Forms Sri Lanka Association of Software and Service Companies (SLASSCOM) to take IT/BPO to become the #1 Industry in Sri Lanka
On 31st of October, leaders of the Software and BPO industry came together to form the unified national IT/BPO industry association - Sri Lanka Association of Software and Service Companies (SLASSCOM) - to lead the advancement of the IT/BPO industry in Sri Lanka.
SLASSCOM represents the fruition of a long felt need within the software and IT enabled services industry, for a unified, strong, and representative body that can speak with one voice, and provide inspired leadership to an industry that has tremendous potential to become the highest export earner for Sri Lanka. It is the culmination of months of deliberation and a sustained effort made by a large number of committed individuals from the industry and the Information and  Communication Technology Agency (ICTA) of Sri Lanka.
The domestic and export IT/BPO industry in Sri Lanka is witnessing a tremendous growth due to the global IT/BPO market expansion and growing domestic usage of ICT. The domestic IT adoption is also raising significantly driven by the eSri Lanka program and the initiatives taken by ICTA to re-engineer government processes, growth of telecom penetration, increase use of IT by corporations and strong focus on ICT education in schools by the Government. Although global recession has slowed down the growth in all sectors, use of technology and offshoring as means to reduce cost will continue to drive the growth of IT/BPO sector post the economic recovery.
This creates a significant business opperunities for companies providing IT/BPO services in Sri Lanka. IT/BPO industry is well poised to take Sri Lanka to the knowledge economy to create wealth and employment for masses in Sri Lanka.  It is the responsibility of the industry leaders, government and academia to make this a reality for the country.
To make this vision a reality, industry leaders have come together to create SLASSCOM to pull together all resources and leadership capability to create a strong unified voice and a formidable execution engine to take affirmative and accelerated action to make the vision of IT/BPO industry becoming the number one industry in Sri Lanka a reality.
The primary objective of SLASSCOM is to act as a catalyst for the growth of the IT-BPO industry in Sri Lanka by facilitation of trade and business, influencing national policies, encouragement and advancement of research & innovation, propagation of education and employment and thereby enabling the growth of the Sri Lankan economy.
Chairman of SLASSCOM and a recognized industry leader Ranjit Fernando said “While the setting up of SLASSCOM is a great step forward, its own objectives and that of the industry as a whole, can only be achieved, by focusing collectively and with a sense of urgency, on the many opportunities and challenges facing our industry.”
SLASSCOM board consists of active industry leaders from leading IT and BPO companies in Sri Lanka. Industry leaders were unanimous in their views of the potential of the IT/BPO industry and the need for their collective effort to make this potential a reality for Sri Lanka.
“Sri Lanka has the potential to significantly expand its ITES capability, the formation of SLASSCOM represents a great opportunity to bring the focus and direction required to realize this potential" said Chris Rogers, Managing Director of HSBC Global Services Center which is the largest BPO operation in Sri Lanka.
“SLASSCOM lays the foundation for the next phase of economic growth in Sri Lanka through the advancement of the IT/BPO industry” stated Mano Sekaram, CEO of Eurocenter.
Omar Fatha Rally, Chief Executive Officer, Hello Corp, Keith Modder, Managing Director & EVP  Global Services, Virtusa Corporation, Dushan Soza, Managing Director, WNS, Naresh Ediriwira, Managing Director/CEO, Aranxa Software, and Sujiva Dewaraja, Executive Vice President, Head of IT Sector, John Keels Holdings, highlighted the need for urgent and bold actions from all stakeholders to drive the industry forward.
Jayantha De Silva, Vice President South Asia and the Managing Director IFS Sri Lanka said “We are committed to bringing in significant growth for the Sri Lanka economy and high end technology jobs to our youth, thorough the growth of the IT/BPO industry”.
“We have seen significant growth in the IT industry during the last five years. Despite the current temporary slowdown of global economies, IT and BPO sector will become one of the key sectors for Sri Lanka in the years ahead” Dinesh Saparamadu, Chief Executive Officer, hSehid and Vice President of SLASSCOM.
Managing Director, Amba Research and Vice President of SLASSCOM Ravi Abesuriya said “SLASSCOM aspire to become a driving force to make Sri Lanka a credible outsourcing destination and a centre of excellence for Financial and Accounting Outsourcing”.
SLASSCOM General Secretary and the General Manager of Virtusa Corporation, Madu Ratnayake said “The very rationale for setting up SLASSCOM, lies in the fact that collective effort benefits everyone. Every enterprise, big or small, adds strength to the cause, and we cordially invite all enterprises in the industry to become members of SLASSCOM. We are very encouraged by the strong response we have had up to now, and hope that every organization engaged in the IT/BPO industry will join SLASSCOM and contribute to make the industry vision a reality.“
The SLASSCOM General Council represents a wide cross section of companies from large to small in multiple sectors of the IT and BPO industry to ensure progressive thinking and wide representation of views direct the agenda of the association.