Kalpitiya Beach Resorts and Waskaduwa Beach Resorts, both from the Citrus Group, made their debut on Tuesday. Over 1.7 million shares were transacted on the opening day in Kalpitiya Beach Resorts at between Rs.24 and Rs.16.60 while over six million shares were traded in Waskaduwa Beach Resorts at between Rs.13 and Rs.17.
Kalpitiya Beach offered 16.2 million shares, while Waskaduwa Beach offered 5.6 million shares by way of an IPO in November 2011.
In another expansionary and ambitious development in the leisure sector, the LOLC group purchased the 76 rooms, chalet-type, Dickwella Resort for Rs.1 billion, making it one of the largest resorts-owning companies.
A cautious sentiment prevailed during the first week of trading for the year amidst gradual erosion in price levels in most stocks, but very attractive in a few blue chips.
Some research analysts are of the view that one of the reasons for the sluggish market is the evaporation of capital due to the rights issues and IPOs worth almost Rs. 48 billion in 2011.
Of this figure, rights issues were worth over Rs. 28 billion. Depressed prices in the plantation shares due to the fall in tea prices; overall lack of confidence due to chaotic rules and regulation of the Securities and Exchange Commission; losses suffered by a few due to the irrational pricing of some IPOs; and the current global economic slowdown are some of the causes for the predicament in the bourse. Tea industry sources are cautiously optimistic in the New Year but more comfortable since at the first auction prices were much improved, especially in BOPs.
Plantation shares have not reacted but brokers expect a fair improvement if tea prices see an upside at future auctions. However a mixed reaction was depicted in the market. Balangoda, Hapugastenne, Namunukula and Watawala were marginally higher while Talawakelle, Horana and Kegalle Plantations were lower. On Friday, Alliance Finance escalated to Rs 784.90, and Colombo Pharmacy was up at Rs.1071 while E.B. Creasy slipped down to Rs.1467.30. Environmental Resources Normal Shares and its Warrants evoked extra demand.
PC Pharma will seek a listing on the Diri Savi Board by way of an introduction of its 101,000.020 Ordinary Voting shares. The ATS version 7 which was to come live on Friday has been postponed to next month.
Changes in directorates: HNB - R K Obeyesekere resigned from the Board; Asian Alliance Insurance - Prof. Lakshman R. Watawala resigned from the Board; Blue Diamonds Jewellery – U.D. Liyanagamage and K.S.C.P.K. Gunasinghe resigned from the board; Harischandra Mills - Tissa K Bandaranayake was appointed Non Executive Independent Director; Abans Finance - Ms Aban Pestonjee (Non-Executive Chairman) and S. Sothivadivel, Non-Executive Director resigned while Rusi Pestonjee was appointed Non-Executive Chairman; Eastern Merchants - Channa S.L. de Silva and Indika P de Zoysa were appointed to the Board; Touchwood Investments - Rienzie Wijetilleke was appointed Chairman/Director while Roscoe Anthony Maloney resigned as Chairman but will continue as a Director; Seylan Bank - Eastman Narangoda will continue as Chairman in a non-executive capacity while Samantha Ranatunga was appointed an independent Non-Executive Director; Bartleet Finance - Eraj Wijesinghe resigned as Chairman but will continue as Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer. K G Dheerasinghe, former Senior Deputy Governor, Central Bank was appointed as Non-Executive Director and chairman; Talawakelle Tea Estates - M de Silva resigned from the board while Ms Minette Perera was appointed a Non-Executive Director; Merchant Bank of Sri Lanka - Gamini Karunathilake, Chief Executive Officer retired while Lakshman Kaluarachchi was appointed acting CEO; John Keells PLC - Lalith Ramanayake retired and R.S.Fernando was appointed to the board; Tea Smallholder Factories - Lalith Ramanayake retired and R. S. Fernando was appointed to the board.
Turnover for the week was Rs. 1.9 billion against 2.5 billion for the four days of the previous week.
Both indices were lower; the All Share Price Index losing 1% or 143.90 points to end at 5930.52 while the Milanka was down 145.99 points or 1% to close at 5083.15.