CFA Society Sri Lanka celebrates capital market excellence

CFA Sri Lanka

The annual CFA Society Sri Lanka Capital Market Awards recognizing and rewarding excellence in the local capital markets was held on Tuesday, 18 June 2024, at the Oak Room, Cinnamon Grand, Colombo.

This year’s CFA Society Sri Lanka Capital Market Awards - a flagship event in the CFA Society Sri Lanka calendar - was held under the theme of ‘The Power of Public-Private Partnerships,’ focusing on the current status of public-private partnerships (PPPs) in Sri Lanka and their future potential.

Speaking on the occasion, CFA Society Sri Lanka President Aruna Perera, CFA, noted: “This event recognizes the tireless efforts and remarkable achievements within our capital market community, as well as among the listed entities in Sri Lanka. It is a testament to the dedication, hard work and visionary mindset that propel our industry forward.”

“The CFA Society Sri Lanka Capital Market Awards hold immense value for the deserving companies and individuals being recognized tonight, as well as the industry as a whole. They highlight best practices, innovation and outstanding performance, setting a benchmark for excellence that inspires others to aim higher and constantly strive for improvement. These
awards recognize the visionaries and trailblazers who shape the future of our industry and contribute to its sustainability,” he further affirmed.

Awards were presented under the categories of Best Stockbroking Research Team, Best Equity Research Report, Best Sector Research Report, Best Investor Relations, Best Unit Trust Fund and Best ESG Reporting with awards for Gold, Silver and Bronze in each category respectively.

Asia Securities (Pvt) Ltd was awarded Gold for the Best Stockbroking Research Team.

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. The Gold for the Best Sector Research Report was awarded to Prakatheesh Nareshkumar of Asia Securities (Pvt) Ltd.

The Gold award for the Best Equity Research report was awarded to Kugaprasath Thilagaratnam and Sanjana Kanilka of CT CLSA Securities (Pvt) Ltd.

In the Best Stockbroking Research Team category, First Capital Equities (Pvt) Ltd was awarded the Silver, while CT CLSA Securities (Pvt) Ltd received the Bronze award. In the Best Equity Research Report category, Hilal Zainudeen and Shehan Abeykoon of Asia Securities (Pvt) Ltd won the Silver. In the Investor Relations category, Silver was won by John Keells Holdings
PLC, with Hatton National Bank PLC being awarded the Bronze.

First Capital Money Market Fund won the Silver award in the Best Unit Trust Fund category, while the Bronze was awarded to CT CLSA Equity Fund. Nathashi Fernando and Shadini Silva of Softlogic Stockbrokers (Pvt) Ltd was presented with the Silver award in the Best Sector Research
Report category, while the Bronze was awarded to Sanjana Kanilka of CT CLSA Securities (Pvt) Ltd.

Certificates of commendation were awarded to Softlogic Stockbrokers (Pvt) Ltd under the Best Stockbroking Research Team Award while Softlogic Money Market Fund was awarded under the Best Unit Trust Fund – New Industry Entrant Category. Under the Best Equity Research Report Award, Iranga Fernando of Bartleet Religare Securities (Pvt) Ltd and Deshan Hettiwatte of CT CLSA Securities (Pvt) Ltd were also awarded a commendation.

hSenid Business Solutions PLC won the Best Investor Relations award pertaining to listed companies in the less than Rs.10 billion market capitalization category.

Project Chairperson of the CFA Society Sri Lanka Capital Market Awards 2024 Samalka Athuraliya, CFA, commended the award winners, adding: “Your achievements stand as a testament to your dedication and excellence. And to all participants, thank you for your passion and commitment to driving innovation in the capital markets.”

This year, the event also saw the introduction of the Best ESG Reporting Award to recognize companies listed on the Colombo Stock Exchange (CSE) that have demonstrated a commitment to creating a positive impact in the environment, social and governance (ESG) areas, and have adopted best practices in relation to global ESG reporting standards and

The inaugural Silver award was conferred on Talawakelle Tea Estates PLC, while Dialog Axiata PLC was awarded the Bronze.

Commenting on the Best ESG Reporting Award, Athuraliya stated: “This year also marked a significant milestone for us as we introduced a new award category - the Best ESG Reporting Award. For the first time, we had the opportunity to recognize and celebrate the efforts of companies listed on the CSE that are championing ESG practices. It brings us immense joy to
see the enthusiasm and interest shared by our corporates in reaching for higher standards in ESG practices.”

The panel of judges commended the participating stockbroking research teams for improving capital market accessibility by continuing to engage in and expand investor education, particularly via webinars, forums and research communications in multiple languages.

However, they called for a need to refocus on in-depth fundamental company and industry research. With respect to investor relations (IR), the judges were heartened that more companies are making their analyst forums/briefings recordings available online, enabling viewing by a
larger audience.

To make the IR function more dynamic, they primarily recommended that more listed companies strengthen their investor relations function and further expand access to investors, both institutional and retail.

Commenting on the Best ESG Reporting Award, the panel of judges noted that while companies are at different stages of their respective ESG journeys in the local market, ESG considerations are being increasingly integrated into the core business strategy.

Areas for improvement include the need for companies to set clear, measurable ESG goals and targets, such as reducing carbon emissions, improving diversity and inclusion, and enhancing governance practices.

This year’s event also included a panel discussion in the form of a knowledge-sharing session on how public-private partnerships can help Sri Lanka as the country emerges from an economic crisis, while raising awareness on how CFA Charterholders’ skills are crucial to executing PPPs successfully.

Leading industry figures – namely, Chanaka de Silva (President’s Counsel, Partner - Nithya Partners), Kushal Kumar Singh (Partner - Deloitte India) and Thilan Wijesinghe (Chairman/CEO of TWCorp [TWC]) - comprised the panel, with Dhinali Peiris, CFA (Transaction Advisor - USAID Sri Lanka Energy Program) acting as the discussion moderator.

The CFA Society Sri Lanka Capital Market Awards 2024 was sponsored by the Colombo Stock Exchange (Platinum Sponsor), Deloitte (Gold Sponsor & Technical Partner), Acuity Partners (Silver Sponsor), Capital Alliance Group (Silver Sponsor), CT CLSA Securities (Silver Sponsor), First Capital (Silver Sponsor), Lanka Pay (Silver Sponsor), NDB Capital Holdings (Silver
Sponsor), Senfin Asset Management (Silver Sponsor) and Uzabase Sri Lanka (Silver Sponsor).

The Awards were also supported by Acuity Knowledge Partners (Knowledge Partner), Sarva Colombo (Creative Partner), Hatton National Bank PLC (Banking Partner), Daily FT, Daily Mirror and The Sunday Times (Print Media Partner), Rupavahini/Channel Eye (Electronic Media Partner), LMD (Magazine Partner), TextWare (Text Messaging Partner), Alpha Business School (Candidate Resource Partner) and EduLoan (Supporting Partner).

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