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Softlogic Holdings’ topline records 9 per cent growth for 2QFY21

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Extracts from Softlogic Holdings plc’s interim financial statements for the six months ended September 30, 2020

For a consumer-driven conglomerate impacted by the systemic COVID-19 (C19) transmission, the Group’s topline recorded a commendable growth of 9% to Rs. 21.8 Bn for 2QFY21 which defied expectations with performance exceeding the two preceding negative quarters. Performance of the 1HFY21 was severely affected by the two-month lockdown in 1QFY21 with the six-month turnover at Rs. 36 Bn.

Despite the depressed market conditions, Softlogic engaged in vertical integration plans, particularly, in the financial services sector for synergy and industry consolidation purposes. Investments, primarily in retail and healthcare, will translate to greater performance in the upcoming periods when the fear of C19 abates, while consumers adapt themselves to new realities. With growing optimism of the Pfizer and Sputnik vaccines, economic confidence is progressively being normalized with pent-up consumer demand showing signs of rebounding.

There was a fundamental shift in how decisions were made during the lockdown. The management prioritized liquidity, rationalized employment and resources and focused on business recovery while pruning down on all non-essential expenditure and obtaining favourable terms from suppliers for fixed costs such as rent waivers from mall operators. The banks provided loan moratoria to support liquidity while providing working capital loans for the hotels under CBSL’s C19 Renaissance programme.

Primary contributors to Group topline for the cumulative period were Retail (52% contribution), Financial Services (22%), Healthcare Services (20%), IT (5%) followed by the non-core sectors — Automotive and Leisure & Property.

Gross Profit for the quarter was Rs. 7.2 Bn while 1HFY21 reached Rs.11 Bn. It should be noted that expectations of significant revenue growth following our recent investments, particularly in the retail sector, would have been achieved if businesses had operated under normal circumstances. The implications of all this, despite the increase in cost of sales, is that the gross profit margins would have further increased as consequence of an increase in aggregate turnover ensuring better bottom-line contribution.

Other Operating Income, which comprise recurrent and non-recurrent income such as investment income, fee and commission generated from retail and financial services, increased 58% to Rs. 213 Mn 2QFY21 while 1HFY21 recorded a 27% growth in other operating income to Rs. 416 Mn.

Stringent cost control measures executed during this phase resulted in distribution and administrative expenses declining 14% and 10% to Rs. 784 Mn and Rs. 4 Bn respectively during the quarter. Total operational expenses declined 11% to Rs. 4.8 Bn during the quarter. Cumulative distribution cost declined 20% to Rs. 1.4 Bn while a 5% deduction in administration costs to Rs. 8.1 Bn was noted during 1HFY21. Total operational cost for the cumulative period reduced 8% to Rs. 9.5 Bn.

(Softlogic Holdings)



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Rootcode wins Startup of the Year and People’s Choice Award at SAARC Startup Awards 2022

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Rootcode, one of Sri Lanka’s leading tech companies, recently took home the “People’s Choice Award” in addition to being bestowed with the “Startup of the Year” title at the SAARC Startup Awards 2022. This regional recognition marks a significant milestone for the Sri Lankan tech space and workforce. Rootcode’s mission to build great tech is well underway, and it is gaining traction faster than ever.

This is the first time a Sri Lankan tech company has made a name for itself in the regional competition, and it is a watershed moment that has focused the global spotlight on Rootcode’s distinct approach to fostering innovation in Sri Lanka. This is also the first time that a Sri Lankan company was able to take home two awards of those presented at the SAARC Startup Awards.

Global Startup Awards SAARC celebrates the spirit of entrepreneurship and promotes bridging boundaries through innovation in its regions, which include Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka, by recognizing them with its most prestigious awards program, attended by top-notch entrepreneurs, corporates, investors, and ecosystem builders from Nordic, Central Europe, SAARC, and ASEAN regions.

Every year, the SAARC Startup Awards bring together hundreds of South Asian startups, entrepreneurs, investors, co-working spaces, and accelerators to provide a platform to highlight trailblazers in the region’s startup world. Rootcode was chosen ahead of dozens of other regional tech startups in the competition.

Sri Lanka is a relative newcomer to the South Asian startup fraternity, and Rootcode’s ability to represent the country on the global stage not long after its inception is remarkable.

“We are extremely humbled and honored by the support shown to us at the SAARC Startup Awards 2022, and being recognized under two categories is a huge milestone for us,” said the CEO and Founder of Rootcode Labs, Alagan Mahalingam. “We have always been driven forward by excellence, collaboration, and integrity, which I believe is the reason why we have come so far and why Rootcode continues to grow every day.”

Rootcode is driven by its focus on helping businesses build great tech not just locally but globally, and its achievement at the SAARC awards stands as a testament to that. Despite the challenging times, this is a win for Sri Lanka.

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INSEE Cement felicitates Sri Lanka’s youngest Commonwealth medallist

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INSEE Cement awarded aspiring wrestler, Nethmi Ahimsa Fernando, who won a Bronze Medal for Sri Lanka at the recently concluded Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, LKR 1 million cash reward, to support her to pursue her passion. Suranga Kumara, her coach, also received LKR 250,000 cash reward, in appreciation of his contribution towards Nethmi’s recent achievements. INSEE Cement has also pledged to support Nethmi’s aspiration to represent Sri Lanka at the 2024 Olympic games, while also providing the entire cement requirement for the completion of her new house, which is presently under construction, in collaboration with the Manusath Derana initiative.

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Textile maker Teejay knits strong start to 2022-23

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Q1 revenue more than doubles to Rs 23.9 billion

Teejay Lanka PLC has made a positive start to 2022-23 posting Group revenue of Rs 23.9 billion for the three months ending 30th June 2022. The Group achieved nearly half its full-year revenue of 2021-22 in just the first quarter of the new financial year as a result of the low base of the previous financial year due to the impacts of COVID, the depreciation of the Rupee and the passing on of yarn price increases during the last quarter.

In a filing with the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE), Sri Lanka’s largest textile manufacturer said it had also recorded significant growth in pre-tax and net profit at both Group and Company level in the quarter reviewed.According to interim financial statements, Group profit before tax for the three months grew by more than Rs 1 billion or 291% to Rs 1.5 billion, while Group net profit for the period was up 301% to Rs 1.2 billion.

At Company level, revenue improved by 108% in the quarter under review to Rs 12.9 billion, while profit before tax grew by 323% to Rs 1.5 billion, and net profit increased by 311% to Rs 1.3 billion.

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