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ACCA Sri Lanka Holds the Country’s First Virtual Financial Hackerthon

In today’s digital era, the success of businesses depends on its ability to sustain innovation. As such, with the aim of fostering and encouraging creative problem solving to drive innovative ideas, the forward-thinking accounting body ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) recently conducted the country’s very first Financial Virtual Hackathon titled “Virtual Finhack 2019.” Teams from key universities in the country participated.
Engaging participants simultaneously across different geographies, Virtual Finhack 2019 had competing teams that worked around the clock to come up with solutions to case studies presented on current challenges prevalent in the finance industry.
Finhack 2019 showcased an intense burst of idea storming, with each team working diligently on seeking intelligent solutions to overcome and manage challenges in the finance arena.
These included working on case studies based on financial management and analysis, risk, financial reporting, maximizing company value and mind mapping on solutions pertaining to fair value. The teams pitched their ideas to a collection of industry experts ranging those from top finance entities, blue chip companies and to senior academics of universities.
The judges in turn evaluated the ideas presented, by perusing their user potential, level of innovation and commercial potential.
The panel of judges for the event consisted of Mr. Suren Rajakarier – Chairman Member Network Panel ACCA Sri Lanka and Partner KPMG, Mr. NandikaBuddipala – Vice Chairman Member Network Panel ACCA Sri Lanka and Chief Financial Officer Commercial Bank, Mr. JehanPerinpanayagam – Member, Member Network Panel ACCA Sri Lanka and Chief Executive Officer Informate Pvt Ltd, Ms. HasiniPerera – Lecturer Department of Accountancy University of Kelaniya, Dr. Chathurika Seneviratne, Lecturer Department of Accounting, University of Sri Jayawardenapura and Ms.Nilusha Ranasinghe – Head of ACCA Sri Lanka
After some impressive pitching, the Department of Accounting, University of Kelaniya emerged the winners, with the Department of Accounting, University of Sri Jayawardenapura and Department of Accounting, University of Colombo coming in as joint runners up for the event.
Giving an insight into the thinking behind holding an event of this nature, Ms. Nilusha Ranasinghe, Head of ACCA Sri Lanka commented, “Innovation comes from creating the right environments where ideas can connect, hence the reason we felt that this Industry-specific hackathon will help drive innovation and drive engagement by focusing on self-directed and dynamic learning. Besides, in a virtual hackathon, we can also give any student and graduate irrespective of where they are located, the opportunity to participate, demonstrate and showcase their skills to take them to the next level.
With digitisation, the future of financial services holds amazing opportunities that will entail finance professionals to combine finance data with external information to help model and predict business outcomes, identifying the most profitable opportunities.
We wanted to help and nurture the future generation of finance professionals to ride this wave with confidence and be well versed problem solvers that will drive organisations forward.”
ACCA hopes to hold Finhack as an yearly event and to use it as a platform to motivate young professionals to confidently embrace the changes taking place in the evolving field of finance.

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