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MAS Holdings partners with The Wildlife Foundation Kenya

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The teams from MAS Holdings and The Wildlife Foundation (TWF) Kenya have partnered to conserve 6,250 acres of the Nairobi National Park wildlife dispersal area

Collaborative conservancy model aims to protect 6,250 acres of the Nairobi National Park Wildlife Dispersal Area

Colombo, 30th August 2022: South Asian apparel manufacturer, MAS Holdings (MAS) has partnered with The Wildlife Foundation (TWF), Kenya to conserve 6,250 acres of the Nairobi National Park Wildlife Dispersal Area. In line with the MAS Plan for Change commitment of restoring 25,000 acres of habitat, this unique initiative enables MAS and TWF to collaborate with local landowners to conserve wildlife on community- and privately-owned land.

The project commenced in March 2022, with a land-lease gathering ceremony with the participation of 58 landowners from the Athi-Kaputiei area. The project is an extension of TWF’s ongoing conservancy model, through which TWF leases lands from local owners to promote wildlife conservation and better land use practices. Through this partnership, MAS has been able to expand TWF’s existing conservancy of 5,000 acres to a total coverage of 11,250 acres.

The conservancy model utilizes both monetary and non-monetary incentives to encourage landowners and local communities to keep land unfenced for wildlife and livestock to move freely in the outskirt lands of the park. This is coupled with initiatives to raise awareness on community-based conservation, place community rangers to mitigate human-wildlife conflict, train youth and women on topics such as beekeeping, biogas, and promote the use of technology to innovate solutions for conservation challenges.

Through the conservancy model, which is collaboratively funded by MAS’ strategic business units MAS Intimates and MAS Kreeda, MAS and TWF provide financial incentives to landowners, to keep private lands open and unfenced for wildlife movement. This contributes to reducing human retaliations against lions and other predators as well as supporting to improve the education of the children in the area by providing landowners with lease payments aligned to the start of the children’s school terms.

MAS established its manufacturing facility in Kenya in 2020, through its subsidiary MAS Intimates. Today, MAS Intimates Kenya (EPZ) Ltd is a leading manufacturer and exporter of lingerie and apparel wear to leading markets in the USA, Europe and Asia, and provides job opportunities for 3,200 Kenyans. The lands in the conservancy model are leased from the Machakos and Kajiado counties, where the majority of MAS Intimates Kenya staff reside.

This conservation project not only contributes considerably to MAS’ target of restoring 25,000 acres of habitat but has also created an opportunity for MAS to engage holistically with its local community in Kenya. The group’s sustainability strategy, the MAS Plan for Change, focuses on 12 commitments under three areas of focus of product, lives, and planet, including championing biodiversity and creating thriving communities.MAS and TWF have committed to collaborate on this unique conservancy project for the next five years, with the collective hope of uplifting and empowering the community to help change our planet for good.

About MAS Holdings:

MAS Holdings, the largest apparel tech company in South Asia, is among the most recognized design-to-delivery solution providers in apparel and textile manufacturing. Home to a community of over 118,000 people, today, MAS spans across 17 countries, with established design locations placed in key style centers across the world. Catering to the demands of a dynamic and ever-changing industry, the MAS portfolio has expanded exponentially; into brands, wearable technology, FemTech, start-ups and fabric parks worldwide.

Over 35 years of operations, MAS has gained global recognition for its ethical and sustainable working environment and for the organization’s tireless efforts in social development and women’s empowerment. Product excellence and craftsmanship have placed MAS on the world map as an industry leader, showcasing unfailing delivery in innovative manufacturing and design. Today, the company’s efforts to drive positive impact are outlined in the MAS Plan for Change, a commitment to create sustainable change under three areas of focus: products, lives, and planet. Through these initiatives, MAS aims to inspire all employees to be changemakers, enabling dreams and enriching the fabric of life on our planet.

About The Wildlife Foundation, Kenya: The Wildlife Foundation (TWF) is a registered Kenya Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) established in the year 2000. TWF’s vision is to maintain community-based conservancies that foster peaceful coexistence between humans, livestock and wildlife within the Athi-Kaputiei ecosystem.



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OKLO adds new feature to Ceylon Tea SmartAuction platform

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OKLO Private Limited, a leading Sri Lankan solutions provider for the Ceylon Tea e-Auction platform, recently added an all-new segment for factories in its SmartAuction platform. This new feature provides over 650 factories with the chance to value and grade teas within the system, printing final catalogues, real-time and post-sales reports, and viewing their tea variants being auctioned live. For the first time, a live auction participation option has been instigated for all stakeholders and factories in the country’s 150 years of auctioning history. The availability of this platform would now allow the tea-producing community to benefit from newly added or enhanced functionalities similar to other stakeholders.

With tea being the most significant commodity to be auctioned in Sri Lanka, it is also one of the most significant contributors to the local economy. As Ceylon Tea has already garnered a worldwide name, the branding has enabled Sri Lanka to be placed on the map as an influential tea-producing entity. At the same time, this functionality can also be utilised by other organisations that market commodities such as rubber, spices and coconut. Being present via an e-Auction paves the way for more competition among buyers and sellers.

Regarding the inclusion of their new feature, OKLO Private Limited, Managing Director – Thilanka Withanage stated, “Since the Colombo Tea e-Auction went live on the OKLO SmartAuction platform, the team has been releasing advanced features and functionalities to all stakeholders. With the release of the latest version, all Sri Lankan tea factories can now have complete access to the platform, similar to all other stakeholders. Our objective is to maintain consistency in the face of tech innovation and uplift our nation’s ascent in the digital realm. We will continue utilising our nation’s talents and build cutting-edge, practical, impactful products that will set innovative strides.”

Sri Lanka Tea Factory Owners Association, Vice Chairman – Pasindu Pieris shared his views on the newly enhanced platform. He said, “This state-of-the-art solution from OKLO provided to the tea sector amalgamates all aspects related to dispatching tea from the factory to the point where it is sold at the auction through competitive bidding. Now, we can see our tea variants being sold at the auction right from our factory premises. The platform offers transparency and traceability while improving efficiency throughout the supply chain.”

OKLO is a Sri Lankan Technology Solutions Provider with current solution offerings in the Travel and Trading sectors. It was founded in 2011 and has been expanded to become one of the key players in the Travel IT sector, catering to some of the largest blue-chip companies such as Walkers Tours, Cinnamon Hotels, Jetwing Travels etc.For more information, email info@okloworld.com, call +94777320383, or visit www.okloworld.com.

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CSE trading marked by ‘a degree of sluggishness’; main indices decline

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By Hiran H.Senewiratne

CSE trading activities reflected a degree of sluggishness yesterday as most stock market investors are adopting a wait- and- see approach due to ongoing IMF discussions on bailing out the Sri Lankan economy, coupled with issues that surfaced in the coal purchase agreement between the Browns Group and a Chinese company relating to coal power generation, stock analysts said.

Amid those developments both indices moved downwards. The All- Share Price Index went down by 31.8 points and the S and P SL20 declined by 19.1 points. Turnover stood at Rs 3 billion with two crossings. Those crossings were reported in JKH, which crossed 150,000 shares to the tune of Rs 21.5 million with its shares trading at Rs 143 and CIC Holdings 241,000 shares crossed for Rs 20.5 million; its shares traded at Rs 85.

In the retail market top six companies that mainly contributed to the turnover were; Lanka IOC Rs 394 million (1.4 million shares traded), Expolanka Holdings Rs 237 million (one million shares traded), Richard Pieris Rs 146 million (4.4 million shares traded), ACL Cables Rs 138 million (1.3 million shares traded), JKH Rs 129 million (910,000 shares traded) and First Capital Holdings Rs 112 million (7.2 million shares traded). During the day 150 million share volumes changed hands in 30000 transactions.It is said that high net worth and institutional investor participation was noted in Expolanka Holdings, Sunshine Holdings and Lankem Developments.

Mixed interest was observed in Lanka IOC, ACL Cables and Royal Ceramics, while retail interest was noted in Browns Investments. The Capital Goods sector was the top contributor to the market turnover (due to ACL Cables and Royal Ceramics), while the sector index gained 1.23 per cent. The share price of ACL Cables moved up by Rs. 6 (5.69 per cent) to close at Rs. 111.50. The share price of Royal Ceramics recorded a gain of Rs. 1.70 (4.10 per cent) to close at Rs. 43.20.

The Food, Beverage and Tobacco sector was the second highest contributor to market turnover (due to Lankem Developments), while the sector index increased by 1.07 per cent. The share price of Lankem Developments appreciated by Rs. 1.50 (4.12 per cent) to close at Rs. 37.90.

Expolanka Holdings and Lanka IOC were also included among the top turnover contributors. The share price of Expolanka Holdings decreased by Rs. 2.25 (0.99 per cent) to close at Rs. 224.25. The share price of Lanka IOC closed flat at Rs. 290.50.Yesterday the Central Bank- announced US dollar buying rate was Rs 359.18 and selling rate Rs 369.93.

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Airtel Lanka records 1.7mn customers switch to Freedom Packs

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One year after the launch of Airtel Lanka’s industry-disrupting prepaid packs ‘Freedom’, the company announced a staggering 1.7 million users have switched to Airtel Freedom, as at the end of August 2022.

“We serve around three million customers in Sri Lanka, aided mainly by this unprecedented adoption of our Freedom packs. The overwhelming customer endorsement reaffirms our strategy of bringing simplicity and value through our products.” notes Airtel Lanka Managing Director/CEO Ashish Chandra.

Powered by Airtel’s world-class 5G-ready mobile broadband network, the telco has reimagined the overall offering and experience for customers, with a strong focus on ensuring value for money, and an advanced network experience. These factors undoubtedly resonate with most users, who are either data-heavy or call-heavy users.

Airtel Lanka’s initial innovation in facilitating unlimited, affordable access to the internet through Freedom Packs continued to evolve, with the telco introducing new world-class features to both its prepaid Freedom Packs and postpaid Freedom Plans

Airtel also disrupted the local telco market with the entrance of the Freedom Unlimited Rs.749 package, which is aimed at prepaid users. For a very affordable cost, users can now make unlimited calls to any network, with unlimited access to favourite social media platforms such as Facebook, Messenger, WhatsApp, and stream superior quality videos on YouTube for 30 days in addition to receiving additional 30GB anytime date.

Airtel was also the first telco to introduce unlimited calls for any network for a postpaid customer through Unlimited 1098. Priced at Rs. 1,098, an Airtel user has access to unlimited calls to any network, 40GB anytime data and SMS facilities. Additionally, Airtel is also the only telco to offer data rollover service for postpaid customers, allowing up to 200GB to be carried onto the next month’s billing cycle, saving data and expenses for the end-consumer.

Airtel Lanka has been part of implementing many industry-firsts in Sri Lanka’s telco space, and was also the first to introduce unlimited calls in Sri Lanka, on calls made to the same network. With the launch of Airtel Freedom, the company offers its users the ultimate convenience for all their voice, SMS and data needs, offering even greater savings compared to the competition. With the introduction of Unlimited, Airtel Lanka undoubtedly serves as a clear trendsetter for the country’s telecommunications industry.

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