On 30th May 1940, The Finance Company was registered with the Registrar of Companies and was the seventh public company to be registered. The main line of business was financing of motor vehicles which was a service pioneered by TFC.
The company obtained a listing of its ordinary shares from the Colombo Brokers Association. Senator Justin Kotelawala became the Chairman of the company. He succeeded in developing it through some of its most challenging times due to the government enforced ban on importation of most goods except essential commodities. In 1966, the present Chairman Deshamanya Dr.Lalith Kotelawala was appointed to the Board of Directors. In 1968, the company shifted its operations to a fully-equipped and modernized office at Ceylinco House, Queens Street, Colombo 1. Under his able stewardship it began a rapid growth, extending its reach across the island and increasing profitability. It was during this period that Fixed Deposit Schemes were launched.
This was a period of remarkable growth and the company introduced novel products such as Real Estate, Easy payments scheme on lands, Import Financing and Pledge Loans to its investment portfolio. Worker shares for employees who had completed 5 years of service were issued at the time. During this period where the finance industry was in turmoil, at the request of the Central Bank, TFC took over the failed finance companies such as The Finance & Guarantee Co. Ltd. and Panadura Finance and Enterprises Ltd., and turned them around to be viable, profit making ventures within a short time. Later the company extended its services to include financing of consumer durables.
In 2002, TFC obtained its registration under the Finance Leasing Act No.56 of 2000 and ventured into the spheres of Property Development, Housing and Leasing of buildings and industrial premises. The company succeeded in benchmarking the industry.
In 1954, the company shifted its operations to No.121, Union Place, Colombo 2, which was the heart of the motor trade. The company continuing to confine itself to financing of motor vehicles, prospered in its new environment for over a decade. As a result, it was able to pay rich dividends to its shareholders, which at times reached as higher as 30 %
Harnessing the unprecedented opportunities provided by the liberalization of the economy, TFC boldly diversified its activities and undertook the financing of gems, industrial raw material, agricultural machinery and other imports. The company's first branch was established in 1976 in Jaffna. Deshamanya Dr. J.L.B. Kotelawala was appointed as Chairman/ Managing Director of the company.With the enactment of the Control of Finance Companies Act No. 27 of 1979, the company came under the supervision of the Central Bank of Sri Lanka.
When the Central Bank granted registration to finance companies that satisfied its criteria under the provision of the Finance Companies Act No.78 of 1988, TFC became the first company to be registered. The company was also the first non-banking financial institution to be appointed as a participating member of a loan repayment program funded by USAid.
In the years ahead, customer satisfaction, retention and growth will take precedence over others as finance companies vie for customers and compete to provide superior and enhanced services. Whilst continuing to expand the distribution channels and developing an efficient processing system for both lending and deposit products, TFC will strive to create an environment that offers a new experience to customers. TFC will do this by developing and empowering the staff so that they are encouraged to provide excellent customer care services, which will lead to building a distinct corporate image. As another step forward toward creating such a customer experience, TFC will develop innovative and flexible financial products and services that will maximize customer satisfaction so as to continue being the preferred financial service provider in the minds of customers.
TFC will also consolidate its dominance in property development and in meeting housing needs by providing houses with the latest designs, models and structures at a competitive price. In addition, the company will enhance its profitability by continuing to focus on leasing of business properties and extending a superior service to customers. TFC looks to the future with great confidence in reaching its goals. The company is determined to be the only household name in time to come.