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Avtra Wins APICTA 2020-21 Award for its Innovative Software Product



Avtra Co-Founder and CTO Nasly Yoosuf

Avtra, one of the world’s leading providers in technology solutions for the aviation and tourism sectors, was named winner in the Consumer, Media, Tourism and Retail Category at the Asia Pacific ICT Alliance Awards 2020-2021 for its superior quality and application of technology, functionalities and features, market potential, and uniqueness.

This was in recognition of its new-generation Avtra Skaii Passenger Service System, a reservation system that provides an online sign-up application for airlines to instantly create a platform to sell tickets utilising Avtra’s comprehensive admin back-office portal and a variety of distribution channels. Avtra’s Co-Founder and CTO Nasly Yoosuf said, ‘We take great pride in our recognition at the recent APICTA Awards. This is a testament to our innovation mindset, continuous development in technology enabling the industry transform from its conventional processes and the dedication and resilience of our teams.’’

As a specialist IT provider for the airline industry, Avtra offers end to end software solutions for airlines, airports and travel agents. The core strength of Avtra is its diverse and talented team based in Sri Lanka and their unwavering commitment and excellence towards delivering innovative purpose-built IT solutions that can support modern carriers and their needs.

Avtra is actively looking to expand its team in Colombo to achieve its ambitious product roadmap, as well as for several exciting new client implementations. Vacancies are in software development using latest Java, web, mobile and cloud technologies; business intelligence, artificial intelligence and application support. The company attracts the crème la crème from both state and private universities, as well as higher education institutions in Sri Lanka.

“We aim to make aware and uplift our brand among prospects who would love to work with us in developing and supporting some of the most cutting-edge software and solutions that power airlines globally. We foster a win-win culture and a stimulating workplace environment where every individual could champion and progress with an entrepreneurial, creative, and innovative mindset”, Mr Yoosuf said.

Based in Malaysia, APICTA is an association of ICT communities nominated by member economies in the region, who come together in the spirit of collaboration and facilitating technology transfer, forming a cooperative network that promotes technology innovation and creativity, and encourages the development of original ICT solutions including product introduction and business matching opportunities.

Held virtually this time around due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 20th APICTA Awards showcased innovative products and solutions from among competing member economies such as Australia, Bangladesh, Brunei, China, Chinese Taipei, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Macao, Malaysia, Myanmar, Pakistan, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.

Avtra today is a result of many years of dedication and hard work. It has been built from scratch, incorporating the latest open technologies, in a multi-tiered modular architecture – allowing for the delivery of portfolio of innovative products for aviation and travel industry.

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Seven factors of concern at upcoming Monetary Policy Review



by Sanath Nanayakkare

The Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) is scheduled to announce its latest monetary policy review on 20th January 2022, with all eyes on dwindling foreign reserves and foreign currency exchange in the country.

In this context, First Capital Research has named 7 factors of concern that could be taken into account at the upcoming monetary policy review. They are as follows.

* Foreign Reserves USD 3.1 billion – Dec 2021

* Inflation CCPI 12.1% – Dec 2021

* GDP Growth -1.5% – 3Q2021

* Private Credit LKR 60.5 billion – Nov 2021

* 03M T-Bill rate 8.38% as at 12.01.22

Liquidity and CBSL Holdings LKR -364.0 billion and LKR 1.42 trillion

Balance of Trade (BOT) and Balance of Payment (BOP) USD -6.5 billion and USD -3.3 billion for Jan-Oct 21

First Capital Research’s Policy Rate Forecast – Jan 2022-Apr 2022 notes that they believe the CBSL may highly consider tightening the monetary policy rates in this policy review but given the concerns over economic growth, there is a probability of 40% for CBSL to maintain its policy stance at current levels.

“With high frequent indicators improving in line with expectations, we have eliminated any probability of a rate cut. We expect a continued increase in probability for a rate hike in order to prevent overheating of the economy amidst the given fiscal and monetary stimulus,” they said.

As per First Capital’s view, CBSL either can choose to hike policy rates by 50bps or 100bps or hold policy rates steady, while a rate cut is off the table due to the high debt repayment and the high domestic borrowing requirement.

First Capital believes that there is a 60% probability for a rate hike due to the remedial actions required in achieving external stability.

However, there is also a 40% probability to maintain the policy rates at its current level in order to further improve the high frequency indicators.30%, they noted.

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Sri Lanka’s dash brand enters international markets



Multichemi International Ltd, which manufactures and distributes a wide range of products under dash, one of Sri Lanka’s leading detergent and household care brands, has begun exporting its products to several international markets in Asia and Oceania, with plans also to enter Africa. The dash brand includes a wide range of products in car care, household care, home fragrances and laundry care sectors. Multichemi International Ltd, which has been awarded ISO 9001:2015 certification, is a Sri Lankan pioneer in environment-friendly cleaning products, having launched the country’s first biodegradable, safe cleaning products over 28 years ago.

Amila Wijesinghe, General Manager of the Company said,”Having conquered the domestic market, we are now ready to capture the international market. We are confident that our products which are of high quality will receive a good demand overseas as well. The feedback we have received so far from our overseas customers is extremely encouraging. We are dedicated to taking our products to the international market, to bring in foreign currency to the country and help uplift the economy”,

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Janaka Abeysinghe appointed SLT CEO



Sri Lanka Telecom PLC has announced the appointment of Janaka Abeysinghe as its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) with effect from February 1, 2022.

The incumbent CEO Kiththi Perera will be overseas on leave for a period of two years to pursue higher studies, according to a stock market filing by the company.

Abeysinghe joined SLT in 1991. In his present role, he leads the enterprise and wholesale business of SLT that provides integrated voice and data solutions to enterprises, government institutions, domestic telco operators and global wholesale carriers.

In his career at SLT spanning 29 years, he has held a number of senior positions, including general manager Enterprise and International Sales and has extensive experience in the areas of Enterprise Digital Services, Enterprise Communications Solutions, Data Communications, Business Development, Domestic and International Switching Operations and Global Wholesale Voice & Data Business.

He holds a Master’s Degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Kansas, USA and a BSc degree in Electronics and Telecommunications Engineering with a First Class Honours from the University of Moratuwa.

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