Facey Plans US$51-m expansion

FACEY Group aims to invest over US$51 million to regionally expand its distribution and telecomunications services.

The conglomerate is seeking roughly half of the financing from the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the financial arm of the World Bank, through equity participation.

However, the US$20-25 million that the IFC is considering investing won't translate into a stake larger than 20 per cent of Facey's shares "on a fully converted basis". Facey will put up the remaining funds through internal cash generation.

Presently, Musson, through its wholly-owned companies Gatcombe Investments and Musson Investments, controls in excess of 80 per cent of Facey's shares, while Seprod, a publicly listed company 45 per cent owned by the Musson Group, controls 8.7 per cent.

The remaining shares (9.9 per cent) are owned by Citigroup Financial Products.

"IFC's investment will primarily support the expansion of Productive Business Solutions (PBS), the company's business solutions and IT segment, by providing the working capital required to enter new markets, strengthen existing brands' market shares, fund equipment leases to gain new clients, develop and expand new brands such as Cisco and Oracle," said IFC documents published on its website.

PBS, the distributor for Xerox in the Americas, also plans to provide additional value added products and services such as IT and data center services, system integration, digitalisation, imaging, among others.

Additionally, the proceeds will finance the growth of the telecom business, to include new markets and carriers, upgrade its terminal network to allow for the provision of additional products and services and grow into the open-market channel (sell mobile handsets directly to network independent wholesalers and retailers), the document added.

The Business Observer was unable to get in touch with Nigel Clarke, vice chairman of Facey Group, up to press time, but the IFC indicated that the project is expected to create direct employment via business expansion; support small microenterprise linkages and reseller growth; promote innovation; and finally, support a Jamaican-based group to further expand its footprint in the Caribbean and Central American regions.

Facey Group, which currently earns US$1.2 billion in annual revenues, operates in three main lines of business including its telecom distribution of phone cards mainly for telecommunications provider Digicel; business solutions/IT distribution led by its PBS operations and Xerox distributorship in the Americas; and its consumer distribution of various food including Kraft, Nestle, Goya, Post, Serge Island, Eve and more along with pharmaceuticals including Pfizer, Benjamins, GlaxoSmithKline and others. data indicate.

The group operates in 31 countries across the Caribbean, Central America and the Pacific region, Europe and USA.

Its employees, some 3,200, are spread out with roughly 726 employees in the telecom operations, about 1,373 in its business solutions operations (with 91 outsourced), and about 858 workers in its consumer operations.