EKO India Financial Services Wins 2011 Tech Awards for Economic Development

Written by Patrick Fisher October 27, 2011 0 comment

Eko India Financial Services India Recognized for Applying Technology to Benefit Humanity

Eko India Financial Services (Eko), was named as a laureate of The Tech Awards 2011, one of 15 global innovators recognized each year for applying technology to benefit humanity and spark global change. On October 20, 2011, The Tech Awards, a signature program of The Tech Museum, and presented by Applied Materials, Inc., selected Eko from among hundreds of nominations representing 54 countries as the winner of their Economic Development category, awarding them with the cash prize. (The two founders – Abhinav & Abhishek Sinha are on the righthand side of the video shot below, wearing purple for their category of Economic Development.)

Creation Investments CEO Patrick Fisher was on hand to congratulate Eko for their distinguished work.  Creation Investments Social Ventures Fund I is the only institutional investor in Eko, providing expansion capital for the growth and outreach of Eko.

Through its robust mobile-based platform and 1,700 agents, Eko provides its customers with basic banking, savings and payment services, along with merchant transactions, bill payment, and cash collection services.  Eko’s solution allows customers to open bank accounts, deposit, withdraw and remit money in real-time at the agent using number dialing from any mobile phone. Through its branchless banking service offering and integration with India’s largest banks, Eko empowers the unbanked in India to access financial services and transact with over 250 million bank accounts.  Eko has served over 1.3 million customers and processed $500 million USD in micro deposits,payments and remittances.

As a technology provider, Eko supports other Business Correspondents, including Microfinance Institutions (“MFIs”), extending their outreach and product offering.  Business Correspondents have used Eko’s solution due to its real-time connectivity to State Bank of India’s core banking system, the ubiquity of access, near zero start-up CAPEX, low client literacy requirements, and proven product design.

The Tech Awards: Technology Benefiting Humanity is one of the premier annual humanitarian awards programs in the world, recognizing technical solutions that benefit humanity and address the most critical issues facing our planet and its people. The awards program honors 15 scientists and innovators annually alongside the recipient of the Global Humanitarian Award. Laureates are selected by a prestigious panel of international judges organized by the Center for Science, Technology, and Society at Santa Clara University, and made up of Santa Clara University faculty as well as leaders from educational and research institutions, industry and the public sector around the world.

“The Tech Awards is an outstanding honor, recognizing individuals and organizations whose ideas and their execution are changing the world,” said Abhishek Sinha, Co-Founder and CEO, Eko. “We are ecstatic to receive this recognition at such a prestigious global platform. It is a proud moment for us to be amidst those recognized for their contributions, and we will continue to develop solutions that improve the overall well being of people worldwide.”

“The global challenges of the day have become increasingly strident, more deeply rooted,” said David Whitman, Vice President of Signature Programs at The Tech Museum. “Still, there is hope. These incredibly impressive Laureates have all proven to be equal to, or better than, the challenge to make the world a better place. By celebrating their accomplishments today, we are encouraging future innovators to work toward solutions to make the world healthier, safer and more sustainable.”

Established in 2000, The Tech Awards recognizes 15 Laureates in five universal categories: education, equality, environment, economic development and health. These laureates have developed new technological solutions or innovative ways to use existing technologies to significantly improve the lives of people around the world. One laureate in each category will receive a $50,000 cash prize during the annual Awards Gala in Santa Clara CA. on October 20.

This year, the laureates represent the truly global vision of the program, spanning countries such as India, Honduras and Ethiopia. Their work impacts people in many more countries worldwide.

The Tech Awards collaborates with humanitarian, educational, and business partners through global outreach efforts, giving people around the world the opportunity to benefit from the successful technologies recognized through The Tech Awards. The selected laureates’ projects address multiple humanitarian efforts including developing alternate ways to generate electricity, creating free educational tools, and improving literacy among children.

Key sponsors supporting The Tech Awards include Applied Materials, Inc., Intel Corporation, Nokia, Microsoft, Swanson Foundation, Flextronics, Polycom, Skoll Foundation, KPMG, Ernst & Young, Accenture, eBay, Qatalyst, Google, Wells Fargo, Xilinx, American Airlines, Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide, Bain & Company, NBC11, San Jose Mercury News, Forbes, Stanford Social Innovation Review, TIME, Xfinity, MEMC Electronic Materials, Brassfield Estate Winery, Hilton San Jose, Convention Plaza Hotel, and Hayward Quartz Technology.

For more information about The Tech Awards, visit The Tech Awards