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The rise of the Kingdom of Raigam in consumer goods manufacture



CHAIRMAN/CEO: Dr. Ravi Liyanage

FMCG PRODUCTS: The Kingdom of Raigam, a leading Fast Moving Consumer Good (FMCG) company in the country makes its present felt in the country by identifying the market and customer needs through common sense, its Chairman and CEO Dr. Ravi Liyanage said.

Dr. Liyanage and others decided on this name because he was born in Horana, which belonged to the Raigam Korale. He said the company started business in a humble manner with eight persons way back in 1987 to sell Soya based products to the local market in a small way but has now blossomed into a leading FMCG company in the country.

The company tapped the Sri Lankan consumer food market strategically in a sustainable manner ensuring survival in a highly competitive market place, yet believes that there is a huge untapped local market.

The Kingdom of Raigam is today a diversified group of companies engaged in the field of marketing and distribution of consumer food items, which includes Soya meat (Textured Soya Protein). Dr. Liyanage said that when he started with eight persons at that time they were optimistic about local behaviour and found that they were on the right track to be in the market.


MODERN: A production line

"We built up the Raigam brand gradually by concentrating on Soya based products with value addition introducing different flavours to soya products," he said.

When the company came out with the name Raigam, they thought that people will reject the product as many go for foreign names but it picked up quickly within a small period of time, he said. The company is very conscious about product quality and always uses high quality material.

The company is truly a Sri Lankan company and has a state-of-the-art factory in Homagama. It also has a well-equipped packing plant, and a modern research and development laboratory to be innovative and different in the market, Dr Liyanage said. Today it manufactures different products including biscuits, coffee, vinegar, yeast extract raimite, noodles, rice herbal solutions and a range of consumables for bakery industry. In addition, group is the authorised distributor for world famous 'Angel'.

According to Dr Liyanage they cater to different market segments from lower middle class to high-end markets.

The company's core business is soya-based products and its products are also imported to 17 countries including UAE, Japan, Lebanon, Maldives and Australia.


THE FACTORY: Soya products taking shape (Pictures by Sumanachandra Ariyawansa)

The company imports 250-300 tonnes of oil extracted flour from India to manufacture many soya flour products.

The country's soya consumption is growing at an alarming stage, as it is very nutritional and healthy for the human health and currently it requires more than 50,000 to 60,000 metric tonnes.

Raigam manufactures more than 30 different varieties of products and those products are high in quality and economical in price, he said. The Kingdom of Raigam currently employs over 1000, which includes 66 executives and supervisors.

Majority of them are graduates and professionals with multi disciplinary qualifications. The Group considers the human resource as the greatest asset and invests on them.

It has also generated indirect employment opportunities for more than 1000 in the country. Prompt rewards are given for exceptional, talented and creative employees apart from the local and overseas training.

Its distribution network consists of a 205-member well trained sales team - 95 stockists and 195 delivery vehicles with three regional wholesale outlets located in three main cities that covers 95 per cent of the country's geographical area. It also has a herbal manufacturing plant of Neeroga is most probably the largest of its kind in the country.

The three lines of soya meat extruders cater to over 60 per cent of the market demand. The whole plant is backed by a system of uninterrupted power supply and an efficient waste water treatment plant. The group has always ensured environment friendly operations.

The company is also concerned on the area of corporate social responsibility aspects and the group helps local charities and community based education for children in pre-schools, he said.

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Produced by Lake House Copyright 2006 The Associated Newspapers of Ceylon Ltd.

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