Friday, December 31, 2010

Sarkis Izmirlian, Man of the Year

Sarkis Izmirlian JCN Man of the Year
The Bahama Journal

As we here at JCN have done for the past ten years; so do we continue this year: we have decided to recognize certain deserving men and women for the contribution they have made [and continue to make] to the ongoing development of the Bahamas.

We do so not only because we can; but because we must –as a responsible media organization – continue to do all that we can to help build up our nation; and so by the same token, we must always give credit where and when credit is due others.

We note also that, right-thinking Bahamians throughout the length and breadth of the Bahamas are today excited at the vistas of opportunity they see as they contemplate the initiation of the Baha Mar project, slated for the Cable Beach strip.

As in the case of these highly expectant Bahamians, we too look forward to the start-up and completion of this mega-project.

In this regard, it should not take the genius that comes with rocket-science to understand and appreciate the import of a project that promises to employ thousands of Bahamians.

Such a venture would also bring with it a multiplier effect that promises to buoy other aspects of the Bahamian economy, its society and its competitiveness in that wider world where in the struggle for economic pre-eminence and consumer satisfaction, it is excellence that matters most of all.

Izmirlian is this Journal’s Man of the Year because he has been able to match word with deed in support of his stated conclusion to the effect that the Baha Mar project – in its guise as a world-class resort - will significantly benefit The Bahamas and all Bahamians.

We believe him when he says that, “… Baha Mar will make The Bahamas one of the premier tourist locations in the world…"

And so, distilled to its essence, the word we are getting is to the effect that, Baha Mar will draw millions of vacationers and business travelers every year to the resort's six hotels, with almost 3,500 rooms and condos, the largest casino in the Caribbean, the largest convention center in The Bahamas, a world-class golf course, retail village and much more.

In addition, it is to be noted that, Baha Mar –once fully operational- will boast having a staff that is fully operational, with some 98 per cent of the staff being Bahamian.

This is excellent-good news.

It is this new information that supports and under girds the decision we have made to name this entrepreneur par excellence – Sarkis Izmirlian- as our man of the year.

He is this year’s choice not only because of his tenacity and vision; but also for being that kind of investor who clearly has a phenomenal depth of confidence in the Bahamas and in its people.

In addition, he is clearly that kind of man who is driven to get things up and going; here we would also venture that this man has a depth of confidence in himself and in his capacity to get up from under any number of disappointments and challenges.

To put the matter concerning Izmirlian in its proper perspective; this investor makes things happen; in this, he is to be distinguished from all those others who wait patiently for things to line up this or that way.

This is not to say that, he does not recognize the need for perseverance; indeed, he surely had his share of this as he plotted his way through what might have – on first glance- seemed to be seemed so very many high hurdles.

As the record shows; this man persevered; stuck to his guns; sought out and found a worthy strategic partner in the guise of the Chinese Export-Import Bank and has thereafter gone on to victory.

As we now know, “The proposed Cable Beach development would be financed by the Export-Import Bank of China and constructed by the China State Construction Engineering Corporation…”

And clearly, while we reference victory on the part of this man –Sarkis Izmirlian – we are also minded to take note of the fact that, the Bahama Mar project signals good news not only for those who govern, but also for the nation’s Loyal Opposition.

As the record would show, the initial conversations and tentative agreements concerning Baha Mar and the revitalization of the Cable Beach Strip came up for consideration in that time when, the Free National Movement was then in opposition.

In toto, then, the vast majority of our people are also winners in that saga that now involves Sarkis Izmirlian, Baha Mar and the transformation of the tourism product in the Bahamas.

This believer in the Bahamas deserves not only our recognition; but also that of all right-thinking Bahamians.

And so, we salute Sarkis Izmirlian as JCN’s Man of the Year.

December 31, 2010

The Bahama Journal