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$80m Crane share plan

by Geralyn Edward, Business Editor

$80m Crane share plan

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??CRANE RESIDENTIAL RESORTS IS ABOUT TO RAISE $80 MILLION in equity financing with a private placement of preference shares at $10 per share to institutional and sophisticated investors in Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago.
This was revealed by Paul Doyle, principal of Crane Residential Resorts, the trading name of Millennium Investments Limited (MIL).
He told BARBADOS BUSINESS AUTHORITY in an exclusive interview that the move comes ahead of an initial public offering (IPO) that will involve the release of ordinary and preference shares when the company goes public and lists on the Barbados Stock Exchange.
And as The Crane prepares to offer institutional investors and high net-worth individuals in Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago a stake in the tourism-based company, it has received a top rating from Caribbean Information & Credit Rating Services Limited (CariCRIS).
CariCRIS, the region’s only credit rating agency, assigned initial ratings of CariA- (foreign currency rating) and CariA (local currency rating) on its regional rating scale, and bbAA- on the Barbados national scale for the US$40 million MIL preference shares.
According to the Trinidad and Tobago-based credit rating agency, the rating indicated that the level of “creditworthiness of this obligation, adjudged in relation to other obligations in the Caribbean, is good”.
Moreover, CariCRIS said, “The ratings are also supported by The Crane’s well qualified, highly experienced senior management team with some members having international industry-relevant exposure.
“Further supporting the ratings are strong operating efficiencies arising from a vertically integrated low-cost business model, together with its comfortable financial performance characterized by good profitability and low gearing.”
Meanwhile, Doyle revealed that the private placement was designed to raise financing to complete a number of projects before the private company goes public.
He said, “The private placement means there will be a non-public offer so that we can raise equity quicker and follow that up with a full public offer later in the year. But it will allow us to complete some of the transactions that we would like to complete before the public offer.”
The hotelier, who has started a high-end residential tourism project at Skeete’s Bay, St Philip, and made a bid to buy the closed 400-room Almond Beach Village in St Peter said he also planned to offer shares in MIL to investors in Jamaica as well.
Neal & Massy, the parent company of Almond Resort Inc., is yet to announce the name of the company to whom it will sell the West Coast hotel.