Archive | March, 2020

Aitken Spence PLC & Aitken Spence Hotels shines at the ACCA Sustainability Reporting Awards

11 Mar

Public performance disclosures of the leading blue-chip conglomerate Aitken Spence PLC were recognised by ACCA Sri Lanka at the recently concluded Sustainability Reporting Awards of 2019. The holding company, Aitken Spence PLC was adjudged Runner-Up in the ‘Conglomerates & Diversified Category’ while Aitken Spence Hotel Holdings PLC emerged winner in the ‘Leisure & Connected Services Category’.

ACCA Sri Lanka has felicitated Sri Lanka’s best sustainability reports for over 15 years. The Sustainability Reporting Awards are held with the objective of recognising and rewarding organisations which disclose information on financial, environmental and social performance, and to encourage corporate transparency, accountability and responsiveness to stakeholders.

Across the Group, a holistic, systemic approach is implemented to fulfil social, environmental and financial commitments with a long-term perspective that is reflected in the value created by the Group. Signatories to the Ten Principles of the UN Global Compact, and the 7 Women’s Empowerment Principles, the Group also aligns their reporting practices to the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI Standard) and the guidelines of the International Integrated Reporting Council. Operational priorities are aligned to national priorities and identified priorities within the Sustainable Development Goals.

Aitken Spence PLC is also the reigning winner of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce Best Corporate Citizen Sustainability award for three successive years while being the only company in Sri Lanka to be ranked among the Top 10 Corporate Citizens for an unprecedented 14 consecutive years.

Strengthening the ingrained ethos of sustainability of their parent company, Aitken Spence Hotels is committed to preserve and sustain the natural environment and to channel dividends of the tourism industry to local communities. The award highlights the importance Aitken Spence Hotels gives to sustainability, transparency and accountability while recognising the company’s commitment to report its economic, social and environmental impacts.

With an indisputable repute as one of Sri Lanka’s pioneering corporates, Aitken Spence has anchored to a heritage of excellence spanning over 150 years. Listed in the Colombo Stock Exchange since 1983, Aitken Spence is a responsible enterprise driven by over 14,000 employees across 16 industries in 8 countries. Creating opportunities for Sri Lanka across new frontiers, Aitken Spence PLC is an organisation committed to the development of Sri Lanka.

Ms. Nilanthi Sivapragasam, Chief Financial Officer of Aitken Spence PLC, accepting the award for Runner-Up – Conglomerates & Diversified Category.


Mr. Jeevaka Weerakon – Chief Operating Officer, Aitken Spence Hotel Managements (Pvt) Ltd and Mr. Dammika Ekanayake – Assistant Vice President Finance, Aitken Spence Hotel Managements (Pvt) Ltd., accepting the award for Winner – Leisure & Connected Services Category.

Aitken Spence’s Heritance Aarah brings Gold from Culinary Olympics 2020

7 Mar

Aitken Spence Hotels continued their winning streak at their latest resort in the Maldives, Heritance Aarah, bringing home multiple wins from the prestigious IKA Culinary Olympics 2020. The team clinched four (04) Golds, seven (07) Silver and two (02) Bronze medals; marking their third win in the culinary sphere since the opening of the resort last year!

The team from Heritance Aarah embarked on the Culinary Olympic journey just months after their previous win at the Culinary Food Expo in September; the eight-member team from Heritance Aarah were led by chef Lalith Gunasekera –  Corporate Chef – Maldives Sector, and chef Amila Silva – Executive Chef Heritance Aarah. The team was guided by Culinary Olympic record holder Chef Dimuthu Kumarasinghe, a (nine-time Gold medalist). Chef Kumarasinghe is currently The Ambassador, Heritance Cuisine/Chefs & Culinary Art Development Officer at Aitken Spence Hotels.

Excellence in skill, together with the expertise of the team, sheer hard work, commitment and dedication fueled by the spirit of Aitken Spence and a winning attitude, proved to be the award-winning ingredient for Heritance Aarah.

Held in Stuttgart, Germany from 14-19 February, the competition saw over 2,000 chefs from around 59 countries crafting over 7,000 menus to be judged by an elite panel of global chefs from across the world. The competition acknowledged as the oldest, largest and most diverse international culinary art competition in the globe is one of the most competitive and challenging battles in the industry.

The winning team was welcomed at the Bandaranaike airport by the Chairperson and Management of Aitken Spence Hotels followed by a felicitation lunch and ceremony with the attendance of Deshamanya D H S Jayawardena – Chairman, Aitken Spence PLC, Dr. Parakrama Dissanayake – Deputy Chairman and Managing Director – Aitken Spence PLC, Ms. Stasshani Jayawardena – Chairperson of Aitken Spence Hotels and well-wishers from Aitken Spence subsidiaries.

Heritance Aarah presents 150 villas with a premium all-inclusive offering, including extensive dining experiences. Introducing a unique food culture to the Maldives hospitality industry, Heritance Aarah’s culinary success is owed to its innovative approach and simple food structure. It’s no surprise that the resort has made a name for itself as a hub for gastronomic finesse among its wide clientele from across the world.

Speaking on this accomplishment, Ms. Stasshani Jayawardena, Aitken Spence PLC Director, Head of Tourism and Leisure, and Chairperson of Aitken Spence Hotels Management, said “I am extremely proud and congratulate our team. Their achievements today will no doubt motivate our very own and others to aspire for the best in their own fields.”

Heritance Aarah has successfully followed the footsteps of its sister properties in Sri Lanka and set a benchmark in the culinary field. Through our unique culture of embracing local flavours and fusing them with techniques around the world, our culinary experts have developed an award-winning experience that amazes guests from around the world. The win reiterates our commitment to create cuisine that delight our customers,” she said.

This achievement also reflects the Company’s dedication to invest in honing talent and to drive innovation. “These wins reflect the promising talent within our family. Our hope is that they utilise all available resources to improve their skillset and together, create memorable holidays for our guests,” she further added.

Aitken Spence Hotels is part of the Sri Lankan blue-chip conglomerate Aitken Spence PLC and operates 23 hotels and resorts across Sri Lanka, Maldives, Oman and India. The Company’s owned hotels represent Heritance, Adaaran and Turyaa brands, popular around the world for exceptional service, and undisputed lifestyle experiences. Aitken Spence Hotels’ Sri Lankan portfolio includes 11 resorts across the island, with seven resorts in the Maldives, four resorts in Oman and one resort in India.


Heritance Aarah Culinary Olympic Wins


Amila Sathsara Silva

Silver, Sri Lanka Culinary Artistic – D1

Silver, Regional Team Sri Lanka


A. Dananjaya Fernando

Bronze, Sri Lanka Pastry Artistic – D2

Silver, Regional Team Sri Lanka


F. Gihan Maduranga Fonseka

Gold, Sri Lanka Pastry Artistic – D2

Silver, Regional Team Sri Lanka


Chamaka Nadeeshan Perera

Gold, Culinary Art Cooking – Sri Lanka

Bronze, Pastry Artistic – D2

Silver, Regional Team Sri Lanka


Shrimal Kulatunge

Gold, Pastry Artistic – D2

Silver, Regional Team Sri Lanka


Lalith Gunasekera

Gold, Culinary Art Cooking – Sri Lanka

Aitken Spence Maritime & Freight Logistics emerges as Integrated Port & Terminal Logistics Operator of 2020

4 Mar

Aitken Spence Maritime & Freight Logistics was adjudged the Integrated Port & Terminal Logistics Operator of the Year 2020 at the prestigious Global Ports Forum Awards ceremony held in Dubai on 26th February 2020.

The primary objective of The Global Ports Forum Awards is to recognise the most valuable contributions made by the organisations and professionals in different areas of ports and terminals industry.

This award category recognises ports/ terminals specialising in port logistics, enhancing capacity and productivity with sustainable and consistent growth, and providing value added, high quality of service for customers.

“As Sri Lanka’s largest integrated logistics service provider, Aitken Spence offers an unrivalled gamut of solutions to the industry and the region at large. Our widespread facilities, service excellence and experience add to our competitive advantages in the industry. The award further reiterates our positive influence in the integrated logistics sector and whilst we take pride in this, we will continue to set higher benchmarks”, commented Mr. Iqram Cuttilan, Managing Director of the Aitken Spence Maritime sector.

Aitken Spence Maritime and Logistics broke new ground by becoming the first Sri Lankan company to venture into port efficiency management and container terminal management overseas. It was also the first Sri Lankan company to enter into an agreement with the Fiji Ports Corporation to operate the country’s two major ports, marking the first ever public-private partnership for a Sri Lankan company overseas.

Aitken Spence is a front runner in freight forwarding in the country, providing total freight and logistics solutions with offices in 15 locations including Bangladesh, Maldives, Myanmar and Pakistan. The company counts over 35 years of experience in international express services and represents global brands in Sri Lanka and the Maldives whilst representing cargo GSA’s of leading global airlines. Qatar Airways Cargo has been represented by Aitken Spence in Sri Lanka since 2011.

It was the first company in Sri Lanka to set up and operate an inland container terminal, Container Freight Stations (CFS), distribution parks, multi country consolidation, third party logistics, mobile reefer storage and quality assurance centres at the CFS.

The company operates the largest inland container terminal in Sri Lanka located close to the port of Colombo. Additionally, they also operate 3 three inland container terminals at major Free Trade Zones in Sri Lanka.