Investors are knocking at the door, and it’s a matter of time before we could piggyback on their projects to provide the necessary software and hardware solutions that will have to complement their infrastructure development works,” Dr. Chandika Wickramatillake (35), Group CEO Designate, Just In Time Group (JIT) told this newspaper on Tuesday.
JIT, a multi million rupee software and hardware solutions company involved in the telecoms and banking sectors, mainly catering to the private sector, is now looking for openings in the health, aviation, construction and education sectors as well, in the area of ICT expansion, that goes along with such projects.
“The cream is in impending public sector led development projects, that’s where the money is,” said Wickramatillake, an engineer by profession, who had previously worked in the UK and in the USA in projects involving the Heathrow Airport expansion works and with UPS, a global logistics company in their operations in Kentucky, before returning to the island after the war end.
“Things are slow to pick-up and start moving because of the global recession,” he said, when questioned as to why the economy was not taking off despite the war end, in contrast to post 1977, where changes to the landscape of Colombo was visible virtually overnight.
Wickramatillake however deflected the proposition made by this reporter that the reason for the slowness of things was because Sri Lanka had upset its traditional friends, mainly the West and Japan, as a result of which aid from that sector was not easily forthcoming as it would otherwise have had, to give that much needed thrust to the economy.
He further said that another theatre of operations that his Group is exploring is the BPO sector, in the Legal and Medical areas, with possible openings in Australia. A lawyer, or for that matter a medical student employed in such services may command a starting salary of between Rs. 30-40,000 a month; Wickramatillake said. The company has booked office space for this operation, for which purpose not only the necessary skills and knowledge are required in the respective disciplines, but also a command of the English language. “The island has available talent in those areas,” said Wickramatillake.
“We went through a bad patch during the last three years due to the fact that the economy was not doing well, with the war being one of the chief contributory reasons, but we survived because we were diversified, as such we didn’t have to retrench a single one of our 200 employees.
We have the capacity and the patience, may be to wait for another three months, or even a year, till the economy takes off, then we shall ride on the crest of a wave,” said Wickramatillake. “The opening of the North-East and the possible expansion of the airport to take in the increased number of tourists and even locals, are vistas of opportunity to our company,” he said.
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