No.1 Banking Brand in Sri Lanka for the 13th consecutive year, BOC; A Brand that stood the test of time.
- The only Banking brand to surpass the Rs.50 Billion mark.
- Brand Value at Rs.53 Billion with a 12% growth YoY.
The Bank of Ceylon (BOC) recorded a significant achievement in its 81-year journey in the Sri Lankan Banking and Finance industry by reaching the Brand value of Rs.53 Billion and continuing to lead as the No.1 Banking Brand in Sri Lanka for the 13th consecutive year.
Bank of Ceylon (BOC) is a hallmark for trust and the stability in the Sri Lankan banking and finance industry. Being a state sector institution, BOC has clearly become a role model as a responsible Corporate Citizen in Sri Lanka. It has not only proven its financial strength but also demonstrated its commitment to serve the needs of the nation especially during crises, such as the Covid-19 Pandemic.
“It is the Bank’s utmost priority to sustain its growth together with all communities and the Bank pays due attention to the overall socio-economic progress of the country. The bank acts as a key financier for Sri Lankan businesses, ranging from start-ups to well-established corporates, driving economic growth. BOC’s financial strength and operational capacity enables us to set the direction for the banking and financial services industry in the country. And we will ensure that we maintain the integrity of the country’s banking sector through stringent measures, while taking the lead in economic revival, through SME and local entrepreneurship development. We wish to share this achievement with all our valued stakeholders and look forward to expanding our value creation for our nation.” stated the Chairman Bank of Ceylon, Mr.Kanchana Ratwatte.
Commenting further Mr.Ratwatte added “Aligning itself with the Government’s initiatives to counter the socio-economic downturn in Sri Lanka, BOC recorded the highest disbursement under the “Saubagya” Working Capital Loan scheme of 18,589 facilities, worth LKR 39.1 billion, while moratorium facilities were valued at over LKR 589.4 billion. While posting robust results, we also achieved the highest reported industry profit for the year 2020 of LKR 23.6 billion (PBT). Our Inward Remittances also recorded USD 2.8 billion for the same year. We intend to lead the way through innovation and keep a keen insight into the aspirations of people as always. With this strategy we were able to face the economic turmoil with a renewed sense of purpose and strategies to aid thousands of individuals and businesses across the country to survive these challenging times. Our efforts to explore new avenues, with innovative HR and IT solutions to serve customers were fruitful”.
Through multiple channels and its multi-faceted nature, the bank has served its customers through a diverse range of products and services. From its very first branch established in Colombo Fort, BOC has expanded its reach to a network of 646 branches and 1,366 ATM/CDM/CRM units locally, and four overseas branches in Malé and Hulhumalé in the Maldives, Chennai, India, and the Seychelles. BOC also operates a subsidiary in London.
The core strength of Brand “BOC” is the ability to uplift any person or business, and the trust it has earned by proving it time and time again. The bank’s financial strength surpasses LKR 3 trillion in assets, over LKR 2 trillion loans and advances and over LKR 2.5 trillion in deposits.
Commenting on the achievement Mr.D.P.K. Gunasekera, the General Manager of Bank of Ceylon stated “whilst thanking all our valued customers and my fellow staff members, I like to remind you that, the pandemic has become a test for all brands - a time that has revealed inherent strengths and the core values that drive brand value. In this context the pandemic revealed the dependability of Bank of Ceylon as a partner to individuals and businesses. The ability to maintain this unwavering trust has come with the stability the bank has shown in sustaining growth and expansion in its financial strength, operational capacity, digital and technological adaptability, and its strategic approach and responsiveness to situations.”
“BOC has always been vigilant that the distribution of its value creation covers the entire country with special attention being given to socio-economically disadvantaged areas. In terms of resource allocation, Bank of Ceylon has taken a keen interest in financial inclusiveness and expanding digital penetration to rural areas in the country to uplift the socio-economic standard. BOC is a brand that indirectly represents both the strength of the State and state institutions. Managing rigorous marketing communications that utilise all physical and digital components of communications available during these limited marketing conditions, BOC invested responsibly in keeping its customers updated continuously with important messages on enabling their financial needs” Mr. Gunasekera further added.
In addition, BOC expanded its customer touch points beyond the 2,000 mark over the last year, that includes its physical branch network along with its ATM/CDM and CRM network to reach every part of the country. Further, the staff of the Bank worked tirelessly to provide the best service possible even at high points of the pandemic, whilst ensuring maximum precautions to safeguard customers and themselves. This approach enabled the majority of customers to connect with the brand and seamlessly carry out their banking needs in a safe and secure manner.
Becoming the ‘Most Valuable Banking Brand’ essentially involves fully embracing the responsibility of operating with a high social and environmental conscience BOC has clearly demonstrated this over its more than 81 years of existence and humbly assures all its stakeholders of its commitment to these principles in the years to come.
As we celebrate 40 years of operation in the Maldives, Bank of Ceylon, as the pioneer in establishing the first international branch from among local banks, thanks our customers for the continued trust placed in us for their financial needs. The Bank also thanks the Government of Sri Lanka, the Government of the Republic of Maldives, the Central Bank of Sri Lanka, and the Maldives Monetary Authority for their unwavering support over four decades and assures our customers of our continued commitment to serve, as we surge ahead into a digital future, offering more customer-centric, innovative banking solutions.
The No.1 Bank in the Country, Bank of Ceylon yet again set a record during Avurudu Season alone with over Rs. 119,405 Million worth transactions counting to 8,395,925 which took place within BOC’s very own ATM/CDM and CRM network. This record is a testimony to the faith that customers kept in the Bank’s ATM/CDM and CRM network, to provide them the best in class 24-hour operative convenient banking services. Having a fully operational ATM/CDM/CRM network with over 1361 machines covering strategic points across the entire country, BOC has provided customers utmost convenience and easy access to cash for their immediate cash requirements during Avurudu.
Taking the lead in the journey towards digitalization with the aim of changing the banking and financial landscape, the Bank of Ceylon always encourages its customers and all non-customers to engage with the convenience of 24 hour enabled banking channels such as ATM/CDM/CRM network, online banking, mobile banking- BApp and QR scanning application- SmartPay. Digital channels not only empower customers with the ability to carry out their banking needs whenever they want to, but also enable them to transact in safety during this pandemic situation. The Bank is dedicated to driving the digital technology looking both at its customer convenience and serving the national interest of safety, saving costs associated with moving physical cash and enabling a seamless and efficient wealth circulation within the country.
ISACA Sri Lanka chapter at its’ 25th AGM, recognized Bank of Ceylon for the contribution made to the GRC (Governance, Risk and Control) sector locally and internationally consecutively for the second time.
ISACA (Information System Audit and Control Association) is a US based professional association focused on IT governance. ISACA provides its members with knowledge, credentials, training and networking in IT audit, governance, risk, controls and security. Founded in 1969 and now serves 165,000+ professionals in 180 countries through 250+ local chapters worldwide.
ISACA Sri Lanka chapter consists of 250+ professional members from different sectors of the nation. Popularity and the recognition of ISACA Sri Lanka chapter have increased with its active presence in the field of IT for past years.
ISACA awards 7 different credentials and certifications for GRC professionals to achieve, including its leading certificate CISA (Certified Information Systems Auditor) and CISM (Certified Information Security Manager) and many more.
Being the No 1 bank in the country with international presence, Bank of Ceylon has set its’ standards high and professional. Bank recognized the need of adapting to changing technical environments and has digitalized its processors to embrace new technology, introduced various digital products to address the needs of the new generation.
At the same time, Bank is well aware of the risk involved with new technology and therefore has immensely invested on capacity building of its employees and delivering a professional service to customers and safeguard assets.
Contribution of Bank of Ceylon to the GRC sector is sparkled by its capability of producing new professionals to the sector each year and BOC has so far introduced a dozen of GRC professionals to the country becoming the national organization with the highest number of ISACA professional credential holders. This was achieved by BOC for the second consecutive year.
The recognition award was handed over to the Chief Internal Auditor of Bank of Ceylon Mr. Maduwantha Liyanage by the Past President of ISACA Sri Lanka chapter Mr. Sithira Wanniarachchi at the presence of chapter officials and professional members from different sectors including public and private Banks and other organizations in Sri Lanka at premises and via online.
As the Federation of Information Technology Industry Sri Lanka (FITIS) is geared to unveil ‘Sri Lanka Internet Day 2021’, a first-time occurrence in the country, The Bank of Ceylon too collaborates as the “Platinum sponsor” for the event. The event will span two full days and bring IT industry experts, startup entrepreneurs, top delegates, and business decision makers from across the globe together. The Bank’s Chairman Mr.Kanchana Ratwatte handed the sponsorship at a recent event took place at the Bank’s Head Office to Mr. Aruna Alwis of FITIS Organizing Committee for “Sri Lanka Internet Day 2021”.
To be held across 6th and 7th April, 2021, the inaugural virtual event themed ‘Digital Inclusion’, an initiative driven by the Digital Services Chapter of FITIS, will present critical digital topics to participants including citizen engagement in a digital society; Sri Lanka’s overall digital strategy and current public plus private sector digitization efforts in key areas; and the national vision for improving the island’s digital infrastructure in supporting a digitally-driven ecosystem and economy. Further, the engaging content presented across both days will carry strong emphasis on Sri Lanka’s re-energized prioritization of strengthening its digital economy, to boldly face and overcome future economic and social challenges experienced. Towards this end, a series of sessions will be conducted during the event on areas such as digital ID implementation and digital payment adoption by the Public sector, as well as FinTech, IoT use in agriculture, plus digital adoption by conglomerates with a Private sector focus.
BOC’s continued support of novel digital initiatives such as FITIS-led ‘Sri Lankan Internet Day 2021’, parallel to the bank’s strong digital focus in streamlining internal processes as well as enhancing services and experience for customers, reinforces their standing as a digital pacesetter in banking with particular emphasis on strengthening the national economy through wider digital adoption.
Bank of Ceylon Chairman Mr. Kanchana Ratwatte handing the sponsorship cheque to Mr. Jiffery Zulfer, President FITIS Digital Services Chapter (middle). (from L to R)The Bank’s Chief Marketing Officer, Chief Information Officer Mr. R. Bakmedeniya and the Bank’s General Manager Mr. D.P.K Gunasekera, Vice President Digital Services Chapter Mr. Channa De Silva and CEO FITIS Mr. Aruna Alwis are also in the picture.
As part of BOC’s continuing efforts to help small-scale entrepreneurs emerge from the financial and operational challenges experienced on account of the COVID-19 pandemic, the bank took their popular Business Revival clinic to Kilinochchi in late-February.
On the 23rd of February, the program held in conjunction with the Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (Kilinochchi District), drew large numbers of the bank’s micro, small, and medium scale fisheries-based customers.
The entrepreneurs received an opportunity to participate in a day-long program conducted by BOC, with a series of sessions allowing for direct interaction with the bank’s and Executive Management personnel and area plus branch managers, to voice their business concerns.
The bank’s Executive Management was represented by Mr. V.Sivananthan, Assistant General Manager (Northern Province), and the event also drew the participation of Mr. K.Mohanakumar, Assistant Director (Department of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources - Kilinochchi District). Other lead forum participants included Mrs. S.Nethananthan, Area Manager (Jaffna East), Mr. K.Alan Jeyaharan, Manager (Kilinochchi Branch), and Mr. S.Sivarupan, Manager (Mulankavil Branch).
During the clinic, fisheries-focused customers from Kilinochchi and surrounding areas presented their entrepreneurial challenges to bank officials, with attention paid to identifying the reasons for business failure and subsequently receiving customized solutions to address exact concerns. Topics ranging from capital expenditure, operating expenses, to specialist loans were discussed as part of the program, with advice given to help entrepreneurs revive their businesses amidst the ongoing pandemic-affected economy.
As part of the program, the bank raised awareness among entrepreneurs on fisheries-specific loan facilities offered through BOC’s Divi Udana scheme, which carries specialized individual loans for business tasks ranging from the purchase of fishing nets to building of tanks.
The bank’s Business Revival and Specialist Loan clinics across the island have been well-received by entrepreneur communities across sectors such as fisheries, prawn farming, and pea cultivation, further strengthening BOC’s position as the industry-leader in facilitating development loans, with particular emphasis currently on boosting Sri Lanka’s vibrant yet hard-hit Micro & SME sector.
With the view of providing a value-added customer experience with the Bank, Sri Lanka’s NO.1 Bank upgraded its 24x7 Contact center integrated will multiple channels which will accommodate more customer inquiries and to provide more efficient and convenient customer service.
With this new customer contact center solution that was established along with an industry specialist the Bank moved to an OPEX model Contact Center with the aim to provide better customer experience coupled with almost no customer waiting time prior to being engaged with a Customer Service Executive. The new Contact Center is established having considered different channel preferences of the customers and thereby incorporated with not only just telephoning service but also integrated with social media channels such as WhatsApp, Web chat with Chatbot & Live agent, Skype, Messenger, SMS and Email. With the service of professional agents with proficiency in Sinhala, Tamil and English would willingly assist customers with their requirement to enhance customer experience.
The system will be more responsive to customer inquiries as it is structured with Trilingual Interactive Voice Recognition (IVR), Automated IVR balance inquiry (trilingual) and Inbound & Outbound Voice Contacts ( trilingual). Therefore, the caller time will be reduced providing more time responsiveness and language responsiveness to customers. Further the specialized IVR facility based on the customer rating will place customer calls with appropriate Customer Service Executives who would be able to meet expectations of the prime customers of the bank. Another feature, the automated messages on bank’s service via Out-bound dialer will also enhance customer awareness on products, services and special offers of the bank, that are available to customers. This expansion will also lead bank to communicate customers on Bank promotions in way of structured outbound campaigns. Since the bank considers obtaining the feedback on customer satisfaction is as utmost priority, this system will avail the bank to successfully obtain customer feedback assess the situation and respond on timely basis for any customer concern. The new Contact Center solution is further embedded with lead management and real time customer experience management through inbuilt CRM and workflow automation system. Being a Bank that is responsible and truly concerned about customer BOC ensures and confident the new Contact Center solution will enable customers from all segments to experience convenient and a smoother banking across all channels.