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Dispute over cotton company takeover

BEA DOTTIN, [email protected]

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Exclusive Cottons of the Caribbean Inc. (ECCI), the company responsible for transforming West Indian Sea Island cotton, has taken issue with recent statements about Barbados’ cotton industry.
ECCI said a release and iterations of it that appeared in the United States before being picked up by local media and blogs state that a Canadian biopharmaceutical company called Kyto BioPharma Inc. had recently announced that it was acquiring the outstanding common shares in a company called Barbados Sea Island Cotton Inc. (BSC).
The announcement also stated that a Jonathan Bryant would be named president and chief operating officer and director of BSC after the share exchange had been completed.
That release added: “Through political relationships, industry experience and proprietary investments in the island of Barbados, Kyto BioPharma Inc. has secured the rights to manage the production process through a vertical integration plan encompassing all aspects of growing, harvesting, ginning, spinning, knitting, assembling and selling premier ‘genuine certified West Indian Sea Island cotton’ finished goods.”
Chief executive officer of ECCI, Adlai Stevenson, said in a statement that the contentions were inaccurate and that ECCI never had any business relationship or arrangement with Barbados Sea Island Cotton Inc.
“We are the exclusive and sole legitimate buyer of cotton from farmers in Barbados. BSC has never purchased any lint, yarn, fabric or finished product such as shirts from Exclusive Cottons of the Caribbean Inc.,” Stevenson emphasized today.
He added: “We buy all West Indian Sea Island cotton grown commercially in Barbados and process that cotton through ginning and other equipment at our plant in Groves, St George. 
“We have made efforts to find out whether and where BSC is incorporated. Preliminary searches of the Corporate Affairs and Intellectual Property Office database indicate that BSC has not been registered or incorporated in Barbados under this name. We have had no response from the principal or representative of BSC regarding the specific registration location and office address for BSC.”
Exclusive Cottons of the Caribbean Inc. is a public/private collaboration incorporated in Barbados in 2004 comprising a group of cotton growers, local and Caribbean individuals and businesses, and the Ministry of Agriculture. In 2012 the industry generated over US$1 million in foreign exchange to the economy.
“The industry is also on the verge of expansion with over 300 acres to be planted next month to satisfy increased demand from our partners and to have more fabric available for local designers and manufacturers,” Stevenson said.