The Sri Lanka Institute of Marketing (SLIM) held its 50th Annual General Meeting on 26th June 2020 at Marino Beach Hotel, adhering to the health and safety guidelines given by the government. Roshan Fernando was officially elected as the new President and will spearhead the institute as its 42nd President in the 50th year. A new Council of Management as well as an Executive Committee were also elected at the meeting.
Roshan Fernando currently holds the position of General Manager – Marketing at the renowned media station Derana. During his illustrious career in the media industry, Roshan Fernando has held several key positions at some of the most sought-after media stations in the country and contributed significantly to propel their growth momentum during his tenure. He is a member of SLIM as well as the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM)-UK, and holds a Diploma in Business Management, an Advanced Diploma in Business Management and an MBA from the Institute of Chartered Financial Analysis University of India. He also holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Marketing from SLIM. Roshan holds the titles of Certified Professional Marketer (Asia) and Practising Marketer conferred by the Asia Marketing Federation and SLIM respectively. Apart from chairing various project committees at SLIM, he has also held many honorary positions including Treasurer, Secretary and Vice President of the Council of Management of SLIM.
Roshan has served as a member of the Export Development Board Technical Evaluation Committee for India Market Entry Study for Sri Lankan Businesses and he has worked with many Small and Medium Enterprises, Women Entrepreneurship Development programmes and projects organized by the Industrial Development Board. He holds the positions of the Head of the Steering Committee of the Derana SME Club established in collaboration with the Industrial Development Board, and is a Board Director of the SAARC Business Association of Home-Based Workers (SABAH-Sri Lanka). He is also a member of the professional Education Team in the Presidential Task Force on Sri Lanka’s Education Affairs. He was also appointed as a member to evaluate COVID 19 related inventions of the Sri Lanka Inventors Commission (SLIC). In addition, he has conducted many programmes on Business Planning for Micro Entrepreneurs at Small Enterprise Development Division, Ministry of National Policies and Economic Affairs, Sri Lanka.
Thilanka Abeywardena, CMO Lead – South East Asia New Markets, Microsoft Sri Lanka (Pvt) Ltd will be the Vice President – Projects, while, Nuwan Gamage, Head of Corporate Affairs and Communications, Arinma Holdings (Pvt) Ltd., will be holding the position Vice President- Education. Chinthaka Perera, Director Sales, Hemas Pharmaceuticals (Pvt) Ltd & Hemas Surgical and Diagnostics (Pvt) Ltd. and Gayan Perera, Senior Brand Manager, Singer Sri Lanka PLC were appointed as the Secretary and the Assistant Secretary respectively. Dr. Jayantha Dewasiri, Head of Field Force at HMD Global Inc is the Treasurer for the year 2020/2021.
The new Executive Committee consists of ten experienced marketing professionals: Manthika Ranasinghe – Head of Business Development (Global Shopping) at Kapruka.com, Sathika Wickramasinghe – Category Manager Insights & Velocity at Fonterra Brands Lanka, Dr. Dilhan S. Jayatilleke – Head of Business Development & Marketing, Arogya Life Systems Lanka Private Limited and General Manager – Business Development, Marketing & Corporate Strategy, Softlidz Solutions Private Limited, Charaka Perera – Executive Director at Fuchsia Retail S.A. (Private) Limited, Nuwan Thilakawardhana – Manager Marketing at Union Bank, Asanka Perera – Chief Executive Officer at Arugambay Beachwear (Pvt) Ltd., Niyas Mohamed Shiraz – Assistant General Manager Sales & Marketing at Fentons Limited, Asela C. Gunasekara – Manager Brand Development at Metecno Lanka (Pvt) Ltd, Channa Jayasinghe – Senior Manager – Brand Development at Kelani Cables Plc and Dr. Thesara Jayawardane – Senior Lecturer and Director Business Research Unit at Faculty of Business, University of Moratuwa
The newly elected President Roshan Fernando expressed his gratitude to the members and Past Presidents for the confidence placed in him to lead the institute. He pledged to continue the good work initiated during the past years and to uplift the marketing fraternity of the country with new initiatives, strategic moves and activities. Commenting on his appointment, he stated, “With the new Council of Management and the Executive Committee, SLIM will continue its efforts in enhancing the marketing fraternity in the country by providing quality education to the future marketers of Sri Lanka and writing a golden chapter in the history of the institute during the new year themed ‘Celebrate the Past, Create the Future’. The Establishment of SLIM Business School operations and paving the way for a Research Institute will be key initiatives for SLIM. We aim to reach greater heights in terms of broadening the horizons of the local marketing fraternity and contributing to the economic growth of the country through the Restart Sri Lanka national initiative. I firmly believe that the diverse and dynamic Council of Management and the Executive Committee together with a fully dedicated staff will further raise the bar of SLIM in the 50th year.”
He further noted that the national campaign ‘Restart Sri Lanka’ initiated by SLIM under the direction of the Prime Minister’s Office, was geared to re-engineer and re-invent the businesses and SMEs to revive the country from the COVID-19 experience. “Our objectives are aligned with 5 pillars, which are Corporate and Public sector development, driving youth sector towards entrepreneurship through School Entrepreneurship Societies and Project RUN, creating a knowledge economy, SME and entrepreneurship development and building a marketing-oriented culture through the ‘Made in Sri Lanka’ concept and nation brand building. The new activities, strategic initiatives and events are planned for the year, particularly to support and restart the nation,” he added.