Adding momentum to its expansion drive, a key component of the company’s growth strategy, Ideal Finance Limited (IFL) opened four branches in strategic locations in the Western and Northern Provinces, strengthening its network to 17 locations.
IFL, which earlier announced plans to more than double its branch network within the current financial year, by adding 16 new locations, opened the new branches in Chunnakam, Nelliady, Ja-Ela and Kaduwela. These branches will offer IFL’s comprehensive suite of financial solutions including Fixed Deposits, Leasing Facilities and Gold Loans.
“The timely expansion of Ideal Finance’s footprint in key rural, urban and semi-urban areas enables our customers to access our services more easily, while also positioning the company to benefit from economic transitions taking place within the country,” Ideal Finance Deputy Chairman, Aravinda De Silva said.
“The strengthening of the branch network will support in achieving the company’s growth strategy, which we are confident will propel Ideal Finance to the next phase in its progression,” he also said.
The opening of the new branches enhances IFL’s presence in significant commercial centres with high-growth potential within the Northern and Western provinces.
IFL’s rapid expansion drive follows the company attracting LKR 2 billion in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) from India’s Mahindra & Mahindra Financial Services Limited (MMFSL). MMFSL is now Ideal’s finance’s largest shareholder with a 58.2% stake. This provides IFL the backing of a massive financial giant with over USD 11 billion assets under management, which far exceeds that of Sri Lanka’s entire banking industry.
Reflecting the enhanced stability of Ideal Finance following the receipt of the investment from MMFSL, Fitch Ratings upgraded IFL’s rating (from ‘BB-(lka)’ to ‘AA-(lka)’), with a stable outlook.
IFL also announced its best-ever annual financial performance in the last financial year (ended 31st March 2021), emphatically overcoming the impact of the pandemic. The company improved all key financial indicators from the previous year. Profit Before Tax (PBT) increased by 76% to LKR 288.4 million, on a year-on-year (YoY) basis. Profit After Tax (PAT) grew by 74% to LKR 183.8 million YoY. Gross Non-Performing Loans (NPL) ratio improved to 3.3% for the financial year, from 5.2% in the previous year.
Ideal Finance Ltd. (IFL), a NBFI registered with Central Bank of Sri Lanka, commenced operations in March 2012 with a clear focus on the rural and semi-urban sectors. Its lending portfolio consists of gold loans, SME loans, personal loans, leasing facilities for motor cars, three wheelers, agriculture vehicles and commercial vehicles. IFL has developed a quality lending portfolio, while recording sustainable annual growth in profitability.