The UCC Group of Companies has revealed plans to launch an initial public offering (IPO) by April next year.
UCC Group Founder and Group Executive Chairman Dr Winston Adams confirmed the IPO plans after the company, through its subsidiary, Spectrum Capital Markets St Lucia Limited, completed the acquisition of real estate franchise RE/Max Elite.
The UCC Group, with its flagship institution University of the Commonwealth Caribbean (UCC), is Jamaica’s largest privately-held tertiary education institution. The group has been making strides into several areas outside its core business of higher education.
Dr Adams said UCC’s foray into areas outside of education is in response to meeting its students’ needs.
“The UCC Group now has eight related companies…we are known as an accredited private university, but the impetus to diversify our business model is our student population,” Dr Adams said.
He added: ” We, unlike the other three universities (UWI, UTech and NCU) cater largely to adult working professionals studying part-time. They are interested in not only higher education but financial and real estate solutions, student loans etc.”
Speaking with Loop News, the UCC founder said the institution would not lose focus on its core mission.
“But that doesn’t mean we should not diversify into other areas”, Dr Adams noted.
UCC also acquired three commercial properties in Kingston and Montego Bay from Marquis Holding Limited (MHL) for an undisclosed amount, “in what is being hailed as a bold and significant coup for the group”.
Dr Adams reckons that the idea of “commonwealth building” is a novel approach in making the Caribbean a market leader and the UCC and its subsidiaries agents of change.
“We have well-developed plans to open further RE/Max offices across Jamaica as well as four other Caribbean countries. We have appointed a new strong, experienced board of directors and property entrepreneurs to run all our RE/Max operations, who are keen to innovate in the real estate market”, he said.
Dr Adams lists Mayberry Investments Limited and JMMB among its partners and advisors in the real estate, finance, construction, and investment sectors.
RE/Max Elite joins UCC Real Estate Investment and Development (UCC REID) in the group’s real estate portfolio. It is part of the international brand RE/Max International LLC, with 6300 offices in 87 countries worldwide.
The UCC registers 7,000 students annually in various courses in seven physical locations in Jamaica and online.