Shari’ah Leasing

June 11, 2008 (LBO) – Lanka Orix Leasing Company (LOLC), which introduced Islamic financing in Sri Lanka, says it wants to expand its portfolio to one billion rupees in one year, with growth so far relying on word-of-mouth publicity.

“We are on a growth trend and we feel that the turbulence that we are seeing in the country right now could be fairly short term so we are building a business for the future.”

Islamic finance which was regarded as a niche market product is now becoming a mainstream component of the global banking system.

At present, its international asset base is 600 billion dollars with an annual growth rate of 35 percent, statistics show.

The company has also posted annual profits of 1.3 billion rupees, up 21 percent from 2007 with nearly 50 percent growth in revenue, to 5.9 billion. LOLC, the first leasing and factoring company in Sri Lanka, introduced four types of Shari’ah schemes; Ijarah (leasing), Murabaha (trade financing), Mudharabah (profit sharing investments) and diminishing Musharakah (property financing).

“We expect the book to reach 500 million very soon and go up to a billion within the next 12 months,” Kapila Jayawardena group managing director and CEO told LBO.

The company