The Ministry of Transport and Works, and outdoor advertising agency, I-Print Digital Limited, signed a $50 million revenue sharing contract, on December 1, to undertake a five-year advertising campaign incorporating the Half-Way Tree Transport Centre in St. Andrew.
The agreement, which was signed by portfolio Minister, Hon. Michael Henry, and I-Print’s Chairman, Stephen Steele, at the transport centre, is expected to further boost efforts to make the centre operations self sustaining.
Consequent on the signing, I-Print will have full responsibility for the advertising and branding of the centre, including the funding, over the next five years. Management oversight for the Centre is currently held by Port Authority of Jamaica subsidiary, Port Authority Management Services Limited (PAMS), on whose behalf Mr. Henry signed.
Minister Henry noted that since the opening in December 2007, the Half-Way Tree centre operations have basically entailed accommodating the flow of Jamaica Urban Transit Company (JUTC) buses transporting commuters across the Kingston Metropolitan Transport Region (KMTR). He, however, lamented that the revenue generated from fares is not sufficient to offset the facility’s operational costs.
Transport and Works Minister, Hon. Michael Henry (centre), and Chairman of the outdoor advertising firm, I-Print Digital Limited, Stephen Steele (right), sign $50 million contract for the latter entity to execute a five-year advertising campaign incorporating the Half-Way Tree Transport Centre, in St Andrew, at the facility on December 1. Looking on is Chairman, Port Authority Management Services Limited (PAMS), Paul East.
“So, we have had to re-look at how we (can) remove the transport centre from any cost on Central Government, and making it self-sustaining, as was the original plan. The revenue sharing arrangement behind this contract, will allow for the implementation of the initiative without any significant public expenditure, which is very important in these times of budgetary constraints,” the Minister said.
Mr. Henry said I-Print has indicated that advertising activity could materialise in the weeks preceding Christmas.
In his remarks, Mr. Steele, who described the agreement as “significant”, said it reflects the strength of partnerships between the private and public sectors. He argued that the partnership involved the merging of a “prime asset” with the cash, ingenuity and expertise of the private sector, thereby “creating an end result which is beneficial to all parties.”
“The agreement allows the government to draw on and take advantage of private sector expertise while, in the process, freeing itself to concentrate on core activities. The agreement allows the government to utilise the capitalist free market system, in the provision of services and, in the process, improving efficiency and productivity. I’m sure the synergy will exceed all expectations,” Mr. Steele said.