Tag Archives: Aitken Spence Sustainability

Aitken Spence Hotels Bags Gold Once Again at the 50th CA Annual Report Awards

10 Jan

Aitken Spence Hotel Holdings PLC emerged victorious once again walking away with the Gold Award in the Hospitality Sector category at the prestigious of Chartered Accountants Annual Report Awards.

The golden jubilee of the annual report awards was held recently at the Nelum Pokuna Mahinda Rajapaksa Theatre. The competition which covers 22 sectors from small business categories such as NGOs, clubs, associations to large conglomerates had a total of 130 organisations submit their annual reports for the coveted awards this year.

The annual competition formulated to encourage transparency and accountability in financial reporting in the corporate sector recognizes companies which have demonstrated excellence in transparency, accountability and good governance via their annual reports. The evaluations were conducted under a stringent three stage system where the shortlisted reports were subjected to an industry expert panel review; the reports selected for the final stage were evaluated by a final panel of judge’s chaired the Central Bank Governor.

Mr. Susith Jayawickrema, Managing Director & Mr.Tilak Gunawardana, Vice President, Finance accepting the award & certification

Mr. Susith Jayawickrema, Managing Director & Mr.Tilak Gunawardana, Vice President, Finance accepting the award & certification

Sustainability, transparency and accountability are stringently practiced at Aitken Spence Hotels and winning this accolade provides a clear indication on its commitment to report on its economic, social and environmental impacts. “We see corporate sustainability as part of our core business strategy and ensure that our commitment is filtered down to every operation. This commendation reflects Aitken Spence Hotels’ track record of commitment to corporate accountability and championing sustainable tourism by producing industry best practices. We will continue to stay committed to delivering exceptional sustainable experiences to our guests whilst continuing to our stringent practices in corporate governance”, said Mr. Susith Jayawickrama, Managing Director, Aitken Spence Hotels.

Aitken Spence Hotels manages a portfolio of hotels and resorts in Sri Lanka, Maldives, India and Oman. The company’s expertise in hotel design, building and management is complimented by its dedication and commitment to excellence. Located in some of the key tourist locations, each of the properties cater to a diverse client base.

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Aitken Spence Launches Empowering Sri Lanka First

26 Jul

Aitken Spence PLC has launched Empowering Sri Lanka First, an English and IT teaching programme for children from its neighbouring communities as its flagship corporate community engagement initiative. The leading diversified conglomerate commenced the pilot phase of the English programme benefiting 180 students in Dambulla, Ahungalla and Mawaramandiya in May.

The eight-year old students follow a globally recognised British Council syllabus combined with accompanying teaching material delivered by local teachers who have completed British Council conducted teacher training.

Aitken Spence was recognized as Sri Lanka’s Best Corporate Citizen for 2012 by the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce.

“With a leading presence in some of Sri Lanka’s key sectors, Aitken Spence has over the years engaged in numerous programmes to enrich the lives of our neighbouring communities across the island. Empowering Sri Lanka First is intended to add more focus to our community engagements by concentrating on two key enablers for young students to achieve their true potential, thereby contributing to the sustainable development of the communities in which we operate”, said J M S Brito, Deputy Chairman & Managing Director of Aitken Spence PLC.

“Our plan is to expand the programme to dozens of local communities within a few years with the support of our many international and local partners who enjoy longstanding relationships with Aitken Spence”, he added.

The Company’s unique model enrols students for a three-year programme to learn the English language and information technology during weekly classes conducted at each locality. Aitken Spence plans to launch the IT module in September this year at all three locations.

“The curriculum followed is one that will complement the national syllabus and meant to make the process of learning more fun and interactive so that the students will be encouraged to keep learning by themselves even after they graduate from the programme”, said Rohan Pandithakorralage, Director and Chief Human Resources Officer of Aitken Spence Group Ltd.

Teachers for the programme are recruited from the same communities and trained on the curriculum so that they can use and benefit from the new teaching methods in their own careers and create more value for the learning process of more students in these communities.

Aitken Spence is among Sri Lanka’s leading and most respected corporate entities with operations in South Asia, the Middle East, Africa and the Pacific. In Sri Lanka, it is an industry leader in hotels, travel, maritime services, logistics, power generation and printing, with a significant presence in plantations, financial services, insurance, information technology and apparel.

Changing Lives, Helping Communities

29 Nov

“Considering the level at which I joined and where I am today, I am very happy and I can now easily support my family. The training we receive is on-the-job and the experience we receive is the best. Before the plant was started the Company promised the community many things and these have been successfully delivered.
So much has been done and the community is very happy”

These were the warm words of praise spoken by Mr Nimal Premarathne from Ace Power Embilipitiya. He joined at its inception in 2005 as a casual worker with the title of junior general helper. Through the years he has risen in ranks to the position of technician. This has been made possible through his dedication and love for the Company as well as the trust and confidence placed on employees by the Company. Ace Power Embilipitiya, a joint venture between Aitken Spence and German owned DEG, is an independent power producer for the CEB. Set in a considerably rural area, the idea of a power plant was not greeted enthusiastically by the community at first. This of course was natural, given the fact that it is generally the norm that power plants are noisy, disruptive and the people and area become industrialized.

This is where Ace Power Embilipitiya proved every negative thinker wrong! This power plant, set on 44 acres of marshy land, occupies only 10 of it for the plant purposes. In the 5 years since Aitken Spence took over its operations and management, not only the plant but the surrounding villages have developed in leaps and bounds. Community development projects are an ongoing process and are chosen based on the need and impact on the community. A most pressing need was that of drinking water. The plant, through the construction of 6 tanks, was able to meet this need to a great extent, benefiting around 3000-4000 families. Several other projects focused on the supply of electricity to the villages and on road development. All these projects, even when outsourced, gave priority to the local community in terms of jobs. Whilst these development projects have been a great strength to Community development projects are an ongoing process and are chosen based on the need and impact on the community. A most pressing need was that of drinking water. The plant, through the construction of 6 tanks, was able to meet this need to a great extent, benefiting around 3000-4000 families. Several other projects focused on the supply of electricity to the villages and on road development. All these projects, even when outsourced, gave priority to the local community in terms of jobs. Whilst these development projects have been a great strength to the community, what has had a bigger impact on their lives are the environmentally friendly practices brought about by the plant. The land area not utilised for the plant has been drastically changed to accommodate 10000-15000 plants, medicinal herbs, agricultural development projects and bee keeping projects.

The dramatic change from a barren land to the lush green area it is today is certainly a big achievement. Once again, it is with the community in mind that these changes have been instigated. The plant conducts advisory services (which include course programmes and training sessions) on farming, bee keeping, herbal plants as well as youth development programmes. It is clear that Ace Power Embilipitiya has gone above and beyond their call of duty to integrate themselves within the community, therefore leaving a green community footprint in the area.


K G Nimal Premarathne (left) and Amal Thushara

As Amal Thushara, another employee at the plant, who has worked there since its inception and has risen to the rank of plant assistant technician from his former general helper status, says – “A real change and a change for the better has taken place through the various services offered by the plant. Everyone is pleasantly surprised because as soon as they walk through the gates of the plant they can see the difference. The plant is open for viewing 3-4 times a week and this greatly benefits the school children too. Also, the plant and the Company helps the community no matter who or what they are. This goodwill and good reputation is beneficial to all of us who work at the plant as well. This plant is a plant with a difference”.

What better praise and accolades can a Company receive, than that of their longstanding employees and the community in which they operate?

Ace Magazine – Volume II – Issue 7

Creating Sustainable Value – Deputy Chairman/MD: J M S Brito

15 Jun

The 2009/10 Sustainability Report gives an introduction to our management approach to corporate sustainability and the substantial progress made by the Group and by individual strategic business units’ [SBUs] in employee and community engagement and environmental management.

We live in times of major global challenges, such as climate change, resource scarcity, globalisation, financial crises, shifting centres of power and increasing income inequality. How we face these challenges, now, will fundamentally shape the society, the environment and the economy of the future.

Our endurance and success for over 140 years has been characterized as much by the unswerving integrity in how we conduct our businesses, as much as by the pioneering sprit and the operational excellence that set us apart.

With the launch of the Group’s corporate sustainability policy, this year has marked a leap in how we approach corporate citizenship. Whilst we retain our ethical values fundamental to our business, we have embraced sustainable development with concerted effort to proactively ensure our long-term viability, profitability and integrity. This holistic approach looks beyond issues to address at all aspects of corporate sustainability in order to create sustainable value to our stakeholders.

Conducting initiatives which comprehensively look at how sustainably we do business across our diverse portfolio is not an easy task; but it is something which we have embarked on with the firm conviction that sustainable business is the business of the future.

Aitken Spence is becoming an increasingly global company, that brings with it responsibilities which we are keen to fulfil. We are committed to protect and promote the principles of the United Nations Global Compact. An indication of our progress in embedding the principles is outlined in the index on page 77. We have integrated the Global Reporting Initiative’s [GRI] framework for sustainability reporting at Level C in this report, with the objective of moving to Level B next year.

The company appreciates the leadership and commitment of the Sustainability Team and the respective sustainability committees set up in each SBU in our effort to create sustainable value and a sustainable business.

For more information on Aitken Spence Group sustainability, click here: http://www.aitkenspence.lk/about_us/financial_reports_of_aitken_spence_sri_lanka.asp

Sustainability Report – 15 June 2010

World Earth Day 2010

22 Apr

Sustainability – 22 April 2010

WORLD WATER DAY – 22 MARCH 2010

22 Mar

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