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FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards

Mobilising Sustainable Capital, Technology and Ideas in the New Economy

London |
Judges include:
John Thornhill

John Thornhill

Financial Times

Nena Stoiljkovic

Nena Stoiljkovic


Kanini Mutooni

Kanini Mutooni

East Africa Trade and Investment Hub


The Financial Times and IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, have announced the winners of the 2016 FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards.

Microvast, a power solutions provider for electric vehicles, received the award for Excellence in Transformational Business. For more information on all the winners and highly commended entries, please see here.

This year’s programme marked 11 years of collaboration between FT and IFC on global awards initiatives that highlight ground-breaking, commercially viable solutions to today’s development challenges. For 2016, special attention was given to products and services that address challenges around climate change, especially in rapidly growing urban areas. The awards also highlighted the role of the private sector in achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). A total of 155 entries were received from 219 organisations involving projects in 92 countries.

The awards were presented at a special dinner in London attended by around 250 senior decision-makers in business, finance and development. The event followed a half-day Transformational Business Conference organised by the Financial Times and IFC.

fallback Add to my Calendar 04/07/2016 00:00:0004/07/2016 00:00:00falseFT/IFC Transformational Business Awards The Financial Times and IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, have announced the winners of the 2016 FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards.Microvast, a power solutions provider for electric vehicles, received the award for Excellence in Transformational Business. For more information on all the winners and highly commended entries, please see here.This year’s programme marked 11 years of collaboration between FT and IFC on global awards initiatives that highlight ground-breaking, commercially viable solutions to today’s development challenges. For 2016, special attention was given to products and services that address challenges around climate change, especially in rapidly growing urban areas. The awards also highlighted the role of the private sector in achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). A total of 155 entries were received from 219 organisations involving projects in 92 countries.The awards were presented at a special dinner in London attended by around 250 senior decision-makers in business, finance and development. The event followed a half-day Transformational Business Conference organised by the Financial Times and IFC.FT/IFC-Transformational-Business-Awards-b9b2fdad7d71b75027af78257981a2ddMM/DD/YYYY

2016 Awards Winners

The winners and highly commended are:

Achievement in Low-Carbon Urban Transformation

Winner: Microvast
Based primarily in China, Microvast have developed, manufactured and sold battery power solutions to 10,000 electric buses in 26 provinces across China and four European countries. Their latest development is an ultra-fast charging battery pack, MVPACK, specifically designed for use in cars, with a battery life that matches the life of the vehicle. The convenience of this environmentally friendly energy solution is expected to encourage and contribute to the mass adoption of affordable electric vehicles, and the long-term electrification of urban transport systems.

In the words of the judges, the winner of this category is transforming the public transit sector in one of the world’s most polluted and densely populated countries where renewable energy solutions are in big demand.  If rolled out globally, this approach could play an important role in the fight against climate change

Highly Commended: Lumos and Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC)
Lumos has partnered with OPIC to provide affordable and solar electricity to off-grid homes in Nigeria, developing a solar-connected indoor unit that allows people to purchase reliable electricity on demand. Working in cooperation with mobile phone operators, the project utilises their existing sales, marketing, distribution and billing infrastructure to ensure that payments can be made via mobile, on a pay-per-use system, without the need for a mobile money infrastructure.

The special commendation in this category goes to a company whose impact goes well beyond its sector by offering a novel and affordable solution to the acute challenge of access to energy.


Special Award: Excellence in City-Led Transformation

Winner: New Taipei City Government
New Taipei City is a newly established municipality circling Taiwan’s capital Taipei City. The vision of the city reform is to build a “Liveable City” that identifies and accommodates the needs of its people. Innovative policies have included the Happiness Protection Station, whereby children of disadvantaged families get free meal boxes in convenience stores, and the Department of Social Welfare can then collect the data and reach out to the families in need. This experiment in modern-age urbanization is citizen-oriented and has encouraged public participation in effective governance, inviting members of the public to be part of committees in major policy areas to enable citizens’ input at every stage of policy planning. 

In the words of the judges, the winner of this category is an exemplary city-wide transformational program that offers a sustainable solution to the worldwide challenge of equitable urban development

Highly Commended: Harare City Council 
The council’s Harare Slum Upgrading Project aims to enhance housing sector inclusiveness and reinstall Council service delivery. This has been achieved in part by engaging the urban poor in slum upgrading processes, and mediating between increasingly active citizens and a stretched national government. Operating within a reform-starved, resource-stressed environment, Harare City Council has served as an invaluable example for other councils in Zimbabwe.

The special commendation in this category goes to a city that is achieving remarkable results in an exceptionally challenging environment. It is building a new relationship with the urban poor, introducing significant reforms and sharing its experience with other cities.


Achievement in Transformational Technology

Winner: Piramal Foundation
Piramal Sarvajal designs and deploys innovative technology to ensure safe water access for India’s rural villages. The company installs local, remotely-tracked water purification systems, and has built a strong network of ‘water ATMs’, the solar-powered, cloud-connected vending machines that dispense water for villagers at the swipe of a smart card. As the ATMs track every transaction that takes place, they enable sophisticated market forecasting and 24-hour access to water, as well as the possibility to provide targeted subsidies to certain villages through government-run programs.

In the words of the judges, the winner of this category is offering an innovative technology to provide access to a basic resource in rural areas. This model holds a lot of promise:

Highly Commended: what3words
This addressing system is based on a global grid of 57 trillion squares, each 3m by 3m in size. The what3words algorithm allocates each square a fixed, unique 3 word address, giving the whole world a simple and communicable address listing that is as accurate as GPS. The apps and codes are then plugged into existing services, and used to track disease outbreaks, send aid and disaster relief to precise areas, address informal settlements across the world, facilitate environmental conservation recording and enable real-time reporting at exact locations.

The special commendation in this category goes to a company whose innovative technology will allow for the delivery of much-needed products across a number of countries:


Achievement in Transformational Finance

Winner: NatureVest, The Nature Conservancy and JPMorgan Chase & Co 
NatureVest’s restructuring of the Seychelles’ sovereign debt has converted a portion of this debt back into a local currency payment stream, to be used to support conservation in the local area. The restructuring provides $281,000 per year for marine conservation activities, and will also see the Seychelles increase its marine protected area in return. This collaboration is the first time that private investment capital has been used to finance a debt-for-nature swap, proving that this model is viable and replicable as a conservation method.

In the words of the judges, the winner of this category was able to leverage strategic partnerships to deploy a novel financial solution, which can be replicable in small island states:


Achievement in Sustainable Development: Sustainable Agriculture

Winner: Farmerline
Based in Ghana, Farmerline’s technology enables communication with farmers in rural areas that would be otherwise out-of-reach due to barriers in connectivity, literacy or language. MERGDATA is available via voice technology in local languages, and provides information including agricultural tips, weather data and market pricing to farmers even in low-connectivity areas. Farmerline has also developed technology to improve the efficiency of the agricultural value chain, including GPS mapping of plot size and systems to facilitate mobile money payments

In the words of the judges, the winner of this category developed user-friendly technology to connect farming communities in remote areas to much needed business intelligence and training on their terms.

Highly Commended: Honey Care Africa
Honey Care sources and sells South Sudanese honey, guaranteeing a fair market price for the farmers who harvest it. Farmers are organised into ‘clusters’, each with a local manager to provide support and apiary training, which ensures that the company can continue to pay them even in areas cut off from the head office due to security issues following the 2013 civil war. The raw honey is then processed and branded before being sold locally or exported to Kenya, bringing much-needed local and foreign exchange revenue and stability to local economies. HCASS plans to expand this sustainable business model and introduce a new product every few months, ultimately aiming to develop food ranges designed to combat malnutrition.

A special commendation in this category goes to a company that developed a viable business model for farmers operating in one of the most challenging environments. This model could be followed in similar countries.


Achievement in Sustainable Development: Maternal and Infant Health

Winner: Kwara State Health Insurance Program
In order to improve access to primary healthcare – particularly maternal – for the people of rural Kwara, the PharmAccess Foundation has joined forces with the Kwara State Government, insurance company Hygeia Community Health Care and the Health Insurance Fund. By educating communities about maternal and child care through outreach programs and mobile health initiatives, and facilitating access to this care by enrolling women and children in the subsidised health insurance program, Pharma Access has had a demonstrable impact on local trust in hospitals and health care.

In the words of the judges, the winner of this category is filling a tremendous systemic need for access to quality healthcare for women and children by forging partnerships with government, foundations, the private sector and the healthcare community.


 Excellence in Transformational Business

 Winner: Microvast

 The distinction of being winner of the winners goes to a company that offers the potential for a truly remarkable energy solution for polluted cities across the globe.


Judges (9)

John Thornhill

John Thornhill

Innovation Editor
Financial Times

John Thornhill was appointed Innovation Editor in February 2016 with a brief to deepen the FT’s coverage of technology and write a regular column on its impact on our economies, societies, and lives. For the previous seven years he was deputy editor and news editor helping to steer the FT’s global news agenda.

Since joining the FT in 1988 as a graduate trainee, John has also worked as the Europe edition editor, Paris bureau chief, world news editor, Asia editor, Moscow bureau chief, Lex columnist and companies reporter.

He founded and runs the FT's 125 executive forum, which holds monthly meetings for senior executives from a range of industries. Previous speakers have included Bill Gates, Jack Dorsey, Ana Botin, and Mark Carney. He hosts FT Tech Tonic, a weekly podcast on the impact of technology. John is also the founder of Sifted, an FT-backed startup media site for Europe's next generation entrepreneurs.

Nena Stoiljkovic

Nena Stoiljkovic

Vice President of Blended Finance and Partnerships

Nena Stoiljkovic is a Vice President of Global Client Services and a member of the IFC Management Team. In this capacity, Ms. Stoiljkovic is one of two vice presidents responsible for IFC Operations. She has a leading role in developing IFC’s strategic direction and its expansion into poorer countries.

A Serbian national, Ms. Stoiljkovic has held a number of leadership positions at the World Bank Group. Previously, she served as a co-Bank Group Vice President for Global Practices and Cross-Cutting Solution Areas, which were established in 2014 to bring global expertise to help government clients tackle their most significant development challenges. The start-up year ended with strong results in lending and advisory and analytic services.

Ms. Stoiljkovic was previously Vice President for IFC Advisory Services. Under her leadership, IFC changed its advisory delivery model to strengthen client focus and impact by integrating IFC’s advisory work with its investment work and with the then-new Global Practices.

Prior to this, Ms. Stoiljkovic was IFC’s Director for Eastern Europe and Central Asia. Under her leadership, IFC supported the banking sector in a region particularly hard hit by financial crisis and contributed to its recovery in close cooperation with the World Bank.

Ms. Stoiljkovic joined IFC in 1995 as an Investment Officer, and has since worked in Asia, the Middle East, North Africa, Southern Europe, and Central Asia.

Prior to joining IFC, Ms. Stoiljkovic worked as a consultant at the Economic Institute of Belgrade. She holds an MBA from the London Business School.

Kanini Mutooni

Kanini Mutooni

Director for Investment
East Africa Trade and Investment Hub

Kanini Mutooni is Director for Investment at the East Africa Trade and Investment Hub in Nairobi, an eight-country initiative created to increase and attract patient capital investments into the East African region. Since launch in May 2015, the unit has supported the allocation of over $25m in investment to companies in the agri-business, financial services and technology sectors. Ms Mutooni also serves as an investment committee member of the African Enterprise Challenge Fund, a $250m donor-funded impact fund based in Nairobi with 124 investee companies in Sub-Saharan Africa. She is also the Chair of the Finance and Audit Committee of the Global Innovation Fund, a UK-based $250m multi-donor fund that supports investment in innovations in emerging markets. She also serves as the Chair of Finance and Audit Committee of the International HIV/AIDS Alliance, a UK-based institution that works with communities in over 34 countries to stop the spread of HIV. Ms Mutooni was recognised by the World Economic Forum as a Young Global Leader in 2014 for her contribution to business and was named as one of the most influential businesswomen in East Africa by BusinessWeek magazine in 2013. In 2010, she was nominated in London as a ‘Woman of the City Future Leader.’ A UK Chartered accountant and MBA holder (Cass Business School, City University), Ms Mutooni has worked at Director and Vice President level at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, KPMG, Ernst & Young, and Kleinwort Benson over the past 15 years. She was also the founder and CEO of MyAzimia, an innovative technology platform providing solutions to the crowd-lending sector. The platform facilitated the origination of over $50m in new loans in Europe and the US in the online lending sector.

Samir Abhyankar

Samir Abhyankar

TPG Growth

Samir Abhyankar is a Partner at TPG Growth based in London, working across sectors covering the group's investment activities in Africa. Prior to joining TPG Growth in 2015, Mr Abhyankar was a Partner with Satya Capital, where he focused on IT, consumer, financial services and retail investments. Previously he spent six years at Citi Venture Capital International, where he was responsible for its African investment activities, and CDC Group, where he was the Director of Strategy. He was also formerly a management consultant with Marakon Associates. Mr Abhyankar started his career with the World Bank as a banking sector analyst. He graduated with an MBA from INSEAD and holds an MA from Johns Hopkins' School of Advanced International Studies.

Billy Cobbett

Billy Cobbett

Cities Alliance

William (Billy) Cobbett is Director of the Cities Alliance, a global partnership promoting the role of cities in sustainable development. Prior to the Cities Alliance he was at UN-Habitat in Nairobi, where he designed and launched the Global Campaign for Secure Tenure. A South African, Billy managed Planact, the leading urban NGO providing support to civic organisations and trades unions. He moved to ANC headquarters in 1992, representing the organisation on the National Housing Forum (NHF) and, prior to the historic 1994 election, the Transitional Executive Council (TEC). In the Government of National Unity under President Nelson Mandela, Billy was appointed Director General of the National Department of Housing, reporting to Minister Joe Slovo. He has a History degree from Middlesex University, London.

Mary Ellen Iskenderian

Mary Ellen Iskenderian

President and CEO
Women's World Banking

Mary Ellen Iskenderian is President and CEO of Women’s World Banking, the global non-profit devoted to giving more low-income women access to the financial tools and resources they need to achieve security and prosperity. Ms Iskenderian joined Women’s World Banking in 2006 and leads the Women’s World Banking global team, based in New York. She also serves as a member of the Investment Committee of its $50m impact investment fund.

Before joining Women’s World Banking, Ms Iskenderian worked for 17 years at the International Finance Corporation, the private sector arm of the World Bank. Before that, she worked for the investment bank Lehman Brothers.

Ms. Iskenderian is a permanent member of the Council on Foreign Relations, a 2017 Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center Fellow, as well as a member of the Women’s Forum of New York and the Business and Sustainable Development Commission. Ms Iskenderian holds an MBA from the Yale School of Management and a Bachelor of Science in International Economics from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service.

Chris Locke

Chris Locke

Caribou Digital

Chris Locke is the Founder of Caribou Digital. He is also a Visiting Fellow at the University of California, San Diego's Center on Emerging and Pacific Economies, and Digital Ambassador to the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF). Caribou Digital works with development organisations to build digital economies in emerging markets, helping to take critical mobile services covering health, agri, money and learning tools to scale at a nationwide level. Mr Locke was previously the Managing Director of GSMA Mobile for Development. He has spent the past 15 years working in the mobile and internet industries for companies including the Virgin Group, Three, AOL and T-Mobile. Previous to his industry career, he was the Xerox Lecturer in Electronic Communication and Publishing at University College London, and has maintained strong links to the research community. He is co-editor of Thumb Culture: The Meaning of Mobile Phones in Society, an anthology of research considering the global social effect of mobile technology.

Nick Robins

Nick Robins

Professor in Practice - Sustainable Finance, LSE and Special Adviser on Sustainable Finance
United Nations Environmental Programme

Nick Robins joined the Grantham Research Institute at the LSE in February 2018. At Grantham, he is exploring the strategic outlook for sustainable finance for both financial institutions and public policy. One priority area is the contribution that investors can make to the just transition to a zero-carbon economy. 

From 2014 to 2018, Mr Robins was co-director of UNEP's Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System. At UNEP, he led the establishment of the Network of Financial Centres for Sustainability (which has 16 members in Africa, the Americas, Asia and Europe) as well as the Sustainable Insurance Forum, which gathers over 20 supervisors to focus on climate and other sustainability issues.

Prior to UNEP, he was head of the Climate Change Centre of Excellence at HSBC in London from 2007 to 2014, where he produced investment research on issues such as clean tech and climate risk. In the Thomson Extel awards for European investment research, Nick was ranked as #1 analyst for integrated climate change in 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2013.

Before joining HSBC, he was first head of Sustainable and Responsible Investment (SRI) research and then head of SRI funds at Henderson Global Investors. At Henderson, he published the first ever carbon audit of an investment fund (2005) and co-designed the Industries of the Future fund.

He is a founding member of the City of London’s Green Finance Initiative and is a board member of InvestorWatch and the Climate Bonds Initiative.

Henrik Skovby

Henrik Skovby

Dalberg Group

Henrik Skovby is the former Global Managing Partner and founder of Dalberg. In his current capacity as Chairman of Dalberg Group, most of his time is dedicated to industry innovation and establishing new business lines under the Dalberg brand. As a strategy consultant, Mr Skovby's main focus has been corporate strategy and organisational reforms. He has led a series of institutional reviews in the development sector and has been involved in launching several global commissions and thought leadership initiatives. Prior to Dalberg, Mr Skovby worked at McKinsey & Company, where his focus was financial and public institutions. He began his professional career with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), where he worked on project management, budget matters, and strategic positioning of the organisation. Mr Skovby holds a Master's of Public Administration degree from Harvard University, a degree in Business Economics from Copenhagen Business School, and an undergraduate degree in Political Science from University of Aarhus.


Award Categories

The Transformational Business Awards are open to all financial and non-financial private sector organisations. The focus is on specific projects and transactions and the impact those initiatives have or promise to have on the problems they are targeting. 

While the focus of all categories is on transformational impact in developing economies, the awards are also open to projects that address similar market deficiencies in the developed world and that could be replicated in severely under-supplied regions.

The aim is to recognise, showcase and reward innovation, impact, replicability, financial viability and sustainability across a number of key development sectors. Special attention will be given to private sector-led public-private partnerships. 

Projects or transactions must have passed the implementation stage, and should result in measurable impact. They must be financially viable now or potentially within five years of implementation. Only initiatives that have been implemented since 2010 will be eligible. 


Achievement in Low-Carbon Urban Transformation 

The award for Achievement in Low-Carbon Urban Transformation highlights innovative projects and transactions that address challenges around energy demand and supply, environmental decay and other climate change-related issues in developing economies, with a focus on urban areas. This category is open to private sector businesses only.


Achievement in Transformational Technology 

The award for Achievement in Transformational Technology recognises ground-breaking transactions, programmes and initiatives that harness the power of technology to disrupt markets and/or directly address basic needs of the underserved, and have the potential to transform communities and their aspirations in the long term. This category is open to private sector businesses that are providing transformative technology and sharing-economy solutions across key development sectors.


Achievement in Transformational Finance 

The award for Achievement in Transformational Finance highlights innovative financing structures, products or services – particularly those generated by institutional investors and other large owners of capital -- that support initiatives with substantial social, environmental and corporate governance value and the potential to transform lives in developing economies. For 2016, special attention will be given to transactions that address climate change. This category is open to all private sector financial participants. 


Achievement in Sustainable Development 

In September 2015, members of the United Nations adopted 17 Sustainable Development Goals designed to achieve by 2030 the eradication of poverty in all its forms as well as protect the planet from degradation, and generally ensure that all human beings can enjoy prosperous and fulfilling lives. The new award for Achievement in Sustainable Development recognises initiatives that successfully address the challenges highlighted by the Sustainable Development Goals, focusing each year on different goals or targets. This category is open to all financial and non-financial private sector organisations, as well as NGOs that meet the judging criteria. 

For 2016, this category comprises two separate awards: 

Sustainable Agriculture 

This award relates to Goal 2: “End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture”, looking specifically at increasing the investment required to enhance agricultural productive capacity, improve the global supply chain, deliver more nutritious food, and decrease losses and waste. 

Maternal and Infant Health 

This award relates to Goal 3: “Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages”, looking specifically at maternal and infant health. Although significant strides have been made in increasing life expectancy in this area, much more needs to be done to reduce the impact of a wide range of diseases and address persistent and emerging health issues. 


Special Category 

Excellence in City-led Transformation 

The Special Award for Excellence in City-led Transformation, supported by the Cities Alliance, recognises those cities that, since 2010, have demonstrated tangible progress towards city-wide, integrated reforms across one or more of the following five parameters: 
Environmental – integrates planning and management of natural resources, with positive impacts on climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies; integrates disaster risk preparedness improving resilience of most affected populations;
Social – demonstrates progress to promote an inclusive city that integrates gender equality, citizen participation with mutual rights and responsibilities;
Governance – demonstrates progress in promoting an enabling environment for inclusive planning, responsive administration, stable municipal finance within a culture of transparency and accountability;
Economic – facilitates enabling environment addressing both formal and informal economic activities that improve livelihoods, and promotes long-term, equitable and sustainable economic growth; and
Services – demonstrates progress in the citywide provision of and access to basic services such as housing, food, water, sanitation, energy, health and education.
This award is open to city governments only. Private sector organisations are not eligible to participate.


Entry Forms and Judging Criteria

Entry forms are now available for download, should you wish to start preparing your submission. Please note that the online entry form submission portal will be open from January, and entries will be accepted until 07 April 2016.

Achievement in Low-Carbon Urban Transformation 
Achievement in Transformational Technology 
Achievement in Transformational Finance 
Achievement in Sustainable Development 
Focus on Sustainable Agriculture 
Maternal and Infant Health 
Excellence in City-led Transformation 

When it comes to judging, our panel will be assessing your entry against the following judging criteria >>


Who Enters?

Productive sector companies, investment institutions, and advisory firms involved in projects addressing key challenges in urbanisation, technology and sustainability with respect to developing economies, including:

  • Infrastructure developers
  • Energy companies
  • Engineering companies
  • Technology companies
  • Healthcare providers
  • Pharmaceutical companies
  • Design houses
  • Pension funds
  • Sovereign wealth funds
  • Life insurance companies
  • Private equity firms
  • Investment banks
  • Fund managers
  • Consultancies

Why Enter?

Highlight your organisation's contribution to helping to solve some of the key challenges affecting developing economies.

As an entrant to the awards, your organisation and the initiative you are submitting for consideration will be featured on the awards website.

If your entry is short-listed in one of the awards categories:
a) your organisation and the initiative that has been short-listed will be promoted further in an advertisement in the Financial Times newspaper
b) you will be invited to attend the FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards dinner, where the winners in each category will be announced. All short-listed entries are presented in detail at the Awards dinner before the winners are revealed. You will also be able to network with other organisations short-listed for the awards.

If the judging panel selects your entry as a winner in one of the categories:
a) your organisation and the award-winning initiative will be promoted in an advertisement in the Financial Times newspaper
b) a summary of your entry will be featured on the awards website



International Finance Facility for Immunization

Winner: 2015 Achievement in Transformational Finance category

“Winning the 2015 Achievement in Transformational Finance Award for our $500-million socially responsible Islamic bond issue helped us build a more diversified relationship with our investors,” said René Karsenti, IFFI Board Chair. “This was a truly groundbreaking transaction that earmarked the funds for purchases of life-saving vaccines, and it pushed us to look for more innovative ways to save children’s lives.  We hope 2016 applicants will be motivated to enter the awards to bring their experiences forward to help inspire others.”

Operation ASHA

Winner: 2015 Achievement in Information and Communications Technology

“Operation ASHA delivers vital healthcare services to the underserved people at the very bottom of the pyramid.  We entered the FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards to call the attention of the public health experts and governments to our approach, so that we could have an opportunity to save more lives through strategic partnerships.”

“Winning the award gave us a feeling of great achievement, and pushed us to do more with greater determination and courage, better results, and more impact.”

“Winning the award helped us build stronger relationships with individuals, donors, families, NGOs, researchers, academicians, and governments of new countries who are willing to adopt our model. It also gave us a big boost in credibility, and helped us build more trust with our partners and donors.  The recognition helped us develop more partnerships and secure more funding to scale up and replicate what worked in other places.  In 2015 – 2016 we received awards from other organizations such as Qualcomm to upgrade technology and use 3G for training health workers in remote setting, and also from Pfizer to scale eDetection technology to step up detection of missing Tb patients.”

“It is important to seek recognition with awards like these. Winning gives you a seal of approval from two of the best organizations in the world, FT and IFC.  This will lead to greater funding, more partnerships and new momentum to your work.” 

Quotes: Dr. Shelly Batra, Founder

K-Electric Limited, Pakistan

Winner: 2014 Achievement in Project Finance/Infrastructure category

“Applying for the FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards was an opportunity to compete with international institutions and corporations in achieving developmental impact, as well as share KE’s successful experience with the global community. “

“Winning the award gave us immense pleasure and satisfaction.  Getting recognized for our innovative approach and development impact at the international level in the field of top-notch participants from around the globe is a matter of great pride for our entire organization.”

“Winning the award has boosted our image in the international business community and among financial markets players and credit rating agencies. Our stakeholders saw it as another feather in KE’s cap.”

“Multi-faceted criteria, complete transparency of process, and backing of two internationally reputed organizations like IFC and the Financial Times make this award is highly sought-after for international corporations who strive for international glory but also want to share their experience and learn from the others.”

Quotes: Muhammad Farrukh, General Manager, Treasury



2016 Awards

For a full selection of the award photo's please click here

FT IFC Transformational Business Awards 2016   Flickr   Photo Sharing


Short-listed nominees 2016

With 155 entries received from 219 stakeholders and involving projects in 92 countries, the shortlisted nominees for 2016 are as follows:

Achievement in Low-Carbon Urban Transformation
Actis, UK
Imperial Homes Corporation and Enfinity, Philippines
Microvast, US
Nepra Resource Management, India
Nova-Lumos, Netherlands, and OPIC, US
ReNew Power Ventures, India
Spinlister, US
Achievement in Transformational Technology
Active Learning Solutions, India
enovatRx, HBL, Mobilink and NADRA, Pakistan
Lubax, US
Mobisol, Germany
Piramal Foundation, India
what3words, UK
YES Bank, India
Achievement in Transformational Finance
Aviva, UK
Bank of America Merrill Lynch, US
CLP, India
CrossBoundary Energy, Mauritius
MasterCard, US, Caixa Económica Federal and TIM Mobile, Brazil, MovilRed, Colombia, and BANSEFI and Nafinsa, Mexico
MicroEnsure and Telenor, UK and India
NatureVest, the Nature Conservancy and JPMorgan Chase, US
Achievement in Sustainable Development: Sustainable Agriculture
BILT Tree Tech, India
Farmerline MERGDATA, Ghana
Honey Care Africa, Kenya and South Sudan
Steak TzarTzar, Israel
SunCulture, Kenya
Achievement in Sustainable Development: Maternal and Infant Health
Etisalat, UAE
GSK, UK and Save the Children
Living Goods, US
PharmAccess Foundation (NL), Kwara State Government (Nigeria), Hygeia Community Health Care (Nigeria), the Health Insurance Fund (NL) and 
Sustainable Health Enterprises, US

Excellence in City-Led Transformation
City of Antananarivo, JIRAMA, and Ministry of Water, Sanitation & Hygiene, Madagascar
Busan Metropolitan City Government, South Korea
City of Harare, Zimbabwe
City of Lviv, Ukraine
Maputo Municipal Council, Mozambique
New Taipei City, Taiwan
City of Surabaya, Indonesia


Short-listed and Winners 2015

Achievement in Urban Transformation
Winner: Sanergy, Kenya
Highly Commended: Heksagon Kati Atik Yonetimi Sanayi ve Ticatet, Turkey

Financiera Sustentable de Mexico
Nedbank Group Limited, South Africa
Pell Frischmann, United Kingdom
Tianjin Hi-tech Environment Development, China
XacBank, Mongolia
Special Award: Excellence in City Transformation

Winner: People’s Committee of Da Nang City, Vietnam
Highly Commended: Agra Nagar Nigam / Agra Municipal Council, India
Barcelona City Council, Spain
Monrovia City Corporation, Liberia
Municipality of Dakar, Senegal
eThekwini Municipality / Durban Metropolitan Council, South Africa
Pereira Passos Municipal Institute, Brazil

Achievement in Inclusive Business

Winner: UnionPay, China
Highly Commended: Cummins Cogeneration (Kenya) Limited
Echale a tu Casa, Mexico
MicroEnsure, United Kingdom
Novartis International, Switzerland
Off.Grid: Electric, Tanzania
Tribanco, Brazil

Achievement in Transformational Finance
Winner: International Finance Facility for Immunisation, United Kingdom
Highly Commended: Citi, United States
Banking Environment Initiative, United Kingdom
bKash, Bangladesh
Credit Suisse, Switzerland
Lion's Head Global Partners, United Kingdom
Zopa, United Kindgom

Achievement in Information and Communications Technology
Winner: Operation ASHA, India

Farmerline, Ghana
WhereIsMyTransport, South Africa

Excellence in Transformational Business
Winner: MicroEnsure, United Kingdom


Short-listed and Winners 2014

Achievement in Project Finance - Infrastructure
Winner: Standard Chartered Bank, UK
Eco Management Korea Holding Inc
TSKB (Industrial Development Bank of Turkey)
Achievement in Project Finance - Energy
Winner: K-Electric, Pakistan
Special Commendation: Abengoa/Industrial Development Corporation, Spain/South Africa
Banco Itaú
CLP Wind Farms (India) Private Limited
FBN Capital Limited
Achievement in Project Finance - Food & Water
Winner: Axzon, Poland
United Water Corporation, United Water (Suqian) Limited
YES Bank
Achievement in Project Finance - Health
Winner: Colalife/Johnson & Johnson, UK/US
Operation ASHA
Achievement in Project Finance - Construction & Affordable Housing
Winner: Rapid Building Systems, Australia
CEMEX - Patrimonio Hoy
Select Financial Services Malawi
Achievement in Information and Communications Technology
Winner: Bima, Sweden
Special Commendation: Roshan, Afghanistan
Micro Clinic Technologies, Angelica Medical Supplies and KEMSA
Santander Brasil
Achievement in Transformational Finance
Winner: JPMorgan Chase/Lion’s Head Global Partners, US/UK
Special Commendation: Toronto Atmospheric Fund, Canada
Aviva Investors
Bank of America, Merrill Lynch, Citigroup, Credit Agricole, JP Morgan Chase
BlueOrchard Finance
Frontier Markets Fund Managers
Achievement in Inclusive Business
Winner: Engro Foods Limited, Pakistan
Special Commendation: Jain Irrigation Systems, India
Agroindustrias Unidas de Mexico S.V. (AMSA) and ECOM Agroindustrial Corp, Ltd. 
Fundacion Cardiovascular de Colombia
Procafecol and Juan Valdez Café
Shanghai F-Road Commercial Services Co Ltd.
Award for Excellence in Transformational Business
Winner: Bima, Sweden


Knowledge Partner (1)

Cities Alliance is the global partnership for poverty reduction and promoting the role of cities in sustainable development.

Partnerships are critical to achieving the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.  We bring together organisations with different perspectives and expertise on city issues around common goals: well run, productive cities that provide opportunities for all residents. Our members include multilateral development organisations, national governments, local government associations, International NGOs, foundations, private sector and foundations, and academia.

The Cities Alliance Secretariat is based in Brussels, and is hosted by the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS).

Technical Advisor (1)

PwC is founded on a culture of partnership with a strong commercial focus. 

Our goal is to build the iconic professional services firm, always front of mind, because we aim to be the best. We set the standard and we drive the agenda for our profession.

Supporting Partners (4)

Futurescaper’s software helps organisations make sense of complex, uncertain, fast-moving issues, by crowdsourcing strategic conversations faster, cheaper, and more effectively than legacy solutions. When surveys, workshops, or analyst teams become constrained by face-to-face logistics and limited data, our collective intelligence cloud platform un-constrains them through structured crowdsourcing and powerful analytics. Users from the World Bank Group, UN agencies, governments, and private companies have so far engaged thousands of minds to generate insights within weeks and increase buy-in across geographies, departments and sectors. Futurescaper was founded in 2011 based on a MIT PhD, an Oxford MBA, and decades of consulting experience.

Alts Crew provides a mutual platform for accredited investors, institutional investors and portfolio companies interested in alternative investments to engage in a trusted environment. Our goal is to become a conduit of knowledge transfer through education. We also aim to effect change in the industry by leveraging our professional relationships.

Dalberg is a leading strategy and policy consulting firm specializing in global development and inclusive growth. Dalberg has worked in over 100 countries, with a focus in frontier and emerging markets. Dalberg supports leaders across the public and private sectors, helping governments, foundations, investors, international agencies, non-governmental organizations, and Fortune 500 companies address global challenges and realize opportunities for growth.

The Africa platform for startup funding. VC4Africa is a fast growing community of entrepreneurs and investors dedicated to building game changing companies on the African continent. Entrepreneurs have access to free online tools, mentorship opportunities and the ability to raise capital. Pro Account users can follow ventures they like, set up intelligent alerts, and connect to members directly. Get involved and join the community today!

Twitter: @VC4Africa

Attend the Conference and Awards Ceremony

To have more information about the Conference and Awards Ceremony, and to register to attend please visit the dedicated website:


Why Sponsor?

Sponsor the FT/ IFC Transformational Awards & Conference to position your organisation at the heart of the transformational business debate, and consolidate and amplify your position in this area:

  • Gain access to senior decision makers hand-picked by the FT and IFC;
  • Brand alignment with the FT and its unrivalled credibility;
  • Demonstrate thought leadership following decisions made at COP21;
  • Benefit from sustained international visibility through our advertising and marketing campaigns.

Please contact John Wallace, Commercial Manager, FT Live
T: +44 (0) 20 7873 4926 |  M: +44 (0) 7808 790475 |  E: 


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Financial Times
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