Sampath Bank pioneers yet another innovation to Sri Lanka’s digital payments landscape

Thursday, 2 July 2020 02:03 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


Sampath Bank Consumer Banking Senior DGM Tharaka Ranwala (second from left) along with Central Bank Payments and Settlements Director D. Kumaratunge, LankaClear GM/CEO Channa De Silva, LankaClear IT and Operations DGM Dinuka Perera and SLBA Secretary General Ravi De Silva – Pic by Ruwan Walpola


  • Becomes one of the first Payment Exchange Name (PEN) issuer and acquirer banks, simplifying online peer-to-peer transactions

Sampath Bank PLC yesterday announced that it has become one of the first banks in Sri Lanka to serve as both an issuer and acquirer of Payment Exchange Name (PEN) based payments to its customers, thus facilitating a simpler method of conducting online transactions and driving greater digital financial inclusivity.

The new PEN system, which was launched by LankaClear at an event held at The Kingsbury recently, will allow Sampath Bank customers to make real-time, online payments via the Sampath Vishwa internet banking portal by simply using the receiver’s mobile number and PEN.

Customers who register for this service will be able to assign a unique nickname, or PEN, to each of their bank accounts with any bank, all linked to their mobile number. This nickname can then be used, instead of their bank account number, to send or receive funds electronically. This solution offers far greater convenience to customers as PENs will be easier to remember than lengthy account numbers, can easily be shared with outsiders, avoids disclosure of their account number and minimises the chance of typing errors, while also having the lowest fee structure for online transactions. This will also be particularly beneficial to self-employed individuals and small business owners who can now shift to cashless operations conveniently and cost effectively. 

“This year has seen significant growth in people’s acceptance and adoption of digital payment solutions due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but this has also helped pave the path towards a cashless society which is expected to bring about much economic growth. Sampath Bank has always prided itself on being a catalyst for technological advancements in the country’s banking industry, while promoting greater financial inclusivity and customer convenience. We are excited to incorporate PEN transfers into our Sampath Vishwa portal, offering greater convenience and security to our customers,” said Sampath Bank PLC Senior DGM – Consumer Banking Tharaka Ranwala.

Sampath Bank is a 100% local bank that has deeply rooted itself in the lives of the people of Sri Lanka. Established in 1987, the bank has become a state-of-the-art financial institution that continues to be a market leader today thanks to its constant innovation and customer focused approach to business. 

It has introduced many firsts to the Sri Lankan banking sector including introducing ATMs to Sri Lanka, extended banking hours and slip-less banking to name a few. As part of its visionary 2020 approach, the bank is steadily transforming itself into a ‘tech company engaged in banking,’ from the traditional approach of a bank engaged in technology.