Monday, October 15, 2012

Coco Lanka to form F&B holding company, rights issue to raise Rs. 1bn

Coco Lanka PLC (Coco) in a Stock Exchange filing last week said it has decided to expand the company’s focus from the Agri Business sector into a full-fledged food and beverage investment holding company. Coco will function with the objective of becoming one of the largest companies in this segment.

"In this light, the company has formed a fully owned subsidiary Renuka Consumer Foods Limited (RCL) which will function as the Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) arm of Coco while Renuka Agri Foods PLC (RAL) will continue to function as its Agri Business arm. RCL’s mandate will be to invest in and or acquire Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) brands and companies. To this effect, RCL has acquired 59.76% of the shareholding of Shaw Wallace Ceylon Ltd (SWCL)."

The Colombo Stock Exchange release also stated that Coco Lanka PLC is to be renamed Renuka Shaw Wallace PLC, to raise Rs. 1008 million by way of a Rights Issue of five new voting and non-voting shares for every four voting and non-voting shares held in the capital of the company and post rights subdivide every one existing voting and non-voting share into two new voting and non-voting shares respectively.

Renuka Agri Foods PLC and its subsidiaries namely Renuka Organics (Pvt) Ltd, Renuka Teas Ceylon (Pvt) Ltd, Kandy Plantations Ltd and Richlife Dairies Ltd are engaged in plantations, manufacturing and marketing Ceylon tea, coconut products (coconut milk powder, coconut milk coconut water, de-fatted coconut, virgin coconut oil), organic products, dairy products (plain milk, flavoured milk, yogurt, curd, ghee, cream) and fruit juice.  The flagship brands are Renuka, Richlife and Cheers. The cluster operates five factories, five processing centres, two plantations and has an out-grower network exceeding 5000 farmer families. The organisation also exports to 61 countries.

Renuka Consumer Foods Ltd and its subsidiaries namely Shaw Wallace Ceylon Ltd, Shaw Wallace Food Services Ltd and Renuka Products (Pvt) Ltd are engaged in manufacturing and distribution to retail and foodservice of fish products (Jack Mackerel, Mackerel, Tuna), flavor enhancers, instant drink powders, soya meat, colourings and essences.  The company owned flagship brands are Captain, Plaza, Sun Gold and Rainers’. The company is also the exclusive distributor for Ajinomoto in Sri Lanka. The cluster operates a state-of-the-art warehouse and logistics centre and has a manufacturing facility. The products are sold to over 65,000 grocery outlets island-wide as well as to hotel, restaurants, catering establishments among others.

Executive Director of the Company Shamindra Rajiyah said, "Today the business encompasses the complete value chain including plantations, manufacturing, international marketing and local distribution of food and beverage products.  As an integrated food and beverage organisation the company has ambitious plans to develop its product portfolio and distribution capabilities with its investment in Renuka Consumer Foods Ltd. We are committed to delivering value added, innovative products for the evolving global consumer through our meticulous process involving quality, research and development. To this effect, the island wide distribution network that Shaw Wallace Ceylon Ltd (SWCL) possesses will be an essential pre-requisite towards achieving this goal. Additionally, the investment is expected to create significant synergies to the existing businesses of Coco Lanka PLC."

Rajiyah further said, "Our future plans include the extension of existing brands to new food and beverage products, building an international coconut water brand, becoming the most innovative dairy products manufacturer, increasing our general trade outlet coverage and efficiency through the sales force automation system currently under implementation, setting up a dedicated group brand custodian team to increase visibility and brand recall, and, manufacturing new food and beverage products in response to market needs of the evolving consumer".

Coco Lanka PLC is a member company of the Renuka Holdings PLC group. The board of directors consist of Dr. S. R. Rajiyah (Chairman), Mrs. I. R. Rajiyah, C. J. De. S. Amaratunge, T. K. Bandaranayake, L. M. Abeywickrama, S. Vasanthakumara and S. V. Rajiyah.

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