AN EMPIRE OF TALENT

Jamaica 2019 | TOURISM & ENTERTAINMENT | INTERVIEW

Pulse has honed its eye for profit, beauty, and talent to make Jamaica and the wider region a more exciting place to do business.

Kingsley Cooper
BIOGRAPHY
Kingsley Cooper, CD (Commander of Distinction), is Chairman of Pulse Investments Ltd. and former Chairman of Jamaica’s Entertainment Advisory Board and the Caribbean Fashion Industry Association. An attorney at law, he founded Pulse in 1980, with colleague Hilary Phillips QC, now a judge of the Court of Appeal. The first fashion production, modelling, music and general entertainment company of its kind, it is listed on the Jamaica Stock Exchange as Pulse Investments Limited. As head of Pulse, he effected a number of innovations and firsts for Jamaica and the wider Caribbean. These include the Caribbean Model Search, Caribbean Fashionweek, the Superjam concert series, the lifestyle TV program Caribbean Fashion Weekly, and the CMS reality TV show.

What have been some recent highlights for Pulse Investments?

Pulse Investments is extremely pleased to have completed the first of its accommodations projects in 2018. We built a 22-room mini-hotel on Trafalgar Road in New Kingston at The Pulse Center and have started welcoming guests. It is great to have facilities for both business and pleasure travelers which give them options in terms of pricing and services. What is special about this particular hospitality offering is that we are located in the same premises as the Peter Tosh Museum. Furthermore, the Bob Marley Museum is just up the road and Devon House across the street. This means we can expand the real Jamaican cultural creative experience for our guests. The Sensi Medical Cannabis Dispensary is also located at the Pulse Center. Our Pulse Rooms at Trafalgar, as we call it, therefore brings a slightly different product to other hospitality offerings in New Kingston. The first phase of our new 65-suite hotel project in Stony Hill is now nearing completion, and we should be receiving guests by summer 2019. We are also thrilled by the success of our modeling agency business in 2018. Alicia Burke, who is currently one of the top models in the world, is now in the top 50 highest earners in global modeling. Additionally, there is a slew of up-and-coming stars in the international space, as well as top established talent, such as Jeneil Williams and Oraine Barrett. This is important to us because expanded model searches, which unearth new faces, will allow us to also expand our international footprint. Accordingly, we are increasing our presence in the wider Caribbean and launching new searches across Africa and other international territories.

How do you manage your investments?

The key is to ensure that everything we do is sustainable. We are in an age of great innovation and change, where everything that used to be done in a traditional way is now being done in another way using the internet as a base. Second, we look at growth. We are listed on the Jamaican Stock Exchange, which provides us with access to capital to finance growth. Once a company has the finance and can sustain its business, it is just a matter of systematic logical expansion. Additionally, we have key management personnel who have been part of this process for many years. We have a great deal of institutional capacity within our organization.

Do you plan to expand your businesses?

Always. In terms of marketing, there are synergies between all the things we do in our different business lines. Our creative business includes events, the museum, fashion, television shows, and so on. We can see guests coming to our hotel to take part in this whole creative experience. At Villa Ronai, in Stony Hill, we plan to have a spa, including treatments that involve cannabis-infused oils and the like. Again, this is about getting into that whole lifestyle experience while guests enjoy the lushness and quality of this beautiful place. Villa Ronai also houses The Majestic Sushi and Grill, perhaps the top Japanese restaurant in the Caribbean. This is all part of our lifestyle village idea, which will be expanded by having these new suites, the spa, and things of that nature. Innovation and working with technology, including social media platforms, are all part of this. Our business is organized in such a way that, with standard effort, we can see significant growth. By definition, these synergies create a result that is greater than the sum of its parts.

What are your goals at Pulse Investments for 2019?

We want to see the first phase of the Villa Ronai property up and running and all aspects of our business realizing increased success. This is especially so in the areas we are giving a new focus, such as Pulse Leisure (our accommodations business), Pulse TV, and our regional and international model searches, as well as a Pulse Festival in the summer.