The Richard Pieris Group ended its first nine month’s performance with a Group Revenue of Rs 28bn and a Group PBT of Rs.2bn. The period under review evidenced a steady performance in most of its major sectors where the reported profits represent business profits, and do not include any gains of a capital nature.
The retail sector of the Group comprises of Arpico Super centres and the network of Arpico outlets across the island. The sector had a dynamic first nine months and as usual was very busy during the festive season with many promotional activities. The "Top Tips" campaign continued to maintain its popularity amongst customers. A very vibrant "Win the world this Christmas" seasonal campaign was also well received by shoppers where it offered air tickets to many a destination around the world.
Plastics and distribution sector
The plastics and distribution sector had a very successful first nine months performance reporting growths in terms of both revenue and profits when compared with the corresponding period of the previous year. The newly introduced hybrid water tanks continued to be a success in the market place. The introduction of a five layer mattress and its promotional campaign was popular and perceived by customers as an innovative product. The seasonal campaigns continued in the plastics and distribution sector with many complimentary offers and discounts.
The Plantation Sector of the Group faced many challenges during the period under review with adverse weather conditions and low prices.
The Richard Pieris Group possesses 3 of the largest plantation companies in the country with diverse crops which includes high grown, mid grown and low grown tea, rubber, oil palm, coconut, cinnamon, cardamom, rambutan and other crops contributing to more than 15% of the Group turnover.
The plantation sector was adversely affected by low prices and production volumes. There was an increase in the price of Oil palm but there was a decrease in the
production volumes. Even the tea production decreased during the period under consideration when compared with the previous year.
During the period under review the tyre sector continued to benefit from favourable raw material prices and expanded some of its services to new customers. Tyre sales of the brand "Nexen" continued to prosper and several new tyre sizes were introduced by the sector during the period under review.
Rubber manufacturing (exports) sector
The sector continued to thrive during the 9 months ended 31st December 2014. There was an overall improvement in the performance of the sector with most business units achieving the set goals.
The latex foam business continued to maintain its high standards and is in the process of setting up the world’s first organic latex sheeting plant at the Biyagama export processing zone. Richard Pieris Exports continued its success story from the previous quarter and many initiatives were undertaken to reduce waste levels and overheads.
Financial services sector
Though the Group is focused in its traditional businesses, diversification into financial services was successfully ventured over the past few years. At present Richard Pieris Group consists of its own insurance, stock broking, fund management and a finance company. (RPG)