Business

Stock split for Sterling

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

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Shareholders in Sterling Investments Ltd (SIL)– an investment holding company managed by Sterling Asset Management – voted on Monday for a 5-1 split of the stock.

The vote took place at an extrodinary general meeting at Knutsford Court Hotel in New Kingston.

With favourable votes in excess of 90 per cent for each of the three resolutions, shareholders of Sterling Investments overwhelmingly approved the strategic moves by the company.

The shareholders of the company voted in favour of a 5:1 split of the stock, approved a new rights issue (an offer to existing shareholders to purchase additional shares in the company), and elected to increase the authorised share capital of the company from $1.8 billion to $2 billion. A total of 22 ballots were submitted.

All four directors of Sterling Investments – Derek Jones, Charles Ross, Michael Bernard and Max Rochester – were in attendance for the meeting.

Speaking after the vote, SIL Chairman Derek Jones stated that he was pleased with the turnout – which included several new and recent investors – and the high level of interest displayed by shareholders.

“More liquidity means that shareholders can buy and sell shares with greater ease. Presently, it is difficult to move large volumes of any stock listed on the JSE and junior market,” he said.

Answering questions on the effective date of the rights issue, SIL Managing Director Charles Ross said it was dependent on consultations with the lead arranger advising the firm. With regard to shareholder wishes for more face-to-face meetings, he stated the company was looking into ways to facilitate this but said, “We are also committed to utilising the full range of outreach in an age of global communications,” suggesting that videoconferencing and other remote methods may be used.

Ross encouraged shareholders and prospective investors to be guided by long-term thinking. “Sterling Investments is a company that offers investors hard-currency dividends and a source of growth in the medium to long term.”

Prior to the stock-split rights issue, Sterling had 61.32 million shares issued and had earnings of 87 cents for each share for the half year. Net profit grew by 20.5 per cent for the first half of 2018 to $51.75 million, up from $42.96 million over the similar period the previous year (2017).

Sterling Investment's assets exceeded $1.2 billion as at June 30, 2018.

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