Dilshan Rodrigo, Chief Operating Officer of HNB handing over the first Hela branded credit card to Dian Gomes, Chairman of Hela Clothing. Also seen in the picture are, (from left to right) Harsha Gunaratne, Managing Director , Hela Clothing, Thima lPerera, Deputy General Manager – Retail & SME Banking, HNB and Ruwan Manatunga, Deputy General Manager – Corporate Banking, HNB
Hatton National Bank which has been in the forefront of innovative banking in Sri Lanka for several decades has launched yet another innovative banking solution exclusively for the staff of Hela Clothing.
Aimed at strengthening the company’s hard-working staff, the ‘HelaSaviya’ programme aims at offering them banking facilities to realise their aspirations towards a better life.
Traditionally, a garment factory worker would not be considered a credit-worthy customer by a bank. Over the years, HNB has however created a tradition of investing in human capital and supporting the vital cogs of Sri Lanka’s economy. It is a tradition built on the simple philosophy of taking banking beyond transactions.
Today, Hatton National Bank has progressed from being the banking partner of the Hela Group of Companies to becoming the financial partner of the entire Hela Family.
Outlining the aspects of the offering, Thimal Perera, Deputy General Manager – Retail & SME Banking at HNB said, “The ‘HelaSaviya’ programme brings to all employees of the Hela Group, greater access to the products and services of the Hatton National Bank through its extensive branch and ATM network across the country, as well as a large array of offers from partner merchants. On the identification of being a member of the Hela Family, HNB staff at any of our branches across Sri Lanka will accord to them the special facilities available to the Hela Family members.”
This unique banking proposition, unlike any other offered by a bank, includes savings accounts, debit cards, a co-branded credit card, a one-of-a-kind leasing proposition and special rates on personal loans, housing loans and microfinance. Additionally HNB has brought together industry leaders in their respective fields to bring a truly unique banking proposition for the employees of the Hela Group which will see Abans offering discounts on direct purchases or swipes when purchasing home appliances and electronic appliances, Next Campus offering attractive discounts for a wide range of higher education programmes; Associated Motorways (Pvt) Ltd., offering special rates on cars, three-wheelers and motor cycles which will be financed by either HNB or its subsidiary HNB Grameen.
SLIC has also come forward to offer life insurance policies and medical insurance schemes that cover entire families of Hela employees.
Hela Clothing is a British owned apparel manufacturing group operating in Sri Lanka for over two decades. They have more than 10,000 employees and manufacture over 100 million units of apparel annually at 13 manufacturing, printing and embroidery plants across Sri Lanka and two factories in Kenya and Ethiopia.
Dian Gomes, who took over as Chairman of Hela Clothing early this year said, “The contribution of the apparel industry worker to Sri Lanka’s economy is unrecognised and unappreciated. They have been sacrificed at the altar of corporations in search of greater profits. Internationally, they are identified as underpaid workers who stitch clothing for developed countries. This should not be the case. We should change these perceptions and attitudes by our actions. We expect HelaSaviya to be a comprehensive programme that will not only strengthen the Hela Family members, but also give them dignity and recognition as key stakeholders of the nation’s economy.”
“Through this programme we are even encouraging them to become entrepreneurs themselves and we will give all the help they need including financing. What’s more, we even give them the know-how so that they can make a strong start,” ThimalPerera added. “All this is done in partnership with the dynamic management of the Hela Group.”