25 year old James Brown from Hampstead London reaches Ceylon seeking fortune and adventure. An engineer and mechanic by profession, he sets up a bicycle repair business near Gleneagle in Hatton.
Brown & Co Limited is launched. The company manufactures, repairs and imports all types of agricultural and farming machinery.
Brown & Co Ltd is incorporated as a locally registered "rupee company" with a share capital of Rs. 500,000/- The company this time around focuses on the manufacturing and servicing of machinery for the tea, rubber and coconut industries which were the driving force of Sri Lanka's economy during that period.
The expansion of Brown & Company further continues with the setting up of establishments in Colombo and Nawalapitiya.
A significant year for Brown & Company Ltd. It heralded the emergence of the Browns Group. Brown & Company bought over the total equity capital of the Hatton Bank Limited and the Hatton Transport & Agency Co. Ltd.
Brown & Co. becomes a "Ceylonese Company" with a Ceylonese Traders' Licence which grants the right to trade with all countries. From 1959 to 1973 branches were established throughout the island, namely - in Ampara, Badulla, Hatton, Haputale, Jaffna, Kandy, Kurunegala, Lindula, Nawalapitiya, Paranthan, Uda Pussellawa and Vavuniya.
Incorporated as an Associate of the Browns Group of Companies in collaboration with British Batteries (Overseas) Limited and the Development Finance Corporation, Associated Battery Manufacturers (Ceylon) Limited began commercial production of automotive batteries in 1961.
Also in 1960
The Browns Group acquired Hoare & Company ( Ceylon) Limited, one of the oldest and most established engineering firms specializing in marine engineering. The new company was named Engineering Services Limited.
Browns Group Industries was incorporated in 1963, taking over the manufacture of items that were traditionally imported.
Browns Tours was established. The division handled a complete travel service portfolio to include charters, airline travel, customs, transport and ground tours. The division acted as agents for SAS (Scandinavian Airlines), Thai Airways International Limited, Touristik Union International ( T.U.I) West Germany, Far Horizons U.K. and Air Maldives.
The group expanded even further when Hatton National Bank Limited was incorporated to take over business carried out by The Hatton Bank Ltd. The scope of the group increased when the bank became a public quoted company with broad based share holdings.
Browns Handicrafts Limited, an associate of the company was incorporated. It manufactured and sold handicrafts of high quality both locally and overseas.