As the pioneers in leasing in Sri Lanka, Lanka Orix Leasing Company Ltd. (LOLC) today celebrates its silver jubilee and a 25 year history for leasing in the country. Today the company looks back at a proud history of having introduced and revolutionized the concept of leasing from corporates to the grassroots across the country, empowering its people with infrastructure, livelihood and employment opportunities.
“Having fathered leasing to the country, we have not rested on our laurels. Through the years, LOLC has scored many firsts and still maintains a standing of an innovative and dynamic provider of financial services to the country. This has been proved not merely from a customer perspective but also from a performance perspective, surpassing half a billion in group profits over the last year, recording thrice the growth in profits over the last 5 years”; said Rohini Nanayakkara, Chairperson on the reaching the milestone.
Starting out as a leader in leasing solutions, the company has expanded its financial instruments and services to include debt factoring, insurance, finance, share broking and IT services.
LOLC is associated with ORIX Corporation, Japan, the largest independent leasing company in the world and the second-largest financial services provider in Japan. Orix today boasts of a worldwide network that not only covers Asia but also the Americas, Europe and the Pacific Rim. Responsible for spearheading and driving leasing across South-East Asia, Orix’s spectrum of services includes leasing, corporate finance, real-estate related finance and development, insurance, investment and retail banking.
LOLC has also demonstrated its might to withstand the economic ups and downs of the country. The company’s sound financial planning and foresight of a diversified credit portfolio softened the impact to the company from the tsunami last year.
“We have made steady strides through the years and recently earned the honour of being ranked among the Top 10 Brands in a study conducted by Brand Finance, the world’s leading independent brand evaluation company together with Sri Lanka based Sting Consultants and LMD Magazine. From a financial perspective, last year LOLC reached a Return on Capital Employed (ROCE) of 24%. Our superior performance on ROCE, coupled with a market capitalization of Rs. 4 billion, recording a 43% growth in shareholders’ wealth, is noteworthy. The company’s stability and strength is further demonstrated by the lower gearing ratio maintained at 2.5 and the significant growth in net assets to Rs. 2.3 billion,” said I.C. Nanayakkara, Deputy Chairman/Chief Executive Officer on the company’s silver jubilee.
Looking towards the future, Mr. Nanayakkara said that company possesses a unique financial and brand strength which would be used to ‘move LOLC into every sphere of financial services in the country.
LOLC’s growth has also been well balanced with its duty as a model corporate citizen. Its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) begins at home with disciplined and ethical conduct, which has been endorsed with the Best Annual Report Award in the Leasing Sector and the South Asian Federation of Accountants Award (SAFA). Product innovations include a focus on the social development angle seen in its participation in loan scheme ‘Renewable Energy for Rural Development’ which enables underprivileged communities to obtain Home Solar Systems.
Other CSR activities of the company include knowledge empowerment through its ‘Viyapara Shilpa’ programme, contribution to dengue eradication, IT education in schools, etc.
LOLC was set up in 1980 with the participation of Orix Corporation and the International Finance Corporation on the recommendation of the World Bank. Though leasing had a bout of scepticism and resistance initially, the company effectively played a catalyst role in campaigning and marketing the concept to empower people and the development of industry and agriculture in the country.
LOLC today operates a group of businesses engaged in leasing, factoring, insurance, financing, stock broking and IT services through five subsidiaries and delivers its services through a network of branches strategically located in major cities and towns in the country.