Looks like December is going to be pretty interesting. Why, you ask? Well, the answer is simple; Jaffna IT Week.
For those unfamiliar with what this is, The Jaffna IT Week is a 4 day event – consisting of a career fair, workshops, and a conference where the heads of some of the largest IT companies and CEOs in Sri Lanka come in and share their insights and experience.
Organized by SLASSCOM (The Sri Lanka Association of Software and Service Companies) together with the Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka (ICTA), Ministry of Education, Export Development Board (EDB), University of Jaffna and the Yarl IT Hub, the event will be conducted from the 3rd to the 6th of December 2014 in Jaffna. It’s split up into three events and is specifically aimed at fresh entrepreneurs, bright undergraduates and young school children still choosing a career path. Think of it as an attempt to reach out to everyone and as such, just the tip of the iceberg for similar projects in other parts of Sri Lanka.
For those willing to trek it, the events, each in a different venue located in Jaffna will also serve as a showcase and promote the different characteristics of Jaffna as a city and as a business venture. As such, tours of the city will also be arranged for those visiting Jaffna from other parts of the island, to visit local businesses and entrepreneurs, plantations and other areas of interest, to see what potential the north really holds in terms of expansion and investment.
Future Careers Program
Held at Vembadi Girls’ High School, Jaffna on the 3rd and 4th of December, the event is a career fair targeting students aged 15-18 years and young undergraduate students with an aim at expanding the talent pool available to the industry and focus on connecting Sri Lankan youth to the exciting job opportunities in the knowledge services industry for them to become truly global citizens. Industry experts from SLASSCOM’s member companies which be present and will offer the chance to have one-to-one sessions to clarify queries about the industry
IT/BPM Export Forum and Entrepreneurship workshop
This will be on the 5th of December and is conducted by EDB and ICTA respectively. The EDB’s mission is to cover all regions and promote exports. As such, the IT/BPM export will be a valuable source of on feasible entrepreneurial ventures, support available via the government and other institutions, concessions and facilities available etc. for the IT/BPM sector in Sri Lanka. The Entrepreneurship workshop will target those who are planning to start up their own business and people who already run their own businesses in Jaffna and around the country.
Jaffna IT Conference
Now this is where things are bound to get interesting. Held on the 6th of December, the event has a number of Sri Lanka’s leading entrepreneurs in the IT/BPM sector giving speeches and sharing their thoughts and views with the audience. Frankly the list of speakers is quite impressive:
- Anuradha Tennakoon – Country Manager of Motorola Solutions Sri Lanka
Anuradha is the presence of Motorla Solutions, which provides high-end communication systems for mission-critical stuff. He’s also the Director of the Motorola Software R&D Centre in Colombo.
- Dinesh Saparamadu – Founder and CEO of hSenid Group of Companies and PeoplesHR
Dinesh heads a group of companies that provide enterprise HR and mobile solutions with a hand in USA, India, Sri Lanka, Singapore and Australia. He is a serial entrepreneur, having founded more than 6 companies over the last 2 decades. He is also a founding member and Chairman Emeritus of SLASSCOM and a founding member of Software Exporters Association.
- Harsha Subasinghe – CodeGen, CEO & Chief System Architect
Harsha heads CodeGen, the company that’s behind the much-talked-about Vega, as well as a many other innovative projects.
- Imran Vilcassim – Country Manager at Microsoft Sri Lanka
He is responsible for leading the company’s commercial and consumer product portfolio, service offerings and overall leadership of operations in Sri Lanka. Prior to Microsoft, Imran was at ZILLIONe Systems Solutions and Ceylinco Micro Technologies respectively.
- Jayantha De Silva – President and CEO at IFS Sri Lanka
He is a founding member and current Chairman of the Sri Lanka Association of Software and Service Companies and past Chairman of the Software Exporters Association. In 2011, he received the ICT Lifetime Achievers’ Award and the Most Outstanding Contribution Award.
- Madu Ratnayake – Head of Digital, SVP & General Manager at Virtusa
Madu is the head of the Sri Lanka Advanced Technology Center and plays a number of leadership roles in multiple areas – including being the former Chairman of SLASSCOM and a current chairman of the Sarvodaya Fusion Organization.
- Mano Sekaram – Co-Founder and CEO of 99X Technology
Mano runs 99X, a software company that’s behind the strongest Agile development awareness projects we’ve seen. He currently holds the position of Vice Chairman of SLASSCOM, alongside other key positions in the IT industry
- Reshan Dewapura – CEO of ICTA
Reshan Dewapura barely needs introduction – he made the news again very recently when he was appointed as the vice chair of UNESCAP’s IT committee. He leads ICTA, the Information and Communication Technology Agency of Sri Lanka.
- Sanjiva Weerawarana – Founder, Chairman and CEO of WSO2
Having spent nearly 8 years in IBM Research, Sanjiva founded WSO2, where he was one of the founders of the Web services platform. In recognition for his company-wide technical leadership, he was elected to the IBM Academy of Technology in 2003. He is also the founder of the Lanka Software Foundation.
- Sankalpa Gamwarige – Vice President – Engineering and General Manager at Zone24x7
Sankalpa directs a team of innovative minds at Zone24x7, a global provider of technology consultancy and innovation services. He previously was a part of Symbol Technologies Lanka (now Motorola Sri Lanka) and is also a director at SLASSCOM.
The event is touted to be a very promising one indeed and by the looks of it, it’s hard to see why not. Ladies and gents, start your packing. It’s going to be quite a game changing event. For more details, drop by http://www.jaffnaitweek.com.