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Cash-rich CT Group rationalises investments

Cash-rich CT Group rationalises investments

Ceylon Theatres Holding (CTH) Group, a Sri Lankan holding company and investment arm of several businesses, is undergoing a process of rationalisation and ‘sustainable’ value creation. In one of the most significant business transactions in recent times, the group – involved in the food and beverage sector, consumer goods, retail marketing, property including real estate [...]

Tea no longer popular in the land of Ceylon Tea, say experts

Tea no longer popular in the land of Ceylon Tea, say experts

Tea houses are set to open in the island aimed at popularising the tea drinking habit among locals, against the coffee houses that pose a challenge, for a country selling the world’s best teas. Despite Ceylon Tea being marketed globally as a brand identified with one of the best tea in the world, the country [...]

Sri Lanka seeks $700 mln World Bank loan to overcome revenue shortfall

The Sri Lankan government is seeking US $7OO million assistance from the World Bank following the Treasury’s failed effort to get budgetary support of $1 billion from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), informed sources said. The Treasury is eyeing cheaper funds for development work and urgent expenditure from international donor agencies, a senior government official [...]

Brazilian may be next WTO chief

A Brazilian may be the next head of the Geneva-based World Trade Organisation (WTO), replacing Director General and French national, Pascal Lamy. At an informal meeting of the ambassadors of member countries on May 8, a 3-member committee, looking into the selection, recommended Brazil Ambassador Roberto Carvalho de Azevêdo as the candidate who can gain [...]

Heraymila to announce new owners

Heraymila Securities Ltd plans to officially announce this week its change of ownership to UAE-based Eagle Investments as well as a change in name, officials said. “Heraymila is awaiting both the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) approval for the new ownership and change of name and we expect it will [...]

Pharma firm into apartments and mixed development

The Colombo Pharmacy Company, which recently exited from the pharmaceutical business, is planning on apartments and mixed development at its lands in Colombo, officials said. An official told the Business Times that in the 200 perch property at Union Place plans are afoot to build a commercial and entertainment facility while on a 30-perch land [...]

Geneva:Drinking fresh, pure water straight off the tap

Geneva:Drinking fresh, pure water straight off the tap

Geneva, SWITZERLAND – The first thing that one notices when getting onto the streets of Geneva is the cosmopolitan nature of the city. There is an equal number of restaurants catering to both the tastes of foreigners and local cuisine – such is the breadth of diversity that this relatively small town brings. There is [...]

Sri Lankans: Are we tea or coffee-drinkers?

Is Sri Lanka turning into a coffee-drinking nation from traditional tea-drinking? Pundits in the industry and some state officials seem to think so. Hence a new campaign to promote tea locally with the setting up of a chain of tea shops to promote the local drinking habit. One of the arguments being trotted out is [...]

Grown momentum slowing down in Sri Lanka

The growth momentum in the Sri Lankan economy has slowed down significantly. It is important to examine its performance subsequent to the necessary stabilisation measures introduced in Feb/March 2012 to address the overheating of the economy. This was reflected in the severe balance of payments/reserves and inflationary pressures at that time. Trends in indicators that [...]

Expo Freight (EFL) wins ‘Logistics Company of the Year Award’ at local conference

Expo Freight (EFL) wins ‘Logistics Company of the Year Award’ at local conference

Expo Freight (EFL) was adjudged the ‘Logistics Company of the year’ at the recently concluded Sri Lanka Ports, Trade and Logistics Conference Awards Ceremony in Colombo. The prestigious award was received on behalf of EFL by its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Jagath Pathirane, the company said. He said, “winning an international award is testimony and [...]

“12,500 youth to get ‘unused’ plantation lands”

Referring to an article under the caption “12,500 youth to get ‘unused’ plantation lands” appearing in the Business Times of Sunday the 5th of May 2013, the Planters’ Association of Ceylon (PA) wishes to make the following clarification. The distribution of unutilised plantation lands to unemployed youth was a proposal made in the 2012 National [...]

Night work barriers and proper child care services restrict women from SL’s labour force

Sri Lanka has one of the lowest rates of female participation in the workforce in the world where 5.6 million women of working age are not working, a World Bank study shows. The findings of the study were presented at a discussion organised by the World Bank and the Institute of Policy Studies in Colombo [...]

SriLankan Airlines tickets thro’ Mobitel phones

State-owned Sri Lanka Telecom Mobitel and SriLankan Airlines are offering customers the option of reserving airline tickets via mobile phone. Expanding on Mobitel’s mTicketing platform, this collaboration breaks new ground, and makes it the only entity to offer this facility in the country, the phone company said. The way to go, the company said, is [...]

Six Jetwing hotels receive ISO 14001 certification from SLSI

Six Jetwing hotels receive ISO 14001 certification from SLSI

Jetwing Hotels, long known for its commitment towards the environment, achieved a new milestone — being awarded ISO 14001 certification for six of its properties in Sri Lanka. The Sri Lanka Standards Institution, or SLSI, awarded the certificates in a ceremony organised at Jetwing Sea, Negombo last week, the hotel group said. The hotels are [...]

Hotel Dolphin and Hotel Sigiriya closed for renovations

Two hotels under the Hemas-owned Serendib Leisure group have been closed for refurbishment since May 1, the company said this week. Club Hotel Dolphin in Waikkal, a 4-star property, will undergo a six month refurbishment of 100 rooms costing Rs 500 million and will be closed between May 1 and October 31. The hotel which [...]

New CEO at HSBC Sri Lanka and Maldives

New CEO at HSBC  Sri Lanka and Maldives

HSBC (bank) has appointed Patrick Gallagher as Chief Executive Officer for HSBC Sri Lanka and Maldives, effective immediately. He succeeds Nick A Nicolaou, who has retired after more than 35 years with the HSBC Group, the global bank said. Mr Gallagher comes to Sri Lanka with over 23 years of experience. Mr Gallagher joined the [...]

US-based Priyan Fernando succeeds Ken Balendra as Chairman of Brandix

US-based Priyan Fernando succeeds Ken Balendra as Chairman of Brandix

Brandix Lanka Ltd this week said US-based banker Priyan Fernando, currently a non-executive Director, has taken over as its Chairman effective 3rd May 2013. Mr. Fernando, Executive Vice President of Global Business Services at American Express, New York, succeeds Ken Balendra following the latter’s retirement after 10 years as Chairman of Sri Lanka’s single largest [...]

Response to ‘Electricity is not Just Arithmetic, Sir”

The article by C. Maliyadda headlined ‘Electricity is not just arithmetic, Sir’ which appeared in last week’s Business Times has several errors; all of which I do not wish to dispute as the public are fully aware of the true picture. I will only address a very glaring error, which if goes unchallenged could be [...]

Indian mega food firm in initial $16 mln investment at Mirigama

A new, multi-million dollar food facility in Sri Lanka by India’s Dabur group will serve as a manufacturing site for India’s signature packed food beverage “Real”. Launched by Dabur Lanka (Pvt) Ltd, a fully owned subsidiary of the giant Indian consumer goods manufacturer, Dabur India, the factory was opened last week in Mirigama by Minister [...]

Z-score debacle at CEB

It is wrong for the United National Party to bring a No Confidence Motion against the present Minister of Power and Energy Ms. Pavithra Wanniarachchi as she is only a puppet on a string. The only technically qualified minister in the Cabinet is Champika Ranawaka, and why he was removed is another matter. To have [...]

Nineteen Sri Lankan car importers team up to operate vehicle business in Myanmar

Nineteen Sri Lankan car importers team up to operate vehicle business in Myanmar

Taking advantage of Myanmar’s aged car fleet at present as well as tax concessions given for vehicle importers, 19 Sri Lankan car sale companies have teamed up to operate a vehicle business in this Southeast Asian market, vehicle importers said.  Indika Sampath Merenchige, President of the Vehicle Importers Association of Lanka, told the Business Times [...]

Sri Lanka wins Kia’s ‘Distributor of Distinction’ award for Asia

Korean car maker Kia has adjudged its sole distributor in Sri Lanka, Kia Motors (Lanka) Ltd., as the company’s ‘Distributor of Distinction’ in recognition of ‘Professionalism of the Highest Degree and Outstanding Sales Performance in the Asia Region, a media release issued by the local company said. The award was presented at the annual Asia [...]

Sri Lanka vehicle registrations plunge further

Sri Lanka vehicle registrations plunge further

Sri Lanka’s vehicle registrations plummeted 35.9 per cent to 87,209 in the 1st four months of 2013 from 136,132 a year earlier with high import duties curbing new arrivals, Motor Traffic Department officials said. According to data from Sri Lanka’s Motor Traffic Department, motor car registrations fell to 8,579 in January-April 2013, down 38.1 per [...]

Vehicle importers launch Motor Guide Directory

Vehicle importers launch Motor Guide Directory

The Sri Lanka Motor Guide Directory 2013 containing details of companies with direct or indirect links to automobile industry has been launched for the first time. This directory was published by the Vehicle Importers Association of Lanka for the benefit of all stakeholders in the vehicle business and vehicle users, said Association President Indika Sampath [...]

New standards system for vehicle repair centres

A programme aimed at raising the standards among motor vehicle repair centres across the island was launched by the Motor Traffic Commissioner’s Department (MTC). Under the initiative the MTC will give its seal of approval and standardization certificate to motor vehicle repair centres that meet tough new requirements developed by the authorities. “This will add [...]

DIMO introduces TATA PRIMA to Sri Lanka

Sri Lanka is moving away from conventional methods of goods transportation due to rapid developments in infrastructure, whilst companies and customers increasingly demand for faster and efficient transportation solutions. The government’s policy of focusing on expressways, new airports and sea ports enable part of those demands to be met. The demand becomes complete, only when [...]

SL Transport Board incurs a massive loss of Rs. 3.8 billion

The state-run Sri Lanka Transport Board (SLTB) has incurred a massive loss of Rs. 3.8 billion while the Treasury has handed out Rs. 3.6 billion from tax income from the people to maintain bus services on loss-making routes, officials said. Revenues of SLTB rose 25.1 percent to Rs. 26.3 billion as result of a 20 [...]

Textured Jersey surpasses Rs. 1 billion net profit milestone

Textured Jersey Lanka PLC (TJL), Sri Lanka’s top provider of knit fabric, has reported Rs. 1.02 billion in net profit for the full year ended 31st March 2013 (FY2012/13), up 62 per cent year on year. The company said in a statement that a combination of a strong order book consisting of major customers such [...]

Pan Asia Bank welcomes President of Bansei Securities Co. Ltd.

Pan Asia Bank welcomes President of Bansei Securities Co. Ltd.

Pan Asia Bank recently hosted cocktails to welcome Toyohiko Murakami, President of Bansei Securities Ltd of Japan, a leading Japanese investment firm with whom the bank has been promoting investment opportunities in Sri Lanka. Bansei is a trading member of the Tokyo Stock Exchange that has been introduced to Sri Lankan investment opportunities by NWS [...]

Sri Lanka seeks WIPO assistance for ‘building respect’ on IP

Sri Lanka is to seek technical and financial assistance from the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) for ‘building respect’ on IP, its enforcement and public awareness campaign in the country, officials said. A country proposal for WIPO assistance for IP has been devised and it will be forwarded to the world organization through the Sri [...]

SL students depart for Intel ISEF in the US

SL students depart for Intel ISEF in the US

Minister of Education Bandula Gunawardena met winners of the Sri Lanka Science and Engineering Fair (SLSEF) 2013, Pasindu Wijesena from Ananda College, Colombo, Subhash Gamage and Rakhitha Malewana from Nalanda College, Colombo, and the runner up, Dinesh Kapuge from Mihintala Maha Vidyalaya, Mihintalaya, prior to their departure to the US to participate in the annual [...]

SL Conventions Bureau, SriLankan Airlines address MICE clients in India

The Sri Lanka Convention Bureau (SLCB) together with SriLankan Airlines recently addressed clients of leading Indian outbound MICE operators in the Indian industrial city of Gurgaron. Following negotiation with Cox and Kings (CNK), among the largest outbound operators in India, an event was organised on April 26 where both SLCB and SriLankan Airlines made presentations [...]

SriLankan Cargo in 2012/13 records highest revenue and tonnage

SriLankan Cargo, the cargo arm of SriLankan Airlines recorded the highest revenue of Rs.12.8 billion in a single financial year in the history of the airline. It also handled the highest tonnage of 101,000 metric tonnes in 2012/13, according to an airline statement. SriLankan cargo recorded an increase of 21 per cent on its revenue [...]

Bata refurbishes MC showroom

Bata refurbishes MC showroom

Colombo water pipes ancient, always breakdown!

Underground water pipes laid during British rule in 1875 in Colombo city are very old and resulting in a regular breakdown in supply, a top official of the National Water Supply and Drainage Board, Sri Lanka (NWSDB) says. Board Chairman Karunasena Hettiarachchi, while conceding these shortcomings in the water supply, also revealed that there are [...]

Piramal Glass Ceylon year-end profits highest ever, proposes a 38% dividend

Piramal Glass Ceylon PLC has seen its year-end 31st March 2013 turnover rise to Rs. 5.5 billion while post-tax profit was the highest on record at Rs.724 million. The Board of Directors declared a first and final dividend of 38 per cent compared to 36 per cent in the previous year, the company said. Revenue [...]

IFS Sri Lanka organises seminar on managing retailers

IFS Sri Lanka, a subsidiary of IFS Global and a leader in the market of supplying and implementing IFS applications, recently hosted a seminar on the theme of “Increase your profitability by effectively managing your Retail Supply Chain’. Denis van Nunen, Managing Director of IFS Retail and a leading strategy and solution expert speaking at [...]

SL export earnings slide in March, declining trends continue

Export earnings fell in March by 2.8 per cent from the same month in 2012, continuing a trend seen over several months in the Sri Lankan economy. The Central Bank (CB), releasing the latest monthly data said March earnings fell due to earnings from industrial exports, which account for about three fourths of total export [...]

Dialog achieves Rs 1.6 bln net profit in 1stQ

Dialog Axiata and its subsidiaries this week reported that its first quarter 2012 revenue was Rs 15.24 billion, up 19 per cent from Q1 2012 and 2 per cent from Q4 2012. In the same review period, group EBITDA (Earnings Before Interest, Tax, Depreciation and Amortisation) was recorded at Rs 4.98 billion. “The strong increase [...]

Venture Engine 2013 kicks-off, entries close on June 3

The second edition of Sri Lankan start-up funding competition Venture Engine was kicked off last week in Colombo, during which the entry cut-off for submissions of business plans closes on June 3, 2013, while the competition’s finale is slated for June 26. Speaking to the Business Times, a founding member of the Venture Engine team, [...]

Sri Lanka’s Haycarb reaches Rs. 1 bln post-tax profit in 2012/13

Haycarb PLC, the coconut shell based activated carbon manufacturer and exporter, has posted a record performance in the financial year 2012/13. Outpacing growing challenges in traditional markets and rising costs of production, the Hayleys Group’s multinational activated carbon business noted significant achievement of several key performance milestones, according to a company statement to the media. [...]

Commercial Bank funds coral replanting in Hikkaduwa

Commercial Bank funds coral replanting in Hikkaduwa

A groundbreaking project to replant coral in the Hikkaduwa Marine National Park has been launched by the Department of Wildlife Conservation with funding from the Commercial Bank of Ceylon. A first for the Department, the initiative envisages replanting an extent of 1,000 square feet in the Walduwa area of the marine park, using techniques perfected [...]

Polytex Garments adds 600 employees in Koggala

Local knit shirt exporter Polytex Garments says its most recent, 53,000 square feet Koggala facility has employed 600 staff, as well as also featuring 10 sewing lines and automated cutting and washing machines. Opened in June 2012, this factory is the company’s second such undertaking in Koggala, and its recently hired 600 plus employees are [...]

CMI, KPMG to collaborate on knowledge sharing initiatives

The Sri Lanka branch of the Chartered Management Institute, UK, recently entered into a long term arrangement with KPMG’s member firm in Sri Lanka. The agreement is to collaborate on a series of knowledge sharing programmes aimed at enhancing professional management practices and collective knowledge sharing as well as networking opportunities amongst business managers in [...]

Sri Lanka’s first ever degree in applied accounting receives good response

Sri Lanka’s first ever degree in applied accounting by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka (CA Sri Lanka) has received an overwhelming response after applications were called from prospective students. CA Sri Lanka President Sujeewa Rajapakse said the BSc. in Applied Accounting which has also been approved by the University Grants Commission “is [...]

Business of Growing Old

Book Review – Medicine of the Elderly / Vol I and II By Kusal Perera What is “geriatrics”? This was one word that I was not much familiar with, till I read through two volumes titled “Medicine in the Elderly”, co – edited by Professor Colvin Goonaratna, the eminent Physiologist who was Head of the [...]

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