Digital Pitch Contest for global development innovations, hosted by Global Innovation Exchange

December 4, 2018

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Global Innovation Exchange, the largest global development innovation platform managed by Results for Development, announced Akellobanker, a data-driven mobile tech platform, as the winner of its Digital Pitch Contest geared towards propelling global development innovations to the next level. Akellobanker competed with more than 200 social enterprises for the opportunity to win a grand prize worth US$15,000.

Akellobanker enables low-income earners including farmers, youth, women and disabled persons to access mechanized agricultural services, improved seed and medical services on credit.

Global Innovation Exchange (GIE), a global development innovation platform managed by Results for Development (R4D), works to scale up innovations and strengthen innovation ecosystems. The tech platform aims to accelerate innovations in developing countries by helping social entrepreneurs fundraise more effectively, and development professionals and funders learn more about such innovations. Since its inception in 2017 at USAID’s Global Innovation Week, the GIE platform has included more than 16,000 innovations, with 5,000 which have a “verified” badge based on input from more than 50 partners.

GIE hosted the Digital Pitch Contest (DPC) to drive global development innovations to the next level by helping social entrepreneurs perfect their fundraising pitch to secure their next round of funding and improving their innovation pages that help them get in front of funders and other partners. The grand prize worth US$15,000 included: storytelling advisory and production of a short promotional video by Vivid Story, and three hours of personalized pitch coaching by the renowned Nathan Gold. The winner, as well as four finalists, also received free access to the CASE Smart Impact Capital toolkit from Duke University.

The contest was designed to benefit all applicants and participants while awarding prizes to the best digital pitches for development-focused innovations. It included a 3-part digital workshop series titled, “Getting the Pitch Right” to help innovators perfect their fundraising pitch to secure additional funding and partners to support their innovation scale-up. The workshop series included the following 3 parts: 

  1. “Part 1: An Investible Story” Co-led by CASE at Duke University’s Fuqua School of Business on how to frame their investable stories 
  2. “Part 2: Building Champions” Co-led by The Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs on how to build a strong network of engaged champions in
  3. “Part 3: A Relatable Story”Co-led by SecondMuse on  how to share a relatable story to appeal to various stakeholders. 

The Contest also had the following four finalists:

  1. World Possible [Education – Guatemala, Sierra Leone, & More]Connecting offline learners to the World’s knowledge – RACHEL (Remote Area Community Hotspot for Education & Learning) is a low-cost, plug-and-play digital library for the 52% of the world’s population without internet.
  2. Maji Mamas [Water Management – Kenya]Women using social enterprise to transition from water bearer to water provider, launching scaleable water and sanitation businesses.
  3. X-Runner [Water Sanitation & Hygiene – Peru]We provide a non-conventional sanitation solution for families who live in informal human settlements in Lima and lack access to water and safely managed sanitation.

CoolCap Fund [Agriculture – Kenya]Providing innovative “Pay-As-You-Harvest” equipment financing to mechanize smallholder farmers globally, resulting in increased production, income, food security, and a significant reduction in manual labor.

Global Innovation Exchange funders and partners


About Results for Development
Results for Development (R4D) is a leading non-profit global development partner. We collaborate with change agents around the world — government officials, civil society leaders and social innovators — to create strong systems that support healthy, educated people. We help our partners move from knowing their goal to knowing how to reach it. We combine global expertise in health, education and nutrition with analytic rigor, practical support for decision-making and implementation and access to peer problem-solving networks. Together with our partners, we build self-sustaining systems that serve everyone and deliver lasting results. Then we share what we learn so others can achieve results for development, too. For more information, visit our website at:






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