NASSAU, The Bahamas, Friday February 8, 2019 – Newly formed Bahamian holding company RF Holdings Limited is acquiring Royal Fidelity Merchant Bank & Trust Limited, as a result of a “management led buyout”.
The acquisition will result in RF Holdings owning 100 per cent of Royal Fidelity’s operations in Barbados and The Bahamas. The shares were previously held on a 50/50 basis by RBC Royal Bank of Canada and Fidelity Bank (Bahamas) Limited.
“While the partnership with Fidelity and RBC has worked well for all of us and Royal Fidelity has developed significantly as a result, the time is right for us to move forward independently,” Royal Fidelity President Michael Anderson said in explaining the move. “We very much value the strong relationship that we have with both RBC and Fidelity and look forward to working closely with both companies.”
Anderson will assume the role of President and CEO of RF Holdings and maintain his roles as President and CEO of Royal Fidelity in both The Bahamas and Barbados. Ross McDonald will assume the role of Chairman of RF Holdings and will maintain the role of Chairman of Royal Fidelity in both The Bahamas and Barbados.
Under the new ownership, the Royal Fidelity Bahamas team will be expanded by the addition of 23 staff members, including new managers for Information Technology, Human Resources and Marketing.
The change in ownership will also see 83 per cent of RF Holdings shares being held by Bahamian citizens and permanent residents. A newly formed Employee Share Option Plan will also mean that all Royal Fidelity management and staff in The Bahamas and Barbados will become shareholders of RF Holdings.
Royal Fidelity has sought to assure its clients in The Bahamas and Barbados can expect to continue with their “business as usual” with no material changes to personnel or Royal Fidelity’s products and services.
“Clients are assured that they will continue to receive the same high level of expertise and professionalism that they have come to expect from Royal Fidelity,” the company said in a statement.