June 15, 2015 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Singer Finance said it plans to launch a credit card in the latter half of this year targeting rural consumers, the company told shareholders in its annual report of 2014/2015.
The company said that it has applied to the Central Bank of Sri Lanka for a license to introduce a credit card and received approval for same, which makes the company to become the first Finance Company to launch a credit card.
“Our future focus in FY 2015/16 will be on the successful launch and growth of our new credit card product,” R S Wijeweera, Chief Executive of Singer Finance told the shareholders.
“As the first financial company to launch a credit card, we have devised an innovative and aggressive marketing strategy and are fully geared to implement this in the forthcoming weeks and months,”
“Singer Finance has a captive customer base for the proliferation of the Singer credit card, keeping in mind the massive customer base of Singer Sri Lanka.”
The card will be an approved Visa card and can be used locally and internationally.
The company says the credit cards will be marketed to the Singer brand’s strong consumer base, many of whom are located in rural areas.
“The unique feature of the card is that it will empower even those in the lower income bracket to transact using the credit card,” the company said.
Singer Finance gross income grew only by 5 percent, as increase in business volumes were offset by decline in lending rates. However, net interest income grew by 14.3 percent as borrowing rates also came down.
Fees increased by 38 percent and other income increased by 27 percent, the report showed. As a result, total operating income increased by 16 percent to 1,317 million rupees.
Profit after taxes increased to 388.7 million rupees from 268.6 million rupees in the prior year.