Sysco LABS was awarded the Merit Certificate in the ICT Sector of the Sectoral Awards category at the 23rd annual Presidential Export Awards. The ceremony held at the Bandaranaike Memorial International Conference Hall (BMICH) in Colombo on 19 September 2019, was presided over by HE President Maithripala Sirisena. The award selection, made by a panel of judges appointed by the Export Development Board (EDB), recognized outstanding exporters for their work in the 2018/19 financial year.
Initiated in the year 1981 by the EDB, The Presidential Export Awards (PEA) is considered the highest form of recognition for exporters in Sri Lanka and recognizes those who have made significant contributions towards the country’s exports.
Sysco LABS was considered for the award based on the significant impact it has made in the year of review towards the economy in promoting ICT sector led exports. Since becoming Sysco LABS via the acquisition of CAKE by the Fortune 60 company Sysco, it has expanded its engineering from the restaurant technology suite to ecommerce, logistics, analytics, supply chain management, cloud pricing and much more across the massive and diverse foodservice industry; influencing the technology that makes Sysco’s 60 billion USD business possible.
Speaking on being recognized as a top performer in the ICT Sector in Sri Lanka, Shanil Fernando, Co-Founder & Managing Director – Sri Lanka at Sysco LABS said, “We are honored to be recognized for our work by such a prestigious body on a national level. Our company is a young company, but the fact that in our little over 10 years of operation we have been able to achieve this level of growth is a testament to the level of engineering and innovation that is possible in Sri Lanka. From a start up a few years back to be recognized amongst the giants in the corporate world in Sri Lanka is an absolute privilege. We believed in it and have invested in developing it, and we are so proud of how rewarding the journey has been.”
Minister of Development Strategies and International Trade, Malik Samarawickrama speaking at the ceremony thanked all exporters for their contribution to national revenue and for being resilient through this past challenging year. He elaborated on a number of policies, projects and investment opportunities pursued by the government which reiterates its commitment to the empowerment of exports, and he went on to urge the private sector to work on creating an ecosystem where developing new products and services, and creating new companies will be easier, encouraging them to avoid operating in silos.
Commenting on the future Shanil said, “We have always believed that Sri Lanka could be a hub for innovative tech product development like Israel or Ireland, that is why we shifted our focus to it with the development of our restaurant operating platform CAKE and encouraged other local companies to do so as well. It is that leading edge innovation that attracted a world leader like Sysco to us. We are proud to now be contributing to the ongoing transformation of a major global industry from Sri Lanka and I would like to encourage all other local tech companies and entrepreneurs to see this as a model for how they can do the same.”
The PEA is one part of many initiatives taken by the EDB and the larger government as a part of their National Export Strategy, aiming to empower businesses and entrepreneurs so that we as a nation can collectively work towards the 28 billion USD export revenue goal by 2022.
About Sysco LABS
Sysco LABS is the innovation arm of Sysco Corporation (NYSE:SYY), the world’s largest foodservice company. Sysco is the global leader in marketing, selling and distributing food products as well as equipment and supplies to the hospitality industry. Sysco serves over 500,000 customer locations through its team of over 65,000 associates and operates 300 distribution facilities across the globe.
Sysco is re-imagining the global foodservice industry: our Sysco LABS engineering teams based out of Colombo, Sri Lanka, San Mateo, CA and Austin and Houston TX, will help to drive innovation across the entire supply chain – sourcing of food products, merchandising, storage and warehouse operations, order placement and pricing algorithms, delivery of food and supplies to Sysco’s global network – culminating in the in-restaurant dining experience for the end-customer. Operating with the agility and efficiency of a tech–startup and backed by the domain expertise of the industry leader, Sysco and the Sysco LABS team is poised to reimagine one of the biggest industries in the world.