Business Times

Free Lanka launches Rs 1.5 bln IPO

Sri Lanka’s Free Lanka Capital Holdings (FLCH), one of the country’s largest tea and rubber producers and owning a large land base in Colombo, is offering its shares to the public – hoping to raise Rs 1.5 billion.

In an announcement on Tuesday, the company that owns the Pussellawa and Maturata Tea plantations said its Initial Public Offering (IPO) to open on March 17 will have for sale 300 million shares at Rs 5 each.

The company that has interests also in property development, leisure and hydropower generation. Its major shareholders are the Browns Group of Companies and Perpetual, the ultimate holding company for the Free Lanka Group and an equal partner with Browns in FLCH.

Established in 1992, the company says it has acquired a reputation as ‘one of the most trusted and favoured plantations’ producing Sri Lanka’s finest tea. The company owns 57,000 acres of land across the country of which 9,200 acres of land is the district of Colombo and includes 19,000 acres of tea; 13,000 acres of rubber; and 3,500 acres of commercial timber.

It has 3.2 Megawatts of generated hydro power with 15 Megawatts of hydro power in the pipe line. Two, 3-star 100 roomed hotel projects will commence soon while 80,000 sq. ft office space is to be built in Colombo.

The group is a 6 billion-rupee annual turnover entity with a 10.5 billion-rupee group net asset value. Free Lanka showed a net profit of Rs 898 million for the seven months to end October 2010.

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