The local mobile unit of Hong Kong-based Hutchison Telecommunications has signed up with Sri Lanka's Commercial Bank to offer SMS banking services to the subscribers, according to a statement by the mobile operator. Hutch, as it is branded domestically, is a subsidiary of the Fortune 500 Hutchison Whampoa diversified conglomerate that has international interests in, as per its website, "ports and related services, telecommunications, property and hotels, retail and manufacturing, and energy and infrastructure."
Further, elaborating on SMS banking services accessible to Hutch subscribers, the statement indicated that "Hutch customers with Commercial Bank accounts can reload their prepaid connections and settle post-pay bills as well via an SMS to 8823. This convenient new service also allows Hutch customers to pay their electricity, water, and other utility bills through SMS banking. A great feature of this agreement is that any Hutch customer gets the opportunity to pay their post-pay bill over the counter at any Commercial Bank, irrespective of them being the bank's customers." At the same time, SMS banking was said to be available 24 hours a day, while the full scope of services, aside from the option of paying postpaid bills at the Commercial Bank premises, was indicated as being open only to Hutch subscribers with accounts at Commercial Bank.
Additionally, the statement also quoted Hutch Chief Operating Officer, Anand Prakash, as commenting that "our objective is to reach as many customers as possible by facilitating more touch points across the island. We will continue to enter into mutually advantageous partnerships to achieve that goal."