Business News from Sri Lanka: Raising the bar in empowering and acknowledging the contribution of pensioners, Pan Asia Bank recently conducted the Pan Asia Bank Sammana Carnival, ‘Garu Saru’, a first of its kind in the industry for its loyal customer base of government pensioners.
More than 600 pensioners participated in this event, which was held recently at the Galle Fort Lawyers’ car park, organized with the enthusiastic involvement of the bank’s branches in Galle, Matara, Akuressa, Ambalangoda, Hikkaduwa and Weligama.
Pan Asia Bank was the first bank in Sri Lanka’s banking industry to introduce a special loan scheme – Sammana – for pensioners six years ago. The Sammana Pension Loan Scheme enables a pensioner to divert his/her pension to Pan Asia Bank and obtain a loan of upto Rs. 4 million, without need for guarantors thus empowering pensioners with new hope and dignity.
In an era where retirees were largely being considered as a liability by the society and overlooked by the financial sector, Pan Asia Bank came forward to offer Sammana loan scheme as a part of its endeavor to offer innovative financial products and also to cater to social segments that could contribute positively towards the country’s economic development. Led by its pioneering spirit, the Bank now holds the distinction of being the first to hold a special event such as ‘Garu Saru’ to pay tribute to pensioners who have made a valuable contribution to society.
Determined to add value to the lives of pensioners who form part of its customer base, Pan Asia Bank ensured that the ‘Garu Saru’ event offered attractive benefits and unlimited enjoyment. The Carnival included free medical camps, eye checks, food and beverages, fun activities, performances by famous actors and actresses. Various prizes were on offer for winners for some exciting competitions held during the Carnival. In order to ensure that more pensioners could travel to and participate in the ‘Garu Saru’, free transport was arranged by the bank from Matara, Akuressa and Ambalangoda to reach the venue.
A talent show was also held to give an opportunity for participants and their family members to show their talents. Providing greater value, free promotion opportunities for promotional stalls was available for pensioners. The Bank also continued its support of the SME community in the region by offering small scale entrepreneurs the opportunity to showcase their businesses at the Carnival, especially those who have been empowered in their entrepreneurship through loans by Pan Asia Bank.
Infusing further value into its relationship with this customer segment at the event, Pan Asia Bank launched the special ‘Sammana’ loyalty debit card for pensioners. The new ‘Sammana’ loyalty debit card rewards pensioners with attractive discounts and promotions from Sri Lanka’s leading corporates.
The Chief Guest on the occasion was Mr. Jagath Dias – Director, General Pensions along with other distinguished guests – Additional Director General of Pensions, K R Padmapriya; Galle Mayor Priyantha G. Sahabandu; Galle Deputy Mayor Faus Niyas; Galle District Secretary, Somarathna Vidanapathirana; Commodore 14th Gemunu regiment, Major S. Hettiarachchi; CEO of Pan Asia Bank, Mr. Nimal Tillekeratne and senior management of the bank, including Area Manager – South, Anuradha Ranaweera; Manager – Credit, Vindya Wickramage; senior management of the Ceylinco Life Insurance and Vision Care Optical ( Pvt ) Ltd. The notable event was supported by Ceylinco Life Insurance and Vision Care Opticals (Pvt) Ltd.
Pensioners, their family members, and even grandchildren thoroughly enjoyed the outing, which afforded an opportunity for these senior citizens to revel in the love and respect showered on them at the event by Pan Asia Bank. 100 free minor savings accounts were opened for customers’ grand-children at the event.