An initiative by the SLASSCOM Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum, the Startup Sri Lanka Survey www.slasscom.lk/startupsrilanka, has the main objective of gaining insights into understanding the current state and most pressing needs of the Sri Lankan Startup community.
The survey is targeted at four separate groups and captures unique perspectives from each: Current startups, those actively looking to start a startup, investors of startups and support groups of the startup ecosystem.
The results of the survey will help obtain quantified data and ground level realities to help collaborate with the many groups currently involved in the Sri Lankan startup eco-system to formulate a national and inclusive strategic action plan to further nurture and grow.
Ruwindhu Peiris, Vice Chairman and Head of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum, opined: “There has been a great amount of work done by many different groups over the last few years to help develop the startup ecosystem of Sri Lanka which is starting to yield results and gain critical mass.  We are now at a point that a synchronised, national program will help accelerate the current success and enable a sustained eco system that will fuel our knowledge economy into new heights.  We invite all individuals belonging to the groups targeted by this survey to please take 15 minutes to participate and sign up to be a part of shaping the future economy of Sri Lanka”.
He added: “Sri Lanka’s competitive advantage in knowledge services and technology/software engineering is built around agility, high value per cost, a niche talent base, ethics, cultural adaptability and superior quality of life as a destination for doing business. Our focus is to drive on two fronts for the next wave of growth. On the knowledge services front, we continue to build on finance and accounting as our primary global niche while going up the value chain of all other industry focused outsourcing. On the technology/software engineering front, our competitive position in product engineering is now becoming a formidable advantage.
“Given the many years of experience in building world class products for global companies through outsourced product engineering, our technology leaders are now well equipped to create their own intellectual property and gain the full value of the end products engineered. The goal of the entrepreneurship and innovation forum of SLASSCOM is to help accelerate and broad base this process that will ultimately lead to a forecasted 200,000 high paying direct jobs within the industry and another knock-on one million indirect jobs in transportation, real estate, retail, food, etc. to support this group.”
Sri Lankan IT/BPM industry strategy growth map by 2022
Earnings from exports of IT-BPM sectors have shown a steady upward trend over the last decade. The ICT sector is the island’s fifth highest foreign exchange earner. Sri Lanka is among the top 20 in the A.T. Kearney’s Global Services Location Index (GSLI) 2013.
Colombo, Sri Lanka’s capital city, was recognised as a global centre of excellence for Finance and Accounting, with Global Services Magazine ranking the city amongst the top 10 emerging outsourcing cities in the world. Sri Lanka won the National Outsourcing Association (NOA) Offshoring Destination of the Year Award 2014, for the second time, validating that the country is a leading destination for outsourcing of information technology and Business Process Management.
Sri Lanka was recently recognised as a top performer in the Global Innovation Index (GII) 2015 by being ranked in the top three across the Central and South Asia region. Sri Lanka’s GII ranking has significantly improved by being globally ranked 85th for the year 2015 and was previously ranked 108th for the year 2014.
Follow Startup Sri Lanka on Twitter @StartupSriLanka to be updated on the action plan and next steps.