RBTT to suspend trading as RBC merger set to take effect

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, May 29, 2008 – The amalgamation of Royal Bank of Canada’s Caribbean operations and RBTT Financial Holdings Limited seems set to take effect from next Monday.

RBTT said it was expecting to get regulatory approval for the move this week and will suspend trading its shares in a matter of days.

The Trinidad and Tobago Stock Exchange announced that it would suspend trading in shares in RBTT Financial Holdings Limited next Monday.

Royal Bank, Canada’s largest financial institution, will join its Caribbean operations with RBTT, the twin-island republic’s largest commercial bank, in a TT$13.7 billion (US$2.2 billion) deal that has already been approved by shareholders.

The acquisition of RBTT creates an extensive Caribbean banking network with assets of US$13.7 billion and a presence in 18 countries, spanning the region from the Bahamas in the North to Suriname in the South. 

RBC’s Caribbean operations will be headquartered in Port-of-Spain, from where further expansion within the region will take place. The new group will have 130 branch offices and employ close to 7,000 employees to serve more than 1.6 million clients.

Following the integration of the two financial institutions, Peter July will remain RBTT chairman while RBTT Group chief executive officer, Suresh Sookoo, will become CEO of RBC’s Caribbean operations.