Mar 20, Colombo: Sri Lanka's state owned large scale retail network plans to open 500 Lanka Sathosa brand outlets across the island by the end of this year, the Minister of Industry and Commerce Rishad Bathiudeen announced today.
Launching the race to reach the expansion in Sri Lanka's FMCG retail market, 50 Lanka Sathosa will be opened in on 28 March within a day.
"On March 28, 50 new and fully equipped Lanka Sathosa outlets across Sri Lanka will be opened by President Maithripala Sirisena and Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe," the Minister announced addressing the Cooperatives Provincial Ministers' Summit at BMICH on Monday.
The Minister said when he took over the retail network was faced with issues of lack of computerization, non- availability of latest stock updates for top managers and lagging accounts.
As a result, restructuring work within the system were initiated with the consultancy by the international firm KPMG and the island-wide computerization of the Lanka Sathosa network will be completed by July 2017.
"Most importantly, we have decided to speed up Sathosa network expansion. The total number of Lanka Sathosa outlets planned is 500 and by end of this year, we will activate all 500. Once we complete 500 outlets by end of 2017, we will stop Lanka Sathosa outlet network expansion. Thereafter, we will expand in a new way. We will be establishing Lanka Sathosa retail franchises with existing private grocery shops and usual retailers. The total number of planned such retail franchises across the country is 8000," the Minister described.
At present, Lanka Sathosa has 325 outlets across Sri Lanka reporting an annual network turnover of Rs. 30 billion. Among other important projects in its restructuring are installation of 125 new CCTV systems, setting up of five laboratories, and installation of Human Resource Information System to manage its 3500-employee squad island-wide.