Connecting local SMEs to new e-commerce markets and buyers, Sri Lanka’s most digitally innovative bank, HNB PLC, partnered with SLT-MOBITEL to offer SMEs free access to the new online trading platform Cochchi.lk.
The partnership between the two industry giants will provide HNB SMEs additional benefits when onboarding to the new e-commerce platform. HNB Deputy general Manager- Retail & SME Banking, Sanjay Wijemanne, HNB Assistant General Manager- SME, Kailaivasan Indravasan, HNB Head of SME Products & Partnerships, Niluka Amarasinghe, and SLT Chief Information and Digital Officer, Tilak Gamlath, SLT General Manager- Digital Transformation Projects, Ishari Siriwardane, SLT Deputy General Manager Digital Projects, Dinesh Perera and SLT Senior Manager (Marketing)-SME Product Development, Lalwin De Zoysa were present at a special ceremony held to commemorate the partnership.
HNB Assistant General Manager- SME, Kailaivasan Indravasan said: “Given the current economic crisis, there is no doubt that we as Sri Lankans have to look at new avenues and opportunities to revive our economy. Our focus on improving our exports and identifying new markets for our SMEs, who have always been the backbone of our economy, will generate new sources of cash flow that we desperately need. As a bank that has always worked with SMEs, we believe that facilitating their transition online is essential. As such, we are delighted to partner with SLT-MOBITEL to provide our SME customers with this opportunity.”
The partnership will offer HNB customers various benefits such as free advertising space, exclusion from initiation and subscription fees, and the ability to purchase extra value-added services. Moreover, the platform will provide customers with a wide variety of products spanning over 500 categories, including a separate “Made in Sri Lanka” category for locally manufactured products.
The proposed E-commerce platform will be hosted in Data Centre of SLT-MOBITEL in a cloud environment. Furthermore, the platform will enable SME and Enterprise customers to create their online stores and e-shops while offering the users (end customers and storeowners), a flexible, feature-rich e- commerce platform that addresses a wide range of e-business needs.
SLT Chief Information and Digital Officer, Tilak Gamlath said: “SMEs have always been the lifeblood of the Sri Lankan economy, and we are working towards enhancing their e-commerce capabilities to enter global markets. We are honoured to partner with HNB who has a long history of working with and creating successful Sri Lankan SMEs.”
Most recently, HNB sealed its reputation as Sri Lanka’s undisputed leader in retail banking, having been crowned as the Best Retail Bank in Sri Lanka for the 12th occasion at the prestigious International Excellence in Retail Financial Services Awards 2022 hosted by the Asian Banker Magazine.
The bank’s dedicated fitness related product, HNB FIT, was crowned the ‘Best IoT initiative’ at the Asian Digital Finance Forum and Awards. Hosted by the Asian FinTech Academy (AFTA), the forum recognised and awarded organisations and impactful individuals who drive innovation in the digital sphere.
The digitally-savvy bank further consolidated its position at the LankaPay Technnovation Awards 2022, where it bagged four top awards. HNB was awarded the prestigious Bank of the Year for Financial Inclusivity and Bank of the Year for Excellence in Customer Convenience titles, in addition to being presented with the Silver award for ‘Financial Institution of the Year for Best Digital Payment Strategy’ and Bronze for ‘Overall Award – Excellence in Interbank Digital Payments’ (Banking Institutions) this year.