The ninth annual CFA Capital Market Awards, organized by the CFA Society Sri Lanka, was held on Wednesday (29 June) at the Oak Room of Cinnamon Grand Colombo, recognizing and rewarding excellence in the local capital markets, with this year’s event focusing on the theme ‘Blockchain Revolution in Sri Lanka’s Capital Market’.
Delivering the opening remarks at the event, CFA Society Sri Lanka President Dinesh Warusavitharana, CFA reiterated that the CFA Capital Market Awards “recognize the commitment to excellence by capital market participants despite the market challenges that we have been facing.”
“This year, we have focused on innovation in the global financial market, and selected to explore how the blockchain revolution is impacting the Sri Lankan capital market, given the ongoing developments in the cryptocurrency market. We are pleased to note that the Sri Lankan government is also exploring the feasibility of blockchain-related initiatives, and hope greater focus and exploration of blockchain technology will support financial innovation and benefit Sri Lanka’s future growth,” he added.
CFA Capital Market Awards Chairperson Nadika Ranasinghe commented: “I take this opportunity to congratulate all the winners this evening and I want to also thank all those who participated from the industry for their strong commitment towards maintaining the highest standards in these unprecedented times. I hope the participants will incorporate the feedback provided by the judges and continue to raise the standards of excellence. I believe we are at a juncture where investor dependence on analysts on the ground is at the highest, to provide accurate and unbiased analysis to navigate these volatile conditions.”
She also conveyed CFA Society’s gratitude to the judges, for their tireless efforts to evaluate and select the best among peers, despite travel restrictions, power cuts and numerous other challenges. The judges in each award category included both CFA charter holders and industry experts.
Awards were presented under the five categories of Best Stockbroking Research Team, Best Equity Research Report, Best Sector Report, Best Investor Relations and Best Unit Trust Fund, with awards for Gold, Silver and Bronze in each category.
Capital Alliance Securities Private Ltd was awarded Gold for the Best Stockbroking Research Team and also the highest honours for the Best Sector Report. CT CLSA Securities received the Gold award for the Best Equity Research Report. Meanwhile, Sunshine Holdings PLC was conferred Gold for Best Investor Relations and Senfin Money Market Fund came out on top as the Best Unit Trust Fund.
In the Best Stockbroking Research Team award, Asia Securities Private Ltd was awarded the Silver, while CT CLSA Securities Private Ltd received the Bronze award. In the Best Equity Research Report category, Capital Alliance Securities Private Ltd won both the Silver and the Bronze awards. In the Investor Relations award, Silver was won by National Development Bank PLC, with Dialog Axiata PLC and John Keells Holdings PLC awarded the joint Bronze. The judges made a special commendation for Expolanka Holdings PLC under this category, in recognition of improved investor relations practices over the past year.
JB Vantage Short-Term Gilt Fund won the Silver award in the Best Unit Trust Fund category, while the Bronze award was not presented. Asia Securities Private Ltd and Capital Alliance Securities Private Ltd was presented with the joint Bronze award in the Best Sector Report category, while the Silver award was not presented.
The judges commended the dedication shown by research teams in providing an uninterrupted service to clients while introducing new research products amidst the challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, along with the introduction of new research dissemination formats such as webinars and video-based reports, in response to client preferences.
However, they recommended that teams look at disseminating research in a more timely and time-efficient manner without compromising on the quality and integrity of the research process, further improve the depth of coverage, and demonstrate industry and sector expertise, which is highly valued by clients.
With regard to investor relations, the judges recognised that a few companies are encouraging wider public participation in investor forums through public invitations posted on their websites, while an increasing number of companies are making their analyst forum/briefing recordings available online. The judges were of the view, however, that there is a need for most listed companies to adopt basic investor relations practices over and above the minimum guidelines stipulated by regulators.
The keynote address at this year’s event was delivered by Gabriella Kusz, CEO of the Global Digital Asset & Cryptocurrency Association (DCA) and Deputy Chair of the Government Blockchain Association (GBA) Regulator Working Group, followed by a Q&A discussion moderated by Travis Gomez, CFA. The discussion was focussed on the adoption of cryptocurrency as an investment asset class in Sri Lanka and the regulatory impediments and implications of adopting cryptocurrency, and how to overcome them.
The CFA Capital Market Awards 2022 was sponsored by the Colombo Stock Exchange (Platinum Sponsor), Acuity Partners (Silver Sponsor), Capital Alliance Group (Silver Sponsor), First Capital (Silver Sponsor), NDB Capital Holdings (Silver Sponsor), Senfin Asset Management (Silver Sponsor), Uzabase Sri Lanka (Silver Sponsor), Acuity Knowledge Partners (Knowledge Partner), Daily FT, Daily Mirror and The Sunday Times (Print Media Sponsors), and TextWare (Text Messaging Partner).
CFA Institute is a global association of investment professionals offering the Chartered Financial Analyst designation. Founded in 2001, CFA Society Sri Lanka is a not-for-profit organization supporting the professional development and advancement of CFA charterholders and candidates in Sri Lanka. Its membership of over 240 members consists of CEOs, CFOs, portfolio managers, equity analysts, banking professionals, investment advisors and other senior-ranking financial practitioners, and over 500 candidates, mainly in the financial sector.