BF&M Limited to Seek Relief From 60/40 Rule

July 1, 2013

In a filing to the Bermuda Stock Exchange, BF&M Limited gave notice of the Company’s intent, effective 22 July, 2013, to seek relief from the 60/40 rule.

In a letter to the Minister of Economic Development Dr Grant Gibbons, the Company stated: “BF&M Limited, whose registered office is at 112 Pitts Bay Road, Hamilton, HM 08, hereby gives notice of its intention with effect from Monday 22nd July, 2013 to rely on the provisions of section 113(1)(cd)(i) of the Companies Act 1981 and to carry on business in reliance upon the provisions of section 114(1)(e) of the said Act and accordingly hereby notifies the Minister of Economic Development that its shares are listed on the Bermuda Stock Exchange and that it is engaged as a business in a material way in the insurance industry.”

The Companies Act was amended last year to allow for companies fitting certain criteria to apply for Government’s permission to have over 40% of their shares foreign owned.

KeyTech and the Ascendant Group have already applied, and been exempted, from the 60/40 rule. Polaris — the parent company of Stevedoring Services, Mill Reach Holding and Equipment Sales & Rentals Ltd — have also applied for 60/40 relief.

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Comments (5)

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  1. Concerned Local Bermudian says:

    Questionable policy move, in my opinion!

    We are enduring a disaster from the sale of Bermuda banks; why would WE now allow more foreign ownership of LOCAL companies? Have we replaced all the HSBC jobs that were cut? Was there any likelihood of increased employment? Is such a move to further increase foreign ownership of LOCAL companies to raise more capital or an exit strategy for current owners?

    We continue to lose control of managing our economy with more and more foreign ownership of local companies. How? Companies owned by foreign entities have less interest in what happens locally and are more likely to implement policies inconsistent with local needs. It also, in the long run, results in a net extraction of capital above the initial investment. How is this good in the long-run?

    Sure I think under certain circumstances this is an appropriate strategy, but what I’m seeing/hearing in terms of 60/40 relief requests is completely different. I can only see a further erosion of the employment base (capacity) in Bermuda from a shift towards more 60/40 relief. How many Bermudian jobs have we lost due to HSBC/Butterfield ownership changes? What are the long-terms implications of further relief? Do we care about the future enough to make the best decisions for Bermuda Inc?

    So, let’s debate! Please someone talk some real sense to me! How does this strategy provide a win-win solution for Bermuda Inc. in the long-term? Can Bermuda effectively play in the globalization arena? Can we better develop a local capital market – inward investment?

    I’m a businessman, but I’m also looking at the social impacts of our collective decisions. We now need to think strategically more so than ever! To make a few happy we might endure increased social demise and unrest, if we make decisions that result in a shrinkage of our employment capacity.

    I’d like to hear antidotes to my view of the possible outcomes!

    Concerned for our future!

    P.S. What has job outsourcing done to the US employment base?

  2. Time Shall Tell says:

    What happened to the article in the media stating the huge profits BF&M has been turning? If this request is not out of need then is this move more out of greed?

  3. Charter says:

    If local insurers are allowed overseas ownership, then why don’t we allow international insurers to more easily enter the local market?

  4. Young Bermudian says:

    We are walking down a slippery slope by allowing foreign ownership of our businesses. This may bid well to get foreign dollars on island, but the long term challenges to future Bermudians is detrimental. We need to rethink this policy now and put up safeguards before we become an island like many others were businesses are owned mostly by foreigners.

  5. Patchy says:

    If, as a wealthy, self-governing Island Nation, banking industry, insurance and re-insurance capital, we cannot even control our local union to have a meeting at a time that least interrupts this Island’s people and it’s welfare, then how can we even have an educated conversation about foreign ownership of businesses???