ICTA-led Australian missions succeed in leveraging export opportunities for Sri Lanka IT-BPM sector

Friday, 2 March 2018 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Aligned with the Sri Lankan Government’s strong commitment to support digital adoption and innovation in the IT industry, the Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka (ICTA) has successfully led several IT-BPM missions to Australia consecutively during the past few years.

Leveraging on its mandate of creating visibility for the nation’s IT-BPM industry and contributing to the national IT industry target of achieving $ 5 billion in exports by 2022, ICTA has facilitated 11 business promotion missions to Australia over the last seven years. 

Australia has a strong track record of innovation, a fast-growing and highly advanced digital economy. The ICTA organised delegations have ensured accompanying Sri Lankan companies a guaranteed platform to showcase their ICT capabilities, establish links with Australian counterparties and expand their business footprint in the continent. 

“Nurturing local IT-BPM companies and expanding the perspectives of entrepreneurs are vital ingredients to be competitive on a global scale. Over the years, ICTA has successfully led several missions and leveraged well-established global networks. Our delegates have also had opportunities to meet with global investors and experts, and learn about latest industry trends and explore commercial partnerships - vital support which helps them expand their businesses on an international level,” noted ICTA Programme Manager Sachindra Samararatne.

He further stated: “ICTA has conducted four seminar theatre sessions during international exhibitions and three other additional sessions at the bespoke networking sessions during the past two years alone to enhance the country’s credentials, innovations and local expertise, pitching Sri Lanka as a destination to invest as well as source IT and knowledge process management services.” 

These sessions have directly attracted over 250 potential partners/investors and created awareness on how Sri Lanka supports SMEs and corporates in Australia and in the global arena in their digital transformation journey. 

Assuring Sri Lankan companies participating have the maximum possible advantage during their visits to Australia, ICTA successfully organised country pavilions and a series of networking events on successive missions. 

Prior to mobilising a mission, ICTA actively works together with interested parties formalising a structured roadmap. ICTA conducts capacity building sessions and training to ensure participating companies gain the maximum possible advantage during their Australian visits. Feedback and benefits gained are also sought from participating companies upon their return to Sri Lanka assisting ICTA’s future work plan. 

Importantly ICTA has also supported a significant number of IT - BPM companies as ‘first timers’ to engage with Australian counterparties and facilitate opportunities to explore overseas markets including start-ups, small and medium enterprises and even corporates.

Among the significant events the ICTA led delegations participated in, included hosting Sri Lankan country pavilions at the Gartner Conference & Expo and the CeBIT & Connect Expo and bespoke business networking events organised in three main states; Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne, where opportunities were provided to engage in onsite meetings with well-known international experts and analysts, discuss strategy, negotiate contacts and showcase product offerings. 

As a result of these ongoing efforts to-date, over 75 uniquely Sri Lankan IT-BPM companies have been supported to explore and enter the Australian market.  ICTA sources also concur lead generation has yielded an estimated conservative cumulative sales pipeline of over AUD 2,750,000 post-missions that took place during the last two years alone, while the total value for overall missions are much higher. 

Not only have these missions contributed to boosting Sri Lanka’s export earnings but helped generate more employment opportunities for local tech professionals creating new jobs. The ICTA-led missions to Australia have also helped yield a vote of confidence of our innovative and tech savvy companies.