arrow-circle-full-right arrow-circle-full-up arrow-circle-up arrow-down arrow-right calendar calendar-done facebook flickr home linkedin login pin reload search share signin star twitter video video youtube nav star-plus info signout double-arrow arrow-up checked

FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards & Conference

Catalysing Finance and Disruptive Technologies to Boost Sustainable Solutions

London |
Speakers include:
Gargee  Ghosh

Gargee Ghosh

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Meryam  Omi

Meryam Omi

Legal & General Investment Management

Jim  Roth

Jim Roth

LeapFrog Investments


The Financial Times and the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, are organising another major gathering of thought leaders in London, ahead of the annual dinner honouring the winners of the FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards.

In line with the focus of the 2017 Awards, this year’s FT/IFC Transformational Business Conference will discuss the ground-breaking use of new technologies in the delivery of infrastructure in the developing world, the impact on renewable energy, and the leadership role that cities are taking in global efforts to address climate change. The shortlisted project have now been announced, please see below for the full list.

Chaired by senior FT journalists, the conference will also delve deeper into the role the private sector can play in helping to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals, in particular the targets around health and education, and the steps that need to be taken to assure financing at scale.

Top innovators, investors, business leaders and policy-makers will share their insights on these issues with a view to formulating specific action steps. This event will be a significant lead-up to the Transformational Business Awards dinner, which will bring together innovators from around the world whose capital, technology and ideas are contributing to substantive progress.

Places are limited and invitation-only. To apply to attend please complete the Online Registration Form >>

fallback Add to my Calendar 06/08/2017 13:00:0006/08/2017 22:00:00falseFT/IFC Transformational Business Awards & ConferenceThe Financial Times and the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, are organising another major gathering of thought leaders in London, ahead of the annual dinner honouring the winners of the FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards.In line with the focus of the 2017 Awards, this year’s FT/IFC Transformational Business Conference will discuss the ground-breaking use of new technologies in the delivery of infrastructure in the developing world, the impact on renewable energy, and the leadership role that cities are taking in global efforts to address climate change. The shortlisted project have now been announced, please see below for the full list.Chaired by senior FT journalists, the conference will also delve deeper into the role the private sector can play in helping to achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals, in particular the targets around health and education, and the steps that need to be taken to assure financing at scale.Top innovators, investors, business leaders and policy-makers will share their insights on these issues with a view to formulating specific action steps. This event will be a significant lead-up to the Transformational Business Awards dinner, which will bring together innovators from around the world whose capital, technology and ideas are contributing to substantive progress.Places are limited and invitation-only. To apply to attend please complete the Online Registration Form >>FT/IFC-Transformational-Business-Awards-&-Conferenced46b9b5a0ad4001f36430d38b7900a52MM/DD/YYYY

Awards Brochure

Event Brochure

To download the event brochure please fill in the form below. All fields are required

Please complete all the highlighted fields

Form submission failed. Please retry.

Data Protection

By submitting this form you consent to being contacted by FT Live about this event by phone and email.

Thank you for submitting your details. Please download the event brochure.

Promotional video




Healthcare Conference

IFC_GPHC2017_webbanners_350x247 (1)


Agenda - 8th Jun

  • 1:00pm
    Registration and light lunch
  • 2:00pm
    Welcome Remarks
  • 2:10pm
    Opening Keynote
  • 2:40pm
    Climate Change: The Impact of New Technologies on Infrastructure

    The cost-effective delivery of essential infrastructure is crucial for economic and social progress in both urban and rural contexts. New, disruptive technologies are radically reshaping planning, financing and implementation of infrastructure initiatives, with transformational outcomes for energy provision, as well as transport systems, water distribution and other key sectors. This session will explore the latest innovations in infrastructure development, the impact on pricing and yield, and the significant role these technologies will play in the drive to address climate change, particularly in emerging economies.

    Mehdi Benjelloun, Project Development Manager, Masen
    Alzbeta Klein, Director and Global Head of Climate Business, International Finance Corporation (IFC)
    Sumant Sinha, Chairman and CEO, ReNew Power
    Mamadou Toure, Founder and CEO, Ubuntu Capital Group

    Moderator: Pilita Clark, Environment Correspondent, Financial Times

  • 3:30pm
    Climate Change: Mayors’ Keynote Dialogue – Cities as Catalysts for Progress
  • 4:10pm
    Networking Break
  • 4:30pm
    SDGs: Accelerating Key Health and Education Initiatives

    Improving health and education are key Sustainable Development Goals. Much more needs to be done to reduce the mortality rate in the developing world, particularly among mothers and infants; improve the delivery of medicines; and rapidly reduce the impact of disease. Inclusive, high quality education and the provision of skills-based training are essential to ensure productive employment, especially among young people. Referring to specific case studies, this session will discuss the major opportunities in healthcare and education in developing economies, the steps that need to be taken to assure progress at scale, and the key obstacles that still have to be overcome, both in terms of private sector engagement and public policy.

    Steve Davis, President and CEO, PATH
    Gargee Ghosh, Director of Development Policy & Finance, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
    Arun Gore, President and CEO, Grey Ghost Ventures

    Moderator: Andrew Jack, Head of Curated Content, Financial Times

  • 5:20pm
    SDGs: Assuring Long-Term Financing at Scale

    Securing long-term financing to support the implementation of SDG-related initiatives around the world is one of the major challenges to be overcome if targets are to be met by 2030. Meeting this challenge requires the full engagement of Institutional investors and other large owners of capital, and innovative financing structures and business models that support initiatives with substantial social, environmental and corporate governance value and the potential to transform lives. What are private investors looking for as they evaluate these initiatives? What role can capital markets play in boosting investment? What are the key risks and how can they be managed? 

    Meryam Omi, Head of Sustainability & Responsibility Investment Strategy, Legal & General Investment Management
    Jim Roth, Co-Founder and Partner, LeapFrog Investments
    Adam Wolfensohn, Co-Managing Partner, Encourage Capital

    Moderator: Sarah Murray, Specialist Writer on Sustainable Development, Financial Times 

  • 6:10pm
    Closing Remarks
  • 6:15pm
    Cocktail Reception
  • 7:30pm
    Awards Dinner

Conference speakers (14)

Gargee  Ghosh

Gargee Ghosh

Director of Development Policy & Finance
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

Gargee Ghosh leads the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s international policy team as Director of Development Policy & Finance. The team develops and funds innovative ideas to make finance more effective in solving the problems of extreme poverty around the world. The team also provides analysis to Foundation leadership, including Bill and Melinda Gates, on trends and opportunities in international Policy. Ms Ghosh previously held senior positions at and in the international development practice of McKinsey & Company, as well as at the Center for Global Development. She has also worked in the Gates Foundation’s Global Health division, where she helped launch the Foundation’s first significant blended finance deals. Ms Ghosh also served on President Obama’s Global Development Council and she sits on the US board of Camfed. She holds graduate degrees in Economics from the University of Oxford and in International Relations from Georgetown University, and a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Victoria in Canada.

Meryam  Omi

Meryam Omi

Head of Sustainability & Responsibility Investment Strategy
Legal & General Investment Management

Meryam Omi is responsible at Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM) for engaging on sustainability themes globally and development of responsible investment product solutions. She leads on the project to integrate environmental, social and governance (ESG) aspects into the fundamental research of mainstream funds and to carry out sector/theme-specific engagements on key sustainability topics, such as climate change, water and corporate tax policy. Mr Omi has over 12 years of investment experience in asset management companies, starting her career as a business proposal writer for fixed income funds. She joined LGIM in 2008 to set up a business proposal team and project managed various marketing and sales initiatives across a wide range of products and capabilities. After completing an MSc in Environmental Decision Making, she joined the Corporate Governance team in 2010 to establish the engagement programme on environmental and social topics as LGIM signed up to the UN Principles of Responsible Investment and the UK Stewardship Code.

Jim  Roth

Jim Roth

Co-Founder and Partner
LeapFrog Investments

Jim Roth co-founded LeapFrog Investments, a $1 billion impact investment fund, in 2007. Today LeapFrog supports businesses that transform the lives of 91.1 million people across Africa and Asia. Mr Roth is recognised as a global leader in the provision of financial services to emerging consumers. For more than 25 years, he has been particularly instrumental in altering the insurance landscape in Africa and Asia..Prior to LeapFrog, Mr Roth worked for the United Nations, pioneering insurance distribution to the emerging consumer, and then went on to consult for some of the world’s largest insurers including Allianz and AIG. He completed his PhD at Cambridge University on the transformative role of financial services in emerging markets.

Mehdi Benjelloun

Mehdi Benjelloun

Project Development Manager

Mehdi Benjelloun is Project Development Manager at Masen, Morocco’s renewable energy agency. He is in charge of business development and project finance for some of Masen’s large solar projects, including financial structuring and tax engineering, as well as procurement. He successfully managed the first green bonds issuance in Morocco. Mr Benjelloun started his career at Areva as Business Development Manager in the mining sector and Internal Auditor, before acting as Finance Bid Manager for international EPR reactor projects. Mr Benjelloun graduated from Arts et Métiers Paristech Engineering School (Paris, France) before obtaining an Advanced Master’s degree (Strategy & Management of International Business) from ESSEC School of Management (also in Paris).

Pilita Clark

Pilita Clark

Environment Correspondent
Financial Times

Pilita Clark was appointed Environment Correspondent in May 2011, having previously been the Aerospace Correspondent and Deputy News Editor on the main news desk at the Financial Times, and then Deputy Editor of the FT Magazine. In her current role Ms Clark covers all environmental issues, from climate change to wildlife and renewable energy, but has a particular focus on the impact of low-carbon policies on businesses and investors. Before joining the FT in 2003 as a Commissioning Editor on the FT Magazine, Ms Clark was a Senior Writer for the Sydney Morning Herald, where she was a Political Reporter in Washington DC and Canberra. She was also Managing Editor of The Eye news magazine in Sydney, and a Nieman Fellow at Harvard University.

Steve Davis

Steve Davis


As president and CEO of PATH, Steve Davis combines his extensive experience as a technology business leader, global health advocate, and social innovator to accelerate great ideas and bring lifesaving solutions to scale. He oversees PATH’s work of driving transformative global health innovation to save and improve lives, reaching 219 million people in 2013.   Mr. Davis’ long-standing commitment to human rights and global development grew from his early work on refugee programs and policies, and from his later focus on Chinese politics and law. He has employed that same passion as a leader and strategist for a range of private and nonprofit companies and international organizations, including as ceo of internet pioneer and global digital media firm Corbis, director of social innovation for McKinsey & Company, and interim ceo of the Infectious Disease Research Institute. Earlier in his career, he practiced law at the international law firm of K&L Gates with a focus on intellectual property.   Davis is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and holds a faculty appointment as a lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business.  He currently serves on the boards of InterAction and Global Partnerships, and sits on several advisory groups, including the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Social Innovation, the Clinton Global Initiative’s Global Health Advisory Board, the Council on Foreign Relation’s Task Force on Noncommunicable Diseases, and Wellcome Trust’s Sustaining Health Dialogue.    He holds several board and advisory appointments for corporate and nonprofit organizations, and holds a faculty appointment as a senior fellow at the University of Washington School Of Law. He earned his BA from Princeton University, his MA in Chinese studies from the University of Washington, and his law degree from Columbia University.

Aric Dromi

Aric Dromi


Aric Dromi is a futurologist, digital philosopher and professional troublemaker. He explores a new way of thinking about how things work. He helps advance philosophical research and related fields through innovation and technology. Mr Dromi recognises that an essential part of capturing the future is being able to explain it, make it tangible and, most importantly, make it relevant. He tends to focus on 10 to 15-year future scenarios, helping people identify and abandon old paradigms and re-think thinking.

Arun Gore

Arun Gore

President and CEO
Grey Ghost Ventures

As the President and CEO of Gray Ghost Ventures, Arun Gore is responsible for the general management and day-to-day operations of the company. He also serves in a portfolio management capacity and plays a governance role as a board member for a number of the portfolio companies. Mr Gore brings an extensive background in mobile telecommunications, finance, operations and entrepreneurship. He has more than 35 years’ experience in the US, South Asia, Africa and the Middle East, including as a member of the executive team at T-Mobile USA, where he was Chief Financial Officer of Cook Inlet T-Mobile. Mr Gore also brings a wealth of entrepreneurial experience as the prior owner and manager of organisations such as SAI, an international supply company for oilfield supplies, where he was responsible for the operations of 13 countries; and Atex Oil Company, a wholesale and retail oil refining and distribution business where he was responsible for the finance, inventory, asset protection and fleet management of an entire division of the company. In 2006, Mr Gore became actively engaged in the Investment Team at Grey Ghost Ventures and in 2008, as a Managing Director of the Investment Team, he took responsibility for overseeing the development, evaluation, governance and operational management of the firm’s impact investing portfolios. Mr Gore completed his undergraduate studies in India and holds a BSc in Sciences and a BS in Accounting. He completed his post-graduate studies in the US and holds an MBA in Finance.

Andrew Jack

Andrew Jack

Head of Curated Content
Financial Times

Andrew Jack has worked as a journalist for the Financial Times since 1990. He currently runs the curated content team, which picks the best news and analysis from the FT and the rest of the web. He was previously Deputy Editor of the Analysis section, Pharmaceuticals Correspondent, Moscow Bureau Chief, Paris Correspondent, Financial Correspondent, general reporter and corporate reporter. He is author of the books Inside Putin’s Russia and The French Exception, as well as numerous specialist reports, and has appeared on the BBC and other media outlets.

John McKinley

John McKinley


John McKinley is a Director at BlackRock and a member of the BlackRock Impact team, working closely with the firm's global investment teams across equity, fixed income and alternatives to develop scalable, innovative investment solutions that address clients' financial objectives alongside their social or environmental objectives. Prior to joining BlackRock in 2014, Mr McKinley served as Innovation Manager at Acumen, a social venture fund investing debt/equity in companies delivering goods and services to low-income consumers across Southeast Asia, Africa and Latin America. Prior to Acumen, Mr McKinley served as a senior policy analyst in the Office of Mayor Michael Bloomberg in New York City and managed rule of law development programmes across 17 countries in Africa and the Middle East with the US Department of Justice. He has written for Harvard Business Review and lectured on impact investing at Haas School of Business, Columbia Business School, London School of Economics, and the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University. Mr McKinley holds a BA from Middlebury College and a Master’s in Economic and Political Development from Columbia University.

Sarah Murray

Sarah Murray

Specialist Writer on Sustainable Development
Financial Times

Sarah Murray is a Specialist Writer on Sustainable Development and a Non-fiction author and editor. A former Financial Times journalist and long-time Financial Times contributor, she also writes for Stanford Social Innovation Review as well as for universities and foundations. Her work has appeared in publications including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, the Economist, The Guardian, and the South China Morning Post. She has edited two books on philanthropy and is author of two non-fiction books, Making an Exit: From the Magnificent to the Macabre, How We Dignify the Dead, and Moveable Feasts: From Ancient Rome to the 21st Century, the Incredible Journeys of the Food We Eat.

Sumant Sinha

Sumant Sinha

Chairman and CEO
ReNew Power

Sumant Sinha is the Founder, Chairman and CEO of ReNew Power, one of India’s largest clean energy companies. Since the company was founded in 2011, ReNew Power has organically grown to own 3,000 MW of commissioned and under-construction clean energy assets (India’s cumulative energy capacity across all energy forms is 310,000 MW). To fund this growth, Mr Sinha has raised over $850 million in equity and $2 billion in debt capital, making ReNew Power one of India’s most well capitalised companies. After graduating from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs (SIPA), Mr Sinha worked as an investment banker with Citi and ING Barings in the US and UK. In 2002, he moved to India to become Group Chief Financial Officer of India’s third-largest conglomerate, the Aditya Birla Group. In 2007, he became the founder CEO of Aditya Birla Retail and scaled the company to become one of India’s largest retail businesses. Following this, he served as the Chief Operating Officer of India’s then largest wind energy company, Suzlon, until 2011. Mr Sinha serves as Chairman of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) – Northern Region, and is the founder Chairman of the Indian Wind Energy Alliance (IWEA). He is a frequent public commentator and has written columns and delivered lectures on market reforms, economic policy, governance, and climate change. He is a graduate of the Indian Institute of Technology, Indian Institute of Management, and Columbia University.

Mamadou Toure

Mamadou Toure

Chairman and CEO
Ubuntu Capital Group

Mamadou Toure is Chairman and CEO of Ubuntu Capital Group, a leading Investment and Advisory firm focused on designing and implementing integrated, innovative investment solutions to strengthen project ecosystems. Prior to his current position. Mr Toure served as Managing Director with GE Africa. In this role, Mr Toure led a regional Capital Markets (Sales and Project Finance) team across Sub-Saharan Africa supporting GE’s industrial business growth with sales funding and investment solutions. Before joining GE, Mr Toure worked in the Infrastructure Department of IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group, principally in charge of private sector investments in the Telecommunications, Media and Technologies sectors of Sub-Saharan Africa. In 2016, he was declared Pan African Leader of the Year, an award issued by the board of African Democratic Institute. In 2015 in Davos, he received a distinction as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. In 2014, Mr Toure was considered by Forbes Magazine as one of the Top 10 Most Powerful Men in Africa and in 2013, BRICS Business Magazine identified him among the 25 Faces of the New Africa. Mr Toure is also Founder and Chairman of Africa 2.0 Foundation, an initiative-driven advocacy group that brings together emerging leaders representing African countries and the Diaspora, who share a common vision of the continent’s future.

Adam Wolfensohn

Adam Wolfensohn

Co-Managing Partner
Encourage Capital

Adam Wolfensohn is Co-Managing Partner of Encourage Capital, an asset management company formed by the recent merger of Wolfensohn Fund Management and EKO Asset Management. A unique partnership of disciplined investors and creative problem-solvers, the new firm is already working with major asset owners to deploy investment capital to solve problems like global ecosystem decline, climate change, and bringing financial services to the world’s poor. Previously, Mr Wolfensohn was Managing Director at Wolfensohn Fund Management and also managed the Wolfensohn family office cleantech and environmental markets strategies. From 2003 to 2006, he produced the climate change documentary, “Everything’s Cool,” that debuted at the Sundance Film Festival in 2007. From 2002 to 2003, he worked with Conservation International to create a market for carbon credits from avoided deforestation projects. Prior to 2002, Mr Wolfensohn composed music for numerous films, television commercials and theater productions as founder and CEO of Red Ramona, an award-winning music and sound design studio in New York City. He is a Trustee of the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Yad Hanadiv, Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors and Bang on a Can. He is a member of the investment committee of Rockefeller Brothers Fund and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Mr Wolfensohn earned a BA from Princeton University and an MEM from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.


Shortlisted entries

A total of 148 entries were received from 152 organisations involving projects in more than 84 countries.
The shortlisted nominees are as follows, with countries of impact:

Achievement in Transformational Infrastructure
Block Island Wind Farm, US
Engro Elengy Terminal, Pakistan
Conergy Lakeland Solar and Storage, Australia
National Freight Information and Transportation Hub (NAFITH), Jordan and Iraq
S.O.L.I.D., Nicaragua
Truck Alliance, China
Yobi Tech, India
Achievement in Transformational Finance
Cash Credit, Philippines
CrossBoundary Energy Fund, Kenya, Rwanda and Ghana 
IFMR Multi Originator Securitisation, India
African Local Currency Bond (ALCB) Fund, Sub-Saharan Africa
Medical Credit Fund, Sub-Saharan Africa 
ReNew Power Masala Bond, India
WorldRemit, Global 

Achievement in Sustainable Development, with a focus on Food, Water and Land 
Doni Doni Cocoa Program, Côte d'Ivoire
EkoLakay Sanitation Program, Haiti
Ignitia, Sub-Saharan Africa 
Levi Strauss Water<Less, Global
New Cairo Wastewater Treatment Plant, Egypt
PATH Ultra Rice, India
Winnow, Global

Achievement in Sustainable Development, with a focus on Health, Wellness and Disease Prevention 
CarePay M-TIBA Mobile Health Wallet, Kenya
Essilor Eye Mitra Progam, India
Glenmark Pharmaceuticals mMitra, India
Goodlife Pharmacy, Kenya and Uganda
Hospital Metropolitano, Ecuador
Unjani Clinics Network, South Africa
Wellspring Healthcare Network, India

Achievement in Sustainable Development, with a focus on Education, Knowledge and Skills 
BRAC STAR Skills Training Program, Bangladesh
BYJU’S Learning App, India and GCC Employment Platform, Philippines
Moringa School Education Platform, Kenya, Tanzania and Ghana
Santander Universia Brasil, Brazil

Overall Award: Excellence in Disruptive Technologies
BYJU’S Learning App, India and GCC
Ignitia, Sub-Saharan Africa 
Truck Alliance, China
Winnow, Global
WorldRemit, Global 

Overall Award: Excellence in Climate Solutions
Block Island Wind Farm, US
Conergy Lakeland Solar and Storage, Australia
CrossBoundary Energy Fund, Kenya, Rwanda and Ghana 
ReNew Power Masala Bond, India
S.O.L.I.D., Nicaragua

Special Public Sector Award: Achievement in City-Led Transformation
Circular Economy Water Management, Dubai
El Cinturón Verde de Cuenca (Cuenca Green Belt), Cuenca, Ecuador
Energy 2040 Goal, Cape Town
PACCM Climate Action Program, Mexico City
Quiero mi Barrio (I Love My Neighbourhood), Talcahuano, Chile


Awards Overview

This unique global programme highlights ground-breaking, long-term private sector solutions to key development issues. 

Selected short-listed nominees will be invited to pitch their initiatives for potential additional funding to a panel of investors gathered by the Global Innovation Fund, a supporting partner of the Awards.

The Awards will continue to underline innovative and financially viable solutions that help meet key UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This year’s Achievement in Sustainable Development awards include a prize for food and water security, with an additional emphasis on land governance.

Special attention for 2017 is being given to products and services that harness disruptive technologies and business models to achieve their goals. Crucial issues around land – ownership rights, governance and management – will also be highlighted, along with the continuing challenges around climate change, and the need to address poverty in all its forms. The Transformational Business Awards are open to all financial and non-financial private sector organisations. A special Achievement in City-led Transformation category, supported by Cities Alliance, will also underline achievements by municipal governments around the world. The 2016 Awards attracted 155 entries from 219 organisations, involving projects in 92 countries.


Awards 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 initiatives that address climate change, and/or harness disruptive technologies and business models to achieve their goals.

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 or later will be eligible.

Achievement in Transformational Infrastructure

The award for Achievement in Transformational Infrastructure highlights projects – in both urban and non-urban contexts -- that address the most crucial infrastructure needs in developing economies, with long-term socio-economic impact. Special attention will be given to initiatives that are environmentally conscious and help efforts to fight climate change. Land governance will also be taken into account. This category is open to private sector businesses only.

Achievement in Transformational Finance

The award for Achievement in Transformational Finance recognises 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. 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 (SDGs) 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. Initiatives that address the challenges highlighted by the SDGs are recognised in the Achievement in Sustainable Development category, which focuses 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 2017, this category comprises three separate awards:

Food, Water and Land

This award relates to Goal 2 “End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture”, and Goal 6: “Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all”, with an additional emphasis on access to land, land tenure rights, land management, and land governance – all critical for the achievement of both food and water security.

Health, Wellness and Disease Prevention

This award relates to Goal 3: “Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages”. Although significant strides have been made in increasing life expectancy in developing economies, much more needs to be done to reduce the mortality rate, particularly among mothers and infants; improve the delivery of medicines, healthcare and health education; reduce the impact of a wide range of diseases; and rapidly address new and emerging health issues. Special attention will be given to innovative, replicable business models that improve the quality and cost-effectiveness of healthcare delivery.

Education, Knowledge and Skills

This award relates to Goal 4: “Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all”, with an additional emphasis on the provision of skills-based training that will help young people gain employment and entrepreneurs secure their livelihoods, in line with Goal 8: “Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all.”

Overall Awards

Excellence in Disruptive Technologies

This award will recognise the short-listed initiative that stands apart across all private sector categories for its ground-breaking use of new technology and the strength of its disruptive approach to markets and business models.

Excellence in Climate Solutions

This award will recognise the short-listed entry that across all private sector categories most effectively addresses one or more of the effects of climate change in the context of a developing economy, or that can be replicated in a developing economy.

Excellence in Transformational Business

This prize will be awarded to the initiative that in the opinion of the judging panel stands apart among the winners of all private sector categories for its level of innovation, impact, replicability, financial viability and sustainability in the context of a developing economy.

Special Public Sector Category

Achievement in City-led Transformation

The Award for Achievement in City-led Transformation, supported by the Cities Alliance, recognises those cities that, since 2010 or later, 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.

The winners in each category will be announced at a special dinner in London on 8 June 2017. The dinner will be preceded by the FT/IFC Transformational Business Conference, a major gathering of thought leaders who will explore and debate the issues generated by the Awards.


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 at the end of November, and entries will be accepted until 31 March 2017

Achievement in Transformational Infrastructure. Download the form >>

Achievement in Transformational Finance. Download the form >>
Achievement in Sustainable Development, with a focus on:      

Special Public Sector Category: Achievement in City-led Transformation. Download the form >>

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


Case studies

In this series of documents, we profile the winners and commendees of the 2016 FT/IFC Transformational Business Awards to share how they are delivering sustainable solutions and making a difference in their markets, countries and communities.

Profile: Harare City Council, Highly Commended - Special Award Excellence in City-Led Transformation 2016. Download here >>

Profile: NatureVest, The Nature Conservancy and JPMorgan Chase & Co, Winner - Transformational Finance 2016. Download here >>

Profile: Farmerline, Winner - Sustainable Development: Sustainable Agriculture.Download here >>

Profile: Lumos and Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), Shortlisted - Achievement in Low-Carbon Urban Transformation. Download here>>

Profile: Imperial Homes Corporation and Enfinity, Philippines, Shortlisted - Achievement in Low-Carbon Urban Transformation. Download here>> 



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


Judging Panel (9)

Robert  Armstrong

Robert Armstrong

Chief Editorial Writer
Financial Times

Robert Armstrong is the Financial Times’ Chief Editorial Writer as of November 2016. Previously, he was head of the FT’s esteemed Lex Column, as well as a Lex columnist based in New York, providing insight on US technology, pharmaceuticals and consumer goods companies. Prior to joining the FT, Mr Armstrong was a senior columnist at Dow Jones Investment Banker, covering health care and technology. His writing has also appeared in The Wall Street Journal in the US and Europe and in Barron's. Prior to this, he served as an equity securities analyst at Seminole Capital Partners. Mr Armstrong earned his PhD in Philosophy at Columbia University, New York, where he taught undergraduates, and a BA, also in Philosophy, at Wesleyan University in Connecticut. He is a CFA charter holder.

Nena Stoiljkovic

Nena Stoiljkovic

Vice President, Blended Finance and Partnerships
International Finance Corporation (IFC)

Nena Stoiljkovic is Vice President for Blended Finance and Partnerships at International Finance Corporation (IFC). Ms Stoiljkovic has a lead role in generating pioneering solutions that create opportunities for large-scale development and job creation in the world’s most difficult places, and in bringing innovation to tackle climate change. She plays a key part in IFC’s efforts to build a new architecture for development finance with other institutions, governments and the private sector. A Serbian national, Ms Stoiljkovic previously served as a co-Vice President of Global Client Services, responsible for all IFC’s investment and advisory operations. During her tenure, she helped shape the World Bank Group’s strategy, working with the International Development Association (IDA) on an innovative private sector window to catalyse greater private investment in low-income and conflict-affected countries. Prior to that, she was a Bank Group co-Vice President for Global Practices and Cross-Cutting Solution Areas, which were established to leverage worldwide expertise to help government clients tackle development challenges. Her role was to bring the private sector experience into the process. Ms Stoiljkovic was formerly Vice President for IFC Advisory Services. Under her leadership, IFC changed its advisory delivery model to strengthen client focus and impact. Prior to this, Ms Stoiljkovic was IFC’s Director for Eastern Europe and Central Asia. She joined IFC in 1995 as an Investment Officer. Previously, she was a consultant at the Economic Institute of Belgrade. Ms Stoiljkovic 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 John's Hopkins' School of Advanced International Studies.

Kalipso Chalkidou

Kalipso Chalkidou

Director, Global Health and Development Group
Institute of Global Health Innovation, Imperial College

Kalipso Chalkidou is the Director of the Global Health and Development Group at the Institute of Global Health Innovation, Imperial College London, helping governments build technical and institutional capacity for improving the value for money of their healthcare investment. She is interested in how local information, local expertise and local institutions can drive scientific and legitimate healthcare resource allocation decisions whilst improving patient outcomes. She has been involved in the Chinese rural health reform and also in national health reform projects in the US, India, Colombia, Turkey and the Middle East, working with the World Bank, PAHO, DFID and the Inter-American Development Bank, as well as national governments. Between 2008 and 2016 she founded and ran NICE International, a non-profit group within the UK’s National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE).

Billy Cobbett

Billy Cobbett

Cities Alliance

William (Billy) Cobbett is Director of Cities Alliance, a global partnership for poverty reduction and the promotion of cities in sustainable development. As Director. Mr Cobbett initiated a series of corporate and strategic reforms for Cities Alliance, including relocating the Secretariat from Washington DC to Brussels, and which will culminate with the inaugural meeting of the Cities Alliance Assembly in April 2016. Born in South Africa, Mr Cobbett was overall coordinator of Planact, an urban NGO providing policy and technical support to civic organisations and trade unions. He moved to African National Congress (ANC) headquarters in 1992, serving on the National Housing Forum and, prior to the historic 1994 election, the Transitional Executive Council (TEC). In the Government of National Unity under President Mandela, Mr Cobbett was appointed Director General of the National Department of Housing under Minister Joe Slovo. He has a History degree from Middlesex University, London.

Chris Locke

Chris Locke

Founder, Caribou Digital, and Visiting Fellow,
Center on Emerging and Pacific Economies, University of California, San Diego

Chris Locke is the Founder of Caribou Digital and a Visiting Fellow at the University of California, San Diego's Center on Emerging and Pacific Economies. 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

Co-Director, Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System
United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)

Nick Robins is Co-Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Inquiry into the Design of a Sustainable Financial System, a two-year initiative to advance financial policy options that more effectively mobilise capital for an inclusive, green economy. Mr Robins has over 20 years’ experience in the policy, research and financial dimensions of sustainable development. Before joining 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 growth, climate vulnerability, green stimulus and stranded assets. In the Thomson Extel awards for European investment research, Mr Robins was ranked as #1 analyst for integrated climate change in 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2013. Prior to HSBC, he was first head of 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 and co-designed the Industries of the Future fund. Mr Robins has also worked for the International Institute of Environment and Development and the European Commission’s Environment Directorate, and was part of the original Business Council for Sustainable Development, working on the Changing Course book for the 1992 Earth Summit.

Henrik Skovby

Henrik Skovby

Executive Chairman
Dalberg Group

Henrik Skovby is the former Global Managing Partner and founder of Dalberg. In his current capacity as Executive 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, 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.



Hilton London Bankside
2 – 8 Great Suffolk Street
London SE1 0UG
Tel: 44-020-36675600



For accommodation options at and near the venue, please click here >>


Organisers (3)

Financial Times Live (FT Live) is the global conferences and events division of the Financial Times Group. Chaired by senior journalists from the Financial Times Group, the summits, conferences, awards and strategic forums organised by FT Live gather the world’s brightest minds and most influential decision-makers.

Exclusive on-stage interviews, stimulating presentations and lively panel debates – available on multiple content platforms – provide the cutting-edge insights, unique personalities and peer audience engagement that have the power to transform finance, business, politics, society and culture.

The Financial Times is one of the world’s leading business news organisations, recognised internationally for its authority, integrity and accuracy. Providing essential news, comment, data and analysis for the global business community, the FT has a combined paid print and digital circulation of 840,000. Mobile is an increasingly important channel for the FT, driving more than half of total traffic.

The Financial Times is one of the world’s leading business news organisations, recognised internationally for its authority, integrity and accuracy. Providing essential news, comment, data and analysis for the global business community, the FT has a combined paid print and digital circulation of 840,000. Mobile is an increasingly important channel for the FT, driving more than half of total traffic.

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is the largest global development institution focused exclusively on the private sector in emerging markets. Working with 2,000 businesses worldwide, we use our six decades of experience to create opportunity where it’s needed most. In FY16, our long-term investments in developing countries rose to nearly $19 billion, leveraging our capital, expertise and influence to help the private sector end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity.We utilize and leverage our products and services—as well as products and services of other institutions in the World Bank Group—to provide development solutions customized to meet clients’ needs. We apply our financial resources, technical expertise, global experience, and innovative thinking to help our partners overcome financial, operational, and political challenges.IFC is also a leading mobilizer of third-party resources for its projects. Our willingness to engage in difficult environments and our leadership in crowding-in private finance enable us to extend our footprint and have a development impact well beyond our direct resources.

Supporting Partners (6)

Sparknews is a social enterprise, at the crossroads of social innovation, the leading media and the corporate world. Our mission is to shed light on innovative & tested solutions to the most pressing global issues. We achieve this through our two annual media operations Impact Journalism Day and Solutions&Co, reaching 120 million readers; alongside this Sparknews also inspires and advises the leaders of large corporations to work towards a more inclusive society.

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 University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL) brings together business, government and academia to find solutions to critical sustainability challenges. Capitalising on the world-class, multidisciplinary strengths of the University of Cambridge, CISL deepens leaders’ insight and understanding through its executive programmes; builds deep, strategic engagement with leadership companies; and creates opportunities for collaborative enquiry and action through its business platforms. Over 25 years, CISL has developed a leadership network with nearly 8,000 alumni from leading global organisations and an expert team of Fellows, Senior Associates and staff. HRH The Prince of Wales is the Patron of CISL and has inspired and supported many of its initiatives.

The Prince of Wales’s Corporate Leaders Group (CLG) is a select group of European business leaders working together under the patronage of His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales to advocate solutions on climate change to policymakers and business peers within the EU and globally.

CLG members are leading players in a range of industries, including retailing and consumer goods, transport and infrastructure, finance, and power generation.  With a wealth of experience, and millions of customers, employees and suppliers between them, CLG members’ collective perspective is informed by their continued commercial success, and ability to innovate, adapt and thrive in a changing economic climate. 

The CLG is convened by the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL).

GIF is a non-profit, social-first investment fund whose mission is to find, fund, and scale-up cost-effective, evidence-based innovations that have the potential to measurably improve the lives of millions of people living on $5 a day or less in the developing world. GIF deploys grant, equity, and debt investments to support a range of innovators across the globe to accelerate the development, rigorous testing, and scaling of evidence-based and market-tested innovations. The fund was established by the White House and 10 Downing Street, with support from the US, British, Australian and Swedish governments, and the Omidyar Network, to bring a venture capital sensibility to international development innovation. 

2016 Awards & Conference

To find out more about the 2016 Awards and Conference please visit:

A selection of photos from the day is also available here >>