The much anticipated Sri Lanka Insurance Corporation Ltd’s (SLIC) initial public offering (IPO) is expected to be mid next year, possibly after a holding company is formed to bring in all SLIC investments under one roof, an official said.
"We plan to be listed on the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) mid next year after we form a holding company in which we will divest around 40% to 49% stake. This is still at a discussion stage," a SLIC official told the Business Times, adding that the SLIC directors had discussed this at several of their board meetings. He noted that the IPO had been expected to be launched this year, but due the general investment climate in the country, they had put it off.
“We want to become the largest holding company in the country,” he said, adding that Litro Gas, which the government acquired from Shell Gas Lanka Ltd for US$ 63 million (for 51% shares) through SLIC recently along with Lanka Hospitals, will be subsidiaries of this holding company. The SLIC, which reverted to the government three years ago, will also be a subsidiary of the holding company. "The holding company will most likely be called Sri Lanka Insurance Holdings," the official added.
SLIC acquired some 12.7% in Blue Diamond Jewellery Worldwide Ltd, recently and the official said that all its strategic investments such as Blue Diamond will also fall under the holding company.