Retail investors ride on Nation Lanka

Wednesday, 1 June 2011 01:23 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Around 8.5% stake or 17 million shares of Nation Lanka traded yesterday generating the biggest turnover of Rs. 535 million with retail investors stepping up what is perceived to be a crazy rush.

This was on top of 15.35 million shares traded for Rs. 457 million on Monday gaining by Rs. 2.10 or 7.66% whilst yesterday it rose by 8.47% or Rs. 2.50 to close at Rs. 31.90.    

Among the sellers on Monday was new shareholder director J. Rudra of Malaysian origin who had sold 580,000 shares or 3.6% stake. Sources said that Rudra’s sale could be to book profit. March 31, 2011 closing price of Nation Lanka Finance was Rs. 11.10.

Following the recent private placement Rudra held an 11.4% stake amounting to 16 million shares. Other major shareholders of Nation Lanka are Asanga Seneviratne’s Investor, Access Equities, and Nawaloka Construction.

Following the private placement Investor Access Equities acting in concert with Nawaloka and Rudra (collectively holding 71.4%) made a mandatory offer of Rs. 5 per share which closed last week with an insignificant response.

National Lanka said recently the Company can now mobilize funds via the issuance of debt instruments under the Finance Leasing (Debt Instruments) Direction No 1 of 2007 of the Central Bank.

This is following the infusion of capital through the conclusion of the Rights Issue and Private Placements recently thereby complying with the Finance Leasing (Gearing Ratio) No 4 of 2006 of the Central Bank.

In the financial year ended March 31, 2010, the Company posted a net loss of Rs. 197.5 million, but lower in comparison to Rs. 734 million in the previous year. Group pre-tax loss was Rs. 184 .4 million, down from Rs. 1 billion in 2009/10. Net loss attributable to equity holders of parent was Rs. 236.7 million, down from Rs. 1 billion last year. Group assets as at March 31, 2011 amounted to Rs. 3.7 billion, lower in comparison to Rs. 6.1 billion a year earlier. Liabilities were down from Rs. 6.6 billion to Rs. 3.5 billion in FY2011.

Top banker Passa joins

Top professional banker Ajita Pasqual will be joining the Nation Lanka Finance Plc as a consultant from next week.

Until recently he worked as a consultant to Seylan Bank Board after he stepped down as the General Manager and CEO in end 2010.

The entry of Pasqual is expected to further help Nation Lanka Finance’s progression to a new level in the financial services industry. The company recently got a big boost with infusion of Rs. 800 million via a Rs. 500 million private placement and Rs. 300 million from a Rights Issue, both at Rs. 5 per share.

The former facilitated the entry of top fund manager and investor Asanga Seneviratne with a 50% stake along with Nawaloka Constructions and Malaysian investor J. Rudra.

Nation Lanka was formerly Ceylinco Securities and Financial Services Ltd., with interests in financial services and real estate and property.

Pasqual joined Seylan Bank in 2003 as the Additional Manager after serving global giant HSBC local operations for 22 years. He was appointed Director/General Manager/CEO in 2004.

He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration which he finished at Manchester College, North Manchester, Indiana, USA.