In keeping with the world trends in commercial ventures, Sri Lanka Handicraft Board better known as Laksala launched its website www.laksala.lk at a ceremony held on Tuesday at its premises. The investment on this project is Rs. 12 million.
The use of information technology in the spheres of marketing and promotion will enable efficient functioning and thereby increase productivity and profitability, Laksala Chairperson Ms Somakumari Tennekoon said.
The move is expected to enhance the quality and sales capacity thus gaining a wider publicity for our local products, she said. `This will also help our producers and suppliers easy access to their product information at a click of a button. It will save a lot of time and money as they can operate within their areas`. The Information Communication Technology Agency (ICTA) in collaboration with the Laksala launched the revamped website as well as its online sales section to provide rural handicraft suppliers access their accounts on orders, inventory and payments.
The online system which simplifies the purchasing and supplying processes will be a boost to the Laksala sales, Tennekoon said. One hundred and fifty staff members were trained to handle the new system. `This will benefit our sales centre and the partner suppliers. It would also contribute to national production and market expansion. As Laksala is the first government commercial venture to equipped with a website it will provide better opportunities for a growth in local and international markets`, she added.
Sri Lanka Handicraft Board was established in 1983 under the National Craft Council and Allied Institutions Act No 35 of 1982. Laksala is a state corporation under the Ministry of Rural Industries and Self Employment Promotion and was set up to preserve and develop traditional skills of the craftsmen. The Board is dealing with nearly 3,500 leading craftsmen who are producing handicrafts items at rural/cottage industry level.
Laksala is the only state owned handicraft marketing organization in Sri Lanka that deals with training to craftsmen and marketing and export promotion of handicrafts. The Board handles 140 training centres 23 sales outlets and 14 provincial purchasing points for the purpose of achieving its objectives.