Dialog triumphs the world in mobile inclusion and empowerment

Friday, 10 December 2010 01:15 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Leading mobile telecom firm’s Tradenet wins industry Oscars – World Summit Award

Sri Lanka’s mobile telecom giant, Dialog has beaten the rest of globe with its inclusion and empowerment solutions by winning the industry’s Oscars – the World Summit Award.

CEO Dr. Hans Wijayasuriya

Tradenet powered by Dialog Axiata won the ‘Gold’ in the ‘Mobile-Inclusion and Empowerment’ category at the Mobile World Summit Awards (WSA) held in Abu Dhabi.

Dialog’s win puts Lankan brand along with BBC Janala, the Wikitude World Browser and the mobile commerce engine of Marks & Spencer UK, who were among the other WSA winners.

‘Dialog Tradenet’ is an inclusive trade information exchange featuring the convergence of multiple access technologies – USSD, SMS, WAP, Voice (IVR/Call Centre) and Web (www.tradenet.lk), designed to reach multiple socio-economic segments and industrial/service sectors, empowering them to trade goods and services through a virtual market place.

The World Summit Award Mobile is a global initiative within the framework of the United Nations World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), in collaboration with UNESCO, UNIDO and the United National Global Alliance for ICT and Development.

Following its success as the winner of the regional M-Billionth award for m-inclusion earlier this year, Tradenet was nominated for the World Summit Awards by the Information and Communication Technology Agency (ICTA), the apex agency for ICT development in Sri Lanka. Tradenet surpassed an aggressive field of global competition at the WSA to secure ‘Gold’ for Sri Lanka.

Dr. Hans Wijayasuriya, Group Chief Executive of Dialog Axiata, commenting on Tradenet’s ‘Gold’ at the WSA, said: “Dialog is passionate about leveraging the power of the mobile phone to bridge economic divides, and disparity with respect to the access to opportunity. Tradenet seeks to attack information asymmetry with respect to the trading of goods and services across geographies and multiple layers of the socio-economic pyramid.  We are indeed humbled by the recognition extended to us by the WSA. It is however a strong endorsement of our vision for mobile-led inclusion.

“We are deeply appreciative of the support and encouragement extended to us by the ICTA, TRCSL, the Government of Sri Lanka and our partners Microimage, Govi Gnaana Seva and the Economic Development Centres at Dambulla, Meegoda and Narahenpita. The international recognition secured by Sri Lanka at the WSA is in no small measure attributable to their collective commitment towards excellence in the inclusive and people centric application of ICTs.”

Tradenet is unique relative to other inclusive virtual market environments with respect to its supply/demand, buy/sell “intelligent matching” engine and post-matching SMS alert facility. Intelligence dimensions applied to the matching are proximity, target prices and product service quality and features.

The intelligent matching and alerting feature of Tradenet relieves user of the burden of exhaustive searching and/or extended engagement with the system. The development of the Tradenet platform was commissioned to Microimage by Dialog.

Harsha Purasinghe, Chief Executive Officer of Microimage, said: “Winning this global award gives us immense pride as it’s yet another testimony of our technology innovations and software engineering excellence. From an engineering perspective, Tradenet’s robust scalable architecture, intelligent trading engine, complete localisation, price info service, and application of cutting-edge mobile technologies set a new benchmark for a true multi-mode and completely inclusive virtual marketplace platform.”

The virtual market place is enriched by the partnership with the three Dedicated Economic Centres at Dambulla, Meegoda and Narahenpita). Director of GGS, Dr. Harsha de Silva, said: “With Dialog Tradenet, Govi Gnaana Seva found the perfect platform to provide rural farmers with their most critical information need; produce prices. The fact that farmers are now using this price information in their decision-making to improve their living standards is a huge success of the Tradenet-GGS partnership.”

Tradenet could be accessed via www.tradenet.lk whilst price information could also be obtained simply by dialling 977 from a Dialog mobile. Price data collection relating to agricultural produce on the ground at the economic centres is done by Govi Gnaana Seva (GGS).

ICT leaders hail Dialog win

Lalith Weeratunga
Anusha Pelpita

Commenting on Sri Lanka’s success at the WSA, Secretary to the President and Chairman of the Commonwealth Telecommunication Organisation and of the UN-ESCAP Committee of ICT Experts for Asia & Pacific, Lalith Weeratunga said: “The World Summit Award for Dialog Tradenet is a testimony to the significant changes taking place in our country. The empowerment ICT delivers to people changes their lives and presents unprecedented opportunity for growth.

“This is why ICT and access to information are key pillars of the rapid development and expansion roadmap laid out by the Government in the ‘Mahinda Chinthana’.

As a Government, we are thoroughly committed to making ICT an important part of our development story, and we will relentlessly support its growth and exploitation.”

Echoing Weeratunga’s commitment to ICT-led citizen empowerment, Anusha Pelpita, Director General of the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission of Sri Lanka (TRCSL), said: “The TRCSL is committed to fostering an enabling environment for telecommunication operators to make their services – telephony as well as broadband, accessible to all citizens of Sri Lanka. Tradenet is a good example of a Sri Lankan innovation which uses a range of mobile and internet technologies to link buyers and sellers from all parts of the county in a very affordable manner, empowering them in the sphere of trade and commerce through ICT.”

Reshan Devapura

ICTA CEO Reshan Devapura said: “As the organisation driving the e-Sri Lanka Initiative, the ICTA has actively promoted the mobile platform for extending essential and innovative services to the broadest section of the population. Dialog Tradenet is a highly commendable effort which leverages on the latest developments in mobile technology to reach out to all levels of society.

“We take great pride in the fact that this completely home-grown product has been adjudged a winner at the first-ever World Summit Award for mobile applications. It is our expectation that this would set the stage for even better and bigger things to come from Sri Lanka.”