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Ex-Pack unpacks good 1st half

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Ex-Pack Corrugated Cartons Limited, one of Sri Lanka’s leading manufacturers of corrugated cartons, has announced an excellent performance during the 1st half of FY2021/22, ending 30th September 2021. The Ex-Pack group has achieved a top line revenue of LKR 3.465 billion, against 2.065 billion during the same period in the previous year, recording a 59% increase, YOY. This was achieved amidst a subdued environment for manufacturing during April and May. Company turnover grew to LKR 2.319 billion, against LKR 1.460 billion the previous year. In terms of manufacturing volumes, Ex-Pack has achieved YoY growth of 17.4% during the 1st half, which is 7.7% above forecasts. The Company’s subsidiary, Neptune Papers (Private) Limited also posted volume growth of 13% for the same period under review.

Based on the 1st half results, Ex-Pack is on track to exceed its forecasted revenue of LKR 5.865 billion for the year. Given that the corrugated carton industry usually witnesses seasonal high demand during the 2nd half of the year, the Company is confident that it will beat all financial forecasts this financial year. During the 1st half of the year, PAT stood at LKR 200 million, against just 45 million during the same period in the previous year, during which performance was heavily impacted by the global pandemic. Earnings Per Share (EPS) for the 1st half stood at LKR 0.80.

Discussing Ex-Pack’s solid financials and sought-after IPO, Zulficar Ghouse, Managing Director said, “The numbers we are seeing are very encouraging. We have successfully managed to navigate one of the most turbulent times in global history, while still posting solid gains and delivering exceptional value to our shareholders. We take this opportunity to renew our resolve to maintain our position as one of Sri Lanka’s leading end-to-end corrugated cartons and packaging solutions providers.”

Ex-Pack Group Chairman, Sattar Kassim further added, “We are optimistic about the future, and look forward to expanding our production capacity through our soon to be commissioned 3-billion-rupee manufacturing plant, which will up our monthly capacity from 2,750 metric tons to 4,000 metric tons by 2025. We also take this opportunity to thank all those who subscribed to our IPO, and announce that trading of Ex-Pack shares will commence on the 10th of November 2021 under the ticker symbol, PACK, on the Colombo Stock Exchange.”

Ex-Pack’s product portfolio includes regular slotted cartons, die-cut cartons, laminated cartons and a host of specialized products developed using recycled material. The Company has designed and engineered many innovative, world class products, including lightweight cartons for fresh fish, and garment on hanger cartons, for high-quality apparel to be shipped upright, hung on clothes hangers. Ex-Pack also worked with the Department of Elections to transform ballot boxes in Sri Lanka, crafting them out of corrugated cartons for the first time ever, enhancing security and mobility, during the 2020 General Election. The Company serves top corporate customers and brands, worldwide, across a range of industries including FMCG, consumer durables, apparel, tea and fisheries.



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Business

Passport Office collaborates with banks to boost international monetary transfers from migrants

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Central Bank Governor, Ajith Nivard Cabraal hands over a new account to a young migrant worker which he opened at the new HNB counter at the Passport Office yesterday, where Jonathan Alles, Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of HNB was present. Pic by Thushara Athapaththu

by Sanath Nanayakkare

People’s Bank, National Savings Bank , Sampath Bank, Hatton National Bank and Commercial Bank of Sri Lanka yesterday established new banking counters at the Department of Immigration and Emigration, at ‘Suhurupaya’, Battaramulla.

The initiative is intended support the Central Bank’s ongoing effort to boost the country’s foreign reserves by offering migrant workers access for safe, official remittance channels from the time they obtain new passports or renew their passports for international jobs.

Ajith Nivard Cabraal, Governor of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka who was the chief guest of the opening ceremony said,” A lot of Sri Lankans go overseas for jobs and send their hard-earned money to Sri Lanka. Sometimes they face various issues when remitting money. So we thought we should provide the opportunity for them to open an account as they obtain their passports at the passport office which they can operate with greater ease and trust when sending money to their families from abroad. The Controller of Immigration and Emigration, his staff, the officials at the Central Bank and at other relevant banks worked in unison to establish their counters here just within a week. This shows that government institutions can collaborate with the private sector and quickly accomplish any task for the benefit of the country and its people. Our hard-working migrant workforce will enjoy the convenience and reliability of this service. As a result of it, more foreign money will flow into the country and the nation will reap benefits from it,” he said.

Workers’ remittances have been a key pillar of Sri Lanka’s foreign currency earnings that has nearly 100 per cent of domestic value addition, providing a substantial cushion for external sector resilience of the country. Workers’ remittances have covered around 80 per cent of the annual trade deficit over the past two decades, and strengthening remittances inflows to the country brings several socio-economic benefits including the smooth supply of forex inflows to the formal banking system.

The Central Bank of Sri Lanka established a new department named ‘Foreign Remittances Facilitation Department’ with effect from November 3, 2021 to facilitate and streamline workers’ remittances inflows to the country.

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SLT-MOBITEL powered SLIOT Challenge 2020 and IESL RoboGames 2020 fostering innovation

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SLT-MOBITEL, the National ICT, Telecommunications and Mobile Services Provider was the proud sponsor of SLIoT Challenge 2020 and IESL RoboGames 2020, championing innovation in Internet of Things (IoT) and robotics to reward and further develop a pipeline of tech talent and critical skills among Sri Lanka’s youth. The winners of the competitions were honoured at a special ceremony held recently.

SLIoT Challenge 2020 and IESL RoboGames 2020 was a collaborative effort between SLT-MOBITEL, the Department of Computer Science & Engineering of the University of Moratuwa and the IT and Computer Engineering Sectional Committee of Institution of Engineers of Sri Lanka (IESL). Recognising the value of promoting digital inclusion among youth and to develop new generation technology concepts, SLT-MOBITEL sponsored the event for the fourth consecutive year. Both competitions encourage technological innovation among youth which in turn provides avenues for SLT-MOBITEL to capitalize on its futuristic thinking towards a connected future.

The SLIoT Challenge 2020 theme centred around the current pandemic ‘Overcoming COVID-19 with IoT’ and over 77 submissions were received. SLT-MOBITEL comprehends that IoT is being widely embraced with the number of connected devices growing rapidly. SLT-MOBITEL recognizes that driving an IoT competition for Sri Lankan youth allows students to unleash their potential in the IoT domain and acts as a gateway to support the country’s evolution towards digital transformation.

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Akshata launches unique new tea blends

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Akshata brand, a pioneer in promoting health and wellness the traditional way presents herbal tea alongside honey/jaggery as an alternative to sugar, redefining tea consumption.

Akshata ‘Ranawara’ herbal tea which promotes clear skin and health benefits for the body is dedicated to Queen Soma Devi who was acclaimed for her beauty, bravery, and sacrifice to save King Valagamba in 77 BC.

Managing Director of Grains N Green, Roshan Perera says, “In addition to the myriad of health benefits, consumers are encouraged to experience a taste of nostalgia with each sip of Akshata herbal tea. Today’s health-conscious consumers increasingly buy items that support their nutrition and fitness. Sugar is no longer included in this list due to its negative impact on one’s health. That’s why we have introduced healthy alternatives for sugar. Putting honey or jaggery in tea is a much healthier choice than using sugar as it does not raise blood sugar levels as quickly, and with our product you can get the tea as well as

the sweeteners all in one pack. This saves time, money, and is a healthier alternative to drinking tea with sugar.”

Akshata herbal tea with bees honey/Jaggery is available at Spar and Glomark supermarkets and can also purchase online at askshatastore.com

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