Over 20 project teams were awarded for their excellence in export market development, sustainable innovation and social impact at the Hayleys Group Chairman’s Awards 2021.
The annual apex recognition platform of the diversified conglomerate seeks to celebrate its employees across all 16 of its diverse business sectors, who have gone above and beyond to make a difference.
“Through the Chairman’s Awards we celebrate our greatest asset – the exceptional people of Hayleys. Thanks to them, we have stayed resilient and weathered several challenging years with dynamism, building on our rich heritage of Sri Lankan innovation, good governance and nation-minded value creation. We honour this culture of excellence by sharing and recognizing the very best that our Group has to offer,” Hayleys Group Chairman and Chief Executive Mohan Pandithage said.
Group subsidiary Alumex PLC received the flagship Overall Winner Award for a sharply focused export drive. This effort established the manufacturer as the first and largest local exporter of aluminium extrusions, increasing its own exports tenfold in comparison to the previous year and adding a new product category to the Sri Lankan value-added export portfolio.
Several other innovative paths to export market development were recognized including Mabroc Teas for gaining traction in export markets through value-added offerings catering to the unique taste profiles of these countries. The Martin Bauer Hayleys team was also felicitated for designing and fabricating equipment to concentrate its premium quality Ceylon tea aroma, increasing its flavour profile and efficiencies in cold storage and logistics – thereby increasing its attractiveness to new export customers.
Leading value-added coir-based export company Ravi Industries Ltd was awarded for pioneering a grassroot collection programme for palmyrah-based fibre from smallholders in Jaffna, connecting more local micro-entrepreneurs to global markets.
The Kelani Valley Plantations PLC team was awarded for their work to support the estate community by establishing an out-grower network for potato farming in the Uva and Central provinces. This seed potato value chain development project supported income generation for farmers, improved the quality of life of involved families including unemployed youth and increased the productivity and economic profitability of the Nuwara Eliya district potato value chain.
Across the Group, teams involved in sustainable innovations were recognized, from Hayleys Fabric’s use of natural dyes, recycled raw materials and development of comfortable sport-wear innovations for high-end international clothing brands – to the first-ever carbon nanotube based non-marking solid tire and electro-static discharge glove from the Hayleys Aventura team.
The Group’s ability to innovate solutions for customers despite extremely challenging circumstances was demonstrated by its service-oriented sectors. The Hayleys Advantis team was felicitated for undertaking the first international rig tow by a Southeast Asian company. The team moved a semi-submersible 13,500-ton drilling rig from offshore Kakinada India to Batam Indonesia – braving busy maritime channels and bad weather for a distance of 1600 nautical miles.