However Carsons, one of the strongest conglomerates quoted on the CSE with a multinational profile, has seen group turnover at mid-year grow 108% to Rs.31.1 billion with the profit attributable to equity holders of the parent company excluding non-controlling interest a substantial Rs.4.1 billion.
"This boost in turnover was the result of all-round better performance in all the sectors of the group whilst the first time turnover contribution from the group’s newest business segment – oils and fats (palm oil downstream business) – contributed Rs.6.3 billion for the second quarter alone," the company has said in an interim financial statement.
The group’s leisure sector was among the beneficiaries of the upward momentum in tourism with turnover up 33% to Rs.19 million and profits after-tax up 86% to Rs.44 million.
"Both hotels (Pegasus and Giritale) show strong potential for the upcoming winter season and full capacity rooms will be available in refurbished status to meet the expected influx of tour groups," the statement said.
"The success of this season will solidify the group’s long term strategies on the sector’s future direction."
The Lion Brewery controlled by Carsons is the dominant player in the country’s beer sector and Carsons said that as a result of an expanding economy, their beverage business had shown an improved performance with the segment contributing Rs.8.1 billion to group turnover and Rs.685 million to the profit after-tax.
Real estate had continued its steady income generation role contributing Rs.11 million to the group profit after tax. All its properties are nearly fully occupied and the revival of the Colombo Fort area where the property of Equity Two is situated is expected to augur well for their Janadhipathi Mawatha property with increased rental potential and overall property wealth expected to follow, the statement said.
Carsons is today a major player in palm oil both as a grower and processor. Its oil palm sector under Goodhope Asia Holdings Ltd based in Singapore had contributed Rs.191.6 billion to turnover and Rs.3.3 billion profit after-tax to the bottom line.
In June this year Goodhope successfully concluded the takeover of three operating fats manufacturers or Premium Nutrients Bhd, a speciality fats manufacturer, with factories in Malaysia and India. Two of the factories are located in Malaysia and the third in Andhra Pradesh, India.
The results of these subsidiaries had been consolidated with the group results from July 1, 2011 and had contributed to performance during the half year under review.
Carsons said that the downstream business in palm oil, though a high turnover generator, yields thin margins.
The period under review had seen the group investments holding sector led by the Ceylon Guardian group booking an exceptional capital gain of Rs.1.8 billion by taking an aggressive sell position in some of its long-term investments thus generating cash for the group.
This business segment had made a contribution of Rs.3.1 billion to the group’s consolidated revenue and Rs.3.2 billion to its profits after-tax with Ceylon Guardian booking exceptional capital gains in a backdrop of challenging market conditions.
Carsons has a stated capital of Rs.1.6 billion and revenue reserves of Rs.7.68 billion in its books at company level with total assets running at Rs.10.57 billion and total liabilities at Rs.1.31 billion.
At group level the stated capital stood at Rs.1.6 billion, capital reserves at Rs.4.19 billion and revenue reserves at Rs.19.4 billion. Total assets were Rs.92.54 billion and total liabilities Rs.43.43 billion.
Segmentally, the oil palm plantations was the biggest contributor to the bottom line earning Rs.1.14 billion profit after-tax with investment holdings segment contributing R.286.88 billion. Oils and fats had recorded a loss of Rs.330.3 million.
Beverages earned Rs.309.4 million, real estate Rs.4.16 million and leisure Rs.23.19 million.
Bukit Darah PLC with 45.68% of Carsons, Tower Investments (Pvt) Ltd (10.66%), Fulcrum (Pvt) Ltd. (9.78%) and Lake View Investments (Pvt) Ltd. (8.79%) are the major shareholders of Carsons. The EPF owns 0.37%.
Th Selvanathan family is the main beneficiaries of Carsons through various holding companies.
The directors of the company are: Messrs. T. de Zoysa (Chairman), H. Selvanathan (Deputy Chairman), M. Selvanathan, I. Paulraj, D.C.R. Gunawardena, S.K. Shah, P.C.P. Tissera, V.P. Malalasekera, M. Moonesinghe and F. Mohideen.