CEAT Kelani Holdings has announced that in response to the government’s policies to develop domestic industry, it has stepped up capacity utilisation across all its manufacturing plants to supply the full domestic requirement of truck and bus tyres, thereby helping to conserve much-needed foreign currency for the country.
Rising to the challenge of the temporary import restrictions in place, the company which already manufactures the majority of Sri Lanka’s tyre requirements said it could supply 100 per cent of the passenger bus and goods transport sectors’ tyre needs through domestic production.
This would represent a saving of Rs 11 billion a year in foreign exchange through import substitution, the company said.
“The role of local industry is primarily to supply domestic needs and export surplus production, which CEAT Kelani Holdings has done very successfully for many years,” the company’s Managing Director Mr Ravi Dadlani said. “We have periodically invested in expanding capacity and product range and now export to 16 countries. However, although we can supply 100% of the truck and Bus tyre requirement with current production, we also have the option if the need arises, to shift some of our export volumes of markets that have not yet opened up to cater to the domestic market and support the government’s effort to reduce foreign exchange outflows.”
Elaborating on the company’s capacity to meet additional domestic demand created by the restriction of imports, Dadlani disclosed that CEAT Kelani can currently produce two million tyres annually in many categories with an imminent addition within next few of weeks of a further 200,000 car and van radial tyres since new machinery is being installed pending the arrival of foreign technologists to commission the new capacity.
“It is also our opinion that in many applications it is cost-beneficial and a viable alternative to replace imported 10.00 R20 Radial Truck and Bus tyres with locally produced 10.00-20 Heavy Duty 18 PR Bias-ply tyres,” Mr Dadlani said, pointing out that with its ability to be re-treaded multiple times in a lifespan due to its robust heavy duty nylon construction, users can enjoy a lower cost per km from CEAT Truck and Bus tyres. He said this alternative, in addition to saving much-needed foreign exchange to the country, would also support the local tyre re-treading industry which currently is in need of more good quality nylon tyre casings for its growth.
Truck Bus tyres that fit 20-inch rims are among those that have been categorised as restricted for import at present, along with Car radial tyres that fit rims of 12, 13 and 14 inches.
CEAT Kelani has also announced that it has kept the prices of its tyres unchanged since December 2019 to support customers and the economy.
In July the Company launched ‘CEAT LYFMAX’ – a heavy-duty 10.00 R-20 size Bias-ply tyre for trucks, engineered and built specifically for users who consider heavy load-carrying capability with higher mileage a priority. Each tyre weighs a solid 52kgs (115 pounds) and has been extensively tested and benchmarked against two of the top imported brands attributed with load-carrying credentials in the local market.
CEAT Kelani Holdings is considered one of the most successful India – Sri Lanka joint ventures in the manufacturing sector. The joint venture’s cumulative investment in Sri Lanka to date totals Rs 8 billion, inclusive of Rs 3 billion committed in January 2018 for expansion of volumes, technology upgrades and new product development. The company’s manufacturing operations in Sri Lanka encompass pneumatic tyres in the radial (passenger cars, vans and SUVs), commercial (Bias-ply and radial), motorcycle, three-wheeler and agricultural vehicle segments.
Union Assurance crowns excellence
Union Assurance PLC held the Annual Awards 2021 to honour its top achievers for their exemplary performance. The ceremony was held at the Monarch Imperial on 8th May 2022, under the theme ‘Crowning Excellence.’ This event, which crowned the champions, was graced by a distinguished leadership team that included Chairman of John Keells Holdings, Krishan Balendra , and Chief Executive Officer of Union Assurance, Jude Gomes.
The awards ceremony recognised the exceptional performance of over 670 award winners, making it the highest number of annual award winners in the Company’s history, a feat driven by a record-breaking performance in 2021. The winners comprised advisors, agency leaders, regional managers, and zonal managers from the island-wide Agency network. The top achievers in the Agency channel (including Best Zone and Best Region) were honoured, while the Ultimate Champion Kalum Jayasinghe was rewarded with a flashy Mercedes-Benz car. Chanaka Appuhamy was also presented with a Mercedes-Benz for his Top of the Table Club achievement.
The CEO of Union Assurance, Jude Gomes lauded the winners for delivering outstanding results. He described their achievements as remarkable since 2021 was full of challenges arising from the pandemic.
Paduma Subasinghe appointed Director Human Resources at Heineken Lanka
Paduma Subasinghe has assumed duties as Director Human Resources of HEINEKEN Lanka Limited. He joins a distinguished panel of Management Team members at HEINEKEN Lanka headed by Managing Director Maud Meijboom-van Wel.
Prior to joining HEINEKEN Lanka, Paduma served as the Director Human Resources in one of the fastest growing export companies in Sri Lanka. His exposure in HR spans across large-scale conglomerates, telecommunication MNCs and consultancy with HR agility being at the core of his forte. Paduma’s versatility befits the transformational journey that HEINEKEN Lanka is on; setting bold ambitions that Challenge the Status Quo with the Courage to Dream and Pioneer whilst Caring for People and Planet to bring forth the joy of true togetherness.
A product of the University of Sri Jayewardenepura (PIM), his postgraduate studies were focused on Human Resources, and he is a Senior Certified Professional of the International Public Management Association for HR, USA. Paduma is also a member of Rotary International and plays a pivotal role in community service through his active involvement in the organisation.
Richard Pieris Finance announces resilient performance for FY 2021/22
Richard Pieris Finance Limited, a fully owned subsidiary of the Richard Pieris Group, and the sole financing arm under the renowned Arpico brand, delivered solid financial performance for the Financial Year 2021/22, amidst a challenging economic backdrop. Supported by the Company’s committed workforce and prudent management strategies, Richard Pieris Finance’s profit before taxes (PBT) rose by a notable 283% to Rs. 444 Mn, compared to prior year. The company also saw revenues growing by 16% to Rs.2,441 Mn during the period. The Company’s deposit base and asset base too grew during the year to Rs.9,910 Mn and Rs.17,927 Mn respectively.
Discussing the achievements and milestones of the year, Lohika Fonseka, CEO at Richard Pieris Finance Limited said, “We are pleased to inform all our stakeholders that the management of Richard Pieris Finance Limited has successfully guided the Company through some of the most challenging times our nation has ever faced. We intend continuing this trajectory, building on our achievements. Supported by our digital drive, the company obtained the membership in CEFTS and JustPay during the year to further customer convenience. Also, we have introduced several new products including pawning to expand our portfolio. Furthermore, taking our plans to fruition, we have upgraded three outlets as fully-fledged branches during 2021/22 to provide a better service to our valuable customers. During the year, Richard Pieris Group infused Rs. 280 Mn of equity capital for strengthening the company’s Tier-1 capital base and the company successfully concluded a debt capital infusion of Rs. 1 Bn to improve the Tier-2 capital base, which positioned the company well above its peers in terms of capital adequacy. While maintaining stability and resilience, we look forward to continuing our business expansion as we pivot and position to tackle the challenges ahead, while always focusing on customer convenience.”
Underscoring the stability and strength of Richard Pieris Finance Limited, the Company has been assessed with the coveted AA-(RWN) from Fitch Ratings Lanka Limited, one of Sri Lanka’s premier credit rating agencies. The Company appointed Kithsiri Wanigasekara as the Chairman who is a veteran professional in the financial services industry together with Shantha Wijeweera, Kithsiri Wijeyaratne, Asoka Keppetipola and Kelum Senanayake to guide and support the Corporate Management team, to navigate the present turbulent economic environment skilfully and effectively. The corporate management team of Richard Pieris Finance Limited comprises of financial industry professionals in multiple disciplines including veteran bankers and legal professionals. Operating within a resilient corporate governance structure while maintaining robust internal controls relating to risk management, compliance and further supported by digital transformation, Richard Pieris Finance Limited is confident on maintaining its growth momentum in future.
Richard Pieris Finance Limited provides Sri Lankans with a full-range of financial products and services including fixed deposits, savings, leasing, Islamic finance, business loans, personal loans, pawning, furniture financing and digital finance solutions. The Richard Pieris Group is a diversified business conglomerate with a rich history spanning over 90 years, having its arms spread across multiple sectors including manufacturing, plantations, financial services, exports, FMCG, logistics and retail. Its flagship brand, “Arpico Supercentres” is one of the most powerful local household brands in Sri Lanka for over 50 years, serving the community with a diverse range of products. A melting pot of talent, home to a workforce of over 27,000 people, Richard Pieris and Company PLC is one of the largest employers in Sri Lanka’s private sector.
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