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Brandix links with Colombo University in latest alliance with academia

Colombo University Vice Chancellor Prof. Kshanika Hirimburegama (3rd right) and Brandix Group Chief People Officer Ishan Dantanarayana exchange the agreement in the presence of (from left) Prof. H D Karunaratne - Dean, Faculty of Management & Finance, Ashanthi Fernando, Head of Group HR Operations at Brandix, T L R Silva - Acting Registrar and Dr. Pavithra Kailasapathy - Head, Department of Human Resources Management of the University of Colombo.

The Brandix Group's initiative to forge closer links with national higher education institutions for mutual benefit took an important step forward recently with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the University of Colombo.

The agreement enables Sri Lanka's largest apparel exporter to support undergraduates of the University's Faculty of Management and Finance, focusing on the latter's Department of Human Resources Management, with a view to developing skills and knowledge that will benefit the apparel industry and facilitate career advancement.

This is the fourth such collaboration agreement between Brandix and a local university to promote engagement between academia and industry specialists.

Speaking at the signing of the MoU at the Senate Hall at College House, Vice Chancellor of the Colombo University, Professor Kshanika Hirimburegama described the partnership as a "win-win-win" for the institution, the students and the country. "We would like to promote public-private partnerships of this nature as part of the globalisation of the University of Colombo," she said, pointing out that the university was already ranked 8th in South Asia.

Ishan Dantanarayana, Chief People Officer of the Brandix Group said Brandix had grown into a global company with its expansion into India and Bangladesh and its offices in Europe and the USA. "Anyone joining Brandix gets a global perspective," he said. "We are therefore pleased to see the level of globalisation that the University of Colombo is thinking of, and look forward to providing opportunities for undergraduate internships and sponsorships."

He said one of the first programmes to benefit students of the university would be a Competency Development Programme to be launched by Brandix shortly.

Under the terms of the MoU between the two organisations, the University of Colombo will provide opportunities for Brandix to interview undergraduates and provide training to selected candidates; for managers from the Brandix Group to conduct guest lectures at the Faculty on topics of relevance; and for students and lecturers to participate in training programmes conducted by Brandix.

Brandix will also explore the possibility of working with the Faculty of Management and Finance on various social activities organized by its Students Association and on providing financial support for activities conducted by the Faculty to improve the skills and attitudes of undergraduates.

The Brandix Group is supported by 38 manufacturing locations in Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh. The Group provides direct employment to over 42,000 associates in total, while providing indirect employment to an equivalent number. The Group's foray into India in the form of Brandix India Apparel City - a 1,000 acre self-sufficient industrial park - is based on the 'Fibre to Store' concept and uses the advantages of scale and strong business fundamentals to leverage global expertise to offer 'total solutions' within the site. Brandix has also set up a large operating unit in Bangladesh extending its regional presence in South Asia.

In July 2011, Brandix was adjudged 'Asia's Best Employer Brand' at the CMO Asia Awards for Excellence in Branding and Marketing in Singapore. Brandix was also ranked among the Top 5 Employer Brands in Sri Lanka in a recent national survey covering top companies in the country.



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