How to succeed as Sri Lanka’s top woman entrepreneur: Honesty, hard work, and perseverance
Posted on March 8th, 2019


This International Women’s Day I chose to have a conversation with a lady who is recognized as the leading Sri Lankan woman entrepreneur, Mrs. Aban Pestonjee.

Her story is an inspiration to youth (male and female) and women who are afraid of failure and taking risks.

Starting from a modest home-based business, 50 years ago, today Aban is a household brand name that is island wide in Sri Lanka.

The company employs people from different walks of life in diverse jobs from street cleaners to those employed in a mega mall. The business ranges from Electronic Retailing to Sri Lanka’s most Modern Mall, to Logistics, Manufacturing, Environmental Services, and even City Cleaning Services.

All this started with a young lady who dared to dream big and defeated the fear of failure.

In our conversation, Mrs. Pestonjee said that many ask her if she had to face challenges because she is a woman and her response is No”. She told me that as long as a woman has mastered her line of work and has proven she is capable of her job, she can overcome all other obstacles.YOU LEARN WHEN YOU MAKE MISTAKES, AND THEN YOU COME OUT STRONGER BECAUSE YOU KNOW MORE ABOUT THE BUSINESS EVEN AFTER THAT.” – Aban Pestonjee

Interview with Aban Pestonjee, interviewed by Geoffrey Jones, Mumbai, India, July 13, 2017, Creating Emerging Markets Oral History Collection, Baker Library Special Collections, Harvard Business School. 

Read more here.

Watch our conversation here:

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One Response to “How to succeed as Sri Lanka’s top woman entrepreneur: Honesty, hard work, and perseverance”

  1. Christie Says:

    This lady is an Indian Colonial Parasite who was rich and had plenty of money before she started this venture. Her Family was also a part of the Indian Colonial Parasite Cabal who financed politicians of all shades.

    During Sirinmavo’s days she started her business from her house in Galle Road , Colombo.

    She bought all house hold goods from Embassies, tourists and travelers and also brought in goods from Singapore and London from Indian Colonial Parasites .

    I once came across a English woman who sold her some personal sanitary goods and make up.

    Aban didn’t want to pay much for tampons but was prepared to pay anything for sanitary pads.

    Asked why she said she had to send some to “Madam”

    When asked who the Madam was Aban said it was the Prime Minister.

    This woman has been interviewed in Bombay where they live and stash our money.

    It is dishonesty and exploitation of we Sinhalese that these Indian Parasites thrive on.

    She fully responsible for the Meetotamulla rubbish dump tragedy and no politician is brave enough to take on her as these Parasites spends billions on our politicians.


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