Top Kandy Entrepreneur to elevate the Kingdom with more investments | Daily News

Top Kandy Entrepreneur to elevate the Kingdom with more investments

W. H. M. Nimal Bandara
W. H. M. Nimal Bandara

The kingdom of Kandy, the second-largest city of the island with a rich history of monarchy and culture behind it and listed as a ‘must visit place’ in the tourism catalog, is now having a growing middle class and a high spending youth population.

When it comes to buying their day-to-day essentials, this segment is always looking at quality and comfort and high service level for which they are willing to pocket more. “Though there are large supermarket chains mushrooming everywhere, I saw a void for a quality supermarket that gives something more to the ‘shopper’ unmatched service levels,” said entrepreneur and economist, W. H. M. Nimal Bandara.

‘Having started as an Executive and ending up in the Director Board I was heading one of largest blue-chip institutions with over 14, 000 employees over a decade ago. Then I moved into the Public sector and was employed as a Director in the Board of Investment and then as the Director General Sri Lanka Gem and Jewellery Authority installing new thinking and a change of mindset to the institution.”

“This resulted in the Gem and Jewellery Authority making the highest ever profits in its history and new mining areas such as Kataragama were detected and given out to miners in a very transparent manner. However the State sector pressure was too much for me and I bowed down from the institution gracefully and moved into Kurunegala starting my own business in Real Estate (Onelta) while continuing my advanced studies in marketing.”

Armed with an MBA I studied the areas where there was scope to grow and offer a different and a unique level of service to the public to the public and then moved to Kandy opening a Service station and then reinvesting it to convert it to a Kandy’s most sought-after Sunrise Auto Spa in Kundalase bringing a new dimension to the auto servicing segment and catering to all Auto care needs including a sales outlet under one roof.

“One of the unique features of Sunrise Auto Spa is that we cater to all segments of vehicles which have resulted in several Three Wheeler’s obtaining our services on a regular basis.”

With the quest to diversify Nimal Bandara then acquired a rundown super market in new Digana Road Naththrampotha Kundasale and created and launched Sunrise Super, dubbed to be the best Supermarket in Kandy,” said Chairman Sunrise Super, Nimal Bandara.

“I invested nearly Rs. 1 billion for these three ventures and a lot of praise should also go to my Daughter Dewmini Bandara based in Liverpool UK for doing the interior which is the first striking feature of Sunrise Super.”

Asked why he invested in a Supermarket when so many chains were available even in close proximity, he said that he knew his product, Sunrise Super, was something different to the ‘traditional’ supermarket chains and he proved to be right with the sales values he was achieving. “As for competition, it helps us to enhance product and service levels and constantly keeps us in check.”

I always wanted to be a ‘trend setter’ which I did at the Gem and Jewellery Authority as well as the BOI and in my Auto Spa ventures and looking back I have delivered one of the best shopping experiences in Kandy by creating Sunrise Super.”

Next, I am planning to move in the appeal sector and create one of the best fashion stores on top of Sunrise Super investing a further Rs. 100 million. “My next mega project is to create and open a carbon copy of Sunrise Super in Kurunegala.”

Another priority is to enhance youth empowerment and have provided over 200 jobs and they were also never retrenched or financially penalized even during the pandemic single handedly shrouding the lossless during lock downs. His efforts were richly appreciated and rewarded when he won a haul of accolades from leading chambers. These also included Entrepreneur of the Year Kandy and many more such prestigious honor.

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