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2017 will unleash great growth opportunities for Sri Lanka

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Optimism reigns in Sri Lanka in particular and in Asia Pacific in general with capital flows into Indian Ocean Island economy expected to increase during 2017, giving a major boost to the country’s burgeoning property industry, opines S. Thumilan – Chairman of Blue Ocean Group of Companies – a dynamic and emerging conglomerate could make a name from property to construction and from education to corporate consultancy. DFT-8-5

Through Budget 2017 the Government has introduced wide-ranging initiatives to support and encourage the construction and infrastructure industry in general and condominium sector of Sri Lanka in particular, says one of the most successful visionaries and entrepreneurs in the country – Thumilan.

Despite the challenges, policy reform initiatives taken by Finance Minister Ravi Karunanayake who was selected as the ‘Finance Minister of the Year’ for Asia-Pacific by the prestigious ‘The Banker’ Magazine have started to show positive impacts and would deliver tangible results to the whole economy in general and construction sector of Sri Lanka in particular within 2017, said a confident Thumilan. 

Budget 2017 – high encouraging 

“Budget 2017 presented by the United National Front for Good Governance (UNFGG) has proposed so many positive and encouraging changes that would undoubtedly boost the property, construction and infrastructure sectors of the country,” he opined.

The Government has reemphasised the huge potential for the construction industry anticipating it to grow into a fully-fledged Rs. 6,500 billion high-value industry in the next five years.

It is pertinent to note that the burgeoning condominium industry has been identified as a sector with significant potential for foreign investment. We laud Finance Minister’s initiative to further incentivise such investment, remove freehold right restrictions from the ground floor. Hitherto foreign investors could purchase fourth floor and above only sans the 100% transaction levy. Allowing foreigners to purchasing condominiums, up to 40% of the cost from a domestic bank is also another positive step. With the servicing of such debt mandated to be done foreign currency will ensure more foreign exchange flowing into the industry.

Creating organic growth

We at Blue Ocean have been fortunate to have an integral facet in the country’s exciting business landscape and I am indeed proud that my team and I have now etched the name of the Blue Ocean Group strongly in the annals of the country’s development history. We are undoubtedly leading the way to the future, having already begun changing the way the corporate and real estate landscape is looking ahead.

I have always said that the success of the Blue Ocean Group of Companies is in creating organic growth which cascades to effective solutions geared to meet global challenges. This in turn contributes positively to the global development agenda and to the eco-system that we all contribute to.

Differentiator in the landscape

When I founded the Blue Ocean Group, I was very keen that the Group would become the differentiator in the landscape we operated in. This is the universal Blue Ocean Strategy that we at the Blue Ocean Group of Companies are following. We are well grounded and founded in realistic and practical data; we pursue differentiation and economies of scale; we create uncontested market spaces, not really wanting to outperform competition but making competition irrelevant by reconstructing boundaries. 

We empower our team through tools and frameworks to break away from competition and assess current industry status to maximise opportunity while minimising risk. Our processes and tools are inclusive, comprehensive and easily communicated. And this binds all our stakeholders into a single platform, ultimately creating a win-win formula of value, profit and people. 

The Group’s consistent year on year improvement in financial results is a signal of the financial sustainability of our business model. To ensure the sustainability of the social and environmental aspects associated with our business, we continue to embrace best practices for social and environmental management. From a social perspective, our infrastructure projects across the country have a significant bearing on the communities in the area and improved the standard of living of our stakeholders. Our work to empower these communities has no doubt in Blue Ocean Group being an exemplary corporate citizen in Sri Lanka. 

Corporate governance

I believe in transparency which is the fundamental element of good governance. Corporate governance should begin in Companies for sustainable development and economic progress. My Group of Companies have evolved the strategy of inward remittance through attracting foreign clientele to invest in apartments. Blue Ocean has now become a well known brand. Some of our customers have purchased more than a few apartments as they see great potential for the immense growth.

Taking this Blue Ocean Strategy into perspective, the Blue Ocean Group of Companies has today grown into a formidable leader and trendsetter in over six industries including real estate, construction, engineering, trading, education and corporate consultancy. Our dynamism is seen in the global networks and projects we have spawned and the expansion we fuel in Europe, Asia Pacific, the Middle East and Asia, especially the UAE, UK, USA, Canada and Australia. 

As a Group, we are very focused on quality to which there is no compromise. It is this that has been the overarching umbrella to our sustainable success, in each project we embark upon. 

Around us, we are seeing the rapid beautification of the Colombo City. It is truly becoming a city that would rival, or as I like to think, be better than other developed cities in this Asian region. These plans are aligned to the ultimate vision of a rationalised Colombo by 2020, which is envisioned by the Megapolis earlier known as Urban Development Authority. We are experiencing rapid change and ambitious development, which naturally prompts quick changes in lifestyles. We do believe that people will become more discerning and more demanding about their needs, wanting quality, conformance to international standards and luxury details to complement their lifestyles. 

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