Aitken Spence Records Rs. 1.5bn as PBT for Six Months

13 Nov

AS Building

Diversified group Aitken Spence posted a pre-tax profit of Rs. 1.5 bn for six months ended 30th September 2015, while reporting a post-tax profit of Rs. 1.15 bn.
The blue chip’s half-year revenue was recorded as Rs. 11.9 bn, results released to the Colombo Stock Exchange revealed. Profit attributable to equity holders was Rs.781 mn for the six months while earnings per share was Rs. 1.92 for the same period.
The conglomerate posted Rs. 773 mn as pre-tax profits and Rs. 567 mn as post-tax profits for the second quarter while recording Rs. 6 bn as revenue. Earnings per share for the quarter stood at Rs. 0.89.
The corresponding results for the previous year included the profits from the operation of the Embilipitiya power plant and insurance proceeds received for the damaged water villas at one of its resorts in the Maldives. If these items were excluded from results of the previous year it would have resultedin a favourable increase in the consolidated profit before tax by 24%.
Aitken Spence PLC is among Sri Lanka’s most dynamic and respected corporate entities with operations in South Asia, the Middle East, Africa and the South Pacific. Listed in the CSE since 1983, it has major interests in hotels, travel, maritime services, logistic solutions and power generation. The group also has a significant presence in plantations, printing, garments, financial services, insurance and information technology.
Tourism sector recorded a pre-tax profit of Rs. 900 mn with revenues of Rs. 5.76 bn for the six months. Maritime and Logistics sector performed well with Rs. 527 mn as profit before tax and Rs. 3.42 bn as revenue for the same period. The Strategic Investments sector, which includes the power generation segment, recorded loss of Rs. 32 mn with revenue of Rs. 2.3 bn for the first half of the financial year. The Services sector recorded an improved performance with pre-tax profits of Rs. 109 mn, whilst revenue stood at Rs. 426mn, for the six-month period under review.
Recently, Aitken Spence PLC entered into an agreement to acquire a 20% shareholding in Fiji Ports Corporation Ltd (FPCL). FPCL manages all the major Ports in Fiji and is a wholly owned government company. Aitken Spence entered into the first ever Public Private Partnership overseas by a Sri Lankan company when it acquired a controlling shareholding in Fiji Ports Terminal Ltd in 2013 and signed a 15 year concession agreement to manage Suva and Lautoka international ports in Fiji
Aitken Spence Hotels recently announced the launch of its latest brand, Turyaa by Heritance, at the World Travel Market in London. The brand portfolio consists of Turyaa Chennai and Turyaa Kalutara with several other properties expected to join the brand in the next two to three years.
Aitken Spence expanded its presence in the Maldives through its acquisition of Raafushi Island in Noonu Atoll on a head lease this April. Plans are being reviewed for an approximately 200-room resort in the island.

Aitken Spence Expands its Footprint in the South Pacific

12 Nov

Fiji Port 2

Aitken Spence PLC, the pioneering conglomerate which entered into the first ever Public Private Partnership overseas by a Sri Lankan company when it acquired a controlling shareholding in Fiji Ports Terminals Ltd in 2013 and signed a 15 year concession agreement to manage Suva and Lautoka international ports in Fiji, further expanded its footprint in the South Pacific by acquiring a 20% shareholding in Fiji Ports Corporation Ltd (FPCL). FPCL manages all the major Ports in Fiji and is a wholly owned government company.

Recently the Fijian Government under its divestment programme invited expressions of interests from interested parties to purchase an equity stake in FPCL. Aitken Spence PLC together withFiji National Provident Fund formed a consortium and submitted a bid for a 59% shareholding, which was accepted by the Fijian Government. Fiji National Provident Fund has acquired a shareholding of 39% in FPCL. The legal agreements were signed on 5th November 2015 in the presence of the Hon Prime Minister of Fiji, HE Frank Bainimarama signifying a landmark in the divestment programme initiated by the Fijian Government. The total investment in FPCL by the consortium for a 59% shareholding is FJ$99.12 million (approximately US$ 50 million).

FPCL provides marine and navigation services, port infrastructure development and maintenance, security and International Ship and Port Facility Security (ISPS), management of local wharves and wharfage services. Additionally, FPCL manages the ports sector and administers tariffs in all major ports of Fiji. FPCL through its fully owned subsidiary Fiji Ships and Heavy Industries Limited provides ship repair services. It also has a 49% shareholding in the port terminal operator Fiji Ports Terminal Ltd, where Aitken Spence PLC has a 51% shareholding.

The Fijian Government through this partnership has taken a major step in achieving its vision of making Fiji the gateway port hub in the Pacific. Aitken Spence PLC, being the only Sri Lankan company to provide port management services overseas is keen to provide the expertise and the technical know-how to realize the vision of the Fijian Government.

Fiji Port 1

DB Schenker Partners with Aitken Spence in Sri Lanka and Maldives

11 Nov

Turku ist die Schnittstelle für die Verkehre nach Nord-Osteuropa (SB Schenker).

(Colombo / Singapore, 26 Oct 2015) As at 1st September 2015, DB Schenker welcomes DBS Logistics Ltd as its newest network partner for Sri Lanka and Maldive Islands.

DBS Logistics Ltd was formed to solely represent DB Schenker in Sri Lanka and Maldives for Air & Ocean Freight as well as Project Cargo. The setup of DBS Logistics was led by Aitken Spence Plc, a publicly listed conglomerate founded in Sri Lanka since 1868. Aitken Spence has diversified interests, which include maritime cargo logistics as well as strategic investments and services. Aitken Spence is one of the largest logistics service providers in Sri Lanka and has pioneered the industry in the country.

Dr Parakrama Dissanayake – Chairman of Aitken Spence Maritime and Logistics Sector and Director of Aitken Spence said, “This partnership in Sri Lanka and Maldives brings together the expertise and experience of a global leader and a regional leader, which will form a catalyst to propel growth. Imagination is what drives innovation & solutions, and together, DB Schenker and Aitken Spence have the imagination to make greater things happen.”

Added Mr Anders Wallin, Chief Financial Officer, Schenker (Asia Pacific) P/L, “DB Schenker has had a long relationship with Sri Lanka since 1980. This new partnership with DBS Logistics marks a new chapter, which will take us to another level of growth in these two important markets, especially benefitting our customers across industries, such as Fashion/Retail, Electronics, Industrial, Healthcare, Automotive, Aerospace and others.”

As DB Schenker’s exclusive Network Partner for Air Freight, Ocean Freight and Project Cargo in Sri Lanka and Maldives, the appointment of DBS Logistics will enable better integration of services as well as enhanced capabilities and quality of service in the two territories.

About DB Schenker:

DB Schenker stands for the transportation and logistics activities of Deutsche Bahn (DB), with more than 95,700 employees in over 140 countries generating revenues of EUR 19.8 billion. DB Schenker has top positions in the global air and ocean freight business, has Europe’s densest land transport network, and has the rail expertise of the largest European rail freight company.

Aitken Spence Launches Turyaa by Heritance at World Travel Market

10 Nov
From Left: Mr. G C Wickremasinghe, Sir Peter Heap, Ms. Stasshani Jayawardena and Mr. J M S Brito

From Left: Mr. G C Wickremasinghe, Sir Peter Heap, Ms. Stasshani Jayawardena and Mr. J M S Brito

Leading regional hospitality operator Aitken Spence Hotels announced the launch of its latest brand,Turyaa by Heritance,at the World Travel Market [WTM] in London. The World Travel Market is the leading global event for the travel industry providing an opportunity for the global travel trade to meet, network negotiate and conduct business.

Turyaa by Heritance was conceptualized to appeal to the changing lifestyles of the global traveler. With the digital revolution and globalization gradually changing the demands and preferences towards brand selection, Turyaa by Heritance was developed to provide the guest with a brand that is more flexible, responsive, interactive and value driven.

Located in gateway cities, resort destinations and MICE locations, Turyaa by Heritance is designed around ultimate comfort, great food, good value and outstanding “can-do-service” that delivers the perfect place to stay for go-getters, trendsetters and highflyers who want to reconnect, rejuvenate and relax.

“From listening to our guests, we learnt that there was an opportunity to better meet the needs of the modern traveler whose expectations are constantly evolving. The essence of Turyaa by Heritance is all about delivering fantastic experiences to our guests. We have created spaces where guests can feel at ease, surrounded by the things they love. This is genuinely an exciting time for us and we look forward to elevating the guest experience through innovations in product and service delivery”, said Mr.Chethiya Perera, Joint Managing Director, Aitken Spence Hotels.

“Aitken Spence will be strengthening and expanding our tourism portfolio in the next few years in the Indian Ocean region. Turyaa by Heritance will deliver a distinct experience across different countries to the traveler who is enthusiastic about life. We are confident that Turyaa will add substantial value to the destinations that it will call home”, said Mr. J M S Brito, Deputy Chairman and Managing Director, Aitken Spence PLC.

Turyaa Chennai, India is located in the IT Corridor of Chennai and just a short drive away from the heart of the city. Whilst being a business hotel, it will also transform into an idyllic sanctuary of rest and entertainment by evening, flaunting its infinity rooftop poolside that opens out to the whole of the bustling city. The property opened its doors on 1st October 2015, to be followed by a property launch in November.

Turyaa Kalutara (formerly known as The Sands) will offer a diverse range of eclectic dining options including Arabic, fusion and local cuisines. The property boasts a diverse range of accommodation with large guestrooms ideal for families. Great food, fun, lively and vibrant will be the hallmarks of this property located just 37 km away from the city of Colombo.

In addition, the brand hopes to include further properties key destinations in Sri Lanka to its portfolio between 2016- 2018. Aitken Spence Hotels operates a chain of 24 hotels and resorts in Sri Lanka, India, Oman, and the Maldives under two premier brands: Heritance and Adaaran. Each of their properties caters to a diverse client base, having hotels suited to every need and budget while maintaining high standards of hospitality. Located in key tourist locations, the Aitken Spence chain boasts of exotic properties such as Sri Lanka’s most awarded Heritance Kandalama which is situated in close proximity to five UNESCO world heritage sites, and the Desert Nights Camp in Oman, rated as one of the top ten desert retreats in the world.

Please visit www.turyaahotels.comto find more about Turyaa by Heritance.

Ms.Stasshani Jayawardena, Director, Aitken Spence PLC & Aitken Spence Hotels with guest

Ms.Stasshani Jayawardena, Director, Aitken Spence PLC & Aitken Spence Hotels with guest

Award winning chef, Dimuthu Kumarasinghe with one of his creations

Award winning chef, Dimuthu Kumarasinghe with one of his creations

Turyaa by Heritance launches at WTM today!

3 Nov


Spanish Tourist Celebrates National Day with Aitken Spence Travels

19 Oct
Celebrations at Hotel Hilltop

Celebrations at Hotel Hilltop

Aitken Spence Travels celebrated the Spanish National day on the 12th October with Spanish tourists traveling during the same period. A group on an adventure tour and another group on a round-trip culture tour were hosted by Aitken Spence Travels for cocktails, anniversary cakes and specially organized calypso bands for entertainment on the national day evening at Hotel Hilltop in Kandy and Cinnamon Wild in Yala. Aitken Spence Travels, with key partners across the world, brings in the largest number tourists to Sri Lanka.

Celebrations at Cinnamon Wild

Aitken Spence Technologies kicks off its first Manufacturing Sector Oracle E-Business Suite R12.2.4 Implementation with NMK Holdings

8 Sep

Aitken Spence Technologies recently signed off with NMK Holdings, better known as Marina Kingdom of Oils and Fats for the design, supply and installation of Oracle ERP (E-Business Suite R12.2.4) Solutions Software for the manufacturing giant. For the sign-off of the project, several dignitaries from NMK Holdings Pvt Ltd were present including Mr. Manjula Narayana – Chairman, Mr. Manjula Priyadarshana – Group Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Rasika Jayawardena – Chief Accountant, Shantha Haloluwa – Finance Manager and Mr. P.D. Premaratne – Executive Director. Mr. Vipula Gunatillake – Group Chief Corporate Officer and Managing Director of Aitken Spence Technologies, Mr. Dhammika Dasa – Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Fahad Cader – General Manager and Mr. Amila Shanka Perera – the Manager Delivery – Oracle Applications were present at the signing from Aitken Spence Technologies.

NMK Holdings (Pvt) Ltd has been in business in Sri Lanka for the last 35 years. Having multiple businesses in Food Manufacturing, Trading, Supply Change Management-Shipping & Logistics and Non Food categories, the group is one of the largest in Sri Lanka. Under the strong patronage of its Chairman Mr. Manjula Narayana, the company has spread its wings across multi-location factories island wide. While its international trading spreads across 41 countries, its brand Marina is a household name in Sri Lankan. It is with great pride that Aitken Spence Technologies ventures into its first Manufacturing & FMCG industry project.

“We’re indeed very proud to enter into a partnership with NMK Holdings, a Sri Lankan company, to support them with their automation. They have chosen the right product after a detailed evaluation of their current and future business requirements. I’m confident that Aitken Spence Technologies would be able to deliver the Oracle solution to meet their requirements” said Mr. Vipula Gunatillake – Group Chief Corporate Officer and Managing Director of Aitken Spence Technologies

The project is an initiative of the newly appointed group CEO Mr. Manjula Priyadarshana who is driven with the aspiration of taking the NMK group to be a One Billion Dollar company by 2020.

Sixteen companies are covered in the project scope, including NMK Holdings (Pvt) Ltd, Cherubium Lanka (Pvt) Ltd, Naratha Agro Industries Lanka (Pvt) Ltd, Naratha Agro Industries (Pvt) Ltd, NMK Agro Industries (Pvt) Ltd, Nara Coco Land (Pvt) Ltd. The project locations will include the Head Office at Colombo 9 and three factories in Kandana, Kurunegala and Dankotuwa.

The group wanted to implement a fully integrated Tire 1 Enterprise Resource Planning System which could facilitate the growing business needs, horizontal and vertical business expansions in local and foreign continents. Aitken Spence Technologies moved into the project with the goal of streamlining the company’s business operation through the best practices which Oracle brings in. After the implementation, NMK will have one integrated system for their full supply chain including Imports and exports, FMCG Business and Manufacturing.

There are approximately 15 modules lined up to be implemented at NMK Holdings revolving around Oracle Financials, Oracle Supply Chain and Oracle Manufacturing. After the project is completed, NMK Holdings is expected to enjoy many cost reductions through revamped efficiencies through Oracle with the expectation of expanding it to Oracle CRM Cloud.

Being a first of its kind for Aitken Spence Technologies, the project will span across 12 months and will widen the customer reach of the company to the Manufacturing sector, in addition to the automobile, banking, port terminal and other industries which the company serves in.

Aitken Spence Technologies, armed with 35+ Oracle Consultants, currently has the largest pool of Oracle resources in the country. The Project team for the NMK Group Implementation consists of 10 Functional Consultants, 4 Technical Consultants & 2 Oracle Data Base Administrators. The Solution Architect and the Project Manager will be Amila Shanka Perera, the Manager Delivery – Oracle Applications. Image ONE Image TWO

Aitken Spence Travels Attracts Nature and Adventure Tours from Spain

26 Aug

Group1Intensive marketing of Sri Lanka as an ideal destination for nature and adventures tours by Aitken Spence Travels has attracted a leading specialized tour operator from Spain to send two tourist groups to Sri Lanka this month. The groups’ tours in Sri Lanka were handled by Aitken Spence Travels, Sri Lanka’s leading destination management company.

The Spanish tour operator who specializes in nature and adventure, offers such tours to most parts of the world from Spain. Its Product Manager, Mr. Javier Ludena Fernandez said “Sri Lanka and its people have been a beautiful surprise. We are confident of moving more clients to the country in the coming months”.

With the commitment towards offering sustainable tourism, Aitken Spence Travels is endowed the Carbon Neutral status by the Sri Lanka Carbon Fund and maintains ISO 9001:2008 and 14001:2004 certifications.

Aitken Spence Q1 Results Affected by Energy Sector Loss and Downturn in Maldives

10 Aug

Diversified blue chip conglomerate Aitken Spence PLC’s financial results released to the Colombo Stock Exchange reported a pre-tax profit of Rs 732 mn for the first quarter, while Group’s profit attributable to shareholders of the parent was Rs. 420 mn. Reported revenue for the first quarter was Rs. 5.9 bn, whilst earnings per share for the quarter stood at Rs. 1.04.
The 100 MW Ace Power Embilipitiya ceased operations in April 2015 subsequent to the conclusion of the 10-year power purchase agreement with the Ceylon Electricity Board. The corresponding results for the previous year included the profits from the full operation of the Embilipitiya power plant and insurance proceeds received for the damaged water villas at one of its resorts in the Maldives.
“Although we were keen to contribute to the stability and capacity of the National Grid, in line with the growing energy requirement in the country, the authorities did not use the opportunity to secure guaranteed power at a reasonable cost by failing to negotiate a mutually favourable agreement to generate power, from our plant in Embilipitiya”, said J M S Brito, Deputy Chairman and Managing Director of Aitken Spence PLC.
“Aitken Spence has several large resort construction projects taking place in Negombo, Kalutara and Ahungalla that are expected to add around 750 rooms to Sri Lanka’s tourism sector. The construction of the Heritance Negombo and the expansion of The Sands in Kalutara are expected to be completed within the financial year, despite delays. The construction of the RIU Hotel in Ahungalla is expected to be completed in the winter of 2016. Turyaa Chennai, the 143-room city property is awaiting a few regulatory licenses to commence commercial operations”, he added.
The Tourism sector reported Rs. 435 mn as pre-tax profits for the quarter. The sector revenue for the quarter was Rs. 3.55 bn.
The hotel industry in the Maldives felt the negative effects of key source markets with arrivals from Russia falling by 40 per cent and the Korean market showing a significant drop, during the first financial quarter. Aitken Spence, which has several resorts in the islands, has been adjusting to changing market conditions in the Maldives with several key source markets to Maldives facing downturns.
Maritime and Logistics sector performed well, reporting Rs. 214 mn with pre-tax profits, while revenue was Rs. 1.85 bn.
Revenue from the Strategic Investments sector without accounting for the contribution from the Embilipitiya power plant was Rs. 1.29 bn while profits before tax was Rs. 86 mn. Reported figures showed revenue at Rs. 1.47 bn and profits before tax at Rs. 23 mn.
Services sector of Aitken Spence performed commendably with a profit-before-tax of Rs. 60 mn and revenue at Rs. 277 mn.

Heritance Ahungalla and Heritance Kandalama Adjudged Top Winners at the Culinary Awards for the Third Time

29 Jul

Most Outstanding Regional Team & Best Culinary Team – Heritance Kandalama

Most Outstanding Hotel Team – Heritance Ahungalla

Sri Lanka’s premier beach resort Heritance Ahungalla, emerged as the Most Outstanding Hotel Team in Sri Lanka for the third consecutive time after competing against 2500 participants from both international and domestic star-class city and resort hotels at the 16th Culinary Art Competition which concluded on Monday. Heritance Hotels dominated the competition with Heritance Kandalama being adjudged the Best Culinary Team and Most Outstanding Regional Team at the competition.

Organized by the Chefs Guild of Sri Lanka, the culinary competition is part of the industry’s largest food and trade exhibition. Thirty judges from the World Association of Chefs Societies (WAS) officiated at the event. WAS consists of over 10 million chef members from over 91 countries.

Maintaining its reputation for offering the best cuisine in the country, Aitken Spence Hotels won 113 medals including 28 Gold medals which included 5 Excellence Gold medals and the prestigious award for the Most Culinary Team in Sri Lanka.

There were 24 categories for the medals and the Aitken Spence Hotels medal tally displayed the sheer dominance the resort chain’s chefs had over its competitors in the field. Chef Lalith Gunasekera, Consultant Chef/General Manager, Aitken Spence Hotels and Heritance Hotels who led the team along with Chef R J Hassim, Corporate Chef, Aitken Spence Hotels and Heritance Hotels and Chef Kasun Premachandra, Executive Chef, Heritance Ahungalla whose continuous training and motivation guided the participants, were jubilant along with the teams from Aitken Spence Hotels who collectively won 13 special awards out of a total of 29 special awards.

The special awards included the following: Best Pastry Chef – Chef Jagath Wjesundara, Heritance Ahungalla, Best Bartender Mixologist & Best Beer Cocktail- Mr. Praveen Sampath Fernando, Heritance Ahungalla, Most Outstanding Apprentice – Chef M R D Fernando, Heritance Kandalama, Most Outstanding Artistic Show Piece – Chef Anil Gunawardane, Heritance Kandalama, Best Plated Appetizer – Chef Manoj Peiris, Heritance Ahungalla, Best Dessert Apprentice – Chef Kaveendra Heshan Balathanthri, Heritance Ahungalla, Best 5 Course Dinner – Chef H H K D Dayananda, Heritance Ahungalla, Best Mocktail – Ms. Lasitha Lakmini, Heritance Ahungalla, Best High Tea – Ms. Mandakini & Mr. Dharmasena, Heritance Kandalama, Best Culinary Team and Most Outstanding Regional Team – Heritance Kandalama, Most Outstanding Hotel – Heritance Ahungalla.

“As in the previous years, I am tremendously proud of the achievements of our team, walking away as the most outstanding hotel, best culinary team, and the most outstanding regional team with 113 medals from a competition such as this is a tremendous achievement. We constantly strive to be the best and are firm believers of ensuring that our future generation is provided with the knowledge required to take on the baton when required”, said Mr. Gemunu Goonewardene, Director/Consultant, Aitken Spence Hotels.

“Sri Lanka as a destination, is flourishing and gearing its offering to attract the premium indulgent traveler. Thus it is imperative to deliver the expected products and services in order to cater to our new target audience’s expectations. Aitken Spence Hotels is continuously committed towards reaching new heights and delivering a product or service that exceeds guest expectations. Receiving recognition as the Best Culinary Team is yet another endorsement of our continuous yearn to achieve greater standards. The loyalty, dedication, commitment and teamwork has made this achievement possible and I would like to congratulate the teams on their achievement.” said Mr. Chethiya Perera, Joint Managing Director, Aitken Spence Hotels.

Chefs Guild of Sri Lanka from their modest beginnings in 1988 has emerged as the premier professional body of culinary professionals in the hospitality trade.

A platform for recognizing true culinary talents, the competition symbolizes the pinnacle of excellence as hundreds of practitioners in the food & beverage industry in the country gathers to prove their mettle.

Aitken Spence Hotels is the largest resort operator in Sri Lanka and the largest international hotel operator in the Maldives with a portfolio of hotels in multiple locations in India and Oman. Its range of international award-wining properties, management & culinary expertise and environmental commitment has set industry benchmarks both domestically and internationally.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 40 other followers