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Gov’t folds! Roadtown Wholesale Trading Ltd SOLD!

- Trade License issued to Canadian North West Company Inc, Local company interested in purchase rejected
Despite the sale of Roadtown Wholesale Trading Ltd, the names Riteway Food Markets and Roadtown Wholesale Trading will remain. Photo: VINO
Roadtown Wholesale Trading Limited has been sold to Canadian Company North West Inc. The sale comes despite controversial politician Hon Myron V. Walwyn (AL), right, the Minister for Education and Culture, claiming in the House of Assembly (HoA) in April 2016 that he was against the sale and wanted to ‘protect local businesses.’ Photo: VINO/Internet Source
Roadtown Wholesale Trading Limited has been sold to Canadian Company North West Inc. The sale comes despite controversial politician Hon Myron V. Walwyn (AL), right, the Minister for Education and Culture, claiming in the House of Assembly (HoA) in April 2016 that he was against the sale and wanted to ‘protect local businesses.’ Photo: VINO/Internet Source
A copy of the rejection letter towards the sale of Roadtown Wholesale Trading Limited to a local group was sent to Premier and Minister of Trade Dr The Honourable D. Orlando Smith (AL); however, nothing was done by his administration to help facilitate a local purchase. Photo: VINO/File
A copy of the rejection letter towards the sale of Roadtown Wholesale Trading Limited to a local group was sent to Premier and Minister of Trade Dr The Honourable D. Orlando Smith (AL); however, nothing was done by his administration to help facilitate a local purchase. Photo: VINO/File
PASEA ESTATE, Tortola, VI- After all the hoopla, one politician trying to gain brownie points and locals lobbying the National Democratic Party (NDP) Administration to stop the sale as there was a local company with the finances that was willing to purchase Roadtown Wholesale Trading Limited, the entity has been sold.

The sale to the Canadian Company North West Inc of Roadtown Wholesale, the biggest food chain in the Virgin Islands (VI) which owns all the Rite Way Food Markets with locations in Virgin Gorda, East End, Pasea Estate, Flemming Street in Road Town, Road Reef, Harbour Market in West End, Nanny Cay and Fine Foods in East End, took place last month.

NDP approved sale

In addition, the Government of the VI issued the Canadian company with a Trade License just before Christmas 2016 and other approvals after the owners of Roadtown Wholesale rejected an offer by a local company to purchase.

A copy of the rejection letter obtained by our newsroom was also sent to Premier and Minister of Trade Dr The Honourable D. Orlando Smith (AL); however, as expected nothing was done by his administration to help facilitate a local purchase.

It was this news site in February 2016 that first and accurately broke the news that Rite Way Food Markets will be sold and Founder of the business, Peter Haycraft subsequently confirmed the possible sale.

Once the news hit the streets and that it had a local company willing to purchase, one controversial politician, Hon Myron V. Walwyn (AL), the Minister for Education and Culture, went to the House of Assembly (HoA) in April 2016 claiming that he was against the sale and wanted to “protect local business.”

Hon Walwyn & hypocrisy  

In his usual grand standing and striving to remain relevant by appearing to be on the right side of issues, the Minister told the HoA “we cannot allow certain companies to come into the Virgin Islands here with all their money and take over what we have and put all those locals out of business.”

Minister Walwyn in his heated rant said “there is something coming down the pipeline and I am going to stand on the forefront of it because it is our job as legislators not to just talk; talk is cheap; money buy land…”

However, while Mr Walwyn was in the Legislature claiming to want to protect local businesses and that “we cannot simply be consumers in our own country; we have to be owners”, he was at the same time negotiating the sale/merger of his own company Orion Law to a foreign entity.

Who is North West Inc?

The Canadian Company North West, who will now own all of Rite Way stores, including the Cash and Carry in Pasea Estate on Tortola, has retail presence in the Caribbean including Cost-U-Less stores in the Cayman Islands, Barbados, Curacao, St Martin, St Thomas and St Croix in the US Virgin Islands (USVI).

It is our understanding that the purchase of the Majority ownership in Roadtown Wholesale Trading Ltd, by North West comes with a few restrictions, which include that North West will continue to operate the business under the trade names, Rite Way Food Markets and Roadtown Wholesale Trading.

In addition, certain VI shareholders will continue to be a minority part of the ownership and will have a seat in Board meetings.

45 Responses to “Gov’t folds! Roadtown Wholesale Trading Ltd SOLD!”

  • cay (03/01/2017, 09:52) Like (22) Dislike (4) Reply
    Ndp is a joke
  • voter (03/01/2017, 09:55) Like (30) Dislike (16) Reply
    Vino you are the best always on top of things
  • Okay then (03/01/2017, 10:02) Like (80) Dislike (3) Reply
    Once the prices are good i dont care who buys it. Politicians stop being greedy! You are here to protect our intetest and that means ensuring wr get value for money. Thank you for the sale!!!!
  • Please! (03/01/2017, 10:17) Like (89) Dislike (3) Reply
    How the hell Government can force them to sell to a local? Just because the local has money doesn't mean they will carry on the legacy that the prior owners want to see. They obviously wanted a proven entity to take over. Show me the locals that have run anything right around here? NOT ONE! Bring on those good prices and let's get this rolling.
    • @ please! (03/01/2017, 10:37) Like (5) Dislike (4) Reply
      Why the hell you do not ask funny man?
    • Huh? (03/01/2017, 13:49) Like (8) Dislike (15) Reply
      What good prices? Nothing will change. The only thing that will change is ownership and maybe a few products. Nothing else will change. They have no reason to offer good prices.... Without competition nothing changes.
      • Wendy (03/01/2017, 22:34) Like (1) Dislike (2) Reply
        Huh, you are right the prices will remain the same, we are still buying and complaing.
  • Hmm6 (03/01/2017, 10:17) Like (15) Dislike (45) Reply
    I hope that all the Naysayers will boycott the new company and go to Cost U Less in St Thomas to shop.
    • right (03/01/2017, 10:47) Like (54) Dislike (1) Reply
      You real funny as The NorthWest Company owns Cost u Less.
    • Really (03/01/2017, 11:10) Like (20) Dislike (1) Reply
      But its COST U LESS is who coming...so why go stt and them here in your mouth. Some of us have to pay boat, tax, taxi/rental, food etc. Is best we buy what we want here.
      • These darn buttons to close!! (12/01/2017, 14:17) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
        @Really......was going to press the reply button but the dislike one registered. These darn buttons are to close. I totally agree with your comment.
    • Read before you talk (03/01/2017, 20:06) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
      Obviously you didn't read the full story. Your probably of them that check the news site just to read the comments.....they own cost you less as well so you'll be still supporting their company
    • Mr. WILLIS (21/03/2017, 10:44) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      cost u-less is owned by NWC everybody get together and buy some shares of NWC Have a Voice.
  • vex (03/01/2017, 10:23) Like (20) Dislike (2) Reply

    Myron better go take several seats 

  • home boy (03/01/2017, 11:27) Like (15) Dislike (0) Reply
    I am so happy the long awaited sale is finally over. Even if the Naysayers go to Cost Uless it is still North West will be benifiting.
  • i from here (03/01/2017, 11:29) Like (12) Dislike (1) Reply
    Myron have no power, juSt TALK!
  • Cookie Jar (03/01/2017, 11:42) Like (15) Dislike (2) Reply
    Mark might be in trouble now
    • Scary Mary (04/01/2017, 17:01) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      Mark isn't in trouble at all, he will just have to COMPETE for a change!
  • Hypocrisy much? (03/01/2017, 11:55) Like (91) Dislike (0) Reply
    I would invite all who can to please take the time and read the article in the following link: http://www.hillmanweb.com/everitt/builders/haycraft.html

    I would then invite all the naysayers who are quick to talk just because they have mouths to please explain:

    1. Why a business started by a UK couple, rejected for funding by UK banks back in the time when there was NO BANK in the BVI and who started this business on their own backs and built it up to be what it is today, should now just sell it to a local because they are local?

    2. Why a local did not do exactly the same as the Haycrafts back in the 60s so that a petition for the business to remain 'local' would have a little more weight to it?

    3. Which locals jobs are in jeopardy as they claim? Remember, no cheating; you cannot suddenly claim that 'locals' include those who are 'not born here' when it suits you.

    As I see it, the Haycrafts built that business up to what it is today on their own steam and it is clear that they want to maintain brand 'Road Town Wholesale' and brand 'Rite Way' as a legacy (hence the agreement that the names will be not be changed). They are ENTITLED to do so, having put in the legwork and effort to build THEIR brand. Because some now claim that it is local after being here for so many years and becoming profitable in those years does not change the facts. Also, local shareholders maintain their shares, so where is the supposed victimization of locals? This is not some communist enclave where foreigners can come in and build businesses which can then be seized by the government of the day because they have proven to be profitable. Get real. This is the British Virgin Islands. No one owes you anything. Either put in the same hard legwork and build something up locally that can be proudly called local, or else as some of you like to say "have several seats" and hush because this false sense of entitlement is exactly what is killing local entrepreneurial spirit.
  • big man (03/01/2017, 11:58) Like (5) Dislike (31) Reply
    NDP sold us out again
  • just asking.. (03/01/2017, 12:19) Like (2) Dislike (2) Reply
    Whats new here?
  • PLEEEEEASE (03/01/2017, 12:34) Like (2) Dislike (5) Reply
    I SMELL A DEAL WITH LOCAL INVOLVEMENT. THIS HAS THE BVIIC ALL OVER IT. LETS SEE HOW THAT WILL PAN OUT.
  • Xxx (03/01/2017, 13:01) Like (6) Dislike (19) Reply
    locals getting screwed again by this NDP gang
  • punk (03/01/2017, 13:21) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    I don't understand why this stupid foreigner is still in the HOA. Just an old show off. He sold his own company to outsiders and now his fees are higher than ever, while talking about: "you are going to see man from boy..." and what did we see? Just a whimp.
  • Eagle Eye (03/01/2017, 14:03) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    Aslong it cost me less i would be there shopping
  • RTW worker.. (03/01/2017, 14:18) Like (44) Dislike (1) Reply
    Locals... Hmmm . Thank God it's not local.. It Will be another Slave Camp like V.Cay. P.Pect.. Rite Now RTW is a great place to work.. You get all all your benefits.. You always get pay on time, check never bounce. Excellent Company.. Just a few managerial changes or switches and it can get better..
  • Not Rich (03/01/2017, 14:36) Like (7) Dislike (1) Reply
    Hallelujah. Might spend all that money I used to going to STT here in the BVI instead.
  • Hmm (03/01/2017, 15:16) Like (6) Dislike (2) Reply
    Nobody finds it strange that u cant find a tolian to feed their own? Come on this is bs
  • Savings (03/01/2017, 16:47) Like (3) Dislike (7) Reply
    Dr smith wiĺl make history as the worst premier in the bvi
  • To the Contrary (03/01/2017, 18:23) Like (9) Dislike (6) Reply
    To the contrary of many opinions here Dr. Smith will go down in history as a Premier who navigated this Territory through some of its most turbulent times and ushered in some of the most fundamental changes as well as developments that the Country has seen in the past decades. As to RTW, there was no folding of no position. Like any true leader Dr. Smith assessed, positioned, negotiated and delivered. Dr. Smith was able to safeguard ( by working with Notthwest) -- BVI ownership, BVI directorship, BVI Branding, protect BVI jobs and BVI competing businesses have BVI as a central role in Northwest Regional operations, etc. all while having a new entrant that is absolutely necessary for our many facets of our economy. Lets face it BVI NEEDS Riteway. I wish all of you could walk a day in Dr. Smith's shoes and see how remarkably well, diplomatic, fair and balanced he handles these matters while others including the media spouts off.
  • Open Letter (03/01/2017, 18:45) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
    An open letter to Mr Walwyn and his supporters:

    1) “We cannot simply be consumers in our own country; we have to be owners”,
    Don't forget who created Rite Way. An English Expat did. It's easy to claim than create.

    2) Which local company wanted to buy that's NOT owned by a politician?

    • pants on fire (04/01/2017, 07:46) Like (4) Dislike (0) Reply
      Why local politician sold his law firm to a foreigner, and which one wants to sell his supermarket to a foreigner?
  • Good stuff (03/01/2017, 19:40) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    This is good news. I don't see a problem here. NDP always want to make a big thing out of everything.
  • Hmm (03/01/2017, 20:06) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    No never mind...I going PriceMart Saturday
  • native (03/01/2017, 22:51) Like (0) Dislike (4) Reply
    Anybody aware that 150 jobs will be cut..... i guess thats why there was no staff party this year... nobody realise the position that the staff is in now..Haycraft done get he money... Now what?
  • pat (04/01/2017, 23:37) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    so now we have a monopoly of bigger stores. I wish there was some diversity.
  • voice (05/01/2017, 11:56) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    That politician is not a true Virginislander. He even did not grow up here now wants to run the show. He cares nothing about Virginislanders. Like all the others what he can get from these islands.


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