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Business


SimPhony, ‘one number for life’ ties up with Tigo

SimPhony, the only public phone operator in Sri Lanka, which provides a life time unique identity to its customers, entered into an agreement with, Sri Lanka’s pioneer mobile telecommunication service provider, Tigo recently.

“We are very proud and honoured to join hands with Tigo, which introduced mobile telephone communication to Sri Lanka. The partnership with them will further increase our coverage, within the island and enable us to introduce more value added features. It will also provide our customers, with the opportunity of purchasing SimPhony Public Phone Cards with Tigo numbers, in addition to the SimPhony cards, presently available in the market”, the CEO of CNS Lanka (Pvt.) Ltd; U G R Jagath Kumara stated. CNS Lanka (Pvt.) Ltd; overlooks the SimPhony operations in Sri Lanka.

“We are happy to have signed this agreement with SimPhony, as we believe that, it will enable us to introduce Tigo services to a much larger segment of the Sri Lankan population”, the CEO of Tigo, Dumindra Ratnayaka said.

An individual who purchases a SimPhony Phone Card, can insert it in to any SimPhony Public Phone, to make and receive calls, send and receive text messages (SMS) and retrieve voice mail messages. The concept is similar to purchasing a SIM card, from a mobile phone operator and inserting it, into a mobile phone. When the SimPhony card is removed from the SimPhony Public Phone, it is similar to any mobile phone, being switched off. The text (SMS) and voice mail messages received during this period could be retrieved later.

The unique feature of SimPhony is that, it enables anybody to have their unique mobile number, and enjoy the mobile phone experience, through the use of a public phone, without having to purchase a conventional mobile phone unit.

Through the wider coverage gained, due to the partnership with Tigo, SimPhony expects to penetrate deeper into many rural areas of the country, and make telephone communication, a reality in such areas. The special antenna used by SimPhony Public Phones, which can receive signals up to a radius of 25 km, from a transmission tower too, plays a vital role in this scenario.

In the future, the SimPhony intends to introduce several new facilities, such as, Internet accessibility and the ability to make financial transactions, utilising the SimPhony card.

CNS Lanka which overlooks SimPhony operations in Sri Lanka, is backed by Cellnets Solutions. Cellnets Solutions is part of the Fore Group, which is a diversified conglomerate in Israel. SimPhony’s operations in Sri Lanka, are carried out under the approval of the Board of Investment (BOI) as well.

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Panora ranked No.1 local PC Brand by IDC

IDC, the premier global provider of market intelligence advisory services and events for the information technology, telecommunication and consumer technology market, has rated ‘Panora,’ Sri Lanka’s first locally manufactured PC Brand under PCH Holdings Ltd, as the No. 1 brand, enjoying the highest market share compared with the other local brands according to the most recent IDC Asia Pacific report covering 3rd and 4th quarters of 2007.

The report states that Panora has maintained 10% quarterly growth with average 10,000 units of sales during the last 2 quarters, claiming more than 30% of the PC market share in Sri Lanka.

The birth of Panora® began 5 years ago, with a revolutionary thought by a visionary Sri Lankan Entrepreneur, Mr. S. H. M. Rishan. The concept of ‘Be Sri Lankan, Buy Sri Lankan’ is a notion that the Chairman of Panora Corporation always believes in. This indigenous product with a Sinhalese name has played a dynamic role in the global Information and Communication arena, taking the market by storm by bringing down the prices of imported branded PCs’.

“We are on the verge of fulfilling our mission. Panora, that stands for two meanings - the rising sun or a store of knowledge, has been able to consolidate itself considerably well in the market today. Panora Corporation (Pvt.) Ltd. which was incorporated to manufacture and market the product locally and in selected overseas markets, has made great strides in placing the product where it is today,” commented Rishan, the founder, Chairman of Panora Corporation (Pvt.) Ltd.

He went on to state that Panora has developed into a brand that offers the total IT solution for the Sri Lankan market. “It is the only PC brand in Sri Lanka with certifications from ISO, Energy Star and Microsoft. Tests are conducted on various aspects of the product to develop further on our product offering. This brand has gone through a steep curve that has molded it to maturity; the promise of quality is one that we profess and enact. Further, Panora along with Intel Corporations’ has posted a stronger partnership in offering the latest technology through their product offerings.

Highly skilled engineers manufacture the locally celebrated Panora computers, and audits are in place to assure satisfaction to all its customers. The company employs a business model, which includes selling through its channel partners with the purpose of generating a ‘push’ for the product in the rapidly growing market.

General Manager of Panora Corporation Rizwan Anise quoted, “Panora is our heart of operations. From humble beginnings, Panora has grown to be the market leader compared to all other local PC brands. Panora has recorded an impressive growth during the last couple of years, overtaking even MNC brands in terms of sales volumes. This is a result of corporate coupled with government sectors building confidence in Panora. The recent models, which were launched for the consumer market, have also been a success throughout the country. Rich with the latest technology and much more as its strength, it will produce more solutions to the Sri Lankan IT industry in the near future.”

He further stated, “We believe all our customers are partners, they help us grow in our business, their loyalty makes us great, their satisfaction gives us excellence and their acknowledgment makes us conceited, stronger and more determined. The commitment within our team to Satisfy and Delight our customers by enhancing the level of customer satisfaction and to provide on time delivery, error free products and services within the agreed response time has been a key motive for Panora to escalate to its peak.” Rizwan added that, “We are positioned to take better advantage of new markets and opportunities, dominating even MNC brands for the past 3 years as we are well armed with the technology, expertise and distribution. We have created a superior product at an affordable price in the minds of consumers.”

The report goes onto analyse that the PC market looks poised for a relatively strong 2008, with growth continuing to stem from portable adoption, consumer demand, retail and growth in emerging markets.

Panora computers, the flagship brand of PCH Holdings, have been in the market for a considerable period, during which, it has transformed into a reliable, versatile and cost effective brand for the Sri Lankan community. Panora is a brand that has a growing trend; it is a result of the focus on the brand and widening its scope of solutions to its users.

IDC is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 1000 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 90 countries worldwide. For more than 44 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world’s leading technology media, research, and Events Company.

IDC, the premier global provider of market intelligence advisory services and events for the information technology, telecommunication and consumer technology market, has rated ‘Panora,’ Sri Lanka’s first locally manufactured PC Brand under PCH Holdings Ltd, as the No. 1 brand, enjoying the highest market share compared with the other local brands according to the most recent IDC Asia Pacific report covering 3rd and 4th quarters of 2007.

The report states that Panora has maintained 10% quarterly growth with average 10,000 units of sales during the last 2 quarters, claiming more than 30% of the PC market share in Sri Lanka.

The birth of Panora® began 5 years ago, with a revolutionary thought by a visionary Sri Lankan Entrepreneur, Mr. S. H. M. Rishan. The concept of ‘Be Sri Lankan, Buy Sri Lankan’ is a notion that the Chairman of Panora Corporation always believes in. This indigenous product with a Sinhalese name has played a dynamic role in the global Information and Communication arena, taking the market by storm by bringing down the prices of imported branded PCs’.

“We are on the verge of fulfilling our mission. Panora, that stands for two meanings - the rising sun or a store of knowledge, has been able to consolidate itself considerably well in the market today. Panora Corporation (Pvt.) Ltd. which was incorporated to manufacture and market the product locally and in selected overseas markets, has made great strides in placing the product where it is today,” commented Rishan, the founder, Chairman of Panora Corporation (Pvt.) Ltd.

He went on to state that Panora has developed into a brand that offers the total IT solution for the Sri Lankan market. “It is the only PC brand in Sri Lanka with certifications from ISO, Energy Star and Microsoft. Tests are conducted on various aspects of the product to develop further on our product offering. This brand has gone through a steep curve that has molded it to maturity; the promise of quality is one that we profess and enact. Further, Panora along with Intel Corporations’ has posted a stronger partnership in offering the latest technology through their product offerings.

Highly skilled engineers manufacture the locally celebrated Panora computers, and audits are in place to assure satisfaction to all its customers. The company employs a business model, which includes selling through its channel partners with the purpose of generating a ‘push’ for the product in the rapidly growing market.

General Manager of Panora Corporation Rizwan Anise quoted, “Panora is our heart of operations. From humble beginnings, Panora has grown to be the market leader compared to all other local PC brands. Panora has recorded an impressive growth during the last couple of years, overtaking even MNC brands in terms of sales volumes. This is a result of corporate coupled with government sectors building confidence in Panora. The recent models, which were launched for the consumer market, have also been a success throughout the country. Rich with the latest technology and much more as its strength, it will produce more solutions to the Sri Lankan IT industry in the near future.”

He further stated, “We believe all our customers are partners, they help us grow in our business, their loyalty makes us great, their satisfaction gives us excellence and their acknowledgment makes us conceited, stronger and more determined. The commitment within our team to Satisfy and Delight our customers by enhancing the level of customer satisfaction and to provide on time delivery, error free products and services within the agreed response time has been a key motive for Panora to escalate to its peak.” Rizwan added that, “We are positioned to take better advantage of new markets and opportunities, dominating even MNC brands for the past 3 years as we are well armed with the technology, expertise and distribution. We have created a superior product at an affordable price in the minds of consumers.”

The report goes onto analyse that the PC market looks poised for a relatively strong 2008, with growth continuing to stem from portable adoption, consumer demand, retail and growth in emerging markets.

Panora computers, the flagship brand of PCH Holdings, have been in the market for a considerable period, during which, it has transformed into a reliable, versatile and cost effective brand for the Sri Lankan community. Panora is a brand that has a growing trend; it is a result of the focus on the brand and widening its scope of solutions to its users.

IDC is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 1000 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 90 countries worldwide. For more than 44 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world’s leading technology media, research, and Events Company.

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Dialog Telekom powers mobile environment education programme

Dialog Telekom PLC, Sri Lanka’s leading telecommunications provider recently joined hands with the Central Environmental Authority (CEA), the Bio-diversity and Elephant Conservation Trust (BECT) and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature & Natural Resources (IUCN) to launch a unique environmental education programme for children. The Mobile Environment Education Programme (MEEP) aims to raise awareness on natural resources and bio-diversity among future generations, while making them ambassadors for the protection of biodiversity in the long-term.

Dialog Telekom has undertaken to be the initiator of the MEEP programme by setting up the entire mobile unit which will carry a series of workshops to 150 schools by the end of this year. While providing the principal funding for the entire project, Dialog Telekom will also develop suitable technologies to enhance environmental education among rural schools in Sri Lanka. The MEEP project will be initiated through a series of mobile workshops which will be delivered in 150 schools throughout this year. These workshops will be carried out through the MEEP van which will be fully equipped with necessary technologies to deliver the workshops in the most interactive manner possible to schools across the island.

The content and material which will be used at the workshops was developed by BECT and was reviewed and approved by the CEA and IUCN. BECT would play a front line role in entire project by delivering the information to over 37,000 school children ranging from eight to eighteen years of age, while IUCN would be continuously reviewing the programme and contributing towards the improvement of the workshop.

The best ‘green’ effort made by the schools subsequent to the programme will be judged and the best school will be rewarded under the programme. It will also work towards instilling a long term sense of understanding of the benefits of environmental consciousness among school children. Commenting on this further Chief Group Corporate Officer, Mothilal De Silva said, “Dialog Telekom has always recognised the importance of maintaining bio-diversity within the environment. Through this project we will be able to use our technology towards raising a sense of environmental consciousness amongst the future generations of Sri Lankans, who will then be able to reap the benefits of well balanced and diverse eco system.”

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Imagine technology towards a sustainable environment

By Santhush Fernando
The Sri Lankan finals of World’s Premier Student Technology Competition – ‘Imagine Cup’ - were held at Galadari Hotel last Tuesday.

’Imagine Cup’ is one way Microsoft is encouraging young people to apply their imagination, their passion and their creativity to technology innovations that can make a difference in the world. In its sixth year around the world and in its fourth year in Sri Lanka, the ‘Imagine Cup’ has grown to be a truly global competition focused on finding solutions to real world issues.

Country Manager for Microsoft, Sriyan de S Wijerathne said that this year, Microsoft is calling on young programmers, artists and technologists around the world to “imagine a world where technology enables a sustainable environment.”

“We’re challenging students to bring their ideas to life in a multifaceted competition that comprises nine categories, each catering to a different technological or artistic affinity. Students’ work will reflect valuable, real world solutions, while giving them the opportunity to compete for cash prizes.”

“When coupled with the power of technology the potential of young people is unlimited and the ideas they develop for the ‘Imagine Cup’ could significantly improve the lives of millions of people around the world. In this competition, everyone wins. Each of us has a unique skill to contribute. Together we can make a difference and have fun during the journey.”

‘Imagine Cup’ tests the teams’ problem identification, consistency, innovation, impact, effectiveness, user experience, extendibility, complexity management, functional completeness and presentation skills.

The six Finalist Teams which took part in the finals on April 22 were e – cultivators - University of Colombo School of Computing, EDUMS - Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology, CarbonX - University of Colombo School of Computing, GreenPeace - University of Moratuwa Faculty of IT Team, Cleaning Licence Management System - University of Moratuwa Computer Science and Engineering Team, Haritha Prayathna - University of Moratuwa - Faculty of IT and Engineering.
The 2008 World Finals will be held in Paris, France from July 3-8, 2008.

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Tigo welcomes new CCO on board

Tigo, Sri Lanka’s premier mobile phone operator has appointed Erik Van Vulpen as the Company’s new Chief Commercial Officer [CCO].

Vulpen who takes on this key position at Tigo, is a seasoned marketing professional who has a Bachelors Degree in Business Engineering and a Masters in Marketing.

Having spent the last 7 years in the region working in Singapore with Samsung and Asia Pacific Breweries, Vulpen climbed up the ranks of marketing through research and management consulting with a McKinsey alumnus in Amsterdam.

According to Tigo CEO, Dumindra Ratnayaka, “with Tigo growing rapidly amidst aggressive competition, Erik’s expertise will no doubt help us continue our growth and further strengthen our market position.”

Millicom International Cellular’s ‘3 A’s’ business strategy is focused on the central themes of Affordability, Accessibility and Availability, through investments in network and distribution with the objective of bringing to the market innovative first time facilities, friends and family services and reliable business solutions.

“I am very privileged to work for Tigo. It is one of the fastest growing global telecommunications companies with a strong business strategy that is aligned with the needs of our customers,” said Vulpen. “It’s a delight to work for a brand that is truly servicing consumer needs. At Tigo you can just tell consumers “there is no fine print, for instance, it is per second billing, 24 hours, to all of your friends.”

With the launch of Tigo one year ago, local mobile phone users were able to make use of the culmination of the major expansion of GSM network which started in 2006, which now covers all corners of the island.

Millicom’s Tigo brand, is now present in 14 countries across Asia, Africa and Latin America – making Tigo a truly global brand.
“At Tigo we are determined to be more than a part of your communication activities, Tigo’s vision is to become as much a part of the Sri Lankan lifestyle and offer easy access to the world that consumers want to be part of – the same as we have become in many different and diverse communities around the world” said Vulpen.

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              IT Centre for Colombo South children                

A new IT Centre for the children of Colombo South was declared open, on April 20th , at Rathanaarama Temple, Polhengoda. This project is funded by Bosath Children’s Education Foundation. The administration and management of this IT project, is by the Children’s Upliftment Programme. The project will provide an opportunity, for the children of the area, to gain knowledge in the field of Information Technology, free of charge.

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