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Group History
Take a journey through time with Ansa...

1881: George R. Alston

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George R. Alston founded Geo. R. Alston & Co. trading in the buying and exporting of local produce – particularly cocoa.

1890

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Alston left Trinidad to establish a partnership with McGregor Frame – Frame Alston & Co. This firm and its successor Alston Arbuthnot & Co. were the London agents of the Trinidad company until Alstons’ death in 1918.

1904

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Geo. R. Alston & Co. started a saw mill and a lumber and hardware department. Geo. R. Alston advertised its 4 locations in Port of Spain and was the agent for seven foreign companies.

1914

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Geo. R. Alston & Co. began to expand its import-export business, diversifying into cargo handling, ship chandlery and acting as an agent for steamship lines. In 1914 many steamships were still burning coal so Geo. R. Alston & Co. became the owners of the Trinidad Coaling Company. With the advent of the motorcar Geo. R. Alston supplied lubricating oils to this growing market.

1916-1918

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Arthur Wight’s early effort at industrialisation was the acquisition in 1916 of the Trinidad Match Factory from Henry Tappin. The factory was situated at 23-25 Philip Street.

1920

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Geo. R. Alston & Co. provided essential services to the shipping lines it represented – drogherage and handling most of the island’s sugar and cocoa exports shipped from Port of Spain.

1921

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Geo. R. Alston & Co. was incorporated as a limited liability company becoming Alston & Company Limited.

1926-1928

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Roy Alston, Gerald Wight and Wilfred Alston were elected Directors.

1929

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Ralph Godsell Gibson joined McEnearney in 1929 in the Repair Shop and worked in every section of the company, eventually becoming its Managing Director & Chairman until 1982.

1935

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Alston & Company Limited took over the trading operation in San Fernando of C. Tennant Sons & Co. Limited by mutual agreement between the parties concerned.

1936

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The company takes a sizeable investment interest in Trinidad Clay Products Limited which has been maintained and increased over the years. In 1936 Sir Gerald Wight, Ernest Eckel and David Areheart formed Trinidad Clay Products. Alston & Co. Limited brought this enterprise into a large multimillion dollar concern.

1938

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In association with the world-famous companies Swedish Match Company and Bryant & May Limited, the Match Factory was converted into a company with Limited Liability. Alstons & Co. Limited formed a subsidiary company to take over the operation of their fleet of marine craft and Tugs & Lighters Limited.

1945

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Anthony N. Sabga went into a business of his own and formed the company Standard Distributors.

1948

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Alstons & Co. Limited established a Sales Agency Department to provide adequate facilities for the distribution of various manufactured items produced by the company’s manufacturing subsidiaries. Sir Errol dos Santos retired from Colonial Civil Service of Trinidad & Tobago and accepted an invitation to join the Board of Alstons & Co. Limited.

1953

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Sir Errol dos Santos was previously the colony’s Financial Secretary and Colonial Secretary, and his wide knowledge, financial experience, contact and clout were to be of inestimable value to the Group.

1957

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The Alstons & Co. Limited Board came to the conclusion that the time had come for the company to withdraw from the wholesale provision business, close down its electrical department and hand over the department’s business to the General Electric Co. of the United Kingdom.

1959

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ANSA Barbados established.

1963

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Trinidad and Tobago Insurance Limited (TATIL) commenced business at #63 Independence Square, Port of Spain on May 01, 1963 writing fire, motor, accident and marine insurance.

1968

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McEnearney Business Machines Limited (MBM) was formed out of the business machine department of Charles McEnearney & Co. Limited. Clay Products merged with Metal Products Limited and Alstons Industrial Sales to become ABEL – Alstons Building Enterprises Limited. Alstons Merged into one entity, Alstons Marketing Co. Limited (AMCO).

1969: Merger of Alstons & McEnearney

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Four take-over bids ended in the merger of Alstons Ltd.

1971

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The last remaining trading departments of Alstons Ltd., the Shipping and the Travel Departments, were converted into a wholly-owned limited liability company. Alstons Shipping & Travel Ltd.

1972

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Construction began on Trinidad's first skyscraper the Tatil building located on Maraval Road in Port of Spain.

1973

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CDC expanded its product range into the dark malt drink market by launching Malta Carib.

1974

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Acquisition of 66.2% of the Trinidad Publishing Company, publishers of the Trinidad Guardian.

1975

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Conrad O’Brien was appointed Chairman/Managing Director of Charles McEnearney & Co. Ltd.

1976

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Charles McEnearney & Co. Ltd. acquired the shares of the minority shareholders of Alstons Ltd. Charles McEnearney & Co. Ltd changed its name to McEnearney-ALstons Ltd (McAL) which consummated the union of the two Groups.

1977

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McAL purchased controlling interest in Penta Paints Caribbean Ltd from Imperial Chemical Industries.

1978

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The McAL Group acquired the entire shareholding of J.T. Allum’s Supermarkets to compete with other supermarkets that were giving preference to Stag over Carib.

1979

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McAL increased its involvement in Barbados by registering McAL (Barbados) and it acquired the entire shareholding of Charles McEnearney & Co. Ltd.

1980

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The Trinidad Guardian was burnt down – a case of suspected arson that was never proven.

1983

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Consolidated Finance Company Ltd was incorporated. McAL acquired the controlling interests in H.J. Gransaull & Co. Ltd and Hardware and Oilfield Equipment Co. Ltd - allowing entry into the oilfield servicing business. The Board of Directors bought out the Inchape Group’s interest in McEnearney.

1984

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Trinidad Guardian re-opened.

1986

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Angostura Ltd and ABL bid against each to take over McAL.

1986

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ANSA offers $40 million to McAL and acquires the majority of the shares. ANSA McAL is formed.

1987

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Anthony N. Sabga became the Chairman of ANSA McAL.

1988

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Carib and Caribe beers win the Gold Medal of the Monde Selection, International Institute of Quality Selection.

1991

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The ANSA McAL Centre for Psychological Research and UWI, St Augustine was formally opened.

1992

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Classic Motors was formed to represent Honda.

1992

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ANSA McAL (US) Inc was established as a US corporation in Miami functioning as the Group’s worldwide procurement and logistics provider.

1992

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ANSA McAL bought out the shareholding of Swedish Match and Bryant & May and Trinidad Match Ltd became a wholly owned subsidiary of the Group.

1994

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The Fleming ANSA Merchant Bank Limited marked the Group’s introduction into the banking sector.

1998

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ANSA McAL acquired Trinidad Broadcasting Company (TBC) publishers of the Trinidad Publishing Company Broadcasting Division.

1999

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The ANSA McAL Foundation Scholarship Programme was conceptualized by the late Dr Anthony N. Sabga, Chairman Emeritus.

2000

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Anthony N. Sabga handed over Chairmanship to A. Norman Sabga.

2001

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Carib Brewery signed on as the exclusive sponsor of the Great Race.

2002

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Penta Paints established the first Auto Refinish Training Centre in the Caribbean.

2002

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The new G-size Guardian was launched featuring a more streamlined version of the newspaper, replacing the original broadsheet format.

2003

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Innovations for the year of 2003 included - a new furnace for Carib Glassworks, world’s largest concrete block manufacturing plant at Bestcrete, state-of –the-art equipment at Trinidad Match, ANSA Polymer and ANSA McAL Chemicals.

2004

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ANSA Finance and Merchant Bank acquired TATIL and TATIL Life from ANSA McAL for TT$667m and changed its name to ANSA Merchant Bank Ltd.

2005

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ANSA Centre completed at 11 Maraval Road, Port of Spain. ANSA McAL relocated its Merchant Bank from the old Gordon Grant Building on Independence Square to its new corporate offices at ANSA Centre, 11 Maraval Road, Port of Spain.

2005

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ANSA Merchant Bank launched its first mutual fund product.

2005

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McEnearney Alstons (Barbados) Ltd was changed to ANSA McAL (Barbados) Ltd.

2006

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The inaugural Anthony N. Sabga Caribbean Awards for Excellence.

2006

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The inaugural Caribbean Building Awards hosted by ABEL/Bestcrete and Penta Paints was held at the Andre Kamperveen Hall, Centre of Excellence.

2006

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ANSA McAL held an Interfaith Thanksgiving Service to commemorate 125 years in business.

2007

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Trinidad Publishing Company sod turning for a new state-of-the-art printing facility.

2007

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Staff rallied after a fire at the Penta and ANSA Polymer compound on Tumpuna Road, Arima in Trinidad.

2008

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Dr. Anthony N. Sabga was the recipient of the Trinidad and Tobago Chamber of Industry and Commerce Business Hall of Fame Award.

2008

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CNC3 was granted a license to broadcast to Trinidad and Tobago’s viewers.

2008

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Consolidated Finance Co. turned 25.

2008

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Trinidad Publishing Co. Ltd (TPCL) successfully commissioned its new printing press in Chaguanas.

2008

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EC$12m makeover for Carib Brewery in St Kitts & Nevis.

2009

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Group’s Core Values Programme and Group Award initative launched.

2010

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Penta launched new Glidden Premium Imported Paints.

2010

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Carib Brewery introduces new brew Carib Pilsner Light.

2011

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ANSA Merchant Bank launched two new income funds for $TT and $US dollars.

2011

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Mr A. Norman Sabga, Group Chairman and Chief Executive announced the Group’s decision to invest TT$310 million in the construction of a new clay block plan at Longdenville, Chaguanas

2011

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ANSA McAL’s Executive took a ‘Leap of Faith’ with their three-year aspiration statement: Getting the People Basics Right, Building an Entrepreneurial Culture and Excellence in Execution.

2011

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Dr Anthony N. Sabga, Chairman Emeritus, received Trinidad and Tobago’s highest award, The Order of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago.

2011

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Sissons Paints (Grenada) Ltd celebrated its 25th Anniversary.

2012

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ANSA McAL Ltd acquired Standard Distributors Ltd from Norman Finance Developments Ltd and Anthony N. Sabga Ltd.

2012

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ANSA McAL Ltd and Heineken International signed a Regional Partnership Agreement.

2012

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“With Boundless Faith” ANSA McAL commemorated Trinidad and Tobago’s 50th Anniversary of Independence with the sealing of the ANSA McAL Time Capsule: 2012 – 2062.

2012

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ANSA Automotive opened Trafalgar Motors, the showroom of Jaguar and Land Rover, at the corner of Charles and Melborne Streets, Port of Spain.

2013

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TATIL celebrated it’s 50th Anniversary in the insurance industry.

2013

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ANSA McAL recorded the best revenue in its history – TT$5.9 billion.

2013

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Classic Motors unveiled the 2013 Honda Accord at the Trade and Investment Convention.

2013

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ANSA Merchant Bank and ANSA Automotive re-launched the Group’s “In One” Auto Financing plan.

2014

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ANSA McAL launched the new TT$400m state of the art ABEL Clay Factory in Longdenville, Chaguanas.

2014

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The Group held its first joint Shareholder’s Meeting and Group Exposition at the Hyatt Regency, Trinidad, themed “Welcome to the City of ANSA McAL”.

2014

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Trinidad Match Ltd became one of the first companies to receive a Product Certification License from the Trinidad and Tobago Bureau of Standards.

2014

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McEnearney Motors opened its spanking new Ford facility at Charles Street, Port of Spain.

2014

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A Memorandum of Understanding was signed by the University of the West Indies and ANSA McAL Ltd for construction of the Anthony N. Sabga School of Entrepreneurship and the Guardian Media School of Journalism.

2015

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A.M Best, a global credit rating agency affirmed TATIL as an “A” Excellent organisation for its outlook on financial strength and issuer credit.

2015

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ANSA Automotive signed a letter of intent with National Energy Skills Centre (NESC) which formalised the existing working relationship between the two entities.

2015

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Abel Building Solutions (ABS) was named Manufacturer of the Year (Large) at the Trinidad and Tobago Manufacturer’s Association Dinner and Awards ceremony.

2015

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Trinidad & Tobago's Number One Inspirational Music & Talk Radio Station Sky 99.5 FM joined Guardian Media Limited

2015

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Diamond Motors unveiled its new showroom located at the Corner of Charles and Richmond Streets, Port of Spain, featuring the FUSO brand etc.

2015

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The ANSA McAL Champions Development Programme was initiated as the first long term internship programme within the Group.

2015

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The partnership between ANSA Coatings Jamaica and ASAPH Promotion unveiled a new dimension of coatings products and service at the opening of the Sissons Colour Shop, Jamaica

2015

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Guardian Media Limited, which was originally situated at St. Vincent Street, POS relocated to its ultra-modern facility at AMCO Compound, Chaguanas

2015

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Dr Anthony N. Sabga, Chairman Emeritus launched his autobiography titled ‘A Will and a Way’

2015

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Mr. A. Norman Sabga, Group Chairman and Chief Executive of the ANSA McAL Group was conferred an honorary Doctor of Laws (LLD) degree by the University of the West Indies.

2015

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Carib Brewery launched Carib Radler, a refreshing beverage that made up of Carib Beer and Lemon Juice.

2015

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Carib Glassworks Limited (CGL) participated in the Havana Trade International Fair (FIHAV) 2015

2016

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ANSA Motors officially launched its swanky multi-product showroom at the Corner of Chan Ramlal Street and the North Bound Lane Uriah Butler Highway, Chaguanas

2016

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Dr Anthony N Sabga, O.R.T.T Chairman Emeritus of the ANSA McAL Group received the Key to the City of Port of Spain by former Mayor Keron Valentine.

2016

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The Order of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago (O.R.T.T) which was put up for auction on e-bay, was returned to the people of Trinidad and Tobago by the ANSA McAL Group.

2016

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ANSA McAL appointed NALIS as the custodian of the prestigious O.R.T.T.

2016

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ANSA Motors, the local dealer for the Golden Dragon (GD) Bus Company, handed over the first 100% CNG Omnibus to the Trinidad and Tobago Association for the Hearing Impaired.

2016

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ANSA Rentals, a division of ANSA Motors, partnered with leading international car rental brand Europcar to provide short and midterm rentals, and a chauffeur service in Trinidad and Tobago

2016

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A new collective agreement for Grenada Breweries Ltd (GBL), for the period 2016 to 2019, was agreed and signed off before the expiry date of 31st May 2016.

2016

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Carib Glassworks Ltd, officially commissioned its Furnace 3 Plant in Trinidad and Tobago.

2016

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The acquisition of the Indian River Brewery, the third largest brewery Florida.

2016

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Carib was named as the official Beer sponsor of the Trinibago Knight Riders team for CPL Cricket Tournament.

2016

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Standard Distributors Limited officially re-opened ANSA House Showroom located at the corner of Queen and Henry Street, Port of Spain.

2016

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ANSA Coatings Limited (ACL) launched its Sissons Colour Shops in Barbados.

2016

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Sissons moved fashionably forward with an innovative new launch of its “Tropical Moderne Collection” in time for the Diwali and Christmas season.

2016

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Penta Paints Colour Shop was officially unveiled in Phil’s Hardware, Spanish Town Jamaica.

2016

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ANSA McAL (Barbados) finalised the sale of Trimart Supermarket chain of stores to Channell Supermarkets Inc.

2016

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ANSA Coatings Limited signed on their first franchisee in Barbados - H. Jason Jones.

2016

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The ANSA McAL Group celebrate its 135 anniversary at the Queens Park Oval, Port of Spain.

2017

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Caribbean Development Company Ltd (CDC) and Carib Brewery Ltd (CBL) settled a collective agreement with the National Union of Government and Federal Workers (NUGFW).

2017

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McEnearney Quality Incorporation launched its new Mazda Showroom at the MQI Complex in Widley offering $3000. cashback on any Mazda sold!

2017

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“Together, We are Family” campaign was launched at Movie Towne, Port of Spain to Executives.

2017

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Carib Brewery Limited announced a three year partnership with Hero Caribbean Premier League (CPL T20)

2017

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The Carib Beer insignia lit up the “Model Beach Volleyball Tournament” held at Miami Beach, Florida

2017

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Carib Glassworks Limited (CGL) achieved ISO 9001:2015 certification and became the first subsidiary in the Group to successfully transition from 2008 to the 2015 version.

2017

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Dr. Anthony Norman Sabga, O.R.T.T. Chairman Emeritus of the ANSA McAL Group of Companies, and one of the Caribbean’s most prominent business legends passed away at the age of 94.

2017

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ANSA McAL Group commissioned the modern ANSA McAL Golden Jubilee Arch at Cummings lodge, to mark Guyana’s 50th Independence Anniversary.