Sunday, May 2, 2010

BELIZE CITRUS INDUSTRY NEWS NOW GETS COMPLICATED!

Citrus Industry News


No! That is the answer to your question about achieving peace and harmony.

The CGA have a mountain of debts, ( tens of millions of dollars ) but control 51% of the Board of Directors of the new FACTORY. Built with Eastern Caribbean money. $60 million thereabouts. It remains to see if they wreck the factory or not? By themselves the CGA do not provide enough fruit either to operate less than 10% of the factory fruit requirements. Lots of wicked variations coming into play over the next couple of years with the FACTORY. Must have the investors from Barbados shitting in their pants. They the investors, get a finished product supply to sell and make a profit on and they also want the dividend. CGA members are not going to get either of those, as they do not produce enough and still have a mountain of debts in the tens of millions, they cannot pay, based on their membership production. Big producers have fled the CGA and formed their own association. My bet is the CGA will eventually be forced to sell their shares in the FACTORY. In the meantime, expect the CGA membership to use the BOARD OF DIRECTORS to bleed the FACTORY dry of all revenues, in an attempt to pay their debts.
The big former Belize Citrus producers have fled the CGA under current elected officers and have their own legal Association. They are the major suppliers of fruit to the FACTORY. They even have their own first step in establishing their own factory, for whole fruit cleaning and shipping, but not in added value processed juices. They also are active in seeking their own markets. The business has split! The BARBADOS investors will have to seek a way to get control of the CGA shares to get a majority vote and control of the Board of Directors, to stop their investment being ruined by a plague of small growers in the CGA, who supply less than 10% of the crop to the factory. Or the new Belize citrus Association can buy 10% of the CGA shares to vote in tandem with the FACTORY Barbados investors 49% and put the industry back on a profitable footing. You can expect the CGA now in control of the FACTORY BOARD of DIRECTORS to loot and plunder the FACTORY earnings, making the BARBADOS INVESTORS very unhappy.
The only asset the CGA have is their voting control shares of the FACTORY, versus a mountain of debts. The tussles ahead will be the debts of the CGA versus their share ownership control of the FACTORY. Somehow either the BARBADOS investors, or the new Belize Citrus Association will have to buy some of those CGA shares. You can expect CGA creditors to sue for ownership of those CGA shares, if the CGA cannot pay off their debts as in bankruptcy.
Lot of twists and turns to come in the development of the CITRUS INDUSTRY in BELIZE.

--- On Sun, 5/2/10, MEL wrote:


From: MEL
Subject: Bz-Culture: CGA Update
To: bz-culture@psg.com
Date: Sunday, May 2, 2010, 2:59 AM


This message sent to the Bz-Culture Mailing List from MEL :
I saw that the CGA held its AGM. So, is the in-fighting over? Everyone friends now and ready to move on with business?

MEL

From Amandala:
There is an extraordinary quiet in the Citrus Valley tonight, after the 2010 Annual General Meeting of the Citrus Products of Belize Limited (CPBL) was convened at 1:30 Thursday afternoon. The representatives of the Bajan minority shareholder, Banks Holdings, did not show up, as had been expected, and were instead represented by Derek Courtenay, SC, who voted via proxy for Banks’ 46% block of shares.

After a string of correspondence between the CGA directors and the attorney for CPBL demanding its new directors be registered, following a court ruling asserting their absolute right to replace and remove directors, CPBL CEO, Dr. Henry Canton, former chairman, Mike Duncker, and Frank Redmond, were replaced by Denzil Jenkins, Rosella Zabaneh, and Antonio Zabaneh, who CGA had been trying to get on the board since last July – months ago.

While the big story has been about the control of the industry, the weightier news tonight is that the audited financials of the country’s premier citrus exporter confirms that the company suffered an $11 million loss for the financial year ended September 31, 2009.

Consequently, no dividends were declared at today’s AGM, and the directors agreed to launch feasibility studies for all the lines of products the company produces, from its citrus concentrate line to the cogeneration facility. The call was made by the CGA, which has expressed concerns over the performance of the company. The report of that feasibility study should be tendered to shareholders within four months.

Why so swiftly did the CGA seek to have the resolution passed? In response to this query, Jenkins told Amandala that the CGA has been concerned that the company has been showing a trend of losses.

“It is very much in the interest of the growers’ investment company that they have the kind of feasibility study to be carried out, to be able to assess the performance and viability of the various lines of operation,” he explained.

In relation to the dispute over the directorships of the company, the three directors who had held their seats on the CPBL board - in the face of moves from the majority shareholder, Citrus Growers Association, through its Investment Company Limited - and refused to vacate their seats, did not resist.

According to newly inducted CPBL director, Denzil Jenkins, CPBL CEO, Dr. Henry Canton, was “very cordial” when he and two other new directors, Rosella Zabaneh and Eugene Zabaneh, paid a courtesy call on him Wednesday morning.

CGA has 51% ownership of CPBL and is entitled to appoint five of the nine directors. Banks is entitled to the other four. CEO of CGA, Henry Anderson, had today been appointed as a fourth new director for CGA on CPBL’s board, to join Charles Woods, who gets an additional tenure. Patrick Polack is out.

Even though they were not present, Banks is keeping its same four directors: Allan Fields, Richard Cozier, Dan Stoute, and Bob Ramchand.

Asked by our newspaper if there is any indication that Banks had staged a boycott, Jenkins said, “I would want to say it was.”

Jenkins said that they look forward to a future where, working along with the investor partners of Barbados, they can move the company ahead for the benefit of all the stakeholders, employees and growers, as well as Banks Holdings.

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