Long Arm

January 01, 2007 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Janashakthi Group is set to take control of privately held financial service group First Capital, officials said Monday.

“We have an agreement First Capital’s major shareholder Singer, to take control of First Capital. The actual price and percentage of shares will be announced in due course,” Janashakthi Group Director, Prakash Schaffter told LBO.

Consumer goods giant Singer (Sri Lanka) Ltd currently controls 50 percent of First Capital through its subsidiaries as well as its own stake of around 20 percent.

Sources close to the deal said Singer, a quoted company on the stock exchange, is keen to keep its 20 percent stake, and sell the balance 30 percent held through Singer Industries and Regnis Ltd.

Singer Industries and Regnis are also quoted companies.

Some of First Capital’s other shareholders Sumith Guruge (36 percent), the Wickremasinghe family trusts (8-percent) and staff (6-percent) have also shown interest in selling out to the Janashakthi group.

The family controlled Janashakthi group, has interests in insurance, financial services, dairy products, garments, housing, real-es