3,000 lose jobs as Readywear closes down
No plans to sell abandoned garment
Industries Ltd., a garment exporter that
provided employment to 3,000; closed shop
last month after paying a hefty compensation
package of Rs. 120 million due to the
unprofitability of its operations.
"We cannot compete
with cheaper sources like India, that’s why
we are closing down," company sources who
did not want to be named said.
"Last year’s port
strike was also a crippling blow to our
operations," they said. "Besides, all our
raw material, from the button to the fabric
have to be imported, and with the rupee
depreciation, that has made imported raw
material costs to go-up, making our business
unviable," the sources said.
The downturn came
to a head in the last 6-7 months, they said.
"We had the added
disadvantage of not having had suppliers and
brands as our partners, an advantage which
most of the big players in the market, like
Brandix and MAS Holdings allegedly enjoy and
which is of great support to them in their
business," the sources said.
At the peak, the
company had some 17 factories, most of them
located in the outstation. The company began
operations in the early 1990s under
President R. Premadasa’s 200 factories
But when operations
closed down on August 31, only some seven
factories were functioning, including one at
the Biyagama Free Trade Zone. Prior to this,
they last sold a garment property in 2005.
The fate of their
remaining outstation properties, now made
redundant, is however unknown. Its
chairperson Ms. Shantha N. Chrysostom was
not immediately available for comment.
"We had an offer
from Hirdaramanis (another garment exporter)
for our outstation properties, but that
didn’t work-out," company sources alleged.
Each of these freehold properties comprises
an extent of 3-4 acres with 20-30,000 square
feet of built in area. The company however
did not rely on bank borrowings for its
"We made use of our
own funds to do our business, that way the
high interest rate regime that is prevalent
in the market did not affect our business as
our borrowing costs were zero," the sources
Readywear also has
a 98% stake in United Motors Lanka Ltd., a
public quoted company and the local agent
for Mitsubishi vehicles.
The sources said
that they would instead move into the more
lucrative property development field in
Colombo, having an eye on the 400 perch
block of land they have at Park Street,
Colombo and 2-2 ½ acres close to Lipton’s
Circus, currently used by HSBC.
package to the garment workers was between
Rs. 300,000 to Rs. 800,000; depending on the
number of years of service, the sources
Most of them have
found employment elsewhere, with senior
company officials assisting them in this
should protest against govt’s. fiscal
Civil society led
by institutions like the Ceylon Chamber of
Commerce has to take a stand to counter the
government’s fiscal and financial
Dr. Harsha de Silva speaking at a seminar on
interest rates and exchange rates in Colombo
on Thursday said that it was because they
successfully protested to the government
that the proposed monthly levy of Rs. 50 on
mobile phone users would add up to a high of
15% on their current average mobile
telephony bill, that this proposal was
Telecoms was the
economy’s success story.
He said that the
average monthly mobile telephony bill of a
user was in the region of Rs. 344. It was
also pointed out that such a levy would
retard GDP growth by 0.06% and would cut
down telecoms penetration from the targeted
65% to 55%.
Inflation which was
a low 0.5% in January 2004 when the previous
UNF government was in power, is now a 17.3%
high, but no one was protesting.
He said that when
inflation was a low 0.5% in January 2004,
the JVP was protesting about the high cost
of living, but now with inflation at a high
of 17.3%, there was not even a whimper from
VVIPs are importing
luxury Aston Martin cars while the masses
are starving. The Central Bank’s mandate
however is inflation targeting and price
After the election
of the Rata Perata government in
2004, inflation shot-up to 16%, then it came
down to 6.4% in 2005 due to tsunami relief,
but it has now risen to 17.3%.
He said that one of
the causes for this high inflationary
scenario was money printing. Though there
had been no approval to release new money to
the market last year, the CB released a sum
of Rs. 38.6 billion to help build the budget
deficit of Rs. 235 billion.
The government is
trying to contain the budget deficit by
slashing capital expenditure. Capital
expenditure that had originally being
targeted at 9.3% of GDP for this year had
been slashed to 7.4% in order to contain the
budget deficit at 7.8% of GDP this year.
Monies for infrastructure development has
been cut down from 5.3% of GDP to 4.3%.
De Silva who blamed
most of the ills besieging the economy to
poor fiscal management said that the Fiscal
Management Responsibility Act (introduced by
the UNF) that targeted to bring down the
budget deficit to 5% in 2006 is now being
The World Economic
Forum had ranked Sri Lanka a low 121st out
of 125 countries in trying to contain the
"What needs to
increase to achieve prosperity is retarding
and what needs to retard in fact is
growing," he said.
For instance, the
government has slashed its original growth
target for the year from 8% to 6.5%.
was being eaten-up by debt servicing,
salaries and wages and transfers and
Though CB Governor
Ajith Nivard Cabraal had said that policy
interest rates will be the main instrument
in conducting monetary policy, market
interest rates however were way beyond this
Referring to the
rapid rupee depreciation in recent times, he
said that the CB cannot try to maintain
stability in the market by threatening it.
increases when the rupee depreciates. It has
to win the respect of the market by being
"The CB suffers
from a credibility gap, that credibility has
to be restored," said de Silva. Then the
market will act. "Calling up and threatening
will not help."
There have been
previous CB governors who had resisted
pressure from governments to print money.
The Monetary Board Act ensures the
independence of the CB. In other countries
if inflation has such wild upward swings,
it’s legislated that the CB governor has to
The dollar has
appreciated to the Rs. 113 levels because
that is its actual value. In vain did the CB
release $ 200 million from the country’s
reserves in recent weeks in trying to defend
However, the dollar
was in the low Rs. 95 levels in 2004.
The CB’s holding of
treasury bills was Rs. 62 billion, whereas a
year ago it was only Rs. 30 billion.
High interest rate
regime to continue
Proceeds from the
sale of the $ 500 million bond will start
coming from next month, thereby stabilising
Institute of Policy
Studies Executive Director Dr. Saman
Kelegama speaking at a seminar on interest
rates and exchange rates on Thursday however
said that interest rates will not come down
until about the first or second quarter of
While the exchange
rates of competitor countries like India and
Thailand have been appreciating in recent
times, in Sri Lanka’s case the currency was
Economist Dr. Johanna Boestel in her speech
said that other countries were able to
counter pressure on the exchange rate due to
higher inflows (foreign direct investment,
exports and remittances), and, as a result
had accumulated high reserves.
This was however
not the case in regard to Sri Lanka.
Boestel said that
Sri Lanka with low external reserves and
high inflation and public debt levels were
contributory factors for the currency to
repayments will lead to higher deficits,"
When the currency
depreciates, the foreign debt burden will be
greater. And higher taxes may be harmful to
growth, said Boestel. .
Bank (CB) Governor Dr. H.N. Thenuwara in his
speech defended the bank’s actions to
intervene in the market.
"The CB cannot idly
sit back and watch when treasury bill
auctions open at 500-600 basis points
higher, or when the currency starts to
rapidly depreciate and when interest rates
go up," he said.
World Bank’s senior
country economist Claus Pram Castrup in his
speech said that Sri Lanka’s economy which
was growing at an average of 3.6% annually
in the period 1950-1977, shot-up by 1% to
4.5% of GDP after the country’s economy was
However, growth in
the past few years had been in the region of
The question is
whether Sri Lanka is performing to its
fullest potential? Castrup asked.
industry has a shortfall of 20,000 machine
operators (seamstresses), so, those who have
lost their jobs due to the closure of
Readywear Industries Ltd., can easily find
jobs elsewhere, a senior official of the
Joint Apparel Association Forum (JAAF)
speaking on the grounds of anonymity told
He alleged that
despite the doom and gloom situation, the
industry grew by14.8% in dollar terms in the
first six months of the year compared with
the commensurate period the previous year,
where it grew by only 6%.
The source further
said that the industry provides employment
to 300,000. He said that 75-80% of those are
provided employment in 25 export holding
companies. The industry brings in 50% of the
country’s export turnover.
Though the industry
has taken a hit due to high inflation and
exchange rates and the rupee depreciation,
it was surviving because the industry as a
whole was working "very hard." Margins have
taken a hit. They have continuous meetings
with workers to explain the situation as
demand for high wages arise. And the
government is not doing anything to contain
But the industry is
futuristic. They have not given-up on Sri
Lanka though some of the key players have
moved out part of their production bases to
countries such as India.
A delegation from
Telecom Serbia (TS) was due here yesterday
to sell value added telecoms services.
Honorary Consul General in Serbia Mrs.
Ljiljana Miljanic Cassim told The Sunday
Leader that TS, a government entity, has
a monopoly in providing fixed line telephone
services in Serbia.
It was also one of
several telecoms providers that was
providing mobile telephony services in
She said that
another Serbian company was interested in
importing heavy duty tyres and tubes from
visiting Sri Lanka from Serbia were
negligible, with the numbers amounting to
only a few scores monthly.
landlocked country and part of the former
Yugoslavia, has a population of 9.5 million
and occupies an area of 85,000 square
Cassim said that
Serbians generally visit Europe and North
Africa for their holidays. The average
monthly salary of a Serbian was in the
region of $ 500.
She said that Sri
Lanka’s country situation was not a
hindrance for Serbians to visit Sri Lanka as
Serbia too went through a period of civil
unrest and bloody killings in the 1990s.
instrumental in getting her brother, Dr.
Zoran Miljanic, president TNI, New Jersey,
USA to play a key role in organizing the
South Asia Broadband Congress that concluded
in Colombo on Thursday.
The Ceylon Chamber
of Commerce (CCC) and the Hambantota
District Chamber of Commerce (HDCC) launched
the Youth Business Sri Lanka (YBSL)
programme in Colombo on Wednesday, said a
HDCC is the founder
and "custodian" of the Hambantota Youth
Business Trust (HYBT) which was founded in
1997. HYBT is modeled on the Prince of Wales
Youth Business (YB) programme which
objective is to enable under-privileged
youth between the ages of 18-35 to start and
improve their own businesses.
As a result, HYBT
also helps reduce youth unrest and avoids
The UK based Youth
Business International (YBI) is the
coordinating agency which overseas a global
network of 40 YB programmes worldwide.
Eighteen of the 40
programmes are fully accredited by YBI and
HYBT was amongst the first of these.
Recently, CCC, YBI
and HDCC collaborated to launch a national
youth business programme for Sri Lanka. This
programme will be initially implemented in
Vavuniya, Trincomalee and in the Uva
is providing assistance to conduct awareness
programmes, while Business for Peace
Alliance is coordinating regional chambers
in the implementation of this project.
The target is to
spread the YBSL programme to the other areas
of the country in the next five years, the
private sector leaders have been appointed
as trustees of the Youth Business Sri Lanka
They are Jetwing
Hotels Ltd. Managing Director Hiran Cooray,
Brandix Director Aslam Omar, former Deputy
Managing Director Ceylon Tobacco Company
J.D. Bandaranayake, CCC Deputy Vice Chairman
Dr. Anura Ekanayake, Japan Lanka Industrial
Development Centre Chairman Nihal Abeysekera,
John Keells Holdings Group Director Sumithra
Gunasekera, Microsoft Sri Lanka (Pvt.) Ltd.
Country Manager Sriyan De S. Wijerathne, DSI
Samson Group Managing Director Kulathunga
Rajapaksa, Gajma & Company Partner N.R.
Gajendran, Hemtours (Pvt.) Ltd. Managing
Director Abbas Esufally, IWS Holdings Group
Director Asoka de Z. Gunasekera and
Hambantota Chamber of Commerce Director
General Azmi Thassim.
Lankem Paints Ltd.,
with their flagship brand Robbialac has
ventured into the international market for
the first time in the history ushering in a
new era and opening up a new window of
opportunity for their business as a premium
colour solutions provider for the coatings
industry in Sri Lanka and beyond.
Lankem Paints is
ISO 9002:1994 quality certified and as at
date is the only coatings manufacturer to
have obtained ISO 14001:2004 Environmental
Management Systems. A pioneer in the
coatings manufacturing industry in Sri
Lanka, it achieved "unprecedented" growth
during the last four years which has led to
more than a 200% increase in our market
share since 2004, the statement further
recently announced the pricing of its
initial public offering of 4.4 million
shares of its common stock at a price to the
public of $14 per share, said a statement.
All of these shares
were sold by Virtusa. The underwriters also
had a 30-day option to buy up to an
additional 462,795 shares of common stock
from selling stockholders and an additional
197,205 shares of common stock from Virtusa
to cover over-allotments, if any.
Virtusa will not
receive any proceeds from the sale of shares
by the selling stockholders. Virtusa’s
common stock began trading on the NASDAQ
Global Market recently under the symbol "VRTU."
Securities Inc. acted as sole book-running
manager for the offering, with Bear, Stearns
& Co. Inc. as the lead manager and Cowen and
Company LLC and William Blair & Company LLC
serving as co-managers.A registration
statement relating to these securities was
declared effective by the Securities and
Exchange Commission on August 2.
Virtusa is a global
information technology (IT) services company
providing IT consulting, technology
implementation and application outsourcing
services. Using its global delivery model,
platforming approach and industry expertise,
Virtusa provides services that enable its
clients to use IT to enhance business
performance, accelerate time-to-market,
increase productivity and improve customer
service, the statement further said.
draws record hits
world over spent 3.8 million minutes with
JWT’s tourism campaign on Sri Lanka on
A statement said
that long after the curtains came down on
JWT’s tourism campaign last year, the agency
continues to add its bit for Sri Lanka at a
JWT persisted with
the campaign even after its contractual
obligations and hosted a 10 minute
documentary on youtube.com which was
specially done for National Geographic. The
campaign continues to get high viewership
and has the highest hits in the tourism and
travel category generating 3,818,210 minutes
out of 381,821 views from all over the world
on youtube and is still growing.
The idea for the
campaign was born from an inspiring thought
from the JWT team in Colombo–"every few
miles you travel you see a new Sri Lanka."
This thought encapsulated the diversity that
awaits the discerning traveller. JWT’s
Colombo team infused the essence of this
into a brief and an idea was cracked by a
cross border creative team between JWT
Mumbai and the Colombo office and "small
island big trip" was brought to life.
The campaign was
developed under a USAID sponsored post
Tsunami initiative to attract tourism back
onto the island. The tourism cluster which
comprised senior professionals was of the
view that the large and emerging outbound
tourism market in India would be the best to
invest in. The campaign was released in
India for four months and saw a 25.4%
increase in Indian arrivals compared with
the preceding year. It helped boost and
reposition the image of Sri Lanka in the
minds of Indian travelers.
Whilst the campaign
was developed by a joint team between JWT
Mumbai and Sri Lanka offices, the digital
initiative was initiated by the local team
that worked with Eureka Technologies Sri
Lanka creating an interactive site called –smallislandbigtrip.com.
The site was a success drawing close upon
1.4 million hits in the first three months.
This campaign went
on to win accolades locally and
internationally. The print advertisements
brought honour to Sri Lanka by winning
bronze at the Asia Travel and Tourism Awards
2006 in Singapore competing with 300
Organized by AdAsia,
this year’s competition drew over 300
entries. It also won silver and bronze
awards at Chillies 2007.
JWT’s –Sri Lanka
office CEO Thayalan Bartlett attributed the
success to a cross border initiative from
its Sri Lanka and Mumbai offices to make the
campaign a success and which continues to
draw positive reviews every time it is seen.
The TV commercial
was shot and put together by leading
director Suren De Silva of Video Image. The
commercial was captured from the air, a
"feat never achieved before."
The telecoms sector
contributes to 20% of Sri Lanka’s GDP, more
than Manufacturing which contributes only
12% and the Financial Sector which
contributes 13%.Korea in 1996 had under 2%
of internet connections and 1% of broadband
connections in 1999, Telecoms Minister Rauf
Hakeem speaking at the inauguration of the
two day Broadband Congress in Colombo on
Wednesday said.But at present 90% of South
Koreans have broadband connections, while
business transactions through the internet
contributes to 30% of Korea’s GDP, he said.
However, expansion in broadband services
require investments in telecoms
infrastructure and in education, said Hakeem
Higher than EU
broadband charges are higher than the EU
While a broadband
connection for a two mega bytes per second
(mbps) of two kilometers DPLC costs $ 3,174
annually, in the EU region it is a low $
Meanwhile, a 2 mbps
broadband business connection in Sri Lanka
costs $ 726 per annum, whereas in the EU
region it is only $ 164.
While the annual
charges for a "minimum 256 kilo bps
broadband business connection" (residential)
in Sri Lanka was a high $ 242, in the EU it
was only $ 119.
While Sri Lanka has
9.55 fixed phones per 100 people and 27.26
mobile phones per 100, its broadband
connections however is a low 0.1258 per 100
key to growth
Indians were getting telephone connections
monthly, which number is equivalent to Sri
Lanka’s total telephone subscribers.
Jhunjhunwala, professor of the department of
electrical engineering, Indian Institute of
Technology, Chennai, speaking at a seminar
on broadband technology on Wednesday, said
that affordability was the key to growth.
in India were equivalent to 1.57 cents (LKR
1.77 a minute), thereby making telephony
affordable to the masses. If telecoms
operators in India make a revenue of $ four
a month per household, they can make money,
He said that in
another 2-3 years, 90% of rural India will
be connected. India will have 100 million
broadband connections by 2015.
further said that broadband connections
which were $ 20 a month in 2004, has since
come down to $ 7 because of DSL (copper
He said that India
which until recently had only 10 million TV
users, saw this growth increase by 10 fold
to 100 million, with the introduction of a
TV set costing only $ 50 a unit.
BBB for Union Assurance
Union Assurance PLC,
one of the leading composite insurers in Sri
Lanka which is backed by the corporate might
of John Keells Holdings PLC and Carson
Cumberbatch, was awarded a "BBB" brand
rating by Brand Finance PLC.
Brand Finance is a
leading independent brand valuation and
rating firm. The brand rating was based on
detailed analysis of data obtained from
public and other sources which is reviewed
by an expert panel of brand analysts and
has an integrated approach to brand
building," noted Marketing and Distribution
General Manager Rukman Weeraratne.
He elaborated that
"The brand building process starts from the
training and development provided to the
sales and non sales staff, customer centric
underwriting and servicing processes and
product development methodologies. These
factors complement the advertising,
promotional and communications related spend
which help to enhance brand visibility."
The company hopes
to capitalize on its strong brand as it
launches Union "Call & Go," a motor
insurance product targeting busy executives
and professionals who don’t have time to
stay at the accident site until an assessor
arrives to inspect the vehicle.
In the event of an
accident, policyholders need to log an entry
with the 24 hour call centre, obtain a
reference number and drive off.
Union Assurance has
tied up with a number of "elite" garages
across the island to ensure a hassle free
service. Union "Call & Go" customers could
drive into any one of these garages, and
they will take care of the rest.
If customers prefer
to repair the vehicle at another garage, an
assessor could be sent to this site as well.
If it is not
possible to take the vehicle to a garage,
customers are advised to move it to a
convenient location and an assessor will
visit them to assess the damage.
The above options
are in addition to arranging an assessor to
visit the accident site to provide an
Pawning has been a
way of life in South Asia for centuries.
Since of late due to the rapid appreciation
of gold and collateral the general public’s
view on pawning has changed rapidly, said a
ventured into the pawning business in 1997
and has rapidly increased its channels to
serve its clients and others who are keen to
patronize the bank in order to tide over
their short term liquidity needs.
constraints of retailers are also met since
the cost of borrowing against gold is low
compared to other conventional lending
service is a simple and convenient mode of
obtaining cash in the easiest method and to
retain the appeal for safe lodging of gold
jewellery especially for the Sri Lankan
housewife who juggles limited resources in
order to meet family commitments from time
The bank has
flexible payment terms since the period of
pledge is 12 months which could be extended
by paying only the interest or payment of
capital and interest or by partly redeeming
articles and even enhancing the advance
based on the value of gold pawned which may
have appreciated due to the increase in the
gold prices globally.
As such the
customer can decide whether to enjoy the
benefit or reschedule the out standings.
To provide a
quality service at Seylan’s branches, staff
have been handpicked and trained and provide
a highly confidential service to ensure
clients feel comfortable, in that payments
are made within the pawning counter itself.
Customer’s transaction time is reduced and
there are no queues or delays even at the
time of redemption as the customer has the
option to inform the bank in advance
regarding the time of redemption which will
enable the bank to have the article ready.
As a value
addition, the stamp duty payable at the time
of pawning is absorbed by the bank. The bank
intends to increase its delivery channels of
67 banking centres to date and introduce the
service to the remaining banking centres in
the long term.
in under two years
CF Savings Avurudu
Bonus campaign was held from April 30 to
July 31, 2007; with the draw held at Central
Finance Co. PLC Auditorium on August 30,
said a statement. Those eligible for the
draw were: Savers for a period of three
months effective from April 30 to July 31.
account balance should have been Rs.5000. It
had to be maintained through out the above
period. If the account had an average
balance of Rs.11,000 through out this
period, the accountholder had twice the
chances of winning (Rs.5000 x 2). And if the
minimum average balance was Rs.50,000, then
the chances were 10 times greater.
(CF) was incorporated on December 5, 1957.
It is a public
limited liability company (PLC) and
registered by the Monitory Board of the
Central Bank of Sri Lanka under the Finance
companies Act no. 78 of 1988. The core
business of the company is providing
financial services; including mobilization
of savings and term deposits.
CF has a network of
44 branches islandwide, out of which 39 are
Owing to its rapid
expansion and growth and customer demand. CF
launched its range of savings accounts on
January 2, 2006 and it already has a 20,000
strong customer base islandwide. The saving
accounts range is targeted at the different
market segments classified mainly by age and
are:-CF Regular Savings: CF Savings is a
savings scheme suitable for anybody over 18
years. It is different from other savings
accounts because it offers a host of special
features and attractive benefits.
CF Super Savings:
CF Super savings is for high volume savers
who want more from their deposits. "You can
decide on the amount you want to keep in
your savings account at anytime and instruct
us to transfer the balance to a fixed
deposit, while the minimum balance will be
maintained in the savings account.
CF Senior Citizen:
For savers who are 60 years and above with a
" high return and special benefits" and easy
operation. CF Lama Savings: CF Lama
Children’s saving accounts are accounts that
allow a high interest scheme as you save
more and a host of ‘unmatched’ benefits."
‘Tigo,’ the new
mobile experience in Sri Lanka launched
their ‘Millionaire Promotion’ to which there
was an unprecedented response from all parts
of the island, said a statement.
Wickramasinghe from Ududeniya, Marassana
becoming the first ever Tigo millionaire.
"There was an
unprecedented response to our Millionaire
Promotion and in fact we had over 50,000
customers responding in as little as six
days," said Tigo’s CEO Dumindra Ratnayaka.
Promotion was conducted in collaboration
with a popular radio station, with the grand
draw being held on recently.
Present for the
final round were Dinesh Ratnayake from Galen
Bindunu Wewa, Anurajika Wasanthi from
Monaragala, Nadeesha Harshini from Kadawatha,
the winner Nishantha Wickramasinghe and H.G.
Jayalal from Malabe.
They all faced
eight rounds of questions based on Tigo’s
island wide coverage , with Nishantha
emerging the winner .
"I am pleased that
I emerged the winner of Tigo’s first ever
Millionaire promotion" said Nishantha,
subsequent to receiving his cheque for Rs.
one million from Ratnayaka.
"I have been a Tigo
customer for over four years, and I am
satisfied with their coverage and service
which have been good at all times. Coming
from a rural area, I have never experienced
any drop in coverage, while Tigo’s customer
service has at all times been courteous and
expressed his thanks to Tigo for giving him
as well as all those who participated in
this promotion the opportunity of becoming a
"This promotion is
evidence of our island wide coverage and we
are indeed heartened by the response we
received; in fact all the finalists arrived
with their parents and well wishers, which
is proof of the popularity and enthusiasm
with which this promotion was received" said
He said that Tigo
will continue to provide customers with
improved access, greater availability and
enhanced affordability of mobile services,
via the Inspirational brand Tigo.
" We are determined
to be, not just a part of your communication
activities, instead, Tigo’s ultimate
ambition is to become a part of the Sri
Lankan lifestyle and with our islandwide
connectivity this has indeed become a
"Pep Up" for
Lanka Herbals (Pvt)
Ltd. a Harcourts Group subsidiary has
launched a timely herbal medicine to correct
digestive dysfunctions, said a statement.
The "Pep Up" tablet
is imported from a GMP/ISO 9001 2000
certified company in India.
This product has
been imported due to many requests made by
the ayurvedic doctors and is approved by the
Ayurvedic department for sale in the market.
This product is
expected to create a big impact among the
health conscious customers, who prefer
ayurveda because of its natural healing
Pep up can be
continuously used and it has no side effects
or any contra indications. It can be used
even by the children above 12 years for
abdominal pain indigestion. It is certified
by a team of medical specialists.
J.M.Ruzzan says that Pep Up tablets will
tone up the digestive system, and ensure
smooth functioning of digestive activity. It
relieves Abdominal distention, Flatulence
and trapped wind.
like Trikatu promotes peristalsis and
facilitate digestion. Bhumiamia and
Bhringaraj help stimulate appetite. Pep up
relieves gaseous unease swiftly and prevents
hyperacidity. From a laymen’ language,it is
suitable for Gastritis. It is effective in
spastic sages of the gastro intestinal track
"Pep Up" is
currently available at all Harcourts Super
drug stores islandwide and other leading
pharmacies, It is reasonably priced to meet
Lanka Herbals has a
wide range of ayurvedic healthcare products
imported from India. Some of the ayurvedic
products will be launched in the market in
the near future with a strategic plan for
the health conscious consumer.
ICICI Bank ensures
that the entire family now has the chance of
earning the highest interest rates with a
series of innovative accounts tailor made to
benefit the entire lifecycle (8 – 80 years),
said ICICI Bank’s Senior Vice President,
Retail Liabilities, Sachin Sikka.
It’s a savings
account product which has no restrictions on
deposits, withdrawals or investment period,
with the other benefits including a free
VISA ATM cum debit card with access to 800
VISA ATMs island wide as well as free
ICICI Bank has
launched a ‘Senior Citizen’s Account’-SCA
(for those over 55 years), a ‘Young Stars
Account’-YSA (upto 18 years) as well as a
savings account which offers an interest
rate of 12% p.a., the highest in the Sri
Lankan banking industry.
Seylan Bank has been widely acknowledged as
the leading minors’ savings brand in Sri
Lanka, said a statement.
accountholders have had many exciting
moments in their relationship with the Bank
such as availing themselves of the "Tikiri"
Gift Scheme, participation in numerous
Tikiri carnivals, kite competitions, art
exhibitions and quiz competitions.
Now, Seylan Bank
continues with this tradition by organizing
a pleasure cum educational trip to Hong Kong
in general and to Disneyland in particular.
Twenty five kids
along with one parent would be accommodated
in this two nights and three days package.
They would be able
to meet with their favourite Disney
characters within Disneyland and see and
enjoy its wonders to their hearts’ content.
Upto October 26,
2007, deposits made to any new or existing
Tikiri account in multiples of Rs. 500 would
be entitled to one chance per Rs. 500
A draw would be
held at the end of the period mentioned
above and the winners along with one parent
each would be entitled to these wonderful
The tour party
would be accompanied by Ms. Sarala
Kariyawasam who is the Brand Ambassador for
Seylan "Tikiri" along with Ms. Dimmini
Senaratne popularly known as "Tikiri Aunty"
who is the Brand Manager.
Conceived in line
with the thinking of Chairman Lalith
Kotelawala, Seylan Bank hopes to continue
with its endeavours in providing the best
value along with many exciting moments in
the future too for its "Tikiri"
accountholders who are the future generation
of this country.
Pay with mobile
Sampath Bank, the
IT leader amongst banks in Sri Lanka has
continuously endeavoured to direct its
technical and operational capabilities
towards expanding its range of products and
A statement said
that the Bank has always been in the
forefront of bringing global innovations to
Sri Lanka to make available world class
banking facilities to its people, offering
them many value additions along with its
In keeping with
this principle, the latest facility
introduced by the bank is "Sampath Mobile
Cash" (SMC), an‘easy to operate’ payment
system via mobile phones.
"Right from the
inception Sampath Bank had a vision for
technology oriented banking products based
on which the bank has been proactive in
delivering solutions to enrich the banking
industry. Over the last five years Sri Lanka
has gradually moved towards an esociety and
we at Sampath are proud of the role we have
played to make this transformation
possible," said Sampath Bank Managing
Director/CEO Anil Amarasuriya.
SMC enables Bank’s
customers to send money instantly to any
person (even non customers) having any brand
of mobile phone or CDMA phone with any
service provider. The transactions are
originated via the Sampath Telebanking
System, which authenticates the fund
transfer by verifying the sender’s User ID
and PIN. The sender is requested to input
recipient’s NIC no. and mobile/CDMA phone
no. and amount. The system generates SMS
messages to both parties and allows the
recipient to make use of the funds
immediately. "The speed and convenience
afforded by the SMC System will be more than
rewarding in an emergency situation which
talks volumes of the service level we wish
to maintain to our customers. We focus on
developing sophisticated solutions that
leverage the most advanced technologies,
while always keeping in mind our customers’
long term benefits," added Amarasuriya.
SMC is yet another
example of inhouse software development. All
software required at the Bank’s end have
been developed by the Bank’s inhouse systems
development team. The software component on
POS terminals at merchant outlets, which is
licensed software, is the only item
developed by sourcing the services of
Hypercom HK through their local agent.
recipients of mobile cash who need not
necessarily be Sampath Bank customers, are
facilitated through the Bank’s branch
network, currently comprising 101 branches.
In addition, the Bank has joined with Singer
Sri Lanka Ltd to facilitate payment of cash
as well as purchase of goods at Singer’s
islandwide network of more than 200 outlets.
Plans are also underway to enable cash
withdrawals through the Bank’s large ATM
network to give recipients of mobile cash
the choice and convenience of obtaining
money at any time of the day.
"The Bank’s IT
strategy has always been in the direction of
elevating service quality within the banking
industry with special emphasis on virtual
banking. The Bank’s migration from
Proprietory Systems to Open System
Architecture in 2000 assisted the Bank in
moving rapidly towards implementing a
banking solution capable of supporting
innovative products. Since then, our forte
has been electronic fund transfer systems
which have enabled us to serve our customers
at all times. SMC is a step towards the
future and we are already geared to face the
challenges ahead, " said Deputy General
Manager, Systems Development, Electronic
Banking and Card Centre Ranjith Narangoda.