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Business


Successful year completed as Ceylon Glass celebrates half century

The Board of Directors of Ceylon Glass Company Limited (CGCL) declared the Company’s results for the year ended 31st March 2008.
The company has reported a sales value of Lankan Rupees 2,014 million and a Pre Tax Profit of Lankan Rupees 49 million, against last year results of Lankan Rupees 1,857 million and 184 million respectively, whilst ensuring a 23% GP margin as against 25% of the previous year.

“This has been a landmark year in the 50 year old history of the Company. The successful completion of a major expansion and modernisation project of commissioning a new 250 tpd plant at Horana was achieved during the past year. This plant has more than double the capacity as compared to the Ratmalana plant with a total investment of around Rs.3.7 billion. The inauguration of this plant was on December 10, 2007. Since then we have successfully relocated our entire manufacturing facilities from Ratmalana to Horana” said CEO, CGCL , Sanjay Tiwari.

The Company also plans to sell the 21 acre land located in the heart of Colombo in Ratmalana. The land is strategically located, surrounded by roads on three sides and it’s proximity to the Galle Road gives an advantage to any potential developer or Industrialist. The new facility is equipped to have 5 manufacturing lines of which 4 are already in operation and the 5th line would be in operation by July 08. Two of the production lines have the colouring facility to manufacture different colours, shapes and sizes of bottles and is supported by the latest quality inspection machines, packing machines, glass laboratory equipments etc., which are comparable with any international manufacturing plant.

“Due to capacity constraints in the early part of the year, this year too the company was compelled to import bottles at negligible or even negative marginal rates in order to satisfy domestic customers and retain customer loyalty. Thus, the increase in the top line is not reflected in the improvement of the bottom line”.

Amidst these constraints an overall sales growth of 8.5% has been achieved as against that of last year. “It is indeed a very positive sign to note the healthy growth not only in the domestic market but also in the export market” said Tiwari.
The company has continued to show its potential at exports. A 160% growth over last years exports were achieved during the year under review. This constituted 10% of its turnover as against 4% of the previous year.
“Having more than doubled it’s capacity, the company is now able to meet the demands of the local market as well as to pursue lucrative exports market.

In terms of exports, the company will be focussing on specialty beverage and food bottles, i.e. short run food and beverage bottles with colouring or decoration for value addition. The company is in a unique position in the Asian market exporting boutique wine and specialty liquor bottles for leading brands in India. It is also in the process of doubling several such products for markets like the UK and Australia as well”.

According to Tiwari, the management of the Company is very positive about it’s future growth.
With all the infrastructure now in place Tiwari said he was sure that the company would achieve even greater heights in the local market as well as in the international markets in the near future. He also said that the successful Rights Issue of Lankan Rupees 752 million speaks volumes for the faith and trust the shareholders have in the company’s future and it’s performance.
Having taken into account the company’s satisfactory performance during the year, the Board of Directors has recommended a final dividend of 2% for the year ended 31st March 2007.

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Browns Group uplifts farmers’ lives in the East

With the intention of uplifting the lives of the rural villagers of Trincomalee and Batticaloa, the Agriculture Division of Brown & Company PLC in association with Sarvodaya Organisation and UNIDO (United Nations Industrial Development Organisation) executed a training programme in the month of June.

Training and demonstrations on tractor operations, servicing and maintenance were given to the participants for them to be aware of the methods on how to achieve the maximum benefit out of the tractor. The training was carried out by the Product Manager, Harindu Lorensu Hewa and Senior Technician Officers of the Agriculture Division.

Farmers, Mechanics, Agriculture Instructors and Technical Students in the area were the segments benefited by the training given. Approximately 160 farmers from 14 farmer societies participated in the training.
 
This was the first instance the villagers of Batticaloa and Trincomalee underwent training on agriculture machinery as they were affected by the war for a long period of time. The programme targeted all communities in that region.
Speaking on this initiative GM Agriculture Division, Panduka Weerasinghe said, “Through these training programmes we try to add value to our customers and to the community in the region. This training programme facilitated to up-lift their technical knowledge as well as changed the product perception.”

Apart from the training carried out by the Agriculture Division, they also organised a street promotion, which was a joint promotion with LOLC and an exhibition in Dutugemunu Central College, Buttala exhibiting various agricultural products the company promotes.

The Browns Group who sells world renowned brands such as Massey Ferguson, TAFE & Sifang has been the pioneers in agricultural mechanization in the country. Currently the Browns Group is the market leader in the tractor market in Sri Lanka.
Browns Group is a diversified conglomerate marketing products and services ranging from tractors, pens, air tickets, wrist watches, generators, power tools, cameras, water pumps, air conditioners, ceiling fans, kitchen appliances, faxes, TV’s etc., to name a few.

With over 135 years of experience delivering value to a large customer base, the Browns Group’s greatest achievement lies in the fact that we have served over three generations of Sri Lankans across the country offering our products and services wherever a need has been identified.

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Emerald Int’l unveils exclusive denim collection

Emerald International has launched a whole new range of fashionable denim shirts and jeans collection under its lifestyle brand “focuss”, with an accent on comfort, style and class.

Focuss’s entry into this category is timed to address the suave and fashionably cool male of today, who are tired of the monotonous supply of unbranded and factory seconds type of products in to the local market.
Sri Lanka’s fashion conscious men will now have access to the entire range of classy denim shirts and jeans in fine fabric and special washes and effects.

“The range comprises half and full sleeved shirts and bottoms in different hues like indigo, blacks and blues. This collection has been launched with a focus on providing our customers with a wider choice and bringing them a superior denim product that communicates their attitude. We have taken great care, technically on the comfort factor, cut, fit and styles of our product” stated M.T.M. Lukman, Manager Marketing Operations of Emerald.

This range will be available exclusively at E-guys, Nolimit, Fashion Bug, Beverly Street, Fair Deal, Sarathas, Ranjanas, Maxmara, Cool Planet, P & A, Thilakawardhana Textiles, Supul Collection, Fashion Collection, Osaka, Kandy Stores-Kurunagala, Supper Style-Gampaha and Samanmal-Matara.

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IFC, Elephant House, team to strengthen linkages in dairy industry

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and John Keells’ subsidiary Elephant House will work together to strengthen linkages in the dairy industry under the company’s sustainable sourcing initiatives program.
Elephant House dairy products and milk have been a household name in Sri Lanka for many generations. The company has decided to expand its dairy products offering, through a production arrangement using multiple dairy producer cooperatives. The model is to allow cooperatives to participate in the value chain by encouraging them to produce flavoured milk and dairy products such as Yoghurt under the technical supervision of Elephant House. This arrangement will allow cooperatives to earn a better income for their raw milk, which they can then pass on to the dairy farming community through better producer prices.

On a pilot basis, the first satellite production facility was identified at Sagaruwanketha, a village in Rikillagaskada in the Central province where, under the technical supervision of Elephant House, the Cooperative Society run factory, manufactures on a small scale, Yoghurt, Ice Coffee and other flavoured milk. The dairy farmer cooperative society has a membership of approximately 4,000 farmers and the society run factory employs about 25 young people from the farmer families.

The IFC plans to carry out a diagnostic study of the Co-operative Society, production facilities, farmer community and their financing needs to exactly identify the gaps for intervention and with the key intention of replicating the model to other dairy farmer cooperative societies together with Elephant house.

Jit Gunaratne, President Consumer Foods and Retail Group of John Keells Holdings said, “The tie-up between the IFC and Elephant House is directed at further developing the production process of local milk cooperatives through training and necessary technological assistance. This will help our local cooperatives to earn a higher income by producing high quality diary products. This is one of the many sustainable sourcing projects carried out by Elephant House aimed at improving the standards of different stakeholders in the supply chain”.

Gilles Galludec, IFC Country Manager for Maldives and Sri Lanka, said, “As part of this project, we will analyse the supply chain operations, quality control and especially on scaling up both from the farmer community and the factory perspective. Effective interventions will assist in the ultimate goal of replicating this model to reach more farmer communities and make a wider impact. We are happy to partner with Elephant House, as it aligns with our larger role of developing small and medium enterprises”.

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Delmege Distributors felicitate sales team

Delmege Distributors, a subsidiary of the Delmege Forsyth Group of Companies and one of Sri Lanka’s leaders in the marketing of branded packaged food products, specialising in retail and wholesale distribution and brand marketing, felicitated their entire sales team at a ceremony held at the Trans Asia Hotel recently.

A total of nine awards were given out including the coveted Chairman’s Trophy for the most outstanding sales representative of the year which was won by J.A. Upul Sampath of Hingurakgoda. The Most Outstanding Nominated Dealer for 2007/2008 was Keerthi Stores of Ja-Ela, while the award for the Best Team went to the Team from the South.

Delmege Distributors, with an expertise developed over several decades, has an islandwide distributor network servicing different channels such as traditional trade, modern trade, food service, as well as non-conventional channels such as cinemas, clubs, etc.
Speaking at the award ceremony, CEO Delmege Distributors, Dinesh Nalliah said that during the past year the Company had exceeded both top as well as bottom line objectives.

Nalliah said that significant steps had been taken to strengthen the Delmege portfolio by launching YoYO and the Lotte confectionary range as well as Ace bubble gum, while the Motha range was extended by introducing the Mango Faluda mix.

“In the canned fish segment Delmege Distributors strengthened their position by consolidating distribution in the retail and wholesale channels and sourcing smaller size tins from Thailand. Motha continues to dominate the desert category with a market share of almost 80%. Delmege Supiri Soy too grew at a healthy rate, while the focussed effort on developing the Delmege brand portfolio generated excellent results, with this actually contributing to the major portion of the Company’s turnover”.

Nalliah said that whilst the year 2007/2008 was a rewarding one for the Company, 2008/2009 would be a challenging one.
“In terms of new business the year 2008/2009 will see the Company entering some new high growth categories. We have already added Lotte Dynamic Energy Drinks and YoYo jumbo peanuts to our portfolio within the first quarter of 2008/2009. Delmege Distributors has established itself as one of the most reputable and efficient FMCG distributors and we are indeed proud of our achievements which are the result of a concerted team effort”.

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New President of JASTECA

At the 23rd Annual General Meeting of Japan Sri Lanka Technical and Cultural Association (JASTECA) held on July 6th, 2008, under the patronage of His Excellency Kiyoshi Araki, the Ambassador for Japan in Sri Lanka, Deshabandu Mr. Tilak de Zoysa was unanimously elected as the President for the current term. Mr. de Zoysa was the Senior Vice President and has been a member or JASTECA over twenty years. He is also a past President of Lanka Japan Friendship Society and a recipient of the prestigious decoration ‘The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon’ conferred by the Emperor of Japan.

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Sri Lankan Delegates at G-8 Peoples Summit 2008

G-8 Summit 2008 held in Japan Hokkiaido – Sapparo. The photograph shows among the delegates the Chairperson of ‘G-8 Peoples Summit’ Madam Masako Hoshina Member of Parliament of Afghanistan, Madam Shukria Barakzai, Sunfo Director General, Dr. Deshapriya S Wijethunga and Millennium Development Ambassador Deshamanaya Dr.A.S.P.Liyanage

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