Finance Rating

Dec 05, 2008 (LBO) – Fitch Ratings Lanka has confirmed Sri Lanka’s Vallibel Finance Ltd’s (VFL) national long-term rating at ‘B+’ with a stable outlook. The rating agency said Vallibel Finance’s profit margins had recovered after narrowing last year but noted that its bad loans had increased although its lending had shifted from three-wheelers to cars and passenger vehicles.

“VFL’s rating factors in its small asset base, relatively weak asset quality and modest financial profile,” a Fitch statement said.

It said VFL, owned by high-net-worth businessman, Dhammika Perera, has rapidly grown its loan book over the last 18 months, branching into lease and loan products from a portfolio previously dominated by hire purchase facilities (HP) for three-wheelers.

Total advances increased to 1,054.8 million rupees in the first half of the 2009 financial year ending September 2008 comprising HP (74 percent), leases (22 percent) and fixed deposit loans (four percent).

The company has also shifted its focus away from three-wheelers and, as at the first half of the 2009 financial year, 52.2 percent of vehicles financed comprised of cars and dual pu