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SSL Ventures signs equity agreement with three portfolio companies

BY KARENA BENNETT
Business reporter
bennettk@jamaicaobserver.com

Friday, September 14, 2018

SSL Ventures Capital Jamaica Ltd (SSL Ventures) has acquired stakes in a diverse set of start-up businesses as it looks to turn around bottom-line results on what was previously known as a cash-strapped music company.

On Wednesday, SSL Ventures, in a notice to shareholders on the Jamaica Stock Exchange, said it has signed off on equity arrangements with three portfolio companies, one being a distribution and branding company with plans to expand products from at least one of its contracts, across all 14 parishes in Jamaica.

The agreements were signed between the months of July and August.

According to SSL Ventures, an agreement was signed with Bar Central Ltd (BCL) on July 2, 2018. The distribution and branding company currently has contracts with a global-branded beverage company and one of the Caribbean's largest manufacturers to service the bar market in five parishes.

“BCL is positioned to capture a significant share of the market given the company's unique value proposition of offering distribution and branding services, while maintaining the relationship with small bar owners,” SSL Ventures told shareholders.

The company then went on to sign an agreement with marketing agency and content production company, Muse 360 Integrated Ltd. Muse's services spans creative development, project management, design, film production, photography, radio production and events management.

According to SSL Ventures, the company has employed the “sharing economy” model to increase work quality as well as contain fixed costs, and during the first seven months of operation, added large corporate clients to its roster.

SSL Ventures' third equity portfolio, Blue Dot Data Intelligence Ltd, was signed off on August 7th.

Blue Dot touts itself as the Caribbean's leading insights agency, providing critical decision support services including qualitative and quantitative market research, data driven strategy recommendations, social media optimisation solutions and management consulting services. The company is said to work closely with some of the Caribbean's largest corporate organisations.

SSL Ventures' agreement with the portfolio companies follows on the reverse takeover of loss-making music publisher C2W Music in July when two C2W Music Ltd (MUSIC) directors, transferred shares totalling 215,978,588 units to Stocks and Securities Ltd bringing SSL's total ownership to 320,000,000 units or 80 per cent of total issued shares. The business was then renamed SSL Ventures last month.

It's not clear the share of ownership SSL Ventures has in each company.