Business groups help with jet for students

  • Albert Benchimol, chairman of Abir

Five Bermuda students and residents returned to Bermuda from Canada in a private plane a few hours before the island began its shelter in place restrictions.

They did so thanks to a collaboration between two of the island’s major international business organisations and the Bermuda Government.

The students travelled from Toronto on-board a LearJet on Friday. The Government had contacted the Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers and the Association of Bermuda International Companies in order to team up and coordinate the group’s return to the island.

Abir and Abic made collaborative arrangements to charter a plane to offer the stranded individuals a ride home.

Albert Benchimol, president and CEO of Axis Capital and chairman of Abir, said: “Reuniting Bermudian students with their families during the pandemic is a small gesture that means a great deal. Abir member companies are pleased to work with Abic and the Bermuda Government to ensure a safe homecoming for Bermudian students studying in Canada.”

Isabelle Ramsay-Brackstone, founder of Lili Bermuda Perfumery and Bermuda’s Honorary Consul of Canada, said: “This was an impressive and very commendable initiative, and underscores these companies’ deep commitment to the island.”

John Huff, president and CEO of Abir, and Richard Winchell, CEO of Abic, said in a joint statement: “Abir and Abic were pleased to come together to address an immediate need in our community. Bermuda’s international business sector remains committed to Bermuda’s health and economic recovery from Covid-19.”