Leading energy company and subsidiary of Lanka Ventures, the LVL Energy Fund PLC, surpassed its outstanding financial performance in the previous year, by posting Profit after interest and tax of Rs. 571 million in 2018/19 compared to Rs. 439 million in the previous financial year, which reflects a formidable 30% growth. The company recorded Profit before interest and tax of Rs. 798 million for 2018/19, compared to Rs. 688 million in the previous year, reflecting an increase of 16%. Finance cost for the year under review amounted to Rs. 140 million compared to Rs. 191 million in the previous year. However, the tax charge was higher at Rs. 86 million in the year 2018/19, in contrast with Rs. 58 million in the previous year, mainly owing to withholding tax on dividend.
Group income from subsidiary companies for the year under review rose to Rs. 355 million as against Rs. 326 million in 2017/18 whilst operating expenses stood at Rs. 148 million in 2018/19 in contrast to Rs. 129 million in 2017/18. Operating profit for the year increased to Rs. 282 million from Rs. 220 million in the previous year. Share of profit from equity accounted investees also increased to Rs. 516 million in the current year from Rs. 468 million in the previous year.
Creating wealth for its shareholders, profit attributable to equity holders of the company for the year under consideration rose to Rs. 529 million compared to Rs. 399 million in 2071/18, reflecting a welcome increase of 33%. On the back of such an exceptional performance, the company declared a second interim dividend of Rs. 31 cents per share, utilizing the entirety of dividend it received from subsidiaries and associates since the payment of first interim dividend of Rs. 34 cents per share in November 2018. The second interim dividend amounts to Rs. 180.5 million. Together with the first interim dividend, the total dividend for the year stands at Rs. 378.5 million. Since the second interim dividend is also being paid out of dividend received by the company on which withholding tax has been paid at source, it will not be subject to any further tax.
Commenting on the company’s impressive performance, Sumith Arangala, CEO of LVL Energy Fund PLC said, “At LVL Energy Fund PLC, we have much to celebrate about, as we reveal our provisional financial results for the year ended 31st March 2019, which are perhaps one of the best in the energy sector. The strategic level of diversification we have achieved in our investment portfolio is one of the key pillars of this performance. The substantial investments made in projects are now bearing fruit, as is evident from the robust financials we have achieved in the 2018/19 financial year. We are pleased to deliver on our promises to our shareholders whilst championing energy security for the nation. Looking ahead to the next financial year, we are focused on expanding our geographical footprint in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal, while remaining focused on repeating our successful performance this year.”
The contribution from hydro power plants showed an improvement during 2018/19 whilst thermal power plants in Bangladesh contributed a significantly higher profit compared to the previous year. The share of profit from Bambabarapana hydro power plant, that commenced commercial operation in the last quarter of the previous financial year, also contributed towards a higher Group profit for the year. Power generation from wind power plants during the year under review was less than in the previous year and accordingly their contribution to Group profit was lower.
The company has investments in seven operational hydro power projects in Sri Lanka with a total capacity of 19.4 MW, two operational wind power projects with an installed capacity of 15.3 MW in Kalpitiya and two operational thermal power plants of 104 MW in Bangladesh. It has also invested in one 10 MW hydro power project in Nepal and a 114 MW thermal power project in Bangladesh which are under construction.