Uniquely located in the heart of the Central Business District, the World Trade Center Colombo celebrates 25 successful years, continuing to mark its presence as the city’s most iconic commercial landmark and sought-after business address.
In 1991, founder and chairman of the Shing Kwan Group, Singapore S.P. Tao, with visionary foresight and entrepreneurial spirit set course to develop a futuristic commercial complex in the I. To achieve his goal, Mr. Tao acquired Overseas Realty (Ceylon) Ltd., a listed company in the Colombo Stock Exchange, which owned the undeveloped plot of land at Echelon Square.
As among the first and most prominent foreign investors in Sri Lanka, Tao realised that to fulfil his vision, an ingenious plan with three major givens was required – the most appropriate design concept, a world leading construction company and no bank borrowings.
Tao’s enthusiastic passion for Sri Lanka and unyielding confidence of its growth prospects, was brought to fruition with the 39-storey twin towers being commissioned. Fast tracking development for the country, the ground-breaking for the country’s then tallest structure, with an investment of USD 130 million, took place in 1992.
It was at that time said to be the largest foreign direct investment (FDI) and years ahead of any commercial development in the country. On 12 October 1997, the WTC Colombo was formally declared open.
Tao’s bold leadership steered the company throughout three decades where he functioned as Chairman until his demise last year.
Today, the impressive office towers remain a renowned feature of Colombo’s skyline housing the largest business to business network under one roof, offering a corporate ecosystem comprising world-class infrastructure with many conveniences and amenities.
As a formal validation of WTC Colombo’s commitment to excellence in facilities and services, it is the exclusive license holder for the global ‘World Trade Center’ and ‘WTC’ trademarks owned by the World Trade Centers Association – a distinguished global brand facilitating international trade with its influential network of over 325 World Trade Centers spread across 100 countries.
To continue to provide superior facilities and services to tenants and visitors, the World Trade Center, Colombo completed its refurbishment program in April 2021. Enhancing the work atmosphere and convenience for tenants, a comprehensive refurbishment of all interiors and retrofitting of all major MEP systems was undertaken.
Overseas Realty (Ceylon) PLC, Group Director/CEO Pravir Samarasinghe said, “WTC is recognised as a landmark workplace based in the heart of Colombo for many global and well-established local businesses. As we celebrate our milestone 25th anniversary, we take this opportunity to extend our gratitude to our clientele, partners, stakeholders and employees as we continue to be the best business address in Colombo. Moreover, our recognition, in-line with iconic global properties associated with the WTC brand, is a strong testament to the Company’s dedication and commitment to excellence in providing quality office space.”
Endorsing its reputation for delivering the best in design, facilities and services to tenants, the WTC Colombo continues to attract prestigious local, and multinational companies. Today, the building houses leading clients such as the Colombo Stock Exchange, Securities Exchange Commission, Board of Investment, Huawei Technologies, Glaxo SmithKline, Earnest & Young Global Deliver Services, Lanka IOC, Mitsubishi Corporation, Deloitte Consulting, Valible One, Bharti Airtel, China Harbour Engineering Company, Asia Broadcasting Corporation, etc.
As the owner, manager, and the developer of the renowned iconic World Trade Center Colombo, Overseas Realty (Ceylon) PLC, continues to dominate the office market bringing extensive expertise, domain knowledge and experience to its real estate developments. The company is also the developer of Havelock City, the largest integrated mixed-use development built in the heart of Colombo with both Residential and Commercial components.