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Sri Lankan firm buys local MFI

Sri Lankan firm buys local MFI

US-based investment bank Developing World Markets Asset Management (DWM) has sold the controlling stake in Cambodia’s fifth-largest microfinance institution, Thaneakea Phum Cambodia (TPC).

A statement issued on Friday says DWM sold a 55 per cent equity stake in TPC to LOLC Micro Investments (LOMI), a subsidiary of publicly listed Sri Lankan financial services conglomerate Lanka Orix Leasing Company. DWM will retain a 37 per cent stake in TPC.

TPC’s employee association also sold its 4.5 per cent stake in the company to LOMI, taking the buyer’s controlling share to 60 per cent. The deals received regulatory approval from Cambodian and Sri Lankan authorities earlier this month.

“Though it has made significant strides in recent years, Cambodia’s financial services sector remains underdeveloped,” Ravi Tissera, director and CEO of LOMI said. “There is a large opportunity for innovative financial services firms to increase their impact across the country, and we look forward to working with TPC’s management and employees to provide sustainable financial services that improve the lives of clients.”

Bun Mony, chairman of the Cambodian Microfinance Association welcomed the purchase.

“All the time there are banks from places like Hong Kong, Korea, Taiwan and Japan looking at the industry . . . I guess the high density of companies now in the sector – about 42 or so – could be a minor concern for them, however,” Mony said.

“But this is good news. LOMI has lots of experience to share with TPC.”

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