Summarised below are the key operational and financial highlights of our performance during the quarter under review:
• Group EBITDA recorded a significant improvement to Rs.6.41 billion during the quarter under review, which is a 93 per cent increase against the comparative period [2020/21 Q2: Rs.3.32 billion].
• The Group’s businesses, except for Consumer Foods and the Supermarket business, recorded a strong growth in profitability compared to the second quarter of the previous year, despite the quarantine curfew which prevailed for a period of six weeks due to the third wave of COVID-19 cases which impacted business activity. • It should be noted that the corresponding quarter in the previous year was a relatively more ‘normal’ quarter, with no COVID-19 related disruptions, where the country benefited from a faster recovery momentum post the outbreak of the first wave with most of our businesses reaching pre COVID-19 levels. • Since the gradual easing of the restrictions from end September 2021 and supported by the high vaccination rates of the population, business activity has seen a strong recovery. • The Leisure industry group, in particular, recorded a significant turnaround in performance with the Q2 2021/22 EBITDA almost at break-even levels at a negative Rs.46 million compared to a negative Rs.1.19 billion in the corresponding quarter of the previous year. • The Maldivian Resorts segment continued its encouraging recovery momentum from the previous quarter where the occupancy at our hotels was higher than anticipated during this quarter, while the forward bookings for the upcoming season indicate a recovery to preCOVID-19 levels. • The quarantine curfew during the quarter under review significantly impacted the previously witnessed recovery momentum in volumes and same store sales in the Consumer Foods businesses and the Supermarket business, respectively. • The mobile phones business, which is included under Retail, recorded a strong increase in profitability driven by a strong growth in volumes. • The handover process of the residential apartment units at ‘Cinnamon Life’ continued during the quarter, resulting in recognition of revenue and profits from sales in the project. Revenue and profit recognition in Cinnamon Life will continue throughout the financial year as the 2 handover of the residential apartments and commercial office spaces already sold will be completed, in addition to new sales recorded. • Further to the execution of a Letter of Intent to develop and operate the West Container Terminal in the Port of Colombo, the Build, Own and Transfer Agreement between the Sri Lanka Ports Authority and Colombo West International Container Terminal (Private) Limited, the project company, was executed for a lease period of 35 years. • The Group’s carbon footprint per million rupees of revenue decreased by 26 per cent to 0.52 MT while the water withdrawal per million rupees of revenue decreased by 9 per cent to 11.93 cubic meters.