Colombo, Sri Lanka, March 22, 2016
— IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, with the support of the Government of Canada, will invest $15 million in Sri Lankan retail chain Richard Pieris Distributors Limited. The investment will help the company expand its modern retail network, support job creation, and develop local supply chains. It will also be used to install solar panels on company store rooftops.
The financing consists of a $7.5 million loan from IFC’s own account and a further $7.5 million from the IFC-Canada Climate Change Program. The Program promotes private sector financing for clean energy projects.
“IFC’s support comes at an important time as we step up our operations and widen our network of branches across the island,” said Dr. Sena Yaddehige, Group Chairman of Richard Pieris & Co. PLC. “Through this planned expansion, we will contribute towards improving food safety and consumer access to better quality food products at affordable prices.”
The investment into Richard Pieris Distributors will help create over 800 jobs directly and an even larger number of jobs indirectly by 2020. It will also help the company adopt green building measures and promote climate-smart technologies.
The Government of Canada's contribution to the IFC-Canada Climate Change Program has helped make this financing package viable. To date, Canada has provided close to 271 million Canadian dollars to the program, to climate change investments that are generating significant environmental and economic benefits in developing countries.
“The Government of Canada is pleased to invest in renewable energy and green jobs in developing countries. Through its partnership with IFC, Canada is working to foster sustainable economic growth and contribute to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions, setting the stage for a cleaner, more prosperous global future,” said the Honorable Catherine McKenna, Canada's Minister of Environment and Climate Change.
Sri Lanka’s modern trade sector currently constitutes less than 20 percent of total trade in the country, which is significantly lower than other emerging markets. The country’s retail sector has significant potential to contribute towards economic growth in an environment of steady economic development.
“As the sector grows, companies like Richard Pieris Distributors are in a prime position to expand their networks, boost employment opportunities through small businesses in their supply chains, and create value for consumers,” said Amena Arif, IFC’s Country Manager for Sri Lanka and Maldives.
Sri Lanka is a priority country for IFC’s work in South Asia. IFC’s committed portfolio in Sri Lanka covers projects across a range of sectors, including infrastructure, tourism, renewable energy, finance, and healthcare. IFC also provides advisory services to promote sustainable growth among small and medium enterprises by facilitating access to finance, and by offering capacity-building and training opportunities.
About Richard Pieris
Richard Pieris & Co. PLC is a diversified business conglomerate with a rich history of 83 years. Its flagship brand "Arpico" is one of the most powerful local household brands in Sri Lanka for over 50 years, serving the community with a diverse range of products across many sectors such as manufacturing, plantations, financial services, exports, FMCG, construction, logistics, educational services & retail. The retail sector led by its flagship brand "Arpico Supercenters" operates one of the largest modern trade chains in the country. A diverse melting pot of talent, comprising a workforce of over 30,000, Richard Pieris & Company PLC is one of the largest employment providers in the private sector in Sri Lanka.
About the IFC-Canada Climate Change Program
The IFC-Canada Climate Change Program promotes private sector financing for clean energy projects and received funding under Canada’s fast-start financing to catalyze investments in renewable, low-carbon technologies that would not otherwise happen.
Canada’s Investment in Global Climate Change Action
The Government of Canada is committed to support climate change action and will deliver $2.65 billion between 2015 and 2020 to support developing countries’ transition to low carbon economies and adapt to the impacts of climate change. For more information, visit
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector in emerging markets. Working with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide, we use our capital, expertise, and influence, to create opportunity where it’s needed most. In FY15, our long-term investments in developing countries rose to nearly $18 billion, helping the private sector play an essential role in the global effort to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity. For more information, visit