The Evolution of Sarvodaya Development Finance Limited
The Deshodaya Development Finance Company Limited (DDFC) evolved from deep rooted commitment to nation building and development along the ‘grass roots upwards’ model of its parent, the Sarvodaya Movement. Guided by the social philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi and the spiritual teachings of Buddhism, Sarvodaya, founded by Dr. A T Ariyaratne, is currently the oldest non-governmental organization in Sri Lanka.
DDFC was born out of a natural process of evolution in which Sarvodaya realised the need for an ‘economic arm’ that could support its aims of reducing poverty by empowering rural folk and creating sustainable livelihoods for all. This realisation led to the formation of DDFC’s predecessor, (SEEDS) (Gte) Limited, where the growing economic emancipation of the rural population required a dedicated institution that could take such emancipation forward via the providing of capital, training, information, advice and product marketing support.
The proliferation and success of rural empowerment of this nature soon meant that SEEDS had reached its limits in terms of catering to the future without restructure or the floating of a new entity.
Thus in 2010, the Deshodaya Development Finance Company Limited was incorporated as a fully-licensed finance company.
Following the consolidation programme of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka, Deshodaya Development Finance Company Limited acquired 75.54% of the shares of George Steuart Finance PLC in November 2014.
The Holding Company was renamed as Sarvodaya Development Finance Limited. This was to exemplify DDFC’s heritage deeply rooted in the Sarvodaya Shramadana Movement, which is the oldest, largest and internationally acclaimed NGO in Sri Lanka. Sarvodaya has been uplifting and empowering rural masses for over 5 decades. It has a strong brand presence and is a trusted name among Sri Lankans.
Given DDFC’s history and legacy associated with Sarvodaya values, Sarvodaya Development Finance Limited would capitalise on the unique Sarvodaya brand recognition and widespread network of solid relationships to cater to the needs of the emerging SMEs and SMEs in Sri Lanka.
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