BOC

Mr. Ronald C. Perera, President’s Counsel, has been appointed as the Chairman, Bank of Ceylon. He assumed duties officially on 20th January 2023 at the Chairman’s Office, Bank of Ceylon, Head Office. Mr. Perera was welcomed by the Bank’s General Manager Mr. Russel Fonseka, members of the Corporate Management, bank staff and other well-wishers.

An experienced lawyer, Mr. Perera had his education at St. Joseph’s College, Colombo before going on to obtain his LLB from the University of Colombo and a LLM in International Trade Law from Northumbria University. Mr. Perera has been appointed as a President’s Counsel in 2012. He has served as the Chairman and a Director of the Bank of Ceylon previously as well.

Mr. Perera is an experienced lawyer with a wide practice in the original courts as well as in the Court of Appeal and Supreme Court. He has wide experience in Civil and Criminal litigation, negotiation and drafting of commercial and transport contracts and agreements. He has specialized in Commercial Law, Banking Law, Industrial Law, Injunctions, Defamation, Election Petitions, Civil Appeals, Revision Applications, Writ Applications, and Fundamental Rights Cases. Additionally, he has appeared in several Commercial Arbitrations.

Presently, he is serving as the Chairman of Sri Lanka Insurance Corporation Limited and as the Acting Chairman of National Lotteries Board. He has also served as the Chairman of BOC (UK) Limited, Merchant Bank of Sri Lanka & Finance PLC and Acting Chairman of Hotels Colombo (1963) Limited, which are subsidiaries of Bank of Ceylon.

Mr. Russel Fonseka assumed duties as the General Manager/ Chief Executive Officer of Bank of Ceylon on January 17th 2023 at the Bank’s Head Office. Having joined the BOC in 1990, he has notched up 33 years of service with the banking giant and was serving as the Additional General Manager and the CFO before assuming duties as the 23rd General Manager of the Bank. Mr. Fonseka succeeded Mr. K.E.D. Sumanasiri, who retired on 13th January 2023.


Mr. Russel Fonseka is a career banker, who over the years has successfully steered and given leadership to the various divisions that came under his purview. He has held the positions of Chief Financial Officer, Head of Finance and Planning, Head of International, Treasury and Investments, Head of Retail Banking and Head of Corporate and Offshore Banking. The exposure to many areas of banking would be a distinct advantage as he faces the task of steering the premier bank in Sri Lanka during what looks to be the most turbulent period the country and the globe has faced in recent times.


He holds a B.Sc (Special) degree in Business Administration from the University of Sri Jayawardenepura and a MBA from the University of Southern Queensland, Australia. He has completed the Advanced Management Programme at Harvard Business School, USA as a part of grooming of selected individuals under Bank of Ceylon’s succession planning. He is a senior fellow member of the Institute of Bankers of Sri Lanka and a fellow member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka. He serves as a member of the Sri Lanka Accounting and Auditing Standards Monitoring Board and is the immediate past president of the AAT Sri Lanka. He also held positions as the director on the boards of a number of Bank of Ceylon’s associate and subsidiary companies.


Whilst steering the country’s largest bank as it navigates through the turbulent conditions, Mr.Fonseka’s task will be to help Bank of Ceylon elevate itself to the next level and utilize its capacities and capabilities to the fullest in assisting in the nation’s economic revival and development-a call to utilize his competencies and acumen to the fullest.

The Bank of Ceylon wishes all its customers, stakeholders and Sri Lankans a Very Happy New Year as it commences work for “2023-New Year”. The main event took place in an austere manner at its Head office in Colombo with a multi-religious ceremony to invoke blessings on the Staff of the Bank, all its customers including expatriate customers and all Sri Lankans in general. The ceremony was held with the patronage of the bank’s Chairman Mr. Kanchana Ratwatte and General Manager Mr. K.E.D. Sumanasiri. Customers, well wishers, members of the Corporate and Executive Management and other bank officials also participated. The staff of Bank of Ceylon also renewed the annual oath taken by public servants attached Government of Sri Lanka before commencing new year operations. Parallel to the main event all BOC branches commenced duty after multi-religious activities with the participation of respective customers. 

Photo Caption

Moments captured at the Bank of Ceylon’s New Year’s Ceremony.

Green Building Council of Sri Lanka recognised the Bank of Ceylon with “Green Business Leadership of the Year Award 2022- Bank Section” and a “Gold Award” for its Wadduwa Branch at the “annual Green building award  2022” in recognition of the Bank’s active leadership role in Environmental sustainability of the country. BOC as a part of its Corporate Social Responsibility aligned with the Sustainability Development Goals (SDG) guidelines introduced by the United Nation, has actively engaged in maintaining its own infrastructure in accordance with “Green Building” standards ensuring maximum energy, water and environment conservation possible. The Bank already maintains its Kekirawa Trincomalee Super Grade, Panadura City, Walasmulla, Laggala, Melsiripura, Mathara Super Grade and Tangalle Branches under “Green Building” concept. 

The award ceremony also highlighted the commitment shown by professionals who actively promote environment preservation and the Bank’s Electrical Engineer Mr. N.K.B. Thilakawardana was recognized as the “Outstanding Green Professional of the year 2022- Honorable Mentioned”.

Envisioned to be the catalyst for sustainable development through social, environmental and economic bottom line, the bank stays on the course as ‘a responsible corporate citizen. Addressing on the norms of Environment Social Governance (ESG) the Bank’s sustainable policy comprehensively covers every aspect with a suitable mechanism. With the strategic implementation of digital transformation that gradually replaced many of traditional procedures, policies and technologies and has laid down a solid foundation for the Bank to embark on this cause. Maintaining Green branches is about going beyond the regular framework of operation for a Bank. The bank effort is to set an example as a corporate leader to create awareness and encourage every business entity and an individual to maintain Environment healthy mannerism in every possible way they can.

Recognized among world’s top 1,000 banks by prestigious ‘’The Banker Magazine UK”, the Bank of Ceylon marks as the highest ranked Sri Lankan bank in the listing’s history. Despite various challenges, BOC maintains a strong balance sheet comprised of an asset base of over Rs.4 trillion and deposit base of over Rs.3 trillion in commanding its local peers. BOC also captured the No.1 Banking Brand in Sri Lanka for the 14th consecutive year in the “Brand Finance Lanka’s – Brand Annual, compiled by Brand Finance Lanka for the year 2022, while also becoming the sole Banking brand to surpass a brand value over Rs.50 billion.

 

In honoring the indispensable social contribution and commitment of the state sector employees, the country’s No. 1 Bank, Bank of Ceylon introduced a special BOC Affinity Credit Card for state sector employees embedded with a range of exclusive benefits to support their life-goals by easing financial barriers.

The BOC Affinity Credit Card was recently unveiled at a ceremony held at “Sky Lounge” on 28th floor of the BOC Head office in Colombo with the participation of senior state sector officials along with the top management of the Bank. At the momentous occasion, BOC Chairman  Mr. Kanchana Ratwatte along with  Director to the Board Mr. Harsha Wijayawardhana, General Manager Mr.K.E.D. Sumanasiri, Additional General Manager/ Chief Financial Officer Mr. Russel Fonseka,  and DGM -Product and Banking Development Mr.Ajith Karunaratne symbolically presented the new BOC Affinity Credit Card to Secretary to the Prime Minister Mr.Anura Dissanayake, Senior Assistant Secretary to the President Mr.Kamal Pushpakumara and Senior Assistant Secretary to the President Mr.S.K. Henadheera.

While recognizing the pivotal role of state sector employees in managing the administrative structure of the country for the wellbeing of the general public, BOC aims to appreciate their invaluable service by offering an unstoppable service to achieve their life aspirations.

BOC has been a pioneer to the country’s financial industry in bringing benefits of latest technological advancements to all of its customers based on their evolving requirements. With the trust that was built over 83 years, Bank of Ceylon offers a wide range of digital products including BOC Card portfolio that comes with  international acceptance. The BOC Affinity Credit Cards are accepted at over 30 million merchant outlets and at over three million ATMs globally. By becoming BOC Affinity Credit Cardholder, the state sector employees have the opportunity to avail themselves to exclusive discount promotions through range of merchants joined with the bank which allows to make a reasonable saving in their daily transactions.

In addition, the BOC Affinity Credit Card for state sector employees offers an array of special benefits which include free joining fee, lower annual fee, zero Interest installment facility, emergency hospitalization limit enhancement facility, fifty percent cash advance on available credit limit once a month at any ATM, interest free credit period (starting from minimum of 22 days up to maximum of 52 days) and easy settlement plans at BOC merchant network up to 24 months.

All card settlements have been made possible through BOC online banking platform, B-App Mobile banking app, SmartPay app, any nearest BOC branch or through any of the BOC’s CRM/CDM network.

Bank of Ceylon Being the No 1 Bank in the country feels it a privilege to serve this highly valued employee sector of the country and welcomes all state sector employees to serve themselves with all these special benefits by the exclusively designed affinity card.

 

With the recent acceptance of Indian Rupee (INR) as a designated foreign currency by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka to promote trade and tourism within the SAARC region, Bank of Ceylon opened up its first “Nostro account” in Indian Rupees with its Chennai branch in India. Consequently, the Bank carried out the very first transaction in Indian Rupees with India through this channel becoming the very First Sri Lankan bank to initiate such a transaction which also marks a beginning of a new chapter in foreign trade of the country.

Following this new initiatives Sri Lankan residents are now able to carry out trade transactions directly in INR and not having to go through forex conversation loss of LKR to US Dollars then US Dollars to INR. In order to fully carry out this initiative Bank of Ceylon has completed all necessary requirements to include INR as a designated currency and has been able to arrange bilateral transactions with India. The Bank looks forward to further assist its customers in exports, imports and remittances while reducing the dependence of US Dollars.

It is expected that economic and commercial partnership between the two countries will also reach to new heights which will immensely facilitate the exporters and importers in both countries.

 

Photo Caption:

The Bank of Ceylon General Manager Mr.K.E.D. Sumanasiri executes the very first INR transaction through the system. Mr. R. M. N. Jeewantha - Deputy General Manager (International, Treasury & Investment) and Mr. A.W. Rajitha Thushantha - Assistant General Manager (Treasury) were also participated to this event.

 

Bank of Ceylon (BoC), the No 1 bank in Sri Lanka has announced Mr. Russel Fonseka as its next General Manager/ Chief Executive Officer. Having joined the BOC in 1990, he has notched up 33 years of service with the banking giant and is currently its Additional General Manager and the CFO. He is to succeed Mr. K.E.D. Sumanasiri, who will be retiring from the bank on 13th January 2023 after a successful stint as the General Manager/CEO.

Mr. Russel Fonseka is a career banker who over the years has successfully steered and given leadership to the various divisions that came under his purview. He has held the positions of Chief Financial Officer, Head of Finance and Planning, Head of International, Treasury and Investments, Head of Retail Banking and Head of Corporate and Offshore Banking. The exposure to many areas of banking would be a distinct advantage as he faces the task of steering the premier bank in Sri Lanka during what looks to be the most turbulent period the country and the globe has faced in recent times.

He holds a B.Sc (Special) degree in Business Administration from the University of Sri Jayawardenepura and a MBA from the University of Southern Queensland, Australia. He has completed the Advanced Management Programme at Harvard Business School, USA as a part of grooming of selected individuals under Bank of Ceylon’s succession planning. He is a senior fellow member of the Institute of Bankers of Sri Lanka and a fellow member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka. He serves as a member of the Sri Lanka Accounting and Auditing Standards Monitoring Board and is the immediate past president of the AAT Sri Lanka. He is a director on the boards of a number of Bank of Ceylon’s associate and subsidiary companies.

Whilst steering the country’s largest bank as it navigates through the turbulent conditions, Mr.Fonseka’s task will be to help Bank of Ceylon elevate itself to the next level and utilize its capacities and capabilities to the fullest in assisting in the nation’s economic revival and development-a call to utilize his competencies and acumen to the fullest.


 

Country’s premier bank, Bank of Ceylon signed a Memorandum of Understanding with PickMe to bring exclusive card offers to Bank of Ceylon Card holders. BOC card holders will avail themselves to enjoy promotional offers through PickMe App for its Food, Market, Rides and PickMe Flash categories. With this the Bank of Ceylon will become the first bank to come on board to give discounts in all PickMe categories. The Bank’s Deputy General Manager Product and Banking Development Mr.Ajith Karunarathne, and PickMe Chief Operative Officer Mr. Isira Perera signed the MoU on behalf of each institution. Assistant General Manager Digital Product Promotion Mr. S.A.N.C Piyumal, Chief Manager Digital Product Promotion Mr. Hasitha Amarasekara and several other officials representing the Bank participated for the occasion.

With the trust that was built over 83 years Bank of Ceylon offer an array of digital products including BOC Card portfolio that comes with the International acceptance. Customers are offered many opportunities to avail themselves to exclusive discount promotions through different merchants joined with the bank which is a reasonable saving for their daily transactions. Currently the bank offers promotional discounts from over 3600 merchant outlets island-wide from life style, personal care, fashion brands, Food and Beverage, Leisure, Educational, Jewelry, leading supermarket and Automobile services. BOC Card holders are also entitled to obtain zero installment plan facility from some of the registered merchants and easy settlement plan facility from any merchant.

All card settlements have been made possible through BOC online banking platform, B-App Mobile banking app, from any nearest branch or through any of the BOC’s CRM/CDM network. The Bank requests to contact nearest BOC branch or type “APPLY” and SMS 076 700 2400 to apply for a new credit card for anyone who wishes to obtain a BOC Credit card.

Bank of Ceylon as a leading corporate citizen of the nation reaffirms its commitment towards developing and preparing the country’s youth to become future leaders. The Bank’s Nanajaya scholarship programme which rewards its 18 Plus Account holders who have achieved exceptional results in Advance Level examination remains key initiative in this regard. Accordingly, BOC is calling for application from eligible students who excelled in the A/L examination in the year 2021.

The Bank awards scholarships worth over Rs 30 million annually and it has made necccssray preparations to offer 382 scholarships top -achievers of A/L examination of year 2021. Any BOC 18+ or 18+ smart Gen account holders who succeeded in producing exceptional results in mainstreams which include biological-science, physical science, commerce, arts, bio-system technology, and engineering technology in 2021 G.C.E A/L examination are eligible to apply for the latest edition of Nanajaya scholarship programme (given they have maintained the minimum balance requirement stipulated in their respective 18+ or 18+ smart Gen account). The students who meets the above criteria s are kindly requested to download an application from www.boc.lk. Completed application forms to be attached with a student’s recent passport size photograph posed wearing his/ her school uniform and dispatched under registered post before 31st of December this year to reach the Assistant General Manager- Marketing, 16th Floor, Marketing division, Bank of Ceylon head office, Bank of Ceylon square, Colombo 01.

The “18 Plus scholarship” programme which commenced in 2003 and later re- launched in 2016 as “Nanajaya” now offers a monthly financial stipend to the scholarship holders. From 2003 to 2020, 2580 students were benefited through this scholarship scheme and the total amount granted so far has topped Rs 90 million. The main objective of “18 Plus Nanajaya” Scholarship program is to facilitate the path for the high-flying A/L students to become proactive contributors for the development of the Nation by reaching their full academic potential by encouraging and instilling much needed confidence in them.

In extending its commitment to educate nations students, BOC has also Initiated its island-wide Nena-Mihira Grade 5 Scholarship Seminar Series to guide the youngsters to optimize their performance in the Grade 5 scholarship examination, along with a dedicated coaching program for their parents.

Nanajaya Scholraship program has also become an incentive in sustaining the saving habit among the youngsters from BOC Rankeklu account all the way up to 18+ SmartGen account, thereby, it has been contributing to develop the financial literacy among the future generation. Therefore, BOC invites to join hands with the Bank to continue to practice the habit of saving while reaping various benefits along the way.

 

 

Sri Lanka’s No.01 Bank, Bank of Ceylon together with the National Carrier, Sri Lankan Airlines (SLAL) geared to introduce BOC Internet Payment Gateway (BOC IPG) facility in offering seamless digital payment experience to customers of SLAL by enabling secure payments across multiple channels and in multiple currencies.

The Agreement Signing Ceremony was held on 30th of August 2022 under the patronage of the Bank’s General Manager Mr. K E D Sumanasiri, Deputy General Manager (Product and Banking Development) Mr. Ajith Karunarathne, Assistant General Manager (Electronic Banking Centre) Mr. Eranga Bandara, Assistant General Manager (Digital Products Promotion) Mr. S A N C Piumal, Assistant General Manager (IT) Mr. Haritha Rajapakshe. Representing the National Carrier, it was joined by the Airline's Chief Exeutive Officer (CEO) Mr.Richard Nuttall, Head Of Worldwide Sales & Distribution Mr.Dimuthu Tennakoon, Group Head Of Information Technology Chamara Perera, Senior Manager (Commercial Services & Support) Conrad Reshantha, Manager ( IT Passenger Services & Cargo Systems) Priyanga Weeraratne,Manager ( Revenue Accounting) S Surendra, Manager (E-Business Development) Bimali Malalasekara.

“The partnership will facilitate the National Carrier to offer seamless online payment experience across different time zones and geographies. BOC IPG facility is set to support the National Carrier to reach a wider customer base and to enhance its business turnover in line with their business expansion plans while adding convenience and ease to its global clientele. We are delighted to partner with SLAL’s digital journey,” BOC General Manager Mr. K E D Sumanasiri said.

BOC IPG enables SLAL to accept multiple payment brands in multiple payment channels using a wide range of digital payment methods from computer to mobile phone. It facilitates MasterCard and VISA cardholders to make payments in their own currencies and the National Carrier to receive payments in major foreign currencies. It further supports the EMV3D secure verification processes with ‘Verified by Visa’ and ‘MasterCard Secure Code’. 

Further, BOC IPG is also Integrated with all key online platforms and mobile apps of SLAL including booking engine, Charika App, IVR, Holidays, Plusgrade and Aviation College.

BOC is the pioneer in introducing payment cards to Sri Lanka in 1989. Presently, it maintains strong relationships with leading global payment schemes such as Visa International, MasterCard International, Chinese Union Pay and JCB. In addition, the Bank has commenced numerous initiatives to facilitate new developments of payment cards and mobile payments in order to safeguard the interest of general public while unlocking growth paths for cooperates. The Bank has been instrumental in leading and shaping the country’s digital payment landscape. As a recognition for its contribution towards promoting digital inclusivity in banking, BOC was recently awarded the prestigious “Overall Gold Award for Excellence in Interbank Digital Payments” at the LankaPay Technnovation Awards 2022 organized by the Lanka Clear Pvt Ltd.

Over the past 83 years in operations, Bank of Ceylon continued to cement its position as the No.01 Bank in the country while serving the national interest, as reflected by numerous global and local accolades. Bank of Ceylon was yet again recognized among world’s top 1,000 banks by ‘’The Banker Magazine UK”. Despite various challenges, BOC maintains a strong balance sheet comprised of an asset base of over Rs.4 trillion and deposit base of over Rs.3 trillion in commanding its local peers. Bank of Ceylon captured the No.1 Banking Brand in Sri Lanka for the 14th consecutive year in the “Brand Finance Lanka’s – Brand Annual” for the year 2022,

while also becoming the sole Banking brand to surpass a brand value over Rs. 50 billion. With over 2,000 touch points spread across the nation, BOC operates over 645 branches connected online and an ATM/CDM/CRM network of over 1350 located in all 25 districts of the country. Bank of Ceylon leads the trade finance and inward remittances market in serving the national interest. Its overseas presence consists of foreign branches in Chennai, Male, Hulhu-Male, Seychelles and a banking subsidiary in London as well as a strong affiliation with the international banking network developed over the years.