developing country, tries to grapple with multiple disruption forces which are impacting us all at the same time,” he further remarked.
Custos of Kingston Ian Forbes represented the patron of the banquet, Governor General Patrick Allen, whose message was printed in the event’s programme. He regards the JSE as a “formidable, world-class organisation with a rich history”, and congratulates the companies and individuals who would have received awards for their outstanding performance.
“I am pleased to know that the JSE continues to maintain its high standard of excellence and make a useful contribution to the fiscal well-being of the country. It is an important nation-builder in providing a conduit for greater investments and wealth creation,” Sir Patrick said,”You are an example of hard work, dedication and commitment, which are qualities that are integral to a sustainable economic future.”