Friday, November 20, 2009

Global investors target Sri Lanka

Sanjeevi JAYASURIYA - The global investor community is keen on exploring opportunities in Sri Lanka as there is a peaceful environment that facilitates growing investor confidence. The next decade would be prosperous for the country as there will be growth potential in its financial market, said Leopard Capital Asia CEO, Douglas Clayton.

Leopard Capital Sri Lanka is a joint venture between Orion Capital Partners in Sri Lanka and Leopard Capital of Hong Kong. It launched a private equity fund to raise US $ 100 million by early next year.

The Fund would nurture the Management Buy Out (MBO) market in Sri Lanka. “There are many companies where the management does not get an opportunity to make the relevant changes to capture growth and enhance shareholders’ value due to lack of capital or shareholder disagreements.

Worldwide, the MBO becomes a solution for such problems and assists good management teams to continue to grow businesses navigating around shareholder issues. In the long term it ensures that companies have longer lifecycles than shareholder groups. MBOs also allow long standing family businesses to avoid decline and demise”, he said.

Leopard Sri Lanka Chairman, Ranjit Fernando said that with the advent of peace in the country it is anticipated that there will be unprecedented growth in the economy.

Many private companies which have traditionally depended on bank funding and retained earnings will be faced with either having to surrender growth opportunities to foreign companies with capital or to conglomerates with capital or else seek capital for expansion.

Leopard Sri Lanka will also assist in supporting this growth capital requirement among mid-sized Sri Lankan companies.

Sri Lanka has a conducive regulatory environment to attract investors. With the introduction of an equity fund of this nature it would help change the corporate landscape.

The Fund will focus on development impact, good governance, scalability of business, quality of management team and transparency in the potential investing companies.

It would invest in tourism, IT, financial services and the retail sectors and would provide capital to enhance business, he said.

Leopard Capital Sri Lanka works in collaboration with international experts in the field of investment management and capital mobilization and a team of Sri Lankan managers who have built a reasonable network in Sri Lanka with insights in to Sri Lankan business. Leopard Capital plans to bring a great deal of international business linkages that will assist Sri Lankan companies to access global markets.

A two-day investor forum will be held from today to showcase the country’s potential growth sectors and entrepreneurship skills to coincide with the launch of Leopard Capital Sri Lanka.

© Ceylon Daily News

Related Links:
Japanese investors show confidence in Sri Lanka - Ceylon Daily News
Sri Lanka can be the “Dubai of South Asia” : SL Minister - Daily Mirror
Sri Lanka market watchdog hosts Singapore investor forum - Lanka Business Online

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