Connect with us

Business

Sampath Bank wins Euromoney and Asiamoney Awards for Corporate Social Responsibility

Published

on

Sampath Bank was recently recognized as Sri Lanka’s best bank for social responsibility by Asiamoney and Market Leader CSR from Euromoney magazines. Both lauded Sampath Bank’s innovative approach and the impact of its successful social outreach programs, and wrote approvingly of how the Bank adapted to difficult circumstances. Euromoney Market Leaders makes an independent appraisal of the leading financial service providers across key banking categories in each market. The result of a rigorous assessment process, these rankings are part of Euromoney magazine’s awards programs that recognize financial institutions for their accomplishments and capabilities within a 12-month period against the backdrop of global events. In the confined world of international banking and finance, Euromoney and Asiamoney awards are the coin of the realm.

Both magazines noted in separate statements that as working capital dwindled during the coronavirus pandemic, Sampath supersized its ‘diriya’ loan scheme for small and medium-sized enterprises, prioritizing green lending. It also scaled up sustainable lending to help Sri Lanka reach one of its environmental objectives: to ensure that by 2030, 70% of the country’s energy will come from renewable sources. Sampath Bank helped support Sri Lanka’s import/export industry, prioritizing prudent management of its foreign currency position. The Bank acted pre-emptively to procure more foreign currency early in the year, and ensured uninterrupted inflows of essential foods and pharmaceuticals. Facing unprecedented, the Bank responded with out-of-the-box thinking and novel solutions. Heeding the Central Bank’s directive to reschedule existing non-performing loans of pandemic-affected businesses, Sampath Bank negotiated mutually acceptable repayment plans. It also distributed with fees for returned cheques, stopped cheques and late payments. When the second wave of the pandemic hit in 2021, Sampath Bank restructured some loans, offering customized deferment plans to help corporate customers ease out of their financial crunch.

Sampath Bank also expanded its ‘Waweta Jeewayak’ tank restoration initiative and its ‘Sampath Saviya’ entrepreneurship development program, and donated medical equipment to help state hospitals cope with COVID outbreaks. Both Euromoney and Asiamoney also commended Sampath Bank for strengthening its core business, noting that the Bank balanced growth, risks and costs: Net interest income rose 23.2% from the previous year and after-tax profit increased 55.2%. The Bank’s efforts to pare down operating costs paid off as well: its cost-to-income ratio dropped to 35.3% from the previous year’s 43.5%. The magazines credited much of Sampath Bank’s outstanding performance to its active monitoring of impairment risks and its efforts to absorb losses during a perfect storm of health, socioeconomic and political crises. “It is an impressive achievement,” they concluded.

“I was delighted to hear that both Euromoney and Asiamoney magazines recognized Sampath Bank as Sri Lanka’s Market Leader CSR and Best Bank for Corporate and Social Responsibility respectively,” said Nanda Fernando – Managing Director, Sampath Bank PLC. “Their editorial boards gave us these awards for our resilience in the face of seemingly intractable problems, and for the way we innovated our way through a very tough year. We are not over the problems of 2022, but we face the future with confidence.”

Sampath Bank is a 100% local bank that has deeply rooted itself in the lives of the people of Sri Lanka. Established in 1987, the bank has become a state-of-the-art financial institution that continues to be a market leader today thanks to its constant innovation and customer focused approach to business. It has introduced many firsts to the Sri Lankan banking sector including introducing ATMs to Sri Lanka, extended banking hours, slip-less banking and adaptation of block-chain technology to name a few. As part of its visionary 2022 approach, the bank is steadily transforming itself into a ‘tech company engaged in banking,’ from the traditional approach of a bank adopting technology.



Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Business

OKLO adds new feature to Ceylon Tea SmartAuction platform

Published

on

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.

Continue Reading

Business

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

Published

on

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.

Continue Reading

Business

Airtel Lanka records 1.7mn customers switch to Freedom Packs

Published

on

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.

Continue Reading

Trending