Jamaica National Overseas And Golden Krust (New York)
Jamaica National Overseas (JNO) and Golden Krust (GK) Financial Services, Inc. today formally announced the formation of a joint venture company, Golden Krust /JNO Financial Services, through which Jamaica National Overseas will offer money transfer services to customers across the United States. Golden Krust will own 60% and JNO the remaining 40%.
The announcement was made at a press briefing today (February 17) at the Pegasus Hotel in Kingston this morning.
In October 2004, the two companies signed a Memorandum of Understanding, paving the way for the establishment of a permanent relationship between JNO and GK. The partnership will see services initially being offered from three franchise locations in New York and two pilot locations in Florida and Connecticut. In addition to money transfers, Golden Krust /JNO Financial Services will facilitate money order purchases and payment of bills.
Jamaica National Overseas (USA) Inc., a subsidiary of the Jamaica National Building Society, has been operating in the United States for over 14 years. JNO (USA) is a licensed money transmitter with four offices and over 100 agents in New York and Florida. The company is now expanding its money transfer business to other states including Connecticut, New Jersey, Georgia, Maryland and Washington DC.
“This strategic partnership puts us in a position to broaden the convenience of the money transfer service,” noted Earl Jarrett, President of Jamaica National Overseas (USA) Inc. “Jamaica National Overseas has a strong reputation that spans three continents and is well established in the Caribbean. We are following through on our promise to deliver innovative products that exceed our customers’ expectations.
He noted that both companies have similar customer profiles, their distribution channels go down the same path to the consumer and brand identification is easily transferable. “As a mutual organization we believe in long term good value for our customers,” he said. He also pointed to the fact the remittances from the Diaspora are a major contributor to GDP, and Jamaica National Overseas was widening its existing channel for supporting economic growth.
Golden Krust is family-owned and is considered the leading Caribbean business in the USA. Like its partner Jamaica National, it started from humble beginnings, and from one store in Bronx, New York, Golden Krust rapidly evolved into a multi-million dollar corporation, with over 80 franchises across the United States. It was the first black West Indian business to be granted a franchise licence in the USA.
Lowell Hawthorne, President and CEO of Golden Krust Caribbean Bakery & Grill, noted that he was very pleased to be partnering with Jamaica National, a household name in Jamaica, to offer financial services. “We are already in the service industry and adding the financial aspects to the operations will make shopping at Golden Krust a one-stop facility for our customers. Golden Krust /JNO Financial Services Inc. will definitely enhance the customer experience,” he said.
He noted that Golden Krust owed its success to strategic planning. “We anticipate our customers’ needs and we think out of the box,” he said. The company added 41 new franchises to its businesses last year, and expects to open several more this year. Over 50,000 customers are served at Golden Krust locations each day.
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