Connect with us


Hiran Cooray calls for practical operating model for ‘Wonders of Lanka’ durng the tourism lull



One of the country’s top leisure industry personalities, Mr. Hiran Cooray, head of the Jetwing Group, has appealed to all concerned to utilize the time available before tourism returns to normalcy to pay attention to improving country’s hundreds of of natural and man-made wonders that have over the years not received the love and care they deserve.

‘The relevant authorities must utilize this time to prepare a practical model of of operating these sites once tourist arrivals return to expected numbers,” he has said in the annual report of Jetwing Lighthouse PLC, owners of the Geoffrey Bawa-built Lighthouse Hotel on a spectacular site near Galle.

“If these are not looked into, there will continue to be negative publicity and permanent damage to natural assets like Yala National Park and man-made cultural sites like Sigiriya,” he has said.

“As tourism will likely take a while to return to normalcy, there is an opportunity for us to strategically plan on how we will grow responsibly and sustainably,” Cooray said.

He has made the point that tourism has always had its ups and downs from the time his father, the late Herbert Cooray, entered the industry in 1973. But since the war ended in 2009, the industry had enjoyed continuous growth which had led to their own expansion including investments made by Lighthouse in the recent past.

Reviewing the year ended Mar. 31, 2009, Cooray said that having survived a difficult year, “we are now faced with an even more challenging year, the like of which had not been seen during Jetwing’s history.

They had begun the year with a lot of optimism and hoped to obtain better results following the upgrades made to the property during the year. But these were belied by the Easter bomb which exploded three weeks into the financial year. As they gradually got on to their feet after some months of hardship, and was heading for a quick recovery when the whole world was shaken by the Covid pandemic.

The company ended the year under review with a loss of Rs. 96.3 million, down from the previous year’s profit of Rs. 102.6 million. They are holding back on planned renovations on which they had invested about Rs. 200 million last year.

A new swimming pool overlooking the Indian Ocean for which all approval had been received was part of the plan that was expected to help position Lighthouse as the premier hotel on the South coast.

The directors’ report indicated changes in directors’ shareholdings with Mrs. AMJ Cooray gifting her holding of over 1.2 million shares equally to her son, Hiran Cooray and daughter, Shiromal Cooray who run Jetwing.

Lighthouse has a stated capital of Rs. 460 million and reserves of Rs. 2.4 billion together with retained earnings of Rs. 332.1 million in its books. Total assets ran at Rs. 3.84 billion and total liabilities at Rs. 644.2 million.

Jetwing Hotel Management Services with 41.24% of Lighthouse is the major shareholder, followed by Mercantile Investments (16.82%), EPF (11.05%) and the Bank of Ceylon (9.73%). Ms. Shiromal Cooray and Mr. Hiran Cooray are the biggest individual shareholders.

The directors of the company are: Messrs. Hiran Cooray (Chairman) RAE Samarasinghe (MD), Ms. Shiromal Cooray, N. Wadugodapitiya, CSR Anotony, Ranil de Silva, EPA Cooray, Ms. AM Ondaatjie, Dr. C. Pathiraja, T. Nadesan and ATP Edirisinghe.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Strong Q4 net profit growth boosts Teejay Lanka’s outlook for year ahead



Teejay Lanka Chairman Ajit Gunewardene (left) and CEO MPubudu De Silva

Strong net profit growth in the final quarter of 2023-24 has enabled Teejay Lanka PLC to end the financial year on an optimistic note despite the impacts of the appreciation of the Rupee, which contributed to its 12-month results falling below those of the preceding year.

Sri Lanka’s first multinational textile manufacturer has reported net profit of Rs 549.1 million for the three months ending 31st March 2024, up 260% over the corresponding quarter of the previous year and a 15% improvement over the preceding quarter.

Despite an increase in sales volumes, the Group’s revenue for the quarter, at Rs 15.3 billion, was down 4% over the figure for the third quarter of the year and 12% lower than the revenue of the corresponding quarter of the previous year. This was due to the appreciation of the Sri Lanka Rupee.

For the year ending 31st March 2024, Teejay Lanka reported revenue of Rs 60.8 billion, profit before tax of Rs 1.6 billion, and net profit of Rs 1.1 billion, reflecting declines of 28%, 49% and 48% respectively over 2022-23 as a result of the softening of the global market conditions during the year.

Nevertheless, the Group ended the financial year with a strong balance sheet with a cash and cash equivalents balance of Rs 8.9 billion and a net assets base of Rs 30.1 billion. Teejay’s net assets value per share of Rs 42 was lower by 6% when compared to the corresponding quarter, stemming from the strengthening of the Rupee against the Dollar, the Group said.

“The Group has reported gross profit of Rs 1.5 billion representing a year-on-year increase of 27% and a 17% increase when compared to the third quarter, as a result of the effective utilisation of the Group’s capacity at its two locations,” Teejay Lanka CEO Pubudu De Silva said. “Further optimisation of capacity utilisation and operational efficiency and stability in yarn prices have positively contributed to this growth, strengthening our confidence for the year ahead.”

Commenting on the Group’s performance in the concluded financial year, Teejay Lanka Chairman Ajit Gunewardene said it was encouraging to note the success of the multifaceted strategic initiatives undertaken to reverse the losses of the first quarter and to respond to market dynamics.

Gunewardene added: “The Group’s long-term priorities include digitalization, establishing and executing a robust ESG framework, reducing costs, developing new products, enhancing synthetic capacity, and uplifting and empowering human capital to enhance resourcefulness. These strategies are expected to come into effect in the current financial year, indicating promising prospects for the future and enabling the Group to mitigate the impact of identified pressures, volatilities, and challenges.”

The Teejay Group owns manufacturing facilities in Sri Lanka and India, along with a state-of-the-art printing facility in Sri Lanka. An ISO 9001:2015, ISO 14001:2015 and OHSAS 18001:2007 compliant company and the first in the industry to develop green fabric, Teejay Lanka was also the first textile manufacturer in Sri Lanka to receive membership of the US Cotton Trust Protocol. Teejay is a public quoted company with 40 per cent public ownership and the backing of Sri Lanka’s largest apparel exporter Brandix Lanka which has a 33 per cent stake in the Company. Pacific Textiles of Hong Kong, whose key shareholder is the Tokyo Stock Exchange listed Toray Industries Inc., owns 27 per cent of Teejay Lanka.(Teejay Lanka)

Continue Reading


SriLankan Cargo partners with CargoAi to enhance airfreight booking and payment experience



SriLankan Cargo, the cargo arm of SriLankan Airlines, has partnered with CargoAi, a leader in digital freight solutions, to simplify and enhance the airfreight booking and payment process for users

SriLankan Cargo, the cargo arm of SriLankan Airlines, has partnered with CargoAi, a leader in digital freight solutions, to simplify and enhance its airfreight booking and payment processes, and bring more transparency and velocity for users than ever.

The integration of SriLankan Cargo’s airfreight services into CargoAi’s ecosystem gives users access to online booking and instant cross-border payment capabilities, while allowing SriLankan Cargo to increase its reach and support forwarders that were previously untapped.

CargoAi’s integration with SriLankan Cargo also streamlines payment processes by offering multiple payment methods, ranging from local transfers to credit card payments, removing the reliance on cash payments and enhancing security and efficiency in financial transactions. Additionally, CargoAi’s CargoWALLET platform facilitates the reconciliation process, automating tasks that were previously manual and time-consuming.

For freight forwarders, the integration also means that they no longer need to provide a bank guarantee or pay yearly subscriptions. Everything is seamlessly integrated with CargoMART, simplifying operations and reducing overhead costs, allowing forwarders to focus on core business operations without the burden of administrative complexities.

Chaminda Perera, Head of Cargo of SriLankan Airlines commented by saying, “Our partnership with CargoAi marks another significant stride in our digitalization journey, aimed at expanding our horizons. We will be able to enhance the visibility of our inventory and offer customers a convenient airfreight booking experience. We are looking forward to extending our market reach and engaging with businesses of all scales with CargoAi.”

Continue Reading


Mövenpick Hotel Colombo unveils ‘Space’ wellness brand



Mövenpick Hotel Colombo proudly introduces ‘Space’, an innovative wellness brand designed to transcend boundaries and cultivate a culture of holistic well-being. The launch of ‘Space’ underscores the hotel’s unwavering commitment to fostering a vibrant and sustainable living experience for all.

‘Space’ represents a transformative leap forward for Mövenpick Hotel Colombo, consolidating its diverse offerings into a singular platform dedicated to holistic wellness. From the rejuvenating embrace of dance therapy to the serene tranquility of outdoor yoga and the invigorating energy of cross-functional fitness, ‘Space’ curates an unparalleled array of experiences tailored to nurture the mind, body, and spirit. Complemented by a thoughtfully curated selection of therapeutic treatments and a culinary journey inspired by the principles of nourishment and balance, ‘Space’ promises to redefine wellness in Colombo.

At its core, ‘Space’ is more than a brand – it’s a philosophy, advocating for the creation of space for oneself and others in the pursuit of a healthier, more fulfilling lifestyle. Through its multifaceted approach to wellness, ‘Space’ invites individuals to reclaim their well-being, fostering a sense of empowerment, connection, and community.

In a bold move towards inclusivity and accessibility, Mövenpick Hotel Colombo has brought together its entire spectrum of wellness offerings under the umbrella of ‘Space’. By consolidating these diverse experiences into one cohesive platform, the hotel seeks to ensure that every individual in the community has the opportunity to access and benefit from the transformative power of wellness. From guests seeking a rejuvenating escape to locals yearning for a sanctuary of self-discovery, ‘Space’ offers a welcoming embrace to all who seek balance and vitality.

Continue Reading