Feb 20, 2017

DCSL pays Rs. 500 bn in taxes - Harry

The Distilleries Corporation (DCSL) has paid over Rs. 500 billion as taxes to the government and are still making profits said Chairman, Harry Jayawardena.

Speaking at their 25th anniversary celebrations of DCSL he said in addition they had paid over US Dollars 90 million as dividend so far. He said that today there are 25 other players in the industry and most of them say they are not making profit.

“Their books don’t show profits and this is surprising as we don’t produce the total requirement of Sri Lanka liquor consumption!”

The government sold 60% of State Distilleries Corporation on the Colombo Stock Exchange in 1992. A consortium of investors formed by Milford Exports Ceylon Limited, Lanka Milk Foods (CWE) Limited (both companies controlled by Harry Jayawardena) together with Smith New Court Investors from Singapore purchased them.

Jayawardena said that State Distilleries Corporation not making profits at that time was surprising. “I cannot believe this since the corporation held a monopoly in the country during that time. No company can lose when they hold a monopoly.”

After he took over the company it started making profits and it is even so, up to now.

“We have shown how to turn around companies and this is because of good management and discipline”

After less than two decades of privatisation, DCSL has become a conglomerate with diversified interests in many areas of the country’s economy.

In 1995, the company entered into a joint venture with Pernod Ricard of France, one of the top 5 liquor producers in the world, to incorporate Periceyl Limited to produce whiskeys, brandies, and other international liquor in Sri Lanka for the Sri Lankan market. Also in 1995 the company acquired the century old Beruwala Distillery Limited.

The current market capitalization of DCSL Plc is over Rs. 82 billion as at date.

Jayawardane said that the company doesn’t have a single Trade Union.

“There is no need to have one since workers do their job and the management pays them well and looks after them.”

In 2016 through a share swap Melstacorp Limited became the holding company of the group making DCSL a subsidiary of the former.

“Politicians and governments should do their job while workers too do their part and this is the recipe of our success”.

“We don’t do politics in office and we also don’t want politicians to interfere with our work.”