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2 Indian companies to receive US grant for fighting poverty

The two Indian companies Orb Energy and Simpa would receive grants from the USAID for social impact, improved outcomes, and market viability, as well as for building pathways to sustainability.

twitter-logoPTI | April 13, 2016 | Updated 11:43 IST
2 Indian companies to receive US grant for fighting poverty
Photo: Reuters

Two Indian organisations and one each from Bangladesh and Pakistan are among eight to receive the $5 million grant from US Agency for International Development (USAID) for finding innovative ways to end extreme poverty.

The two Indian companies Orb Energy and Simpa would receive grants from the USAID for social impact, improved outcomes, and market viability, as well as for building pathways to sustainability.

Orb Energy has developed in-house financing solutions to make solar energy access more affordable to small and medium sized enterprises seeking solar systems in India, a media release said.

Simpa provides pay-as-you-go solar home systems to rural households and small shops in India allowing low-income customers to finance ownership of the system over time.

USAID said the awards are funded through the Development Innovation Ventures (DIV) program, a year-round open competition that seeks innovative, breakthrough development solutions.

The new awardee organisations will implement their solutions in over six different countries.

The majority of the awardee organisations are new to USAID and are using technology to address global development challenges, a media release said.

"Through our open innovation programs like DIV, USAID works with innovators from around the world to test, prove, and scale solutions that work," said Ann Mei Chang, USAID's Chief Innovation Officer and Executive Director of the US Global Development Lab.

"These awardees join 145 other DIV innovations [since 2010 inception], working to improve millions of lives at a fraction of the usual cost," Chang said.

TraumaLink from Bangladesh utilizes a 24-hour emergency hotline and trained local first responders to save the lives of traffic accident victims.

And Naya Jeevan Welfare Organizsation from Pakistan connects female healthcare providers who work from home with underserved, low-income patients via telemedicine, the release said.

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