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ComBank wins 5 awards at world’s “Oscars” for best annual reports

  • 05 Sep 2023
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The 2022 Annual Report of the Commercial Bank of Ceylon has won five awards at the 2023 MerComm ARC Awards, the world’s largest annual report competition, widely considered the “Academy Awards of Annual Reports.”

The Bank won Silver in the ‘Integrated AR & CSR: Non-Traditional Format’ category as well as Silver for ‘Cover Design’ in addition to two Bronze awards for ‘Interior Design’ and ‘Illustrations’ and an Honours Award for ‘Written Text.’

The ARC Awards competition is unique in that each annual report is judged against itself, based on its success in communicating its company's story. Judging is based not on corporate profitability nor production, but on the values of creativity, clarity, effectiveness, and excellence as symbolised by the ARC Awards.

“Commercial Bank has always been committed to complete transparency and accountability, and our Annual Report is the primary and most authoritative source of information for all stakeholders,” the Bank’s Managing Director/CEO Mr Sanath Manatunge noted.  “Every year, we look at best disclosure practices around the world to fine tune it further to provide a deep insight into governance and performance. Winning ARC awards consistently demonstrates the success of these efforts and is a tribute to the team behind all the hard work.”

Commercial Bank’s 2022 Annual Report titled ‘In Context, Weathering a perfect storm’ was its 54th annual report and presented comprehensive information on all aspects of performance and governance in the backdrop of a series of events of great adversity, which the Bank said had combined to unleash a perfect storm in Sri Lanka. The report elaborated on how the Bank had kept faith in its proven prudence of strategy and adherence to a progressive drive towards enhancements in technology, customer convenience and operational efficiencies to take the Bank forward.

Entries for the ARC awards are evaluated three separate times during the preliminary rounds. The three sets of scores are then averaged into a single score for the individual entry. Annual reports scoring in the top 30 percent are awarded Honors, Bronze, Silver and Gold certificates of outstanding achievement. Some of the elements considered in the judging of the annual reports include: cover design, president's letter, interior design, clarity of written text, presentation of corporate information, expression of financial data, and how well the spirit of the organisation is communicated.

The 2023 International ARC Awards presentation ceremony is to be held in New York later this year.

Commercial Bank’s annual reports have consistently been recognised with local and regional awards for many years. The Bank was awarded the Cyril Gardiner Memorial Trophy presented by CA Sri Lanka for Overall Excellence in Financial Reporting 10 times. The Bank has also won the Edmund J. Cooray Memorial Trophy for the Best Annual Report among Banking Institutions presented by CA Sri Lanka on 16 occasions.

Sri Lanka’s first 100% carbon neutral bank and the first Sri Lankan bank to be listed among the Top 1000 Banks of the World, Commercial Bank operates a network of 271 branches and 957 automated machines in Sri Lanka and is a leader in digital innovation in the country’s Banking sector. The Bank’s overseas operations encompass Bangladesh, where the Bank operates 20 outlets; Myanmar, where it has a Microfinance company in Nay Pyi Taw; and the Maldives, where the Bank has a fully-fledged Tier I Bank with a majority stake.

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