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Business


Motor Vehicles and leasing facilities under one roof

AMW ties up with Central Finance

AMW, the leader in brand new vehicles, is offering a further facility to ensure customer comfort by providing easier access to finance by joining hands with Central Finance - the established professionals in vehicle leasing.
Under this scheme, designated staff from Central Finance will man a desk at AMW showrooms and, in turn, Central Finance will display a Suzuki-Maruti vehicle at their branches, enabling customers to view and inspect the product, make the purchase decision, and obtain a lease all under one roof. This promotion will be valid until September 15.
All formalities for obtaining the lease will be completed in a very short span of just two days; making it possible to take a coveted Suzuki-Maruti home. With the rising cost of petrol and congestion on the roads, the Maruti’s popularity has risen further. Speaking of the features unique to Suzuki-Maruti vehicles, AMW’s marketing manager, Viraan de Zoysa said “Suzuki-Maruti vehicles are manufactured for use on rough roads in India which are similar to roads in Sri Lanka. Being small in size, it is easier to manipulate in heavy traffic conditions and it goes without saying the convenience one enjoys when it comes to parking.” He went on to say “These vehicles are very fuel efficient and easy on the user’s budget in these days of rising oil prices.” The Suzuki-Maruti is the answer to the middle-income owner’s dream of buying a new car. The price of a Suzuki-Maruti in comparison to other cars in this range remains low and affordable. Commenting on the scheme to provide easy access to finance in collaboration with Central Finance “We formulated this scheme mainly thinking of the middle level executive and professionals who earn a reasonable salary and would like to purchase a new car but find it difficult to raise the full amount in one go”
Suzuki-Maruti is the most popular family car brand in India, and also counts over 5 million cars in use world-wide. One of the key reasons for the popularity of the Suzuki-Maruti is that it’s a brand manufactured without a particular target group in mind and therefore has mass appeal. Even among high-income groups, where luxury is the key requirement, owning a Suzuki-Maruti as a 2nd car is considered a must-have for routine chores.

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Ogilvy Fast-Trackers meet in Sri Lanka

Fast -Trackers, was a dynamic forum in which over 40 selected high performers within the Ogilvy Network in Asia Pacific and Europe participated to discuss ‘Winning the last mile for clients’ and convincing consumers to “buy”.
The programme in Sri Lanka was the first of its kind and included a series of themed workshops, held from July 30th to August 4th. The programme invited key Ogilvy figures in the Asia Pacific region such as Miles Young – Chairman, Tim Issac – Vice Chairman, Glen Mogford – Regional Business Director and Ian Strachan- Consultant, who put together their skills and experience to offer an interesting and ‘action-packed’ experience for the participants.
Workshop discussions revolved around building the Ogilvy culture, credibility and appeal to both internal and external audiences. The main aim of Fast-Trackers was to strengthen internal and external communications through increased understanding of self and others, envisioning the future of Ogilvy, thinking out of the box and stimulating more creative solutions. The final goal was to arrive at understanding the concept of ‘winning the last mile’ in order to execute consumer-centric communication strategies. The red ball symbol of Ogilvy Action, signifying action and influence, was a significant idea used to drive the programme.
The programme kicked off with a market visit to understand the channel dynamics of Sri Lanka, where all participants shared their learning with one and other. The highly interactive weeklong programme gave participants the opportunity to share with each other the best practices of their respective countries.
The highlight of the programme was the HERRMANN BRAIN DOMINANCE INSTRUMENT which helped participants extend or control their thinking style or process accordingly and to identify the most suitable team for a particular project.
“The programme was hectic but interesting and insightful.” said Herman Somasundaram, who represented Pheonix O&M - Sri Lanka. “We learnt about Trade Marketing & Distribution, out of the box thinking, logical debating skills and effective presentation skills through a series of indoor and outdoor activities.”
“’Fast-trackers’ was an excellent opportunity to understand and learn how to cater to consumer needs rather than go by theories and concepts. Also working together with fellow agency members from across the world as one team really broadens one’s perspectives. ” said Chamley Ariyachandra from Ogilvy Action, who also participated from Sri Lanka.

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SLT provides total communication solution to Millers Ltd.

Sri Lanka Telecom, the nation’s only integrated communication service provider recently entered to an agreement with Millers Ltd. to provide a comprehensive communication solution for the inter-branch communication. Millers is a leading group of companies in the trading of well known products such as Cadbury, Kraft, Bonlac, and Kodak. It is also the main distributor for Cargills branded products.
SLT’s communication solution will enable to connect Millers’s eight colour labs and warehouses in Colombo, Negombo and the suburb areas, with the state-of-the-art IP-VPN solution for data communication, new PABX system for internal communication and total voice services provided through a high capacity E1 connection.
T D E Jayanithie, Managing Director speaking on the reason, why the company tied up with SLT, said; “We have always had a good rapport with SLT and the services they have provided us over the years have been beyond our expectation. Through this agreement they offers us a diverse range of services and benefits, such as island wide connectivity, the high quality of service, the scalability of the IP – VPN network as well as a customised solution based on our requirement among others. It also gives us the flexibility to incorporate other products and services when needed in the future.”
The agreement is projected to cut down costs of inter branch communication, increasing productivity resulting from cost effective real time communication, as well as making operations smoother, enhancing the capabilities of the customer.
Sri Lanka Telecom (www.slt.lk) is one of the country’s most valuable blue chip companies with an annual turnover in excess of Rs40 bn. The SLT Group has a customer base of over two million including multinational corporations, large and small corporate, retail and domestic customers. Today with NTT Communications of Japan as a strategic partner, SLT provides facilities and services: voice, data, video and mobile to its customers, which are unmatched in scope. These services range from domestic and international voice, advanced data transmission services which include internet services on leased lines, broadband [on ADSL] and dial up, data circuits, frame relay solutions to IP services such as IP-VPN based on IP-MPLS technology, total corporate solutions of multiple services, satellite uplink services and mobile telephony through the fully owned subsidiary Mobitel.
SLT is in the process of introducing the necessary infrastructure in the form of NGN [Next Generation Networks] using optical fibre backbone and broadband services such as IMS, IPTV etc. SLT also provides high speed global connectivity to countries in the South Asian region through its investments in international submarine cables such as SMW3, SMW4 and the Bharat Lanka submarine cable [between India and Sri Lanka] and Dhirragu-SLT submarine cable system between the Maldive Islands and Sri Lanka. Newly incorporated SLT Hong Kong Ltd, a fully owned subsidiary of Sri Lanka Telecom is fully geared to provide services such as IP transit, IPVPN, IPLC and International voice traffic transit services to global telecom operators and corporates in Hong Kong.
Lakshitha Paranawithana, Account Manager (SME Sales), SLT; Prashantha Robertson, DGM (SME Sales), SLT; Ajantha Seneviratne, GM (Sales), SLT and T D E Jayanithie, MD, Millersr; S R Balachandran, Finance Director/Company Secretary; Mignonne Perera, General Manager, Finance and Administration; Delano Dias, General Manager, Marketing and G Brinsley De Alwis, Data Processing Manager of Millers Ltd.

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JWT chosen as the network marketing agency for Nokia

Nokia has announced that it has chosen JWT as its global network marketing agency. The announcement is part of Nokia’s marketing renewal that focuses on streamlining marketing planning and increasing the effectiveness and efficiency of all marketing activities. The marketing agency review has been an integral part of the marketing renewal process.
In July, Nokia announced Wieden + Kennedy’s appointment as the global lead agency for Mobile Phones. Multimedia will continue to use Interpublic Group (IPG) for Nokia NSeries creative support and Enterprise Solutions will continue to use WPP as their global creative agency.
JWT will support the lead creative agencies in the implementation and localization of global campaigns. Also, as a strategic global partner, the agency will support local marketing activities in over 80 markets worldwide.
‘’Working together with JWT will help us to align our marketing efforts. With one global marketing network partner, we believe we will be better positioned to reach our goal of becoming the most loved and admired brand by people in the world”,says Pekka Rantala, Senior Vice President, Nokia.
In the network marketing agency selection, a strong emphasis was put on choosing an agency that is best positioned to support Nokia’s long term marketing strategy and business requirements locally. Additionally, a diverse repertoire of knowledge and experience was a key priority.
Transition to the new marketing mode will begin during the fall and will be fully operational by January 1, 2008.

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Star Channels FOC for all Dialog package holders

Dialog TV, Sri Lanka’s leading Direct to Home (DTH) service provider has enlarged its bouquet of channels to its thousands of Sri Lankan viewers with the inclusion of the immensely popular range of Star Channels.
“Star Channels have been long awaited by our diverse and rapidly expanding customer base all over Sri Lanka. The inclusion of Star Channels further consolidates our commitment and determination to add top-end news, sport and entertainment to our already large portfolio of channels” said Nushad Perera, General Manager Sales and Marketing Dialog Telekom.
‘Star Movies’, ‘Star PLUS’, ‘Star Sports’ and ‘Star World’ and the Tamil Channel ‘Vijay TV’ will be available free of charge to all of DTV’s Rs. 1400/- package customers. As a special bonus, the Tamil Channel ‘Vijay TV’ has been added on to the Rs. 900/- package as well for no additional rental. For more information customers can call the DTV hotline 077 7 679 679.
“Dialog Satellite TV has revolutionised Direct to Home Television in Sri Lanka leading to a very positive and favourable demand right along. We’ve been reaching out to Sri Lankan audiences through quality television programming with world class entertainment and the widest spectrum of channels with a special focus on news, entertainment and knowledge based programming”, Perera added.
Dialog Television (Private) Limited, a subsidiary of Dialog Telekom Plc, operates Dialog Satellite TV, supporting a broad array of over 40 international channels including BBC, HBO, Cinemax, AXN, ESPN, Ten Sports, Discovery Channel, MTV (Music Television) and Cartoon Network, in addition to a wide portfolio of Sri Lankan television channels. For more details log on to www.dialog.lk

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NIVASIE goes green

Takes small steps to live more green

Caring, preserving building in harmony with nature is NIVASIE’s contribution to the preservation of mothernature. After successfully completing sales in Zone 1, Victoria Range Bungalows, opens Zone II, with the “going green” concept, making it possible for you to own a home, while making a small contribution towards the securing the nature as well.
Global warming is a big challenge in today’s context of a world. If we don’t take corrective measures now to reduce the contribution done for Global Warming, we will not have OUR EARTH or OUR WORLD for the future generation said Dilan Senevirathne, Marketing Manager of Nivasie Developer (Pvt) Ltd. As a company Nivasie has taken small measures for a more greener life, thereby contributing in their own way towards controlling the Global Warming.
Victoria Range Digana, intends to help the conversation of valuable water resources through this method. In each individual house water collected in gutters from rain will be directed to an underground Tank, which can be utilised by the home owner for watering the garden, etc. Also man made ponds to maintain water within the common areas.
Nivasie intends to build houses in Zone II minimizing cutting and filling the land area. By this method, damage done to the environment will be made less, as well as, each house plan will differ from one another, giving a variety of choices for the buyers.
Use of Zinc Alum Sheets will create a healthy life style for home owners. Also, less use of normal asbestos sheets, will also affect the manufacturing, resulting reduce of carbon emission to the Environment.
For Zone II Nivasie will use their own product – Durra Building Material by ICC Housing (Pvt) Ltd. Durra is 100% Sri Lankan product combined with Australian Technology. Durra board is a unique solid building panel manufactured from densely compressed rice straw using extreme pressure and heat in the manufacturing process.
Power for the Street Lights and the Hot Water System will be generated through Solar Power. For Zone II we have designed an open plan house, which reduces the use of power; as a result our contribution will be towards the National Grid of Sri Lanka in a small way, since energy consumed through the National Grid will be less for these types of houses, said Senevirathne.
Each house will be given a Composed Bin for utilization, by which it will help to enrich nutrition value as well as the fertility of the Soil.
Nivasie has been the leader in the real estate field for the past seven years, and some of the well known projects are Nivasiepura and The Nest at Ekala, Tranquil Crescent at Pitakotte, Hill Crest Estate at Piliyandala and also the marketer’s for Iceland Residencies at Colpetty as well. Nivasie is backed by the strengths of International Construction Consortium Ltd., one of the mega construction companies in Sri Lanka.

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Star Channels FOC for all Dialog package holders

Dialog TV, Sri Lanka’s leading Direct to Home (DTH) service provider has enlarged its bouquet of channels to its thousands of Sri Lankan viewers with the inclusion of the immensely popular range of Star Channels.
“Star Channels have been long awaited by our diverse and rapidly expanding customer base all over Sri Lanka. The inclusion of Star Channels further consolidates our commitment and determination to add top-end news, sport and entertainment to our already large portfolio of channels” said Nushad Perera, General Manager Sales and Marketing Dialog Telekom.
‘Star Movies’, ‘Star PLUS’, ‘Star Sports’ and ‘Star World’ and the Tamil Channel ‘Vijay TV’ will be available free of charge to all of DTV’s Rs. 1400/- package customers. As a special bonus, the Tamil Channel ‘Vijay TV’ has been added on to the Rs. 900/- package as well for no additional rental. For more information customers can call the DTV hotline 077 7 679 679.
“Dialog Satellite TV has revolutionised Direct to Home Television in Sri Lanka leading to a very positive and favourable demand right along. We’ve been reaching out to Sri Lankan audiences through quality television programming with world class entertainment and the widest spectrum of channels with a special focus on news, entertainment and knowledge based programming”, Perera added.
Dialog Television (Private) Limited, a subsidiary of Dialog Telekom Plc, operates Dialog Satellite TV, supporting a broad array of over 40 international channels including BBC, HBO, Cinemax, AXN, ESPN, Ten Sports, Discovery Channel, MTV (Music Television) and Cartoon Network, in addition to a wide portfolio of Sri Lankan television channels. For more details log on to www.dialog.lk

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The Finance Company wins another accolade

The oldest Finance Company in Sri Lanka, The Finance Co. Plc continues to be in the forefront by winning another accolade recently. The company was honored with an A+ Brand Certification rating, which no other Finance Company has achieved.
Brand Finance, the company that certified TFC with this A+ rating, is the world’s leading independent intangible asset valuation and brand strategy firm, now operating in Sri Lanka.
Mrs. P.K. Karunanayake receives the A+ brand rating certificate from Professor Atul Tandan of MICA Communication School, India.

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Media Factory signs annual media deal with Derana

Derana the fastest growing TV channel in the country signed an annual media deal with Media Factory (Pvt) Ltd,the only exclusive media house in the country who has become a leading force in the advertising industry.
(Right) Kpila Vidanagamage - Director Media Factory (Pvt) Ltd (left) Thushara Perera - Director Sales & Marketing (Derana).

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SLIM brand excellence awards for the sixth successive year

SLIM Brand Excellence, the most prestigious awards ceremony in Sri Lanka which recognizes and rewards the contributions of brand custodians and their brands, will be held for the sixth successive year on the October 11, 2007, at The Hilton. The event is organized by the Sri Lanka Institute of Marketing (SLIM).
The theme for the event this year is based on the brand custodians being asked to prove themselves to themselves. This will enable them to make their brands shine by constantly trying to outdo their own previous best achievements. This constant pushing to make themselves try, and eternally do better than their previous best will not only make them strive to be better than they already are, but it will also help raise the benchmark for themselves and the whole industry as a result.
Local and international brands that are currently marketed in Sri Lanka are eligible to participate in the competition along with Sri Lankan brands that are marketed internationally. All these brands have the opportunity to compete under the product or service categories.
The main awards of the event are Product Brand of the Year and Service Brand of the Year, with the highest scoring from the above being awarded the prestigious Brand of the Year. This year also the new category Small Business Brand of the Year will be available to give exposure to companies with an annual turnover of less than Rs. 50 million.
Among the other awards are the Innovative Brand of the Year, which is awarded to the brand that has showcased exceptional innovations, and Turnaround Brand of the Year for the brand that has overcome an adverse performance, downturn or crisis situation, and come out favourably. Yet another award is for the Local Brand of the Year. This is to recognize a true Sri Lankan brand that has been developed and marketed locally and made its mark. The International Brand of the Year will be awarded to a home-grown brand that has made headway in the international arena. An opportunity for recognition awaits new brands that have been in the market for two years or less, that have performed exceptionally well, as the Best New Entrant Brand.
Based on constructive proposals given by the previous panel of judges and specialists in marketing, the evaluation criteria has been changed this year with the objective of raising the bar. Therefore the performance of the brands will be evaluated against Brand Intent, Brand Content, Brand Performance and Brand Process. The awards are judged on written submissions followed by a verbal presentation from the short listed entrants.
The judges of this competition will comprise of eminent professionals from local and multinational companies at CEO and Marketing Director level and their decisions will be based on proven results and documented evidence. This year Mr. Imal Fonseka, Director/General Manager, sales and marketing, Chevron Lubricants Lanka Limited., will be presiding as Chairman for the panel of judges. Additionally to ensure that each award category is won by the most deserving entrant, the local marketing guru Dr. Uditha Liyanage will play an advisory role to the organizing committee of SLIM Brand Excellence 2007.
Those who wish to step up to the challenge of proving themselves to themselves, handling brands, which they believe are worthy of competing in the above categories are invited to submit their entries to get the recognition they and their brand desire, on or before the 10th of September 2007 in order to participate in SLIM Brand Excellence 2007.

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