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Adds new industry category to 2014 Sri Lanka Robotics Challenge of Moratuwa University

The Brandix Group has announced a potentially life-changing annual innovation award for a successful robotic solution to an industry-specific challenge, significantly raising the bar for Sri Lankan innovators working in the sphere of automation.

To be presented as a new category of the Sri Lanka Robotics Challenge (SLRC) conducted annually for the university fraternity by the E-Club of the Department of Electronic and Telecommunication Engineering of the University of Moratuwa, the Brandix Innovation Award will also be open to the wider inventor community, and will comprise of a cash prize, a trophy and financial and technical support to develop the invention, the company said.

Brandix is the principal sponsor of the 2014 Sri Lanka Robotics Challenge which will select Sri Lanka’s representation at the next International Robotics Challenge (IRC) conducted annually by the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Mumbai.

For the inaugural Brandix Innovation Award, Brandix has set contenders the challenge of building a robotic arm that can pick up single pieces of fabric from a stack and place them in a reverse-order stack within a specified area, within five minutes. The entire stack may not be picked up at once, reversed in the air and placed in the new location, and the pieces of fabric cannot be damaged or folded in the process.

The finals of the 2014 Sri Lanka Robotics Challenge are scheduled for 12th December 2014, with the qualification round for the Industry Challenge to be held on 11th December 2014.

The team that produces the best fabric handling robotic arm that meets the challenge will receive a cash prize of Rs 250,000 from Brandix, an opportunity within the Group to build or refine the robot, opportunities to connect with global robotics specialists, an employment opportunity to work on the prototype, and if the product is commercially viable, seed funding and assistance to register a company from Disrupt Unlimited, the Brandix-led start-up seed accelerator. 

The robotic innovation that completes the process will thereafter be provided an opportunity to be implemented as a solution at Brandix facilities in Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh, the company said. A Brandix Innovation Award winner who “successfully fails” in his or her endeavour has the option of continued employment within the Group.

“Innovations that disrupt existing processes are the key to the future of many industries,” said Brandix Director Udena Wickremesooriya. “At Brandix, we have taken it upon ourselves to be the stimulus for technological innovation in the apparel industry, where we believe, the potential for transformative technology and processes is infinite.”

Launched in early 2014, Disrupt Unlimited is a seed accelerator that seeks to inspire, mentor and fund start-ups with breakthrough solutions to disrupt products, practices, processes and business models in the Apparel, Textile and Accessories sectors. The company’s role is to encourage innovators from across industries to develop technology-driven solutions that address challenges at every stage of the supply chains, leading to revolutionary changes in the way apparels, textiles and accessories are made, packaged, distributed and consumed.

Disrupt Unlimited was initiated by Brandix with an intention to fast-track Sri Lanka’s evolution into a knowledge and innovation hub for the apparel, textile and fashion accessories sectors. In order to build a stronger ecosystem for innovation in Sri Lanka, Brandix has partnerships with the Universities of Colombo, Peradeniya, Moratuwa, Kelaniya, Sri Jayewardenepura and Wayamba and the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT). The Group also partners the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Global Start-up Labs (MIT-GSL) Sri Lanka programme, and sponsors the robotics competitions of several other universities and institutions as well.

For more details regarding the SLRC 2014, visit: www.mrt.ac.lk/competitions/slrc



.


The Brandix Group has reaffirmed its dominance of mercantile volleyball, sending five teams to the 2014 finals of the Men’s and Women’s Tournament conducted annually by the Mercantile Volleyball Association.

This is the second year in succession that five of the eight teams competing in the four matches of the finals are from companies in the Brandix Group.

The five Brandix teams playing for the Championship in their respective categories are Brandix Apparel Solutions Limited (BASL) – Intimate Apparel, Welisara which meets a team from the Group associate Textured Jersey, Avissawella in the Super League Men’s Final; BASL – Intimate Apparel, Minuwangoda in the Super League Women’s Final, BASL – Essentials, Ratmalana in the Men’s Championship and BASL – Intimate Apparel, Mirigama in the Women’s championship.
(Above) The BASL – Intimate Apparel, Minuwangoda team
and (Below) the BASL – Intimate Apparel, Welisara team
that will compete in the Women’s and Men’s
Super League finals respectively

The finals of the 2014 Mercantile Volleyball Tournament are to be worked out at the National Youth Services Council (NYSC) indoor complex in Maharagama in October.

(Above) The BASL – Intimate Apparel, Mirigama team
and (Below) the BASL – Essentials, Ratmalana team
that will compete in the Women’s and Men’s
Championship finals respectively
Three other Brandix teams, BASL – Intimate Apparel, Minuwangoda, BASL – Intimate Apparel, Welisara and BASL – Intimate Apparel, Polonnaruwa, took third place in the Men’s Super League, the Women’s Super League and the Men’s Championship respectively.

Fourteen of the 92 teams that competed in the preliminary rounds of the tournament were fielded by the Brandix Group.

Brandix, Sri Lanka’s single largest apparel exporter, conducts its own annual volleyball tournament for the ‘Rasadiya Kusalanaya’ (Mercury Trophy), which is considered the largest volleyball tournament organised by a private company in the country.


The application of technology innovatively to improve access to information, products or services was the common theme when seven teams of young Sri Lankans demonstrated their ideas for business start-ups at the conclusion of the Brandix-funded MIT Global Start-up Labs (MIT-GSL) Sri Lanka 2014 challenge.

From the delivery of therapy to dyslexic children, accessing organic vegetables and fruit, or eliminating false alarms generated by electronic surveillance systems, to helping university students find lodging facilities, commuters to locate the taxis closest to their locations, and retailers to know, engage and retain customers, the ideas were presented to potential investors at the programme’s ‘Demo Day.’

A collaboration between Brandix, the Sri Lanka Association of Software and Service Companies (SLASSCOM) and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the 2014 MIT-GSL Sri Lanka programme commenced on 9th January 2014 and ended on Wednesday 30th July. The programme is to be offered twice a year to second-year or older undergraduates as well as recent graduates of Sri Lankan universities.

The top seven teams that presented their start-up ideas after seven months of brainstorming, training and mentorship provided by the programme, were chosen from the 75 original participants selected from an initial pool of 380 applicants from several higher education institutions including the Universities of Moratuwa, Colombo and Sabaragamuwa, the Open University of Sri Lanka, the Informatics Institute of Technology (IIT), the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT), and Alliance Française de Kotte.

Speaking on behalf of Brandix at the ‘Demo Day,’ Group Director Udena Wickremesooriya said his company is involved with the MIT-GSL programme to drive disruptive innovation in the apparel industry. 

“I come from an industry labelled by many as very ‘basic,’ with adjectives such as ‘Juki’ and ‘Garment,’ he said. “This is partly true, if you consider something like a man’s shirt, which hasn’t changed much from the time of my grandfather and father. Compare that with anything else you use, from mobiles to cars to shoes which have all gone through a mega transformation. What this shows is the opportunity that exists in the industry to do something completely different and disruptive.”

In his speech, Madu Ratnayake, Chairman Emeritus of SLASSCOM said the progress made by the MIT-
‘Dolawa’ - the start-up team adjudged the winner of the MIT-GSL SL Challenge 2014
with Brandix Director Udena Wickremesooriya (extreme left) and Madu Ratnayake,
Chairman Emeritus of SLASSCOM (second left)
GSL Sri Lanka programme could be an indicator that the target of having 1,000 start-ups by 2022 could be overhauled. “If you look at the top 20 companies in the world today, 60 per cent would be technology companies, and half of them did not exist 20 years ago,” he said. He stressed that more than ideas, money and the team, the most important aspect of the MIT-GSL programme is the mentorship provided to the participants.

The ‘EagleEye’ team adjudged first runner-up
The panel of judges at the Demo Day comprised of members of the Lanka Angel Network (LAN) Messrs Dumindra Ratnayake, Mano Sekeram, Asantha Wijeratne, Hiran Wickramasinghe, Duminda Jayatilleka and Rohitha Mendis. The seven start-ups that pitched their ideas for investor support were ‘Organic Hug’ (Reap the harvest near at hand), TopNotch (Understand, engage and retain your customers), ShopIn (Helping fashion retailers know the unknown), ‘Dolawa’ (Taxi around the corner), ‘D-Care’ (Your child can learn easier and faster), ‘Boarding.lk’ (Find a boarding place that feels like home) and ‘EagleEye’ (Stay notified, stay safe).

The best three start-up ideas chosen by the panel of judges were ‘Dolawa’ followed by EagleEye and
The ‘Organic Hug’ team adjudged second runner-up
Organic Hug. Each of these three teams will be given an opportunity to launch its start-up with SLASSCOM and receive a grant from Brandix in aid of this process.

A Group that employs approximately 48,000 people at manufacturing plants in Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh, Brandix has partnerships with the Universities of Colombo, Peradeniya, Moratuwa, Kelaniya, Sri Jayewardenepura and Wayamba and the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT). A preferred supplier to many global apparel labels, Brandix is credited with many firsts on the global stage, and recently launched its own seed accelerator ‘Disrupt Unlimited’ to inspire, mentor and fund start-ups with breakthrough solutions that disrupt products, practices, processes and business models in the apparel, textile and fashion accessories sectors.


Two manufacturing facilities of Brandix Apparel Solutions Limited - Lingerie Cluster in Nittambuwa have been awarded Eco Factory Attributes by the global retail giant Marks & Spencer (M&S) in recognition of achievements in reducing their environmental footprint.

The two factories have reduced energy and water consumption by 30 per cent and 15 per cent respectively and are recycling or reusing 100 per cent of their solid waste, enabling them to score 91 points out of 100 at the M&S Eco Factory Audit.

The Eco Factory Attribute is awarded under Marks & Spencer’s ‘Plan A’ initiative which was launched in January 2007 to combat climate change, reduce waste, use sustainable raw materials, trade ethically, and help customers to lead healthier lifestyles with an aspiration to be the industry leader in sustainable consumption and production, by offering customers good value, high quality products and services, sold through an efficient multi-channel operation. It is intended to produce products with integrity by using the most sustainable raw materials available and to work with factories operating to the highest environmental and social standards, thus encouraging suppliers around the world to make their supply chains carbon neutral through Green manufacturing processes.

With the latest certifications, the Brandix Group has seven Eco Attribute recipient factories, at Koggala, Seeduwa, Giritalé and Nittambuwa in Sri Lanka and one each in India and Bangladesh.

“Reducing the impact of our operations on the environment is a key group initiative and a continuing process at Brandix, and progressively encompasses more manufacturing locations, as we reach and surpass enterprise-wide annual targets for reducing our carbon footprint,” said Rajiv Malalasekera, CEO of Brandix Apparel Solutions Limited - Lingerie Cluster. “Along the way, factories that produce apparel for Marks & Spencer qualify for Eco Factory Attributes, which are important independent certifications of their sustainability-linked achievements.”

At Plants I and II of Brandix Apparel Solutions Limited - Lingerie Cluster, the installation of energy efficient air conditioning, solar water heaters and skylights and modifications to the compressed air system brought about the reductions in energy consumption, while the installation of low flow water fixtures and dual flushing systems in toilets generated savings of water, he said. These plants no longer generate solid waste for disposal, and food waste has also been reduced to a minimum.

Overall, conservation initiatives across the Group have enabled Brandix to reduce electricity consumption per product by 12 per cent in 2013-14 over the previous year, and cut water consumption by 2.6 per cent during the same period.
One of the Brandix Apparel Solutions Limited - Lingerie factories
in Nittambuwa

In September 2012, Brandix set itself the target of reducing its environmental footprint by a further 20 per cent by 2020, and released its maiden Sustainability Report, the first by a private company in Sri Lanka. To support this initiative and track its progress, the Group has developed its own ‘Eco Index’ -- an assessment tool which can be used to measure the environmental performance of Brandix factories and offices across the Group and facilitates a fair and easy comparison between factories and clusters.

By March 2014, the Group had reduced its carbon footprint by 35 per cent from the base year (2008), principally through switching from furnace oil boilers to biomass boilers. A fifth of Brandix’s energy requirements now come from renewable sources.

Production of Lingerie at one of the Brandix factories
that recently received the M&S ‘Plan A’ Eco Factory Attribute
One of the largest suppliers of apparel to top retail brands in the US and Europe, Brandix employs over 48,000 associates across several integrated manufacturing facilities in Sri Lanka, and large operations in India and Bangladesh. The Group is a benchmark and international award winner for eco-friendly manufacture and commitment to environmental best practice and was earlier this year recognised as Sri Lanka’s ‘Organisation Committed to Green’ by the Green Building Council of Sri Lanka (GBCSL).


Disrupt Unlimited, the Apparel Start-up Seed Accelerator funded by Brandix, and the Sri Lanka Inventors Commission (SLIC) have entered into an agreement to establish a partnership to promote innovation in Sri Lanka and enhance opportunities in the fields of Textile, Apparel and Accessories.

A Memorandum of Understanding entered into recently by the two organisations envisages that SLIC through its regular programmes will identify inventors with potential to commercialise their inventions in these fields and introduce them for consideration by Disrupt Unlimited.

Disrupt Unlimited will review such inventors introduced by SLIC and select suitable candidates to go through its incubator or the Disrupt-a-thon programmes, which could lead to funding and additional mentoring to commercialise their ideas.

Speaking at the signing of the MoU, Brandix Director Udena Wickremesooriya stressed on the importance of building and fast-tracking an ecosystem which encourages and nurtures start-ups. “We are still in the infancy stages of this cycle,” he said. “Therefore, we need to really go for it in the next five years to catch up to ecosystems that have been 25 years in the making.”

He said the purpose of Disrupt Unlimited is to take big ideas to the global market. Mr Wickremesooriya advised inventors to “take the risks, make your ideas work, and deliver results.” Besides, “if you successfully fail,” he added, “Brandix will offer you an employment opportunity within its group of companies.”

The Brandix Group’s focus on promoting innovation began with its first sponsorship of ‘Sahasak Nimewum’ the annual competition and exhibition conducted by the Sri Lanka Inventors Commission for local inventors. Alongside the signing of the MoU with SLIC, Brandix presented cash awards to the owners of the top five inventions in the Apparel, Textile and Energy sectors at the 2013 Sahasak Nimewum competition. 

Addressing the two events, SLIC Commissioner Deepal Sooriyarachchi said he is extremely pleased to see the efforts being made by Brandix to tap into the talent of young inventors. “Brandix is a company that values your innovative brain,” he told the inventors. “This partnership will hopefully encourage other corporates to follow the Brandix example in supporting the SLIC. Five years from now when we look back, I want to be able to say that we have come a long way.” 

The five inventors rewarded were M. A. Firouze, G. H. G. G. M. C. Senarathna, and A. V. T. Thushan in the University category, and Asiri Dilhan De Silva and W. S. U. K. Wijesinghe in the Open category.

SLIC Commissioner Deepal Sooriyarachchi (extreme left) and Brandix Director Udena Wickremesooriya
exchanging the MoU and (on right) representatives of Brandix, Disrupt Unlimited
and the Sri Lanka Inventors Commission with the inventors who received cash awards
Launched in early 2014, Disrupt Unlimited is a seed accelerator that seeks to inspire, mentor and fund start-ups with breakthrough solutions to disrupt products, practices, processes and business models in the Apparel, Textile and Accessories sectors. The company’s role is to encourage innovators from across industries to develop technology-driven solutions that address challenges at every stage of the supply chains, leading to revolutionary changes in the way apparels, textiles and accessories are made, packaged, distributed and consumed.

Disrupt Unlimited will provide such start-ups with access to seed funding, advisors, practical workshops, networking opportunities, collaborative workspace and legal and administrative services, along with the opportunity to pitch game-changing ideas to venture capitalists and angel investors at an exclusive Demo Day.

Disrupt Unlimited was initiated by Brandix with an intention to fast-track Sri Lanka’s evolution into a knowledge and innovation hub for the apparel, textile and fashion accessories sectors. In order to build a stronger ecosystem for innovation in Sri Lanka, Brandix has partnerships with the Universities of Colombo, Peradeniya, Moratuwa, Kelaniya, Sri Jayewardenepura and Wayamba and the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT). The Group also partners the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Global Start-up Labs (MIT-GSL) Sri Lanka programme, and sponsors the robotics competitions of several universities and institutions.


Brandix i3, the IT and consulting company of the Brandix Group has been appointed a Strategic Channel Partner to Ambient Clinical Analytics, Inc., a US based company providing powerful bedside real-time critical decision support tools for ICU, Operating Room and Emergency Departments.

Within the context of the partnership, Brandix i3 said its initial focus will be on the Mayo Clinic YES Board®, - a multi-patient management tool that will affect providers and patients in a positive way as it improves physicians’ ability to deliver care with all of the relevant and pertinent information at their disposal.

Mayo Clinic YES Board® utilises IT tools and analytics technology to deliver a scalable solution that makes world class tools available to healthcare providers on an affordable basis regardless of the size of the organisation.

Brandix i3 partnered with Ambient Clinical Analytics to fast track its position to the forefront of the critical care patient monitoring market in the USA.

“Ensuring patient service care is the main focus of healthcare providers. Managing patient data, discrete systems and complex operations are key challenges in the industry today. Ambient Clinicals’ powerful technologies tackle this issue and will change the way critical care providers operate, offering real-time, bed-side access to important information and analytics,” said Arjuna Sirinanda, Chief Executive Officer of Brandix i3. “Ambient’s new technologies are exactly what healthcare systems need, to be more efficient in order to deliver best-in-class patient care, and we are excited to partner with Ambient to deliver these solutions to healthcare providers.”

“The Brandix i3 team has supported these technologies through Ambient and the Mayo Clinic since inception, and understands the impact the technologies will have on patient care,” said Chris Fowler, Vice President Sales and Marketing of Ambient Clinical Analytics. “Because of its knowledge and experience in the healthcare field the team will be instrumental in the integration and implementation process.”

“A partner like Brandix i3 whose experience in diverse enterprise integration projects for healthcare service providers is vital to help us grow our market power,” said Al Berning, Chief Executive Officer of Ambient Clinical Analytics. “Brandix i3’s developed competencies in healthcare technology systems and desire to help healthcare providers use their data and systems more efficiently to become more flexible and agile to deliver the best possible patient care, flows right into Ambient’s goals.”

About Ambient Clinical Analytics
Ambient Clinical Analytics sells powerful bedside real-time healthcare data assimilation, communication, and analytics based decision support tools that support the ICU, Operating Room and Emergency Department. Ambient Clinical Analytics’ business model is supported by software license fees, SaaS, Cloud and system integration revenue. 

About Brandix i3
A fully-owned subsidiary of Brandix, the ISO 9001:2008 certified Brandix i3 was launched in April 2012 to provide services in Infor Consulting, Enterprise Software Development and Business Improvement Consulting. Brandix i3 has customers in the USA, Russia, Australia, South Asia and South East Asia, and currently has offices in Sri Lanka and USA. The company has a team of 200 extensively qualified, multi-skilled professionals, with global experience across diverse industries including Healthcare, Fashion, Manufacturing and Food and Beverage.

To learn more about Brandix i3’s Enterprise Integration and Mobility services across the healthcare industry please visit: www.brandixi3.com/healthcare


Five months after they embarked on a mission to identify, develop and commercialise successful tech enterprises, a group of young Sri Lankans began the third and final phase of the Brandix-funded MIT Global Start-up Labs (MIT-GSL) Sri Lanka 2014 challenge on 16th June at the University of Colombo School of Computing.

Eight possible start-ups that will pitch their ideas to a panel of investors in Colombo on 30th July will now work with four instructors from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the six-week ‘Refine & Launch’ phase of the programme.

A collaboration between Brandix, the Sri Lanka Association of Software and Service Companies (SLASSCOM) and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the MIT-GSL Sri Lanka programme commenced on 9th January 2014 with 73 participants from several higher education institutions including the Universities of Moratuwa, Colombo and Sabaragamuwa, the Open University of Sri Lanka, the Informatics Institute of Technology (IIT), the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT), and Alliance Française de Kotte.

The Brandix Group has pledged to fund the MIT-GSL Sri Lanka programme for five years in collaboration with MIT and SLASSCOM. The programme is to be offered twice a year to second-year or older undergraduates as well as recent graduates of Sri Lankan universities.
(Above) The four MIT instructors and (Below) some of the students
who began the third stage of the MIT Global Start-up Labs
Sri Lanka 2014 challenge

The four MIT instructors tasked with guiding the eight start-ups through their development to prototype level in time for the Pitch Day are Darshini Thiagarajan (Entrepreneurship Lead), Champika Fernando (Technical Lead), Tiffany Yeh (Entrepreneurship Assistant) and Sarah Edris (Technical Assistant). The MIT-GSL global entrepreneurship incubator is currently run by MIT in collaboration with 15 international universities.

A Group that employs approximately 48,000 people at manufacturing plants in Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh, Brandix has partnerships with the Universities of Colombo, Peradeniya, Moratuwa, Kelaniya, Sri Jayewardenepura and Wayamba and the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT). A preferred supplier to many global apparel labels, Brandix is credited with many firsts on the global stage, and recently launched its own seed accelerator ‘Disrupt Unlimited’ to inspire, mentor and fund start-ups with breakthrough solutions that disrupt products, practices, processes and business models in the apparel, textile and fashion accessories sectors.


Ceremony held in Colombo for the first time, attended by officials of WHO and other international organisations

The Brandix Group’s status as Sri Lanka’s largest corporate blood donor for the fourth consecutive year has been formally acknowledged at a global event held in Colombo in commemoration of World Blood Donor Day.

Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena presented the Group with a special plaque of appreciation at the World Blood Donor Day Global Event hosted by Sri Lanka at the BMICH on 14th June 2014.

Sri Lanka is the first South Asian country to host this annual global event attended by the World Health Organisation (WHO), International Society of Red Cross & Red Crescent, International Society of Blood Transfusion (ISBT), Asian Association of Transfusion Medicine (AATM), the International Federation of Blood Donor Organizations and the Asia Pacific Blood Network.

Sri Lanka’s single largest apparel exporter Brandix commenced an annual organised blood collection drive across the Group's manufacturing plants in Sri Lanka in 2007, and has now been recognised by the National Blood Transfusion Service (NBTS) as the country’s largest corporate blood donor consecutively since 2010. The company said plans are underway to conduct a blood donation campaign on a much larger scale this year.

In a further gesture of support to the National Blood Transfusion Service, the organiser of the 2014 World Blood Donor Day Global Event on behalf of host country Sri Lanka, Brandix took on the role of ‘Contributing Partner’ for this high profile forum.

“Our annual blood donation programme encompassing Brandix manufacturing locations across Sri Lanka is now an established and important element of the Group’s annual calendar,” said Ishan Dantanarayana, Chief People Officer of the Brandix Group. “The commitment and civic consciousness of our inspired people are invaluable assets that Brandix is justifiably proud of.”
Brandix Group Chief People Officer Ishan Dantanarayana and
Head of Corporate Communications Anuk De Silva
receive the plaque of appreciation from Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena

One of the largest suppliers of apparel to top retail brands in the US and Europe, Brandix employs over 48,000 associates across several integrated manufacturing facilities in Sri Lanka, and large operations in India and Bangladesh. In another health-related initiative, Brandix has been supporting the National Occupational Safety and Health Week and the causes it represents for the last seven years.


Textured Jersey Lanka PLC, Sri Lanka’s leading manufacturer of high quality weft knitted fabric, was recognized with the Gold Award for the Textile Category at the National Green Awards Ceremony held at the BMICH recently. The award was presented by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who graced the occasion, at which the country’s highest Environmental Awards are presented.

The ceremony was organized by the Central Environment Authority of Sri Lanka under the Ministry of Environment and Renewable Energy, with an aim to recognize and reward business entities that contribute towards eco-friendly environments through excellence in Green practices, strategy and better products. Entities and agencies are nominated and then evaluated on stringent conditions such as Environmental Pollution Control, Cleaner Products, Waste and Resource Management etc.

Textured Jersey is Sri Lanka’s leader in Sustainability initiatives within the Textile domain. In addition to pioneering many revolutionary Green practices in better production processes, eco-friendly waste management and reduced energy consumption, the company has a string of awards which complements its work and demonstrates its passion and commitment towards these aspirations. It is also the first local Corporate to publish a Greenhouse Gas Emission report.

“Being among the Top 50 Public Companies in Sri Lanka, and the only Textile company with a demonstrated commitment towards Sustainability, we are deeply honoured by the recognition we have received for our significant contribution towards improving and protecting our environment,” said Pubudu De Silva, Chief Operating Officer - Production at Textured Jersey. He also thanked the team at Textured Jersey for their efforts in implementing measures to minimize effects on the environment, while deliberately taking added measures to protect it. 
Pubudu De Silva, COO - Production at Textured Jersey being presented
with the Gold Award by H.E. the President Mahinda Rajapaksa

“This award further encourages us to provide our customers with cutting-edge innovation when it comes to our sustainability initiatives, and to support our ongoing efforts to make the world a better place,” he further elaborated. Textured Jersey is jointly owned by Pacific Textiles of Hong Kong, and the Brandix Group, which was recently recognised as an ‘Organisation Committed to Green’ for 2013 by the Green Building Council of Sri Lanka.


More than 1,100 executives to undergo leadership acceleration training under two-year collaboration

Sri Lanka’s single largest apparel exporter Brandix has enlisted the services of the USA headquartered Center for Creative Leadership (CCL), one of the world's Top 5 providers of executive education, in a major new initiative to underwrite its next phase of growth through Group-wide leadership training.  

This leadership development programme represents CCL’s first assignment conducted in Sri Lanka for a Sri Lankan company, and is intended to develop leadership bench strength at Brandix and a strong, capable succession pipeline of leaders steeped in the Brandix culture, the company said.

As part of the two-year collaboration, more than 1,100 high-potential Brandix executives are to undergo transformational training in leading self, leading teams and leading organisation, with the training modules appropriately distributed on the basis of areas of responsibility.

“Since inception, our focus has been to grow great leaders. We have used the services of many institutions in the past, but have been most impressed with the Center for Creative Leadership. We have now decided on a strategic tie-up with the Center to create best in class leaders to fuel our growth,” the Group’s CEO Ashroff Omar said.

The Center for Creative Leadership ranks fourth overall in the 2014 Financial Times worldwide survey of executive education released in May this year and is placed higher than educational institutions of the calibre of University of Chicago Booth, Stanford Graduate School of Business, Harvard Business School, London Business School and INSEAD. With offices in Africa, Asia, Europe and North America, CCL also ranks No. 4 globally for Custom programmes. For the 13th consecutive year, CCL is the only institution — from more than 75 in the Financial Times survey rankings — that focuses exclusively on leadership development.

“Apparel manufacturing and export has a significant impact on Sri Lanka’s GDP, and CCL is privileged to play a part in contributing to this nation’s economic growth by partnering with the truly talented team at Brandix,” said CCL President and CEO John Ryan.
Milestone collaboration: Brandix CEO Ashroff Omar (3rd from right)
and CCL President & CEO John Ryan exchange the agreement in Colombo
in the presence of (from left) CCL’s Regional Director, Leadership Solutions
Yoosuf Moiz, Vice President – APAC and Managing Director, CCL Asia
Roland Smith, Brandix Chief People Officer Ishan Dantanarayana and
Manager – Group Capability Nilangani De Silva

“We are delighted to join with Brandix in creating a stronger business and also delivering societal impact for the people of Sri Lanka,” said CCL’s Asia-Pacific Vice President and Managing Director Roland Smith. “Leadership development has a ripple effect, and, as the common culture and leadership language cascades to the larger team, boundaries will shrink across Sri Lanka’s communities. CCL and Brandix invite other foundations and bodies to join us in strengthening this nation’s social fabric through deploying initiatives that impacts leadership in youth, women and other social groups.” 

One of the largest suppliers of apparel to top retail brands in the US and Europe, Brandix employs over 48,000 associates across several integrated manufacturing facilities in Sri Lanka, and large operations in India and Bangladesh. Committed to quality, service and compliance with international labour and environmental standards, Brandix is focused on enhancing the welfare and development of its workforce. Its talent development philosophy has evolved from focusing on individual needs and development to building a talent pipeline to strengthen organisational capability.


Adds new industry category to 2014 Sri Lanka Robotics Challenge of Moratuwa University

The Brandix Group has announced a potentially life-changing annual innovation award for a successful robotic solution to an industry-specific challenge, significantly raising the bar for Sri Lankan innovators working in the sphere of automation.

To be presented as a new category of the Sri Lanka Robotics Challenge (SLRC) conducted annually for the university fraternity by the E-Club of the Department of Electronic and Telecommunication Engineering of the University of Moratuwa, the Brandix Innovation Award will also be open to the wider inventor community, and will comprise of a cash prize, a trophy and financial and technical support to develop the invention, the company said.

Brandix is the principal sponsor of the 2014 Sri Lanka Robotics Challenge which will select Sri Lanka’s representation at the next International Robotics Challenge (IRC) conducted annually by the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Mumbai.

For the inaugural Brandix Innovation Award, Brandix has set contenders the challenge of building a robotic arm that can pick up single pieces of fabric from a stack and place them in a reverse-order stack within a specified area, within five minutes. The entire stack may not be picked up at once, reversed in the air and placed in the new location, and the pieces of fabric cannot be damaged or folded in the process.

The finals of the 2014 Sri Lanka Robotics Challenge are scheduled for 12th December 2014, with the qualification round for the Industry Challenge to be held on 11th December 2014.

The team that produces the best fabric handling robotic arm that meets the challenge will receive a cash prize of Rs 250,000 from Brandix, an opportunity within the Group to build or refine the robot, opportunities to connect with global robotics specialists, an employment opportunity to work on the prototype, and if the product is commercially viable, seed funding and assistance to register a company from Disrupt Unlimited, the Brandix-led start-up seed accelerator. 

The robotic innovation that completes the process will thereafter be provided an opportunity to be implemented as a solution at Brandix facilities in Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh, the company said. A Brandix Innovation Award winner who “successfully fails” in his or her endeavour has the option of continued employment within the Group.

“Innovations that disrupt existing processes are the key to the future of many industries,” said Brandix Director Udena Wickremesooriya. “At Brandix, we have taken it upon ourselves to be the stimulus for technological innovation in the apparel industry, where we believe, the potential for transformative technology and processes is infinite.”

Launched in early 2014, Disrupt Unlimited is a seed accelerator that seeks to inspire, mentor and fund start-ups with breakthrough solutions to disrupt products, practices, processes and business models in the Apparel, Textile and Accessories sectors. The company’s role is to encourage innovators from across industries to develop technology-driven solutions that address challenges at every stage of the supply chains, leading to revolutionary changes in the way apparels, textiles and accessories are made, packaged, distributed and consumed.

Disrupt Unlimited was initiated by Brandix with an intention to fast-track Sri Lanka’s evolution into a knowledge and innovation hub for the apparel, textile and fashion accessories sectors. In order to build a stronger ecosystem for innovation in Sri Lanka, Brandix has partnerships with the Universities of Colombo, Peradeniya, Moratuwa, Kelaniya, Sri Jayewardenepura and Wayamba and the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT). The Group also partners the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Global Start-up Labs (MIT-GSL) Sri Lanka programme, and sponsors the robotics competitions of several other universities and institutions as well.

For more details regarding the SLRC 2014, visit: www.mrt.ac.lk/competitions/slrc



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The Brandix Group has reaffirmed its dominance of mercantile volleyball, sending five teams to the 2014 finals of the Men’s and Women’s Tournament conducted annually by the Mercantile Volleyball Association.

This is the second year in succession that five of the eight teams competing in the four matches of the finals are from companies in the Brandix Group.

The five Brandix teams playing for the Championship in their respective categories are Brandix Apparel Solutions Limited (BASL) – Intimate Apparel, Welisara which meets a team from the Group associate Textured Jersey, Avissawella in the Super League Men’s Final; BASL – Intimate Apparel, Minuwangoda in the Super League Women’s Final, BASL – Essentials, Ratmalana in the Men’s Championship and BASL – Intimate Apparel, Mirigama in the Women’s championship.
(Above) The BASL – Intimate Apparel, Minuwangoda team
and (Below) the BASL – Intimate Apparel, Welisara team
that will compete in the Women’s and Men’s
Super League finals respectively

The finals of the 2014 Mercantile Volleyball Tournament are to be worked out at the National Youth Services Council (NYSC) indoor complex in Maharagama in October.

(Above) The BASL – Intimate Apparel, Mirigama team
and (Below) the BASL – Essentials, Ratmalana team
that will compete in the Women’s and Men’s
Championship finals respectively
Three other Brandix teams, BASL – Intimate Apparel, Minuwangoda, BASL – Intimate Apparel, Welisara and BASL – Intimate Apparel, Polonnaruwa, took third place in the Men’s Super League, the Women’s Super League and the Men’s Championship respectively.

Fourteen of the 92 teams that competed in the preliminary rounds of the tournament were fielded by the Brandix Group.

Brandix, Sri Lanka’s single largest apparel exporter, conducts its own annual volleyball tournament for the ‘Rasadiya Kusalanaya’ (Mercury Trophy), which is considered the largest volleyball tournament organised by a private company in the country.


The application of technology innovatively to improve access to information, products or services was the common theme when seven teams of young Sri Lankans demonstrated their ideas for business start-ups at the conclusion of the Brandix-funded MIT Global Start-up Labs (MIT-GSL) Sri Lanka 2014 challenge.

From the delivery of therapy to dyslexic children, accessing organic vegetables and fruit, or eliminating false alarms generated by electronic surveillance systems, to helping university students find lodging facilities, commuters to locate the taxis closest to their locations, and retailers to know, engage and retain customers, the ideas were presented to potential investors at the programme’s ‘Demo Day.’

A collaboration between Brandix, the Sri Lanka Association of Software and Service Companies (SLASSCOM) and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the 2014 MIT-GSL Sri Lanka programme commenced on 9th January 2014 and ended on Wednesday 30th July. The programme is to be offered twice a year to second-year or older undergraduates as well as recent graduates of Sri Lankan universities.

The top seven teams that presented their start-up ideas after seven months of brainstorming, training and mentorship provided by the programme, were chosen from the 75 original participants selected from an initial pool of 380 applicants from several higher education institutions including the Universities of Moratuwa, Colombo and Sabaragamuwa, the Open University of Sri Lanka, the Informatics Institute of Technology (IIT), the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT), and Alliance Française de Kotte.

Speaking on behalf of Brandix at the ‘Demo Day,’ Group Director Udena Wickremesooriya said his company is involved with the MIT-GSL programme to drive disruptive innovation in the apparel industry. 

“I come from an industry labelled by many as very ‘basic,’ with adjectives such as ‘Juki’ and ‘Garment,’ he said. “This is partly true, if you consider something like a man’s shirt, which hasn’t changed much from the time of my grandfather and father. Compare that with anything else you use, from mobiles to cars to shoes which have all gone through a mega transformation. What this shows is the opportunity that exists in the industry to do something completely different and disruptive.”

In his speech, Madu Ratnayake, Chairman Emeritus of SLASSCOM said the progress made by the MIT-
‘Dolawa’ - the start-up team adjudged the winner of the MIT-GSL SL Challenge 2014
with Brandix Director Udena Wickremesooriya (extreme left) and Madu Ratnayake,
Chairman Emeritus of SLASSCOM (second left)
GSL Sri Lanka programme could be an indicator that the target of having 1,000 start-ups by 2022 could be overhauled. “If you look at the top 20 companies in the world today, 60 per cent would be technology companies, and half of them did not exist 20 years ago,” he said. He stressed that more than ideas, money and the team, the most important aspect of the MIT-GSL programme is the mentorship provided to the participants.

The ‘EagleEye’ team adjudged first runner-up
The panel of judges at the Demo Day comprised of members of the Lanka Angel Network (LAN) Messrs Dumindra Ratnayake, Mano Sekeram, Asantha Wijeratne, Hiran Wickramasinghe, Duminda Jayatilleka and Rohitha Mendis. The seven start-ups that pitched their ideas for investor support were ‘Organic Hug’ (Reap the harvest near at hand), TopNotch (Understand, engage and retain your customers), ShopIn (Helping fashion retailers know the unknown), ‘Dolawa’ (Taxi around the corner), ‘D-Care’ (Your child can learn easier and faster), ‘Boarding.lk’ (Find a boarding place that feels like home) and ‘EagleEye’ (Stay notified, stay safe).

The best three start-up ideas chosen by the panel of judges were ‘Dolawa’ followed by EagleEye and
The ‘Organic Hug’ team adjudged second runner-up
Organic Hug. Each of these three teams will be given an opportunity to launch its start-up with SLASSCOM and receive a grant from Brandix in aid of this process.

A Group that employs approximately 48,000 people at manufacturing plants in Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh, Brandix has partnerships with the Universities of Colombo, Peradeniya, Moratuwa, Kelaniya, Sri Jayewardenepura and Wayamba and the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT). A preferred supplier to many global apparel labels, Brandix is credited with many firsts on the global stage, and recently launched its own seed accelerator ‘Disrupt Unlimited’ to inspire, mentor and fund start-ups with breakthrough solutions that disrupt products, practices, processes and business models in the apparel, textile and fashion accessories sectors.


Two manufacturing facilities of Brandix Apparel Solutions Limited - Lingerie Cluster in Nittambuwa have been awarded Eco Factory Attributes by the global retail giant Marks & Spencer (M&S) in recognition of achievements in reducing their environmental footprint.

The two factories have reduced energy and water consumption by 30 per cent and 15 per cent respectively and are recycling or reusing 100 per cent of their solid waste, enabling them to score 91 points out of 100 at the M&S Eco Factory Audit.

The Eco Factory Attribute is awarded under Marks & Spencer’s ‘Plan A’ initiative which was launched in January 2007 to combat climate change, reduce waste, use sustainable raw materials, trade ethically, and help customers to lead healthier lifestyles with an aspiration to be the industry leader in sustainable consumption and production, by offering customers good value, high quality products and services, sold through an efficient multi-channel operation. It is intended to produce products with integrity by using the most sustainable raw materials available and to work with factories operating to the highest environmental and social standards, thus encouraging suppliers around the world to make their supply chains carbon neutral through Green manufacturing processes.

With the latest certifications, the Brandix Group has seven Eco Attribute recipient factories, at Koggala, Seeduwa, Giritalé and Nittambuwa in Sri Lanka and one each in India and Bangladesh.

“Reducing the impact of our operations on the environment is a key group initiative and a continuing process at Brandix, and progressively encompasses more manufacturing locations, as we reach and surpass enterprise-wide annual targets for reducing our carbon footprint,” said Rajiv Malalasekera, CEO of Brandix Apparel Solutions Limited - Lingerie Cluster. “Along the way, factories that produce apparel for Marks & Spencer qualify for Eco Factory Attributes, which are important independent certifications of their sustainability-linked achievements.”

At Plants I and II of Brandix Apparel Solutions Limited - Lingerie Cluster, the installation of energy efficient air conditioning, solar water heaters and skylights and modifications to the compressed air system brought about the reductions in energy consumption, while the installation of low flow water fixtures and dual flushing systems in toilets generated savings of water, he said. These plants no longer generate solid waste for disposal, and food waste has also been reduced to a minimum.

Overall, conservation initiatives across the Group have enabled Brandix to reduce electricity consumption per product by 12 per cent in 2013-14 over the previous year, and cut water consumption by 2.6 per cent during the same period.
One of the Brandix Apparel Solutions Limited - Lingerie factories
in Nittambuwa

In September 2012, Brandix set itself the target of reducing its environmental footprint by a further 20 per cent by 2020, and released its maiden Sustainability Report, the first by a private company in Sri Lanka. To support this initiative and track its progress, the Group has developed its own ‘Eco Index’ -- an assessment tool which can be used to measure the environmental performance of Brandix factories and offices across the Group and facilitates a fair and easy comparison between factories and clusters.

By March 2014, the Group had reduced its carbon footprint by 35 per cent from the base year (2008), principally through switching from furnace oil boilers to biomass boilers. A fifth of Brandix’s energy requirements now come from renewable sources.

Production of Lingerie at one of the Brandix factories
that recently received the M&S ‘Plan A’ Eco Factory Attribute
One of the largest suppliers of apparel to top retail brands in the US and Europe, Brandix employs over 48,000 associates across several integrated manufacturing facilities in Sri Lanka, and large operations in India and Bangladesh. The Group is a benchmark and international award winner for eco-friendly manufacture and commitment to environmental best practice and was earlier this year recognised as Sri Lanka’s ‘Organisation Committed to Green’ by the Green Building Council of Sri Lanka (GBCSL).


Disrupt Unlimited, the Apparel Start-up Seed Accelerator funded by Brandix, and the Sri Lanka Inventors Commission (SLIC) have entered into an agreement to establish a partnership to promote innovation in Sri Lanka and enhance opportunities in the fields of Textile, Apparel and Accessories.

A Memorandum of Understanding entered into recently by the two organisations envisages that SLIC through its regular programmes will identify inventors with potential to commercialise their inventions in these fields and introduce them for consideration by Disrupt Unlimited.

Disrupt Unlimited will review such inventors introduced by SLIC and select suitable candidates to go through its incubator or the Disrupt-a-thon programmes, which could lead to funding and additional mentoring to commercialise their ideas.

Speaking at the signing of the MoU, Brandix Director Udena Wickremesooriya stressed on the importance of building and fast-tracking an ecosystem which encourages and nurtures start-ups. “We are still in the infancy stages of this cycle,” he said. “Therefore, we need to really go for it in the next five years to catch up to ecosystems that have been 25 years in the making.”

He said the purpose of Disrupt Unlimited is to take big ideas to the global market. Mr Wickremesooriya advised inventors to “take the risks, make your ideas work, and deliver results.” Besides, “if you successfully fail,” he added, “Brandix will offer you an employment opportunity within its group of companies.”

The Brandix Group’s focus on promoting innovation began with its first sponsorship of ‘Sahasak Nimewum’ the annual competition and exhibition conducted by the Sri Lanka Inventors Commission for local inventors. Alongside the signing of the MoU with SLIC, Brandix presented cash awards to the owners of the top five inventions in the Apparel, Textile and Energy sectors at the 2013 Sahasak Nimewum competition. 

Addressing the two events, SLIC Commissioner Deepal Sooriyarachchi said he is extremely pleased to see the efforts being made by Brandix to tap into the talent of young inventors. “Brandix is a company that values your innovative brain,” he told the inventors. “This partnership will hopefully encourage other corporates to follow the Brandix example in supporting the SLIC. Five years from now when we look back, I want to be able to say that we have come a long way.” 

The five inventors rewarded were M. A. Firouze, G. H. G. G. M. C. Senarathna, and A. V. T. Thushan in the University category, and Asiri Dilhan De Silva and W. S. U. K. Wijesinghe in the Open category.

SLIC Commissioner Deepal Sooriyarachchi (extreme left) and Brandix Director Udena Wickremesooriya
exchanging the MoU and (on right) representatives of Brandix, Disrupt Unlimited
and the Sri Lanka Inventors Commission with the inventors who received cash awards
Launched in early 2014, Disrupt Unlimited is a seed accelerator that seeks to inspire, mentor and fund start-ups with breakthrough solutions to disrupt products, practices, processes and business models in the Apparel, Textile and Accessories sectors. The company’s role is to encourage innovators from across industries to develop technology-driven solutions that address challenges at every stage of the supply chains, leading to revolutionary changes in the way apparels, textiles and accessories are made, packaged, distributed and consumed.

Disrupt Unlimited will provide such start-ups with access to seed funding, advisors, practical workshops, networking opportunities, collaborative workspace and legal and administrative services, along with the opportunity to pitch game-changing ideas to venture capitalists and angel investors at an exclusive Demo Day.

Disrupt Unlimited was initiated by Brandix with an intention to fast-track Sri Lanka’s evolution into a knowledge and innovation hub for the apparel, textile and fashion accessories sectors. In order to build a stronger ecosystem for innovation in Sri Lanka, Brandix has partnerships with the Universities of Colombo, Peradeniya, Moratuwa, Kelaniya, Sri Jayewardenepura and Wayamba and the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT). The Group also partners the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Global Start-up Labs (MIT-GSL) Sri Lanka programme, and sponsors the robotics competitions of several universities and institutions.


Brandix i3, the IT and consulting company of the Brandix Group has been appointed a Strategic Channel Partner to Ambient Clinical Analytics, Inc., a US based company providing powerful bedside real-time critical decision support tools for ICU, Operating Room and Emergency Departments.

Within the context of the partnership, Brandix i3 said its initial focus will be on the Mayo Clinic YES Board®, - a multi-patient management tool that will affect providers and patients in a positive way as it improves physicians’ ability to deliver care with all of the relevant and pertinent information at their disposal.

Mayo Clinic YES Board® utilises IT tools and analytics technology to deliver a scalable solution that makes world class tools available to healthcare providers on an affordable basis regardless of the size of the organisation.

Brandix i3 partnered with Ambient Clinical Analytics to fast track its position to the forefront of the critical care patient monitoring market in the USA.

“Ensuring patient service care is the main focus of healthcare providers. Managing patient data, discrete systems and complex operations are key challenges in the industry today. Ambient Clinicals’ powerful technologies tackle this issue and will change the way critical care providers operate, offering real-time, bed-side access to important information and analytics,” said Arjuna Sirinanda, Chief Executive Officer of Brandix i3. “Ambient’s new technologies are exactly what healthcare systems need, to be more efficient in order to deliver best-in-class patient care, and we are excited to partner with Ambient to deliver these solutions to healthcare providers.”

“The Brandix i3 team has supported these technologies through Ambient and the Mayo Clinic since inception, and understands the impact the technologies will have on patient care,” said Chris Fowler, Vice President Sales and Marketing of Ambient Clinical Analytics. “Because of its knowledge and experience in the healthcare field the team will be instrumental in the integration and implementation process.”

“A partner like Brandix i3 whose experience in diverse enterprise integration projects for healthcare service providers is vital to help us grow our market power,” said Al Berning, Chief Executive Officer of Ambient Clinical Analytics. “Brandix i3’s developed competencies in healthcare technology systems and desire to help healthcare providers use their data and systems more efficiently to become more flexible and agile to deliver the best possible patient care, flows right into Ambient’s goals.”

About Ambient Clinical Analytics
Ambient Clinical Analytics sells powerful bedside real-time healthcare data assimilation, communication, and analytics based decision support tools that support the ICU, Operating Room and Emergency Department. Ambient Clinical Analytics’ business model is supported by software license fees, SaaS, Cloud and system integration revenue. 

About Brandix i3
A fully-owned subsidiary of Brandix, the ISO 9001:2008 certified Brandix i3 was launched in April 2012 to provide services in Infor Consulting, Enterprise Software Development and Business Improvement Consulting. Brandix i3 has customers in the USA, Russia, Australia, South Asia and South East Asia, and currently has offices in Sri Lanka and USA. The company has a team of 200 extensively qualified, multi-skilled professionals, with global experience across diverse industries including Healthcare, Fashion, Manufacturing and Food and Beverage.

To learn more about Brandix i3’s Enterprise Integration and Mobility services across the healthcare industry please visit: www.brandixi3.com/healthcare


Five months after they embarked on a mission to identify, develop and commercialise successful tech enterprises, a group of young Sri Lankans began the third and final phase of the Brandix-funded MIT Global Start-up Labs (MIT-GSL) Sri Lanka 2014 challenge on 16th June at the University of Colombo School of Computing.

Eight possible start-ups that will pitch their ideas to a panel of investors in Colombo on 30th July will now work with four instructors from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the six-week ‘Refine & Launch’ phase of the programme.

A collaboration between Brandix, the Sri Lanka Association of Software and Service Companies (SLASSCOM) and Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the MIT-GSL Sri Lanka programme commenced on 9th January 2014 with 73 participants from several higher education institutions including the Universities of Moratuwa, Colombo and Sabaragamuwa, the Open University of Sri Lanka, the Informatics Institute of Technology (IIT), the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT), and Alliance Française de Kotte.

The Brandix Group has pledged to fund the MIT-GSL Sri Lanka programme for five years in collaboration with MIT and SLASSCOM. The programme is to be offered twice a year to second-year or older undergraduates as well as recent graduates of Sri Lankan universities.
(Above) The four MIT instructors and (Below) some of the students
who began the third stage of the MIT Global Start-up Labs
Sri Lanka 2014 challenge

The four MIT instructors tasked with guiding the eight start-ups through their development to prototype level in time for the Pitch Day are Darshini Thiagarajan (Entrepreneurship Lead), Champika Fernando (Technical Lead), Tiffany Yeh (Entrepreneurship Assistant) and Sarah Edris (Technical Assistant). The MIT-GSL global entrepreneurship incubator is currently run by MIT in collaboration with 15 international universities.

A Group that employs approximately 48,000 people at manufacturing plants in Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh, Brandix has partnerships with the Universities of Colombo, Peradeniya, Moratuwa, Kelaniya, Sri Jayewardenepura and Wayamba and the Sri Lanka Institute of Information Technology (SLIIT). A preferred supplier to many global apparel labels, Brandix is credited with many firsts on the global stage, and recently launched its own seed accelerator ‘Disrupt Unlimited’ to inspire, mentor and fund start-ups with breakthrough solutions that disrupt products, practices, processes and business models in the apparel, textile and fashion accessories sectors.


Ceremony held in Colombo for the first time, attended by officials of WHO and other international organisations

The Brandix Group’s status as Sri Lanka’s largest corporate blood donor for the fourth consecutive year has been formally acknowledged at a global event held in Colombo in commemoration of World Blood Donor Day.

Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena presented the Group with a special plaque of appreciation at the World Blood Donor Day Global Event hosted by Sri Lanka at the BMICH on 14th June 2014.

Sri Lanka is the first South Asian country to host this annual global event attended by the World Health Organisation (WHO), International Society of Red Cross & Red Crescent, International Society of Blood Transfusion (ISBT), Asian Association of Transfusion Medicine (AATM), the International Federation of Blood Donor Organizations and the Asia Pacific Blood Network.

Sri Lanka’s single largest apparel exporter Brandix commenced an annual organised blood collection drive across the Group's manufacturing plants in Sri Lanka in 2007, and has now been recognised by the National Blood Transfusion Service (NBTS) as the country’s largest corporate blood donor consecutively since 2010. The company said plans are underway to conduct a blood donation campaign on a much larger scale this year.

In a further gesture of support to the National Blood Transfusion Service, the organiser of the 2014 World Blood Donor Day Global Event on behalf of host country Sri Lanka, Brandix took on the role of ‘Contributing Partner’ for this high profile forum.

“Our annual blood donation programme encompassing Brandix manufacturing locations across Sri Lanka is now an established and important element of the Group’s annual calendar,” said Ishan Dantanarayana, Chief People Officer of the Brandix Group. “The commitment and civic consciousness of our inspired people are invaluable assets that Brandix is justifiably proud of.”
Brandix Group Chief People Officer Ishan Dantanarayana and
Head of Corporate Communications Anuk De Silva
receive the plaque of appreciation from Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena

One of the largest suppliers of apparel to top retail brands in the US and Europe, Brandix employs over 48,000 associates across several integrated manufacturing facilities in Sri Lanka, and large operations in India and Bangladesh. In another health-related initiative, Brandix has been supporting the National Occupational Safety and Health Week and the causes it represents for the last seven years.


Textured Jersey Lanka PLC, Sri Lanka’s leading manufacturer of high quality weft knitted fabric, was recognized with the Gold Award for the Textile Category at the National Green Awards Ceremony held at the BMICH recently. The award was presented by President Mahinda Rajapaksa, who graced the occasion, at which the country’s highest Environmental Awards are presented.

The ceremony was organized by the Central Environment Authority of Sri Lanka under the Ministry of Environment and Renewable Energy, with an aim to recognize and reward business entities that contribute towards eco-friendly environments through excellence in Green practices, strategy and better products. Entities and agencies are nominated and then evaluated on stringent conditions such as Environmental Pollution Control, Cleaner Products, Waste and Resource Management etc.

Textured Jersey is Sri Lanka’s leader in Sustainability initiatives within the Textile domain. In addition to pioneering many revolutionary Green practices in better production processes, eco-friendly waste management and reduced energy consumption, the company has a string of awards which complements its work and demonstrates its passion and commitment towards these aspirations. It is also the first local Corporate to publish a Greenhouse Gas Emission report.

“Being among the Top 50 Public Companies in Sri Lanka, and the only Textile company with a demonstrated commitment towards Sustainability, we are deeply honoured by the recognition we have received for our significant contribution towards improving and protecting our environment,” said Pubudu De Silva, Chief Operating Officer - Production at Textured Jersey. He also thanked the team at Textured Jersey for their efforts in implementing measures to minimize effects on the environment, while deliberately taking added measures to protect it. 
Pubudu De Silva, COO - Production at Textured Jersey being presented
with the Gold Award by H.E. the President Mahinda Rajapaksa

“This award further encourages us to provide our customers with cutting-edge innovation when it comes to our sustainability initiatives, and to support our ongoing efforts to make the world a better place,” he further elaborated. Textured Jersey is jointly owned by Pacific Textiles of Hong Kong, and the Brandix Group, which was recently recognised as an ‘Organisation Committed to Green’ for 2013 by the Green Building Council of Sri Lanka.


More than 1,100 executives to undergo leadership acceleration training under two-year collaboration

Sri Lanka’s single largest apparel exporter Brandix has enlisted the services of the USA headquartered Center for Creative Leadership (CCL), one of the world's Top 5 providers of executive education, in a major new initiative to underwrite its next phase of growth through Group-wide leadership training.  

This leadership development programme represents CCL’s first assignment conducted in Sri Lanka for a Sri Lankan company, and is intended to develop leadership bench strength at Brandix and a strong, capable succession pipeline of leaders steeped in the Brandix culture, the company said.

As part of the two-year collaboration, more than 1,100 high-potential Brandix executives are to undergo transformational training in leading self, leading teams and leading organisation, with the training modules appropriately distributed on the basis of areas of responsibility.

“Since inception, our focus has been to grow great leaders. We have used the services of many institutions in the past, but have been most impressed with the Center for Creative Leadership. We have now decided on a strategic tie-up with the Center to create best in class leaders to fuel our growth,” the Group’s CEO Ashroff Omar said.

The Center for Creative Leadership ranks fourth overall in the 2014 Financial Times worldwide survey of executive education released in May this year and is placed higher than educational institutions of the calibre of University of Chicago Booth, Stanford Graduate School of Business, Harvard Business School, London Business School and INSEAD. With offices in Africa, Asia, Europe and North America, CCL also ranks No. 4 globally for Custom programmes. For the 13th consecutive year, CCL is the only institution — from more than 75 in the Financial Times survey rankings — that focuses exclusively on leadership development.

“Apparel manufacturing and export has a significant impact on Sri Lanka’s GDP, and CCL is privileged to play a part in contributing to this nation’s economic growth by partnering with the truly talented team at Brandix,” said CCL President and CEO John Ryan.
Milestone collaboration: Brandix CEO Ashroff Omar (3rd from right)
and CCL President & CEO John Ryan exchange the agreement in Colombo
in the presence of (from left) CCL’s Regional Director, Leadership Solutions
Yoosuf Moiz, Vice President – APAC and Managing Director, CCL Asia
Roland Smith, Brandix Chief People Officer Ishan Dantanarayana and
Manager – Group Capability Nilangani De Silva

“We are delighted to join with Brandix in creating a stronger business and also delivering societal impact for the people of Sri Lanka,” said CCL’s Asia-Pacific Vice President and Managing Director Roland Smith. “Leadership development has a ripple effect, and, as the common culture and leadership language cascades to the larger team, boundaries will shrink across Sri Lanka’s communities. CCL and Brandix invite other foundations and bodies to join us in strengthening this nation’s social fabric through deploying initiatives that impacts leadership in youth, women and other social groups.” 

One of the largest suppliers of apparel to top retail brands in the US and Europe, Brandix employs over 48,000 associates across several integrated manufacturing facilities in Sri Lanka, and large operations in India and Bangladesh. Committed to quality, service and compliance with international labour and environmental standards, Brandix is focused on enhancing the welfare and development of its workforce. Its talent development philosophy has evolved from focusing on individual needs and development to building a talent pipeline to strengthen organisational capability.


 
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