Ascendant Group Limited, the parent company of BELCO and Bermuda Gas, has filed notice to seek relief from the 60/40 rule.

It becomes the second Bermuda Stock Exchange company to be granted an exemeption from the 60/40 rule after KeyTech, the parent company of BTC and Logic Communications, did so in September.

The 60/40 rule stipulates a company must be 60 per cent owned by Bermudians.

Earlier this year, Government eased restrictions  and allowed for exemptions as a way for local companies to have more access to capital.

At that time, Wayne Furbert, Business Development and Tourism Minister, said: "This would help companies raise capital which is not available in Bermuda."

In a letter to the Government of Bermuda’s Minister of Business Development and Tourism, the Ascendant stated: “In accordance with subsection 113(8) of the Companies Act 1981, Ascendant Group Limited, whose registered office is located at 27 Serpentine Road, Hamilton HM 07, Bermuda, hereby gives notice of its intention with effect from October 22, 2012, to rely on the provisions of section 113(1)(cd)(i) of the Companies Act 1981 and to carry on business in reliance upon the provisions of section 114(1)(e) of the said Act. As such, Ascendant Group Limited hereby notifies the Minister that its shares are listed on the Bermuda Stock Exchange and that it is engaged as a business in a material way in the energy industry."

Besides Bermuda Gas and BELCO, Ascendant also is the parent company for AG Holdings Limited, PureNERGY Renewables Ltd., and inVenture Limited, as well as BELCO Properties Limited and BTS Limited.