Advantis and Cordelia Cruises to launch first cruise sailing operation around the island

The luxury Cordelia cruise line will embark on its inaugural sailing between India and Sri Lanka in June 2023. A significant boost to the Sri Lankan tourism industry is anticipated, attracting an estimated 80,000 tourists within the first four months alone.

Cordelia Cruises aims to revolutionise the tourism market in the region by offering an extraordinary cruise experience that exudes style and luxury through its crown jewel - “The Empress”. With 796 cabins in 5 distinct categories filled with state-of-the-art amenities, the ship is capable of accommodating 2,000 passengers.

The transportation and logistics arm of the Hayleys Group, Advantis, announced a groundbreaking partnership with India’s top cruise line, Cordelia Cruises to Leveraging their newly forged partnership, Advantis - Travel and Aviation will serve as the General Sales Agent, while Advantis Group subsidiary, Clarion Shipping will serve as the Port Agent for Cordelia Cruises in Sri Lanka.


Business and Economics
Dialog Delivers a World of Exclusive Benefits with All New Power Plans

Delivering a world of exclusive benefits, Dialog Axiata PLC, Sri Lanka's premier connectivity provider, announced the launch of its upgraded range of Power Plans for Postpaid customers, aimed at providing the best possible experience and value for its customers.

The all new Power Plans presents an unparalleled postpaid experience with unmatched features including rolling-over unused data to the following month, sharing up to 50GB data with loved ones, accessing Unlimited YouTube for as low as Rs. 120 per month, Unlimited Dialog to Dialog calls and upgrading to Unlimited calls to any network for just Rs. 100 per month along with exclusive discounts on devices.

Fitch Assigns Hayleys First-Time ‘AAA(lka)’ National Rating; Outlook Stable

Fitch Ratings has assigned Sri Lankan conglomerate Hayleys PLC a National Long-Term Rating of 'AAA(lka)'. The Outlook is Stable. Fitch has also assigned a 'AAA(lka)' National Long-Term Rating to Hayleys' senior unsecured debentures.

The rating reflects Hayleys' large operating scale locally as a result of extensive business and geographical diversification, and strong market share in most of its businesses. We believe this will lead to steady operating cash flows. We expect Hayleys to maintain a measured approach to debt-funded acquisitions amid a weak domestic operating environment and high borrowing costs. This should keep its credit metrics adequate for the rating.

Hayleys' debentures are rated at the same level as the issuer rating as we expect the company to maintain prior-ranking debt, including debt at its subsidiaries and secured debt at the company, below 2.0x-2.5x, the threshold above which we may consider downgrading the notes' rating. The ratio was 2.0x in the financial year ended March 2023 (FY23).

Strong Business, Geographical Diversification: Hayleys operates in 12 main sectors catering to industrial and retail customers. It is exposed to defensive segments such as agriculture, hand protection, textiles and purification, as well as cyclical but growth markets like transportation, consumer-durable retail and construction. Hayleys is geographically diversified with more than 50% of its revenue from exports, limiting risk from the weak domestic market. This has supported strong EBITDA growth in the last few years, despite the challenging domestic environment.

Strong Market Presence: Hayleys is the leader in Sri Lanka's transport, consumer-durable retail, textile, aluminum extrusion and tea production industries. It also has a sizeable share in the fragmented global hand protection and activated carbon-based purification markets.