Established in 1982, with donation of the Japanese Government, Rupavahini Corporation is Sri Lanka’s national television that stands for the benefit of the whole nation. Recognizing the diversity of expectations, values, interests and needs, Rupavahini TV reaches three basic target groups in the country – the Sinhala, the Tamil and the English-speaking natives.
The main purpose of this internationally renowned media is to achieve excellence in the creation of content, ensuring timely and valuable educational, entertainment and informative programs, and disseminating them with state-of-the-art technology. Ravi Jayawardena, Chairman, explains, “We broadcast two channels, the Rupavahini Channel One and the Channel EYE. Channel EYE is divided in two separate parts, Channel EYE broadcasted in English and Nethra TV in Tamil language”. He adds, “25% of the population of Sri Lanka speaks Tamil, but unfortunately we did not have a full time Tamil channel. We are in the process of setting up a full-time channel as a necessity for Tamil speaking people in this country”.
Enabling coverage throughout the country, Rupavahini Channel constantly strives to provide effective reach to the viewers with strategic use of state-of-the-art technologies in a converging environment of acquisition, post production and dissemination. Rupavahini Corporation is situated in a studio complex in Colombo, the commercial capital of Sri Lanka. The complex comprises a Master Control Room, four Studios, two Dubbing Studios, a Digital Post Production Unit, two Analogue Post Production Units, several editing suites including Non-Linear Editing and four Outside Broadcast vehicles.
Rupavahini TV regained its media independence and freedom in producing content with the political changes in the country, in 2015. Ravi Jayawardena points out “There is a lot of transparency. Every person that is interested in our work can come and see how we are working. We are not profit-making television, but we also do not depend on the Government”.
The company is actively engaged in the productive development of the employees, constantly seeking for new means to generate income and raise the competitiveness. “We have a marketing team that takes our products to the advertising agencies, and they bring the clients. The biggest revenue that we have is coming from the lottery, because we hold the rights. Most of the companies like to advertise with us because our reach is island wide”.
Offering extensive content for the Sri Lanka population
Aiming to reach excellence, Rupavahini Corporation puts its main focus on the improvement of the attractiveness, offering variety of quality television programs with constant change in the format. This includes musical, agricultural, political, religious, educational and medical programs, documentaries and discussions. Ravi Jayawardena emphasizes, “When it comes to news people rely on us, because we give the correct information. Furthermore, we are the leaders of the sports programs. If someone wants to learn about Sri Lanka, about the culture and tradition, this is the right channel to watch. Our main responsibility is the impact on the society and its development process”. The TV has produced different social projects, including the Child Protection and the Road Safety Project, and is currently working on the promotion of the Safety Environment Project.
“We have to secure the national interest. We should not go against the culture and we must thing about our heritage and our living standards. Being a national channel, we have to set the standards for the rest of the media. That is the biggest focus and purpose of this channel, to bring harmony and to secure the culture and self-sustainability”, says Ravi Jayawardena.
Connecting international and home viewers worldwide
Working as Sri Lanka’s National Channel, Rupavahini Corporation’s main role is to promote the investments, highlighting the work of the foreign investors, discussing their brands and their contribution to the economy. Ravi Jayawardena points out, “We are one of the top brands in this country, and we are also present on international level. Our reach is very good and we are very popular among the Sri Lankans who live abroad. If you ask the international community, like the embassies, they will tell you that we are number one channel in Sri Lanka”.
Welcoming a bright future
Ravi Jayawardena highlights the environmental protection activities the company is undertaking. “We want Rupavahini to become the first green media in Sri Lanka. We have already created a garden in our yard, and now we are going to start to grow vegetables. We want to be a role model, and we started a forestation campaign through the whole country”.
He concludes, “Sri Lanka is a tropical island, with one of the best beaches in the world. We have very educated people and the location of our island is an advantage for everybody who visits us, because the country is in the heart of the Indian Ocean, connecting the East and the West”.