Bank of Ceylon General Manager D.M. Gunasekera receiving his award from Dr. Tarita Shankar
The World Sustainability Organisation recognized Bank of Ceylon’s (BOC) General Manager/CEO D.M. Gunasekara as one of the ‘100 Global Sustainable Leaders’ at the World Sustainable Congress held in Dubai.
The ceremony was organised by the World Sustainability Organisation, which is a non-profit organisation advocating government bodies and private organisations and public interest groups in the world for sustainable leadership accelerating sustainable business practices and solutions.
This ceremony aims to bring together CEOs and professionals from multiple industry segments that stimulate the global business community for a better tomorrow.
The bank received several awards to its credit, claimed its award as the only Sri Lankan brand recognized as one of Asia’s Best Brands in 2013 by the Chief Marketing Officer Council (CMO Council) based in Mumbai, India.
In 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016, the bank earned global recognition as one of the top 1000 banks in the world (country rank No.1) as listed by The Banker Magazine (UK). Since 2008, for the last eight consecutive years Brand Finance Lanka has ranked BOC as the country’s No. 1 Brand for enhancing its brand value significantly over years.
BOC won the overall Gold award at the National Business Excellence Awards in 2015 with five other winner awards. The bank was named as the ‘Strongest Bank’ for the year 2015 in the country by the Asian Banker. These key achievements coupled with being endorsed as one of ‘Asia’s Best Employer Brands’ by Employer Brand Institute for the year 2016 were gained during the term of Gunasekara. These achievements testify Gunasekera’s effort in steering the bank as CEO spearheading the bank to meet challenges successfully and achieve remarkable heights.
Gunasekara was the only Sri Lankan CEO to be selected among 100 global sustainable leaders named in 2016 by the World Sustainability Congress.
“It is a pleasure to be recognized among the 100 Global Sustainable Leaders. I have acquired knowledge, skills and experience in banking and has reached the pinnacle of my career as General Manager/CEO of Sri Lanka’s No.1 Bank, Bank of Ceylon. I take this opportunity to thank all my colleagues who helped me to reach this great milestone,” stated Gunasekara.
Other significant achievements in 2016 were surpassing Rs.1 trillion deposits followed by surpassing Rs.1.5 trillion in its asset base after achieving a Rs.1 trillion asset base in 2012. Setting a new benchmark in the Sri Lankan banking industry the bank became the highest profit earning single business entity in the country with a Rs.25 billion profit before tax (PBT) in 2015.
Gunasekara counts over 33 years of banking experience and commenced his career in retail banking, which enriched him with a wealth of knowledge and experience in all aspects of credit management, administration and retail and corporate banking.
He served at the BOC London branch from 1997 to 2000 gaining international exposure. He joined BOC in 1983 and held several key senior positions in the bank. He is an alumnus of the University of Colombo with a special Degree in Public Finance and Taxation (1981).
Gunasekara is also an Associate Member of the Institute of Bankers of Sri Lanka and a member of the Association of Professional Bankers. He has successfully completed the programme on Corporate Management for Sri Lanka (LKCM2 AOTS) in Japan and also followed an Advanced Management Programme conducted by the Wharton University of Pennsylvania, USA.
As a leader, Gunasekara has been an inspiration to the whole staff to become professional bankers who deliver the best to their customers and the community to grow together. With his global focus, he has initiated many projects and policies to empower the staff and move the bank towards a fully-fledged digital change pushing it to thrive and to go an extra mile to reach excellence in banking.
With the recent branch modernization, several next generation products and services were added. They include digital SMART Zones, Regional Loan Centres and centralization of business processes. Internal processes and systems were upgraded by building up infrastructure that includes IT, process automation and capacity building.
As part of this process, the bank activated the 5S concept within the bank and its branch network, which enhanced operational efficiency and reduced wastage of resources. ‘Quality Circles’ were formed in order to ensure the sustainability of the process.