Co-Chairman of the Economic Programme Oversight Committee, EPOC, Richard Byles, is encouraging more Jamaican companies to invest in tourism.

Mr. Byles is also President and CEO of the Sagicor Group, which owns the Hilton Rose Hall in St. James, and three Jewel Resorts in St. Ann.

Sagicor’s Real Estate X Fund is also in the process of completing the acquisition of a 742-room hotel in Orlando, Florida.

The Sagicor Group, which was traditionally known for insurance.

But the Group, which has made significant strides in the banking industry, has begun making a name for itself in tourism over the past few years.

Their interest began with the purchase of Jewel Dunn’s River in Mammee Bay, St. Ann in 2010.

They then acquired the Jewel Runaway Bay Resort in 2012, which was quickly followed by another Jewel Resort in Salem and most recently the purchase of the Hilton Rose Hall Hotel in St. James.

The four properties place Sagicor among the power brokers in the tourism industry.

Mr. Byles says companies that are struggling in their core business should consider investing in tourism.

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The Sagicor boss says there are tremendous opportunities in tourism.

He says his company’s success in the industry is proof of that.

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And Mr. Byles says Jamaicans shouldn’t be content to let foreign players dominate the industry.

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