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Tuesday September 26th, 2023

Singapore’s Zilingo acquires Sri Lanka’s nCinga for US$15.5mn

Zilingo’s production software. Source: Zilingo Photo.

ECONOMYNEXT- Zilingo, a Singapore-based fashion platform, said it has acquired Sri Lankan startup nCinga Innovations for 15.5 million US dollars in cash and stock

“What excited us about the nCinga product was their ability to dramatically improve efficiency and drive insights by digitising the shop floor,” Zilingo Co-Founder and Chief Executive Ankiti Bose said in a statement.

“We have partnered with them for a long time and their work has been crucial to our mission of creating a transparent, sustainable, economically viable and socially responsible apparel supply chain,” she said.

Zilingo said the acquisition will drive the adoption of nCinga’s nFactory software across its global network of 6,000 factories and 75,000 businesses.

nFactory uses internet of things technolocies, real-time event capturing and processing, predictive analytics and mobility devices for ‘smart factory’ transformations.

The software automates operations on the factory floor by enabling access to real-time data on the go.

nFactory has been deployed across factories in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Thailand, Singapore and Vietnam.

Zilingo plans to leverage its global manufacturer network to increase distribution of the software – specifically for core fashion manufacturing markets such as Bangladesh, India, Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand and Turkey among others.

It added that the acquisition will bring more features to the company’s customers in the United States, Europe and Australia, where brands traditionally lack transparency over the supply chain and manufacturing processes.

The acquisition marks one of the largest tech-buyouts in Sri Lanka.

nCinga, founded in 2014, was backed by Sri Lanka and Singapore-based BOV Capital.

The firm’s Chief Executive Imal Kalutotage said the Sri Lankan startup’s vision aligns with Zilingo.

“Both the teams align on shared values and a global ambition to make the fashion and apparel industry fair, transparent and efficient, we hope
to do great things together,” he said.

Founded in 2015, Zilingo raised 226 million US dollars earlier in 2019 through Sequoia Capital, Burda Principal Investments and Sofina, as well as new investors Temasek Holdings and EDBI.

Analysts believe Zilingo to be valued at close to 1 billion US dollars.

In October, Zilingo announced plans to invest 100 million US dollars to expand into the US as part of an accelerated growth strategy into new markets, including Australia, Europe, and the Middle East. (Colombo/Dec17/2019)

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Sri Lanka cabinet okays appropriation bill for 2024 budget

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s cabinet of ministers had approved a draft Appropriation Act for 2024, the state information office said.

The Finance Minister’s proposal to gazette the bill and table it in parliament was approved by the cabinet.

Presenting the appropriation bill is the first stage of presenting a budget for 2024,

The appropriation bills set outs the expenditure plans for each ministry.

The budget proposals, made in November is called the second reading of the Appropriation Act. (Colombo/Sept24/2023)

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Sri Lanka’s MEPA to get 28.5 mn rupees from Singaporean AEPW, for beach clean up

ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s Marine Environment Protection Authority (MEPA) is to receive 5.7 million rupees a year, for five years, from Singapore-based marine waste solutions provider, Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW), to maintain 8 beach cleaner machines.

The donation is meant to support MEPA clean coastal areas across Sri Lanka, using BeachTech Hydro Sweepy beach cleaner machines, previously donated by the organisation.

The oil industry-founded non-governmental organisation donated the 8 beach cleaners worth about US$180,000 to MEPA in the wake of the 2021 MV X-press Pearl ship disaster.

The machines manufactured by Kässbohrer Geländefahrzeug AG, a German company, are effective at cleaning up plastic nurdles and other types of potentially harmful non-biodegradable waste, minimising human contact with hazardous materials.

As a significant amount of money is spent for the deployment of these machines for beach cleaning activities, the Alliance to End Plastic Waste has agreed to provide the funds for the upkeep of the machines for a period of five years.

With this financial donation, the Maritime Environment Protection Authority will be able to continue using these machines without interruption to clean identified beaches in the future. (Colombo/Sep26/2023)

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Sri Lanka’s SEC makes four new appointments

ECONOMYNEXT – The Securities and Exchange Commission of Sri Lanka (SEC) made four new additions from diverse backgrounds to its leadership.

These appointments are expected to increase the effectiveness of the SEC secretariat in the respective operating areas, the SEC said.

Manuri Weerasinghe, with over 20 years of experience in accounting, financial management, financial reporting and auditing, was appointed Director, Corporate Affairs.

She is a Fellow Member of CA Sri Lanka, member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants and a member of the Certified Practicing Accountants of Australia.

Her academic credentials include a Master of Business Administration and a BSc (Hons) in Accountancy and Financial Management (Special).

Prior to joining the SEC, she served in several financial management positions in Bermuda and Sweden.

Madura P R Wanigasekara was appointed Chief Digital Officer. He has over 20 years delivering and managing IT solutions, and has held several senior management positions in the public and private sectors.

His academic qualifications include a Master of Science in Information Technology from the University of Colombo and a Bachelor of Information Technology from the Curtin University of Technology.

He is also a member of the Australian Computer Society (ACS).

Sharmila Panditaratne was appointed Assistant Director, Legal and Enforcement.

She is an Attorney-at-Law with over 21 years of experience as a securities market regulator.

She holds a Master of Laws degree from the University of Houston, Texas and has worked at two law firms in the USA prior to joining the SEC.

Riyaz Bary, Deputy Solicitor General at the Attorney General’s Department was appointed a Director on secondment basis. (Colombo/Sep26/2023)

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