26.01.2015 in Expolanka, Latest by admin 0

Expolanka Milestones 2014



Continuing from where it left off in 2013, Expolanka Holdings consolidated its position as a leading transportation, trade and manufacturing conglomerate in the island in 2014. The year saw significant milestones for the company in terms of logistic operations, sustainability and CSR activities.

2014 began with a significant milestone for Expo Medix, which treated its 100,000th patient in the month of January. As the flagship CSR programme of Expolanka Holdings, Expo Medix is dedicated to offering free medical consultation and subsidized drugs to patients from lower income segments.

Expolanka Freight Limited, a subsidiary of Expolanka, was awarded the ISO 9001:2008 Quality Management Systems certification from SGS United Kingdom in February. The certification acknowledges safe & reliable products along with good management practices of the company. Later in the year, Expo Freight claimed two Gold awards at the National Chamber of Exporters awards ceremony, rounding off what was a highly rewarding year for the logistics company.

The achievements in the sporting arena too kept Expolanka’s name among the reckoning throughout the year. The company emerged as champions in the Mercantile ‘A’ Division Football League for the third year in a row. The win portrayed Expolanka’s focus on the employees’ work-life balance, which has been an integral part of the company’s continuous high performances across all sectors.

2014 was another year that saw Expolanka being recognized for its excellent business practices within the corporate community. In February, the company was awarded Runners Up in the Diversified Organizations Sector at the annual ACCA Sri Lanka Sustainability Awards. Expolanka was honoured for their commitment in reporting and disclosing their environmental, social, and sustainability information within the country.

The following month, Expolanka was again awarded at the Asia Responsible Entrepreneurship Awards for its services to the less privileged communities through the Expo Medix CSR programme.

Classic Travel succeeded in strengthening its service portfolio when the Company was appointed as the General Sales Agent of MakeMyTrip.com for Sri Lanka. With this tie-up, MakeMyTrip’s complete range of value-based International holiday travel products became available exclusively through Classic Travel in Sri Lanka. MakeMyTrip is the largest online travel company and the largest e-commerce business in India.

In an interesting development, Expo Freight joined hands with Elmo Francis, a professional mountaineer, to support Sri Lanka’s first expedition to reach the summit of Lobuchi East on Mount Everest. The conquering of the Lobuchi East summit, which stands at 6200 metres above sea level, was another milestone in a series of mountain climbing achievements for Elmo, who aspires to conquer the Mount Everest summit in 2015.

Expo Global Distribution Centre (EGDC), a subsidiary of Expolanka Holdings, released its first shipment on the 28th of April 2014. EGDC serves as a Free Port, which is a duty-free zone that allows retail brands to import goods without any Customs Duty. In addition, the EGDC offers services as a distribution centre as well as an offshore business.

EGDC1 edited

In a significant development in Expolanka’s corporate profile, SG Holdings, a leading logistics company in Japan, purchased 30% stake of Expolanka Holdings PLC in May 2014. The deal was initiated with the aim of making Expolanka a prominent figure in the global logistics industry. SG Holdings, the holding company for the Sagawa Group, focuses on global freight forwarding and currently owns 24 local subsidiaries in 10 countries.

In June 2014, SG Holdings acquired further stake of the company, resulting in a controlling amount of 51% of Expolanka’s Shares. Along with this, a new Board of Directors was appointed for Expolanka Holdings. Commenting on the strategic shift, Hanif Yusoof said,

“The new, diverse Board of Directors will manage and implement our business strategy to take the group forward by unifying the collective strengths of both Expolanka and SG Holdings.”

In August, a Gala ceremony was organized to mark the new strategic partnership between Expolanka Holdings and SG Holdings. The event saw the presence of Nobuhito Hobo, the Japanese Ambassador to Sri Lanka, Members of the Sri Lankan Parliament, Board members, staff and well-wishers of both companies.

With the company’s focus on innovation and modern technology, Expolanka launched a Microsoft Azure based leisure application for its travel sector business in September. Incidentally, the company became the first Sri Lankan conglomerate to host a travel & leisure based application on the Microsoft cloud platform.

Classic Travel, a prominent subsidiary of Expolanka Holdings, celebrated its 20th anniversary of offering innovative and pioneering travel solutions to customers in Sri Lanka and abroad. Classic Travel is the first and only travel agent in Sri Lanka to be open 24 hours a day, offering a host of services for the customers. In November, the company established its first branch named Classic Vacations, to serve as the outbound touring division of the mother company.

Classic Travel wasn’t the only company in the Expolanka family to reach 20 years, as Norfolk Foods too reached the milestone during the latter half of 2014. As a pioneer in specialized frozen foods in Sri Lanka, the company has been able to offer a variety of nutritious and healthy food items under the charismatic leadership of its founder, Mohamed Ziauddin.

Expolanka Holdings made a major strategic decision in November when it divested its stake in several companies that were part of the Group’s International Trading and Manufacturing sector. The divestment was done as a strategic decision to focus on Expolanka’s core businesses, and optimize sustainable growth.

Later that month Expo Freight won a Bronze Award in the Business to Business category at the SLIM Brand Excellence Awards 2014. This honour was a continuation from similar honours in the previous years at the SLIM Brand Excellence.

November became an eventful month with Classic Travel opening a new branch in Munidasa Kumaratunga Mawatha to cater to the discerning holiday travellers. The new branch mainly focuses on customized holiday tour packages with added value to suit each customer.

The year 2014 rounded off with more accolades for Expolanka, as it was awarded top honours at the National Business Excellence Awards 2014 organized by the National Chamber of Commerce of Sri Lanka. Adding to the awards in 2013, Expolanka walked away with the Gold award for Global Reach and Diversified Sector while Expo Freight Ltd won Gold for Shipping and Related Services.

Eyes of hope - edited

In wrapping up the year with a goodwill project Expolanka’s CSR arm facilitated 25 cataract surgeries free of charge and donated spectacles to those in need through the ‘Eyes of hope’ project. The surgeries and the spectacle donation was conducted following a free eye care clinic to determine the necessary actions.

Expolanka has no plans of stopping here. The company hopes to emulate its past successes and reach further targets in 2015 with more commitment and innovation, offering high quality products and services to the public.

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