First Capital Equities, the equity arm of First Capital Holdings PLC, has taken several steps to strengthen its business by establishing strategic partnerships with stock brokering houses based in Asia and the US, in addition to reinforcing its local efforts through the group’s expanding branch network.
Director/Group CEO, Dilshan Wirasekara told the Business Times that they have tied up with foreign brokerages in Japan and New York who will promote local equities amongst their clients.
He added that the group sees its earnings moderating in the second half with interest rates stabilising resulting in lower trading opportunities for the primary dealer business. The group recorded a profit after tax of Rs. 731 million for the first half of 2017/18, a substantial increase compared to Rs. 406 million in the corresponding period of the previous year. Total comprehensive income for the first half was Rs. 641 million (2016/17 – Rs. 406 million).
The primary dealer business dominated the group’s earnings reporting a profit after tax of Rs. 538 million for the first half (2016/17 – Rs. 371 million), Mr. Wirasekara said. First Capital Treasuries PLC capitalised on opportunities created by declining interest rates in the secondary market realising significant trading gains, he added noting that it has a capital base of Rs. 2.2 billion.
A strategic approach has led to improved activity in the corporate finance business, mobilising Rs. 13 billion for clients through structuring and placement of corporate debt securities and recording a fee income of Rs. 42 million (2016/17 – Rs. 30 million) during the period under review.
First Capital Asset Management Ltd recorded a growth in funds under management to end with Rs. 6.7 billion as at 30th September2017.
“Our main focus is to enhance the fee-based activities and the management of risk,” Mr. Wirasekara added.
The credit rating of First Capital Holdings PLC and First Capital Treasuries PLC was reaffirmed by ICRA Lanka Ltd in October 2017 at “A-”.