Thursday 2 April, 2020

Deaf Can! Coffee to become first listed entity on JSSE

Deaf Can! Coffee's listing was announced at the opening ceremony of 15th JSE’s Regional Conference on Investment and the Capital Markets in Kingston on Tuesday.

Deaf Can! Coffee's listing was announced at the opening ceremony of 15th JSE’s Regional Conference on Investment and the Capital Markets in Kingston on Tuesday.

Marlene Street Forrest, Managing Director of the Jamaica Stock Exchange (JSE) has announced that Deaf Can! Coffee, a sustainable coffee company, will become the first entity to list on the new Jamaica Social Stock Exchange (JSSE).

The coffee company, a not-for-profit venture, is one of the JSE’s six projects for the new social exchange that was introduced on a phased basis in 2019.

Deaf Can! Coffee evolved from an initiative by Evelyn Clarke, a deaf coffee farmer in Top Hill, St Elizabeth.

A group of students from the Caribbean Christian Centre for the Deaf (Kingston, Jamaica) were taken on a field trip to meet Clarke. Inspired by his work, the students from the Jamaica Society for the Deaf began roasting, packaging and selling coffee.

They then began brewing the coffee and a few months later opened a small coffee shop at their school. Out of this was born the social enterprise Deaf Can! Coffee, which also operates a mobile coffee shop.

Street Forrest, during her opening address at the 15th JSE’s Regional Conference on Investment and the Capital Markets in Kingston, on Tuesday said the listing was being funded by the NCB Foundation.

The foundation, she said, had committed to providing full funding in the amount of $7.5 million to the coffee project.

 

Marlene Street Forrest, Managing Director of the Jamaica Stock Exchange

The social exchange is the latest platform developed by the JSE to facilitate the listing and trading of shares and other securities to help enable the sustainable growth of social enterprises.

The JSE cites data that values the not-for-profit and NGO sector at around 3.5 per cent of Jamaica's US$17-billion economy - which would be about US$600 million.

The exchange's documentation on the new project defines a social enterprise as a business whose focus is on the triple bottom line of people, planet and profit.

Street Forrest noted that the Deaf Can! Coffee project supports entrepreneurship and empowerment in the deaf community, adding: “the NCB Foundation in partnership with NCB Capital Markets has enabled us to realize this goal within the first year of the launch of the JSSE.”

JSE Conference 2020 opening night

Click the gallery for highlights of the opening ceremony of the 15th JSE’s Regional Conference on Investment and the Capital Markets

The JSE head noted meanwhile that the exchange was pushing ahead with technological innovation, which is intended to attract more investors and companies both at home and abroad.

At the same time, Street Forrest said the 2020 conference was focused on innovation under the theme, “The Winds of Change: Capital Innovation & Technology”.

She expounded, “Our region must be seized of the fact that natural winds and financial and economic headwinds can easily wipe out gains made in respect of our island states economic stability.”

“It is, therefore, necessary to expand these gains as we re-position ourselves to welcome the winds of change through capital, innovation and technology.”

She noted that in line with this, the JSE migrated to the NASDAQ trading and surveillance platforms in December 2019, “ensuring that technology will drive our operations.”

“We must also examine how we will cope in a technological age with issues such as cybercrime; how do we use technology to mitigate climate change and finance it; how we explore blockchain and robotics to improve our financial products and services and how we ensure that the digital age does not catch us unprepared,” the JSE managing director concluded.

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