Dialog Axiata secures controlling stake in finance company to pursue Financial-Technology solutions
Dialog Axiata PLC has acquired 80.34% controlling stake in Colombo Trust Finance PLC (CTF) at LKR 28.70 per share from its previous major shareholder, Cargllls Bank Limited.
The transaction was completed via a crossing on the Colombo Stock Exchange on Tuesday at a transaction value of LKR 1072 million. In accordance with the Takeovers and Mergers Code of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Dialog will proceed to announce a mandatory offer to the remaining shareholders of CTF.¹
A stamen released by Dialog states, “… The acquisition of CTF by Dialog Axiata PLC will facilitate the expansion of the scope of operations of the Dialog Group in to the sphere of mainstream Digital Financial Services.”
“Dialog aims to bring together the realms of advanced digital connectivity and cutting edge Financial Technology (FinTech) to deliver a revolutionary suite of products and services which will expand the vistas of financial inclusion in Sri Lanka. Significant within the envisaged inclusion drive, will be a focus on financing solutions aimed at increasing the affordability and accelerating the adoption of digital devices and services by a wide spectrum of consumers and businesses, the company,” it went on to state.
In 2012 the Central Bank (CB) gave licencing rights to Dialog Axiata to activateSri Lanka’s first Mobile Payment Service ez Cash which was awarded the “GSM World Award for the best Mobile Payment Network Globally”for its position as the World’s first “end-to-end Inter-operable mobile payments network” in 2015. Not too long ago Brand Finance recognised ez Cash as “Sri Lanka’s highest valued e-commerce brand“.
The Central Bank has also granted Dialog alicence toactivate the TOUCH contactless transport payment service.
Dialog’s Digital Services Portfolio which includes the e-commerce portal WoW.Ik operated by Digital Commerce Lanka, Doc.lk operated by Digital Health (Pvt) Ltd, the digital education service Guru.lk operated by Headstart Pvt Ltd., will now also include CTF.
“Dialog envisages that its foray into financial services would help accelerate Sri Lanka’s drive towards adoption of Digital Financial Services by encouraging digital savings and increase access to financial services for all segments of society. Dialog would also leverage this acquisition to drive down the entry barriers for adoption of smart technology and devices through inclusive financing solutions,” said Dialog Axiata Group CEO, Supun Weerasinghe.
Such an acquisition has paved the way for other interested parties to also consider such a venture. With the government’s focus on steering the country towards a digitised economy, such ventures are bound to prove fruitful. On the other hand, the availability of cutting edge Financial Technology in the country would be an added advantage for possible investors to the country.
|Article Code :||VBS/AT/15092017/Z_5|