Colombo, March 6, 2017: Dipped Products PLC, Hayleys Group’s internationally renowned glove manufacturing subsidiary, emerged as winners of the Ian Dias Abeysinghe Memorial CSR/Sustainability award at the recently concluded Japan Sri Lanka Technical & Cultural Association (JASTECA) Awards 2016.
The Gold award was presented to DPL in recognition of the Company’s groundbreaking efforts to develop the world’s first ethical rubber gloves manufactured using ‘Fair Trade’ principles that ensure that the rubber is sustainably and ethically sourced from smallholder farmers. This was initiated in 2007 in the Moneragala district.
The Firstlight program has been designed to enable smallholder rubber farmers to be directly integrated into the field latex supply chain of DPL manufacturing operations. DPL has always been mindful that one of its primary responsibilities is to take good care of the rubber farmers who form the first link in the value chain of latex glove manufacturing. DPL has crafted the Firstlight programme as its core CSR/sustainability project keeping this primary responsibility in mind.
The company adopts a multi-pronged strategy that ensures a transparent pricing scheme based on Colombo RSS1 auction prices, in order to ensure a fair price for field latex while also providing education and practical training in optimized tapping techniques, and end-to-end sustainability practices with a view to enhancing productivity and quality.
DPL’s comprehensive assistance towards optimization of smallholder rubber production also extends to material assistance setting up of rubber plant nurseries and the provision of high quality tapping knives, rain guards, aprons, fertilizers.
Moving beyond direct support in terms of rubber production, Firstlight has since expanded the scope of its operations to also encompass community capacity building initiatives in the fields of healthcare, education, sanitation and other critical areas capable of driving significant and meaningful improvements to the overall quality of living for these communities.
DPL Managing Director, Dr. Mahesha Ranasoma stated “Corporate social responsibility is a vital component in the success of Dipped Products and the Hayleys Group of companies. Through a dedicated team effort, we have been able to achieve widespread international recognition for the quality of our products while adding even greater value through our pioneering ‘Fair Trade’ model. We hope that these efforts will demonstrate how powerful CSR strategies can be incorporated into a successful business model in order to add further value to the end consumer in an ethical and sustainable manner,”
Firstlight started with 4 farmers in 2007. By 2008, the base increased to 148 farmers who contributed 12% of the field latex supply to DPL. By 2016, the farmer base has grown more than 10 fold to 1,620 and their contribution to DPL's field latex requirement has grown to more than 45% of the total requirement.
Dipped Products PLC is a fully integrated rubber glove manufacturer producing a continuing stream of high value, new product innovations in protective hand wear that is renowned for quality and performance. A subsidiary of the Hayleys Group, DPL currently services up to approximately 5% of the demand for household and industrial gloves in developed and emerging markets worldwide. Backed by over four decades of extensive experience and technical expertise, DPL ranks among the world's largest manufacturers in the hand protection industry.
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Lower prices for tea and rubber impact revenue
Dipped Products PLC (DPL) posted Rs. 22Bn in Group Turnover during the financial year 2015-16, a 21 percent reduction from a year ago. Group Profit Before Tax (PBT) for the period was Rs. 648 million, a 64 percent reduction from the Rs. 1,780 million recorded for the last year.
The Hand Protection segment contributed Rs. 12.7Bn to revenue, 15 percent lower than the previous year. Contribution to PBT from the segment was at Rs. 549 million, 63 percent lower from a year ago. The Plantation segment reported Rs. 9.5Bn in revenue, a 29 percent reduction from the previous year and a PBT of Rs. 154 million, compared to Rs. 390 million posted for the last year.
Dr. M Ranasoma commenting on the results said “it has been a very challenging year for DPL due to multiple factors including heightened competition from regional players and some of DPL’s key markets continuing to be sluggish”. He further stated that DPL’s manufacturing platform with its new factories in Biyagama Export Processing Zone are expected to contribute positively to Group performance in 2016/17 financial year.
Established in 1976, Dipped Products is one of the leading non-medical rubber glove manufacturers in the world, and accounts for a 5 percent share of the global market. The company’s products now reach 68 countries.
The Board of Directors of Dipped Products PLC comprises Messrs. Mohan Pandithage (Chairman), Dr. K. I. M. Ranasoma (Managing Director), D.K.Welmillage, F. Mohideen, S. C. Ganegoda, Dhammika Perera, M. Bottino, S. Rajapakse, N. A. R. R. S Nanayakkara, S. P. Peiris, K.D.G.Gunaratne, H.S.R. Kariyawasan and S.M.Shaikh.
Firstlight, the Corporate Social Responsibility project of Dipped Products PLC (DPL) has won the Best Innovative Model for CSR at the JASTECA (Japan Sri Lanka Technical and Cultural Association) Awards recently. The Firstlight initiative reflects DPL’s commitment towards business sustainability in which economic, environmental and social factors are integrated in order to empower smallholder rubber farmers to achieve their maximum capability as well as empowering farmer communities through capacity building activities. Through FirstLight, DPL’s mission is to introduce and promote ethically produced gloves to the world market.
The aim of this initiative is to provide a better quality life to disadvantaged farmers from the remote villages of Sri Lanka who account for 65% of Sri Lanka’s national rubber crop. With the initiation of this project in the year 2007, Firstlight has been able to expand its rubber sourcing farmer base from 20 to nearly 500 farmers based in Monaragala by 2013.
The initiative also intends to maintain fair-trade in the latex rubber industry by empowering the small holder farmers to be self-dependent. Furthermore, by partnering with an ethical business initiative in natural rubber production, the farmers are able to sustain their families on a long term basis.
The CSR program does not limit itself to community development, but also ensures the environment too is protected such as by teaching the farmers on the appropriate use of fertiliser. Due to the impact made by the program to society, it attracts more farmers, thereby encouraging the growth of the business.
Audited by Tradecraft UK, based on the Fair Trade Principles laid out by the European Fair Trade Association and Fair trade Labour Organisation Certification (FLO-CERT), this initiative was previously the winner of the ‘Investment in People’ Category at the Asia Responsible Entrepreneurship Awards (AREA) 2012 for South Asia.
The AREA program recognises and honours Asian businesses for championing sustainable and responsible entrepreneurship in the following categories: Green Leadership, Investment in People, Corporate Governance, Health Promotion, Social Empowerment, SME CSR and Responsible Business Leadership.
Established in 1976, Dipped Products is one of the leading non-medical rubber glove manufacturers in the world, accounting for 5 per cent share of the global non-medical glove market. DPL’s products now reach about 70 countries worldwide. Furthermore, DPL is also recognised as an ethical glove manufacturer across the world.
On 13 December 2012, representatives from Dipped Products PLC (DPL), globally ranked rubber glove manufacturer of the Hayleys Group, officially received the Investment in People Category Award at the Asia Responsible Entrepreneurship Awards (AREA) official presentation ceremony in Delhi, India.
DPL was the sole company to win the Investment in PeopleCategory, a clear indication of the project’s groundbreaking business model. “Receiving the award means a great deal to the DPL team,” stated Dr. Ranasoma at the event. “Having these efforts recognised within the industry and in addition being placed head and shoulders over other enterprises in the region, is testament to our success and contribution to entrepreneurship and sustainable development.”
Over 100 applications from the region, including almost 30 from Sri Lankan participants, were submitted under the categories Responsible Business Leadership, Social Empowerment, Investment in People, Health Promotion, Green Leadership, and SME CSR. Of these, ten applications from countries including India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Pakistan were received by Enterprise Asia under the Investment in PeopleCategory.
The in-depth search and selection process for the Award comprised of initial screening, audit verification by a reputable Audit Partner, Auditors’ Score-carding process, and final judging by an Advisory Panel.
An extract of a document published by Enterprise Asia titled Sustainable Success Stories reveals that the recipient of the Investment in People award must have policies and programmes in place that show their respect for their people (primarily employees but may also include vendors, clients and business partners).
The same document also showcases DPL’s Firstlight initiative – which was featured in the rubber glove manufacturer’s application – an exciting cause-related marketing programme that advances the concept of ethical and fair trade based production in the rubber industry.
Dipped Products PLC (DPL) has been named winner of the Asia Responsible Entrepreneurship Awards 2012 for Southeast Asia, in the ‘Investment in People’ category. The Hayleys Group’s globally-ranked rubber glove manufacturing business clinched the category award for championing sustainable and responsible entrepreneurship through its Firstlight project, which gave the world its first ethical rubber gloves.
“Firstlight is DPL’s home-grown sourcing initiative. Coupled with market sustainability and corporate social responsibility, it is aligned to empower smallholder rubber farmers to achieve their full potential,” stated Dipped Products Managing Director Dr. Mahesha Ranasoma.
“We engage all components of the value chain, from suppliers to buyers and end customers and in doing so, encourage the move towards ethically sourced and manufactured products. It is truly an honour to represent Sri Lankan corporates, and be ranked amongst the top organisations in the region for sustainable business practices.”
DPL will receive the award at an official presentation ceremony to be held on 13 December 2012, in Delhi, India.
Established in 1976, Dipped Products is one of the leading non-medical rubber glove manufacturers in the world, accounting for five per cent share of the global non-medical glove market. DPL’s products now reach about 70 countries worldwide.
The Asia Responsible Entrepreneurship Awards program (AREA) recognises and honours Asian businesses for championing sustainable and responsible entrepreneurship in the following categories: green leadership, investment in people, corporate governance, health promotion, social empowerment, SME CSR and responsible business leadership.
Strong operational performances from Hand Protection combined with capital gains and better contributions from Plantations have generated healthy revenue and profit growth for Dipped Products PLC (DPL) in the year ending 31st March 2012.