North Sails NEWS
NORTH SAILS SRI LANKA CELEBRATES 25 YEARS
Evolving Together To Create The World’s Best Sail Technology
This month we give special recognition to ten employees who have been part of the North Sails team in Sri Lanka since 1996. Thank you for your hard work and dedication, which is a big part of why North Sails is the leader in sailmaking technology worldwide.
On February 1st, 1996, North Sails Sri Lanka facility opened with 12 employees, at one single loft location in the Biyagama Export Processing Zone. 700 employees now run the five buildings that make up the most advanced laminating line in the sail cloth industry—including 10 of our original employees. So together, we’re celebrating a silver anniversary!
How it began
When the facility first opened, capacity was just 25 one design sails per week. Today, a typical work week produces about 600 sails. The manufacturing compound consists of nine buildings, which house five 3D molds, Six 3Di tape heads, cloth lamination, and 11 flat-bed plotters with lasers. The total capacity is 20,000 sails per year, plus sail bags and accessories.
Creating a positive work environment
Over the course of their time at North Sails each employee has benefitted from their experiences in the workplace. It’s not just about building sails— it’s about building a framework and team structure that allows employees to succeed. With the many developmental programs, training sessions, and outbound programs to help align their cultures with the North Sails brand, the knowledge enhancement also offers staff a closer look into the inner workings of sailmaking.
“Outbound training has shown many benefits for employees,” says North Sails Sri Lanka Director Larry MacDonald, adding that the manufacturing team had the opportunity to build and sail remote control sailboats. “Many of the participants now are grasping the intricacies of the sport and the importance of sail design and workmanship. Employees were empowered with sailing know-how, improved problem solving, and communication skills. That has given them a better connection with our product, so they can make judgments and improvements to the sail assembling process naturally.”
During the pandemic the company has continued to provide a safe work environment, which allowed the facility to remain open.
Here’s some of what we heard when we reached out directly to our silver anniversary employees.
Employees Celebrating 25 Years
Indrani Wijebandara celebrates her 25th year anniversary with North Sails Sri Lanka. She believes that North Sails is the foundation stone of all her personal and social triumphs. She comments,
“This is my second home and I’m fortunate to be the first employee of North Sails Sri Lanka. I still remember my old days, 25 years ago, we worked with just a handful of people and with a very limited amount of resources. This company has evolved in so many ways, and in a very positive sustainable journey.”
Sumithra Gamage also celebrates her 25 year anniversary. She comments,
“The success of North Sails was not achieved overnight but with long term endeavors such as hard work, commitment and having the ability to overcome various challenges. I’ve enjoyed my 25 years here, which still feels like yesterday.”
Thank you to all of our employees who help contribute to our company success. A special thank you to the ten employees who’ve been part of our sailmaking revolution over the last 25 years.
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