Tag Archives: Business News Sri Lanka

‘Financial disintermediation, need of the hour’ – Daily News

Investment banks in Sri Lanka, Investment banking in Sri Lanka, Investment companies in Sri Lanka, Share market Investment in Sri Lanka
Investment banks in Sri Lanka, Investment banking in Sri Lanka, Investment companies in Sri Lanka, Share market Investment in Sri Lanka

These sentiments were expressed by First Capital Holdings PLC, Senior Manager – Corporate Finance, Mahesh Amarasinghe to the Daily News.

Sri Lanka is too dependent on banks and financial institutions and it is of much importance to acknowledge the importance of the capital market. Banks and financial institutions are limiting both corporate and investors. What we need is a financial disintermediation, which would permit investors to access the capital market directly for cheaper funding.

Bringing down interest rates should be a priority, since Sri Lanka has probably one of the highest real interest rates in the world.

“For a business operating in Sri Lanka, the cost of capital is significantly higher than any where else in the world. We as an organization, have been advocating for better access to capital and we suggest that that banks and finance companies be incentivized to lend for investment, rather than consumption, because when interest rates are brought down, people use credit for consumption purposes and not contribute to the growth of the economy.

On the other hand, financial disintermediation means that Issuers or Borrowers – the companies that are seeking funds to grow should look beyond traditional sources of funds such as banking and financial institutions and find opportunities to directly access investors to directly get involved and lend to projects.

“This is what a vibrant capital market could do to grow business.”

“This is where Corporate Finance has a significant role to play as a full service investment bank operating in both debt and equity markets. We understand the changing economic and industry trends and provide both Issuers and Investors with new opportunities for businesses at attractive rates.

He commenting that the problem is that most lending entities too have traditional mind-sets on how they approach lending.

“For example, despite the prevalence and growth of IT, digital, and data-related companies, many banks are still reluctant to lend to them, as they have less understanding about the business, how it runs and how it could make profits.”

“In addition, we as Sri Lankans, have very little financial literacy so it makes life harder for entities looking for funding to pitch their proposals in an attractive manner.”

“Our teams are able to study and understand the financial position of corporates and structure customized solutions that are on their terms such as what rates they would wish to borrow at, if they are fixed or floating, matching cash flow and growth requirements of companies.”

On the other hand, investors are finding it difficult to place their funds due to caps on interest rates. “Traditionally, Sri Lankans are used to a financial landscape where people make deposits to banks and banks keep a margin and lend to businesses they perceive to be risk-free, but not really contributing to the economy.”

He said that the teams at First Capital would advise a client how the investor looks at the company and we advise on how to improve.

“When we see liquidity decreasing, our advise is to get the funding now, as we see trends of lack of liquidity in the market, while and these are part of the services we offer.”

Corporate Finance creates a more robust capital market structure that actually provide investors the opportunity of going directly into businesses and earn higher interest rates in addition to the security that is behind this type of instrument. “If you put a Fixed Deposit it’s just between you and the bank of the institution, whereas this would have a trustee, regulator if listed, a security to back the funds.”

We are a sponsor for SMEs to list them in the Empower Board. Specific license.

He also opined that listing or unlisted debt, there is a cost benefit to the issuer. So we advise them accordingly. Although unlisted costs less, sometimes it is better for a company’s brand or name if they are a listed with a publicized IPO.”

“IPOs are an ideal way for an investor who had not invested in this type of product earlier, because it is highly regulated with the CSE and SEC monitoring, a rating agency and a trustee and many other participants securing the process.”

Also for someone subscribing to a debt IPO, there is a set exit mechanism, because they could trade it on the secondary market.

“However, with the previously offered tax benefits no longer applicable, there is a significant benefit for corporates to do an unlisted issue, but to do so, there must be qualified investors who are experienced and understand the risks of the product.”

He said that they would look into it and would judge as to how these projects must be structured for the company to make the best of it. “Or we also would offer finding investment opportunities for investors who are looking for opportunities in the Securities Market for private placements or public offerings.”

Amarasinghe and his team recently closed a Rs. 5 billion Debenture for LOLC in a market where the company is over exposed.

Amarasinghe counts over 18 years of significant experience in Treasury and Securities Management through business operations and expertise gained as a Primary Dealer in and a Secondary Dealer of a range of fixed income securities.

He has extensive exposure in front and back-office operations and in customer relations in financial services.

See full article >>

MARKET UPDATE ON ADA DERANA ENGLISH NEWS – 2017.07.16

Stock Brokers in Sri Lanka

First Capital’s Head of Research Dimantha Mathew with the market update – between 17.00 mins to 17.37 mins

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory. 

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

MARKET UPDATE ON ADA DERANA ENGLISH NEWS – 2017.07.09

Investment in Sri Lanka

First Capital’s Head of Research Dimantha Mathew with the market update – between 15.20 mins to 15.56 mins

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory. 

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

OBG outlines reforms for growth

Published on Daily FT on  Tuesday, 20 June 2017

– By Charumini de Silva

 InvestmentInSriLanka
From left: Oxford Business Group Country Director Andrea Tsiachtsiri, Oxford Business Group Editor-in-Chief Oliver Cornock, BOI Chairman Upul Jayasuriya, Ceylon Chamber of Commerce Chairman Samantha Ranatunga, First Capital CEO Dilshan Wirasekara and Standard Chartered Commercial Banking Head Dushan Casie Chetty with the report – Pic by Ruwan Walpola

Sri Lanka needs to concentrate on a much-needed modernisation drive and structural reforms to improve growth, experts said yesterday, as the country attempts to break out of its low-middle income status.

Sri Lanka’s plans to boost economic growth, which places tourism development high on the agenda, towards a new era of optimism buoyed by strong growth, low unemployment and rising incomes were mapped out in a report by the Oxford Business Group.

Titled ‘The Report: Sri Lanka 2017’, it also highlighted Sri Lanka’s plans to capitalise on high levels of investor confidence and a $ 1.5 billion program with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to implement a much-needed modernisation drive and structural reforms.

Speaking at the launch event, OBG Editor-in-Chief Oliver Cornock said the report this year has outlined that the reforms needed to help Sri Lanka reach its long-term goal of securing sustainable and inclusive economic growth were taking shape.

“The post-war years have brought impressive economic expansion and investor interest; pockets of poverty and inequalities remain an issue,” he added.

He said the finding suggests that Sri Lanka’s new administration is already moving to align its economic policy and address these weaknesses, while embarking on an infrastructural overhaul that will sit well with investors eyeing the country’s many opportunities.

Considering the global economic outlook, Cornock pointed out that growth in emerging markets is still very strong, adding that Sri Lanka is well located among huge growing engines like India and China.

OBG Managing Editor for Asia Paulius Kuncinas in a statement agreed that there was a tangible sense of optimism in Sri Lanka, with new trade deals in the pipeline and a shift in the economic landscape towards service-led industries.

“Sometimes overlooked, Sri Lanka has a fascinating story to tell, which most recently includes 15 years of continuous growth,” he said.

“With ambitious plans that include transforming the country into an international transport hub and driving new growth in the greater Colombo region, the Government’s bid to take Sri Lanka’s development to the next level looks to be well on track,” Kuncinas pointed out.

OBG analyses the part that improved transport infrastructure, including upgrades to ports and roads together with Customs reforms, will play in supporting Sri Lanka to strengthen trade and international relations, while building on its strategic location in the Indian Ocean.

It also explores the Government’s plans for developing the tourism sector further, while highlighting the activity already underway, which includes a raft of new hotel openings.

In addition, OBG looks in detail at the country’s fast-developing telecommunication and IT industry, which is being driven forward by rising demand for a wider range of services from a growing and increasingly tech savvy population. Other areas of Sri Lanka’s economy examined agricultural industry, which is earmarked for modernisation as a part of a national drive to boost both production and exports.

In addition to the launch event of the report, there was a discussion where experts shared their insights on the building blocks expected to drive growth across key sectors of the economy.

First Capital CEO Dilshan Wirasekara called for policy consistency as it had deterred the confidence and momentum of the economy with many investors waiting to see changes come into the system.

“No matter what policy, we need consistency. The latest example was the Budget 2017 which brought in a significant number of tax changes to the capital market which was implemented. This creates a ‘wait-and-see’ phase for foreign investors,” he added.

He said if the proposed Inland Revenue Act and Foreign Exchange Management Act would be put into place, it would help the building blocks which are critical to take Sri Lanka to the next level.

In addition, he said the implementation of the Central Counter Party (CCP) system at the Colombo Stock Exchange by the end of the year as well as digitalising the processes of financial services would bolster the investment climate in the country.

However, he said it was unfortunate that Sri Lanka was too dependent on banks and financial institutions, which “rip-off people.”

“It is important to acknowledge the importance of the capital market. The banks and financial institutes are ripping off the consumers. What we need is a financial disintermediation, which would allow investors to access the capital market directly for cheaper funding,” Wirasekara stressed.

Agreeing with Wirasekara, BOI Chairman Upul Jayasuriya also highlighted the need for regulations that allow investors to tap into private equity, which will also make their businesses more viable.

“We need to encourage private equity to come into the country,” he added.

He said that there are a number of factories that close down every month in the zones as the companies are unable to pay their bank loans.

“While attracting new investments to the country, it is also our duty to retain existing investors in the 12 zones we have at present. There are a number of companies closing down their factories every month as they are unable to repay bank loans.”

Noting that 15 new licensed zones will be launched under the BOI, Jayasuriya asserted that the Government has outlined special allowances in the Northern and Eastern provinces.

MARKET UPDATE ON ADA DERANA ENGLISH NEWS – 2017.06.18

InvestmentInSriLanka

First Capital’s Atchuthan Srirangan with the market update – between 22.32 mins to 22.56 mins

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory. 

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

MARKET UPDATE ON ADA DERANA ENGLISH NEWS – 2017.06.11

InvestmentInSriLanka

First Capital’s Head of Research Dimantha Mathew with the market update – between 18.50 mins to 19.20 mins

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory. 

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

MARKET UPDATE ON ADA DERANA ENGLISH NEWS – 2017.06.04

InvestmentInSriLanka

First Capital’s Head of Research Dimantha Mathew with the market update – between 18.22 mins to 18.56 mins

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory. 

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

Finance & Leasing Companies Show Sharp Growth in Assets in FY16

Sunday, May 07, 2017

The licensed finance companies (LFCs) and specialised leasing companies (SLCs) sector showed a sharp 26.4 per cent growth in its total assets to Rs. 853 billion at FY16 with improved assets quality reflected in the NPL ration. Analysts said that its growth of assets was largely contributed by the increase in borrowing by 29 per cent YoY and deposits by 17 per cent YoY.

Funds mobilised were largely utilised in granting loans and advances. Throughout FY16 this sector experienced a strong demand for credit on vehicle leasing and other secured loans.

“There was a steady growth in deposits as the sector continued to attract depositors due to relatively high deposit rates offered by LFCs compared to banks. Total deposits grew by 17.22 per cent to Rs. 490 billion in FY16. The deposit mobilisations mainly through fixed deposits accounting for 95 per cent of the total deposits whilst a slight increase was shown in the savings deposit base. The capital elements of the sector increased by 8.44 per cent to Rs. 131.5 billion at end FY16, mainly on account of internally generated profits made during the year,” Atchuthan Srirangan, Senior Research Analyst First Capital Equities told the Business Times.

LFCs and SLCs sector total assets expanded by 7.51 per cent to Rs. 1,158 billion in the first six months of FY17. The increased appetite for credit at the grass-root level of the economy enabled the finance sector to grow their business volumes and increase profitability, analysts say. Increase in assets was largely funded through borrowings, Mr. Srirangan said, adding that 42 per cent of the assets increase during the period was funded through borrowings. The sector borrowings increased by 10.94 to Rs. 416.5 billion in the 6MFY17. In contrast, the deposits grew by 4.8 billion to Rs. 512.7 billion in 6MFY17.

Analysts say that private sector credit growth is to slow down against 2015 and 2016 but remain moderate at 12 per cent-14 per cent while finance sector credit which has always grown at a faster rate and therefore is likely to remain at 16 per cent -18 per cent compared to 27 per cent growth in 2016.Given the monetary tightening measures and the currency depreciation vehicle leasing segment is likely to register a slowdown while loans and advances segment record the bulk of the growth. IMF forecast for private sector credit growth stands at 14 per cent – 15 per cent levels between 2017E-2020E.

MARKET UPDATE ON ADA DERANA ENGLISH NEWS – 2017.04.27

First Capital’s Atchuthan Srirangan with the market update – between 14.33 mins to 15.20 mins

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory. 

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.

Sri Lanka Finance Sector Report (Mar 2017) on ADA DERANA ENGLISH NEWS – 2017.04.17

Share Market Investment in Sri Lanka

First Capital Head of Research Dimantha Mathew with the Sri Lanka Finance Sector Report (March 2017) – between 20.54 mins to 22.14 mins

The comments on this report are provided by the Capital Markets Research Unit of First Capital Holdings PLC an investment bank in Sri Lanka.

The company operates in the capital markets of Sri Lanka in government securities – treasury bills and bonds, stock brokering and share market investments, asset management, private wealth management,  retirement planning, personal financial planning, unit trust, margin trading, capital market research, trustee services, corporate finance advisory services including corporate debt structuring (debentures, trust certificates, commercial papers), valuations, restructuring, mergers and acquisitions, initial public offerings (IPOs) and project advisory. 

The First Capital Group consists of First Capital Treasuries PLC, First Capital Limited, First Capital Markets Limited, First Capital Asset Management Limited and First Capital Equities (Private) Limited covering Colombo, Negombo, Matara, Kandy and Kurunegala.