By NATARIO McKENZIE
Tribune Business Reporter
A prominent Bank of the Bahamas (BOB) investor said its new Board had inspired a "fair degree of confidence" over the institution's future, although he reiterated concerns about its management.
Darron Cash, the former FNM chairman and Senator, told Tribune Business there remained a need for leadership changes at the management level. He raised the point during Wednesday night's annual general meeting (AGM), saying he was "extremely curious" about the composition of the executive management team.
Speaking to the new BOB Board, Mr Cash said: "I think that the composition of the Board inspires a fair degree of confidence in the potential future for the bank. There are persons with meaningful banking background, accomplished persons. That is very good in terms of the likelihood that you would have a meaningful impact.
"They did not reveal a lot of detail, but I think a lot of people appreciate that they have only been on the job for a matter of weeks. What was clear was that the Board seems to be tackling head on issues of government policies for dealing with the bank, and that provides some hope for the bank's continued survival.
"The second thing is the bank's relationship with the Central Bank. I applaud the chairman for speaking candidly on some of the issues between the bank and the regulator, and the fact that the bank has done some things to lower the temperature between the two and address some concerns with regards to capital adequacy ratios."
Mr Cash added that those two areas are significant issues which impact the long-term survival of the bank. "I think that the information provided at the AGM was encouraging, and the fact that the Board appears to have started to take those matters in hand," he said.
Mr Cash added that BOB's executive leadership was also an issue of concern for himself and several other shareholders. "In fairness, the chairman was rightfully non-committal to specific action, but forthright on the issue of executive leadership and the fact that it will get crucial attention from the new Board," he said. "We made no secret of our view that we felt that changes need to be made at the executive level."