Taking IT by Storm
By Shanuka Kadupitiyage
Arimac Digital is an organisation that needs no introduction. One of the biggest organisations in the country’s digital sphere, Arimac has been an industry leader, and game changer in the spheres of digital IT solutions. Now, the organisation celebrates its tenth anniversary amidst a number of achievements to its name. Ceylon Today spoke with the man behind it all, CEO of Arimac Chamira Prasad Jayasinghe, to learn more about the decade-long road he and Arimac have travelled and to glean what they attribute as their recipe for success.
Chamira Prasad Jayasinghe
A serial entrepreneur, disruptive innovator and avid programmer based Sri Lanka, Chamira revitalised the digital sphere in the heart of Colombo by founding Arimac Digital. He founded the company in 2011, and has since been at the forefront of the digital communications industry, not only locally, but also throughout Asia, building Arimac into a billion dollar venture.
Chamira is first-class honours degree holder in computer science and has won several international awards for projects on brain computer interfaces and humancomputer interactions. He has also collaborated with several Silicon Valley companies and top technology universities in the USA, Singapore, and Australia. He is also an honorary member of the Forbes Technology Council.
Proving a point
We learnt that Arimac came to what it is today because of the simple ambition of a man with the drive to make a change. “When we started Arimac back in 2011, my vision was to create a space for people of various talents to work together and to give life to unique and ground-breaking ideas,” he shared. “While pursuing my higher education, I realised that Sri Lankan talent have the potential to take the local tech industry to greater heights, and so my ultimate goal was to create a company which can retain these talents and give them a platform to use their ideas to ultimately pinpoint Sri Lanka in the world map as a global ICT hub.
So far, I think we are on the right path to achieve just that. “I also wanted prove that you don’t need fluent English or multiple degrees and accolades to go up the ladder of success. Today, we have the talent with us who have broken stereotypes and help us achieve the success we are proudly enjoying today, as one of the front runners in digital space, in Asia.”
Founded with a bunch of Chamira’s friends, including co-founder Chinthaka Sandaruwan, Arimac Digital has grown to become an organisation that is spearheading digital solutions for customers across the globe, especially the Asian region. Today, Arimac has expanded its presence to several countries, including the UAE, the Caribbean Islands, Fiji, and Australia, working with even Fortune 500 companies, such as Du Mobile, Ooredoo, Etihad, Visa, and Emirates over its ten years of operations.
Arimac also has a starstudded local client base, which includes Dialog Axiata, Coca-Cola, Microsoft, MAS, Hemas, Sri Lankan Airlines, Brandix, 3M, Lowe LDB, Nestle and Unilever. The company operates with over 230 employees and is involved in web and mobile development, immersive technology, robotics and cognitive sciences, and game development. It is through these ventures that South Asia’s first humanoid robot Diyazen and world-class video games such as Kanchayudha and NERO were created by the group.
Not without challenges
Of course, all this success wasn’t without some major setbacks along the way. At first, there was the lack of awareness for AI, Immersive technology, design anthropology and brain computing – all fields that Chamira had a massive interest in. Most recently, the biggest challenge faced by the organisation, as a result of the pandemic, was not being able to add a human touch to the ethnographic research sessions, which are usually conducted together with clients at the commencement of a new project, to better understand customer needs.
The secret ingredient
We wanted to know what the secret ingredient was for Arimac’s success, which Chamira attributed to his team of more than 230, who come from all walks of life. “We have Stanford graduates to those who have not yet completed their academic education,” he shared. “Every talented and passionate youth has an equal opportunity at Arimac to showcase and hone their talents. This is the ethos on which Arimac was founded.
Arimac’s doors are open for pure talent, passion, and fire without any pre-requisite for language fluency or educational qualifications. Here at Arimac, we treat everyone like family, and create a work condition that allows freedom.” This focus on the human element, along with the passion for technology and innovation, have helped Arimac to achieve the success it has today.
The present and the future
Arimac continues to move forward, scoring achievement after achievement. One example is the announcement of NERO, Sri Lanka’s first stealth-action shooter, which will be launching today (26) and will be available for download on STEAM, the world’s largest PC game client. Developed completely by Sri Lankan talent at Arimac’s Game Design Studio, NERO marks the commencement of Sri Lanka’s foray into the global stage of gaming, showcasing the immense talent of Sri Lankan game developers.
“We hope that NERO will be embraced with pride by the locals and will get the undying love and support as we continue to break barriers and achieving big in the digital technology space, globally,” he shared. Not only that, Arimac has the ambitious goal of nurturing and growing 50 tech star-ups by 2028, hoping to build a tech-unicorn in Sri Lanka as well as pursue a physical presence in Singapore, aiming to register patents and monetise technologies developed by Arimac for Diyazen towards robotics manufacturers and developers.
Bringing Sri Lanka forward
“Arimac is proof that we have the right talent in Sri Lanka, but unfortunately, many of them choose to journey abroad due to the lack of guidance, lack of knowledge regarding the opportunities we have at hand, here in our country,” Chamira shared while adding his message to you, the reader.
“Always give your best at whatever you do. At Arimac, we strongly believe that, whatever the size and scale of the project, it is important to give your 100 per cent. We will face numerous challenges in the way, but we must always see the brighter side, and turn the challenge into an opportunity. Our talented team take this advice on a daily basis, which I humbly believe, is why we achieved big within just a short span of 10 years.”