Business Times

Lankem to expand in leisure, paints

By Duruthu Edirimuni Chandrasekera

Paints giant Lankem Ceylon PLC (LCP) is moving big-time into the hotel sector, acquiring a majority stake in Weligama Bay Hotel, and looking at other opportunities while pushing ahead with plans to export paint, its core business activity, officials said.

“Very recently we acquired the Weligama Bay Hotel’s controlling 51% through our subsidiary, Beruwela Resorts Ltd. It is a 60-room hotel and the closest one (in the south) for whale-watching. We are open to acquire as well as build hotels,” Anushman Rajaratnam, Managing Director LCP told the Business Times on the sidelines of a company reception on Tuesday.

He said LCP will be developing its land in the East and is looking to re-start the hotel project in Kandy which was stopped sometime ago due to the war. “We’re also eyeing regional expansions in our paints sector. We plan to export paints to some countries,” he added.

Expected turnover for the company in the current financial year would be around Rs 16 billion, which is a 60% growth against the Rs 9.8 billion in the previous financial year. He noted that this was possible due to LCP acquiring C.W. Mackie (CWM), a listed food distribution and trading firm in February.

Mr. Rajaratnam said that CWM will contribute some Rs 5 billion to the turnover. LCP is also open to other acquisitions. “We’re open to other such takeovers. The economic optimism is quite high at present and if there is something which adds value to the group we will certainly look at it,” he added.

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