FirstCaribbean leaving Belize

FCIBFirstCaribbean Bank, a subsidiary of CIBC Canada, is set to exit banking activities in Belize the Central American country with lots of land and a small population of 332,000.
“The bank entered into an agreement on August 3, to sell its net assets in Belize to a local banking institution, Heritage Bank Limited. At July 31, 2015, assets for the Belize operation totalled US$169 million, while total liabilities were US$140 million”, FirstCaribbean said in a note to their July interim financials. The bank currently operates 5 branches in the country.
Upon the completion of the sale and related wind-up activity the Bank will discontinue its operations in Belize. The transaction is subject to approvals from the Central Banks of Belize and Barbados, along with other related governmental authorities. The transaction is not expected to have a material impact on the Bank’s capital ratios, the FirstCaribbean report stated.
The sale will make a huge difference to the acquiring bank as the acquired assets will more than double its size. Heritage Bank had assets of Belize $244 million Hertitage Bnkat the end of 2012 which fell to $204 million at the end of 2013, with deposits falling from $228 million at the end of 2012 to $187 million and cash declining from $110 million to $57 million.
The bank made a profit of $1.76 million in 2013 after tax and $2.2 million in 2012 but had accumulated deficit of $21 million with net equity of $14 million at December 2013. It takes two Belizean dollar to purchase one US dollar.
Heritage has 10 branches in Belize according to information on their website.

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