Edition 12 – October 2012


A tremendous opportunity exists today to transform the face of investor/donor engagement with the vast, untapped markets at the base of the pyramid (BOP). The Artha Platform’s mission is to help unlock this opportunity.


Table of Contents:

Case studies
Statistics of interest
Recent investments
Investment opportunities
Platforms of interest
Tweet Corner




@amity_incubatr: AirJaldi Brings Internet to Difficult Terrains in Rural India (Link)

Milaap ?@milaapdotorg:
Husk Power brings renewable energy to 200k+ people in rural #India. (Link)  via @acumenfund @Ashoka

India: Transforming poor rural women into successful business managers (Link)

@thinkchangeind: Finalists of India Social Entrepreneur of the Year (SEOY) Award 2012 (Link)

@UNDP: 4,000 women entrepreneurs in poorest parts of northern #India. The project that made it possible: (Link)  #EqualityMonday

@sustain_ability Sustainability: Will 2012 belong to wind

@asiaiix: US$45M of #impinv raised in Q3 for 11 transactions in India! (Link)

@dietrichmarkus: Knowledge Today – Tablets in India take to frugal engineering and BoP markets via @danieloporto | @scoopit (Link)

@danieloporto: Lessons for #bop markets and #inclusivebusiness from #jugaad in India (Link)

@BizSocially: Family Roots: An alternative distribution network to the rural BoP ThinkChange India (Link)

@FrontierMkts: “If the spotlight for selling BoP-focused consumer products shifted to the urbanite with rural roots, maybe the… (Link)

Associate (India Philanthropy Forum) – Dasra
The Associate will be responsible for a wide range of activities directly related to the Indian Philanthropy Forum (IPF) and the formation of the Dasra Giving Circles. Key responsibilities will include: creating high quality materials for IPF members, corporations, foundations and other partners. Also on-going communication with IPF members and partners to ensure engagement throughout the year. This includes supporting the IPF Events Associate with planning events for the IPF members, with a special focus on the IPF Annual Event and events related to Dasra Giving Circles.
The Associate will help with the growth and development of the IPF through research on current and potential members and potential new partners. Additionally, the Associate will work closely with the Communications Team, to develop and implement the communications strategy, including IPF branding and positioning and oversee the creation and rollout of the IPF events calendar. Overall, the Associate will play an important role in the implementation of the IPF strategy to encourage strategic philanthropy in India.
Key Areas of Responsibility:

  • High Quality Materials and Communications with Internal and External Parties
  • Supporting IPF members and growth of membership
  • IPF Strategy and Implementation

Location: Mumbai, India
Contact: Click here to apply


Director (Advisory Research) – Dasra
Dasra’s Director, Advisory Research role will work closely with the Advisory Research Team creating an opportunity to position action-oriented knowledge enabling strategic and informed giving. Our reports direct funding, that drives greater impact on the ground where it is most needed and can improve the lives of thousands living in poverty. Our team conducts six months of in-depth research on key social sub-sectors in India and summarises the findings in comprehensive research reports. These reports highlight the most effective interventions and high-impact, scalable non-profit organisations.

Please click here to see Dasra’s Research Reports. Our research process involves in depth secondary research as well as primary field-based research. For each report, we reach out to a cross section of key stakeholders including: Leading non profits, beneficiaries of non profit programs, experts, academics, government, private sector and social businesses. These stakeholders will foster a growing network, where our new business opportunities can be developed. The Business Development aspect of this role will also incorporate stronger branding and position of Dasra overall and supporting senior leadership on new business opportunities for Dasra. This will require a deep understanding of Dasra’s products and the ability to position a potential donor’s needs to our service offering with core strategic thinking and pitching. This role will demand a fine balance of pursuing new business with balanced involvement from each vertical – Dasra Social-Impact, Dasra Giving Circles, Indian Philanthropy Forum, Advisory Research, Communications and the Impact Assessment Unit.
Location: Mumbai, India
Contact: Click here to apply

Asia Business Responsibility Conclave (ABRC) 2012
November 6th-8th, 2012
Location:Bombay Exhibition Centre, Mumbai, IndiaThe Asia Business Responsibility Conclave (ABRC) 2012 is a conference and exhibition designed for business leaders and other stakeholders of business to congregate around sustainable business practices in light of the recently concluded Rio +20 UN summit. The Rio +20 summit called upon businesses to shoulder the responsibility of sustainable development and be accountable for the same, requiring the development and deployment of region-specific sustainable business models.Go to Artha events to read more…

Independent Sector Annual Conference
November 11th-13th, 2012
Location:Hilton San Francisco Union Square, , San Francisco, USAThe Independent
Sector has put together a slate of 25 breakout and four plenary sessions inspired by GameChanging people, events, and ideas that can
ignite new thinking about who they are, how they lead, and what it takes
to shape a robust future for the charitable sector and the communities
we serve. Go to Artha events to read more…
EVPA Annual Conference

November 13th-14th, 2012
Location: Croke Park, Dublin, IrelandThis year’s conference will focus on the topic of “Backing the change-makers in an era of uncertainty: can we do more?”. For access to the programme, pre-conference
event, speakers, practical information, news and updates, please visit
the EVPA  website. Go to Artha events to read more…


Khemka Forum on Social Entrepreneurship
Date: December 7th-8th, 2012

Indian School of Business, Hyderabad
Participation in the Khemka Forum is by ‘invitation only’. If you
are working in the field and are committed to advancing innovative and
sustainable social solutions and would like to attend the Forum, please
kindly fill in this online form.Go to Artha events to read more…


Millennium Alliance Inspiring Innovation. Sharing Solutions.
The MA is an inclusive platform to leverage Indian creativity, expertise, and resources to identify and scale innovative solutions being developed and tested in India to address development challenges that will benefit base of the pyramid populations across India and the world.
Selection Criteria: Please read the detailed selection criteria here.
Categories:The MA awards will be provided for projects under the following two stages:

  • Stage 1: The development needed to support proof of concept and financial, administrative, and technical viability.
  • Stage 2: Implementing the project at a sufficiently large scale to allow for rigorous impact testing.

Rewards: MA will make at least six awards per year, subject to the evaluation and recommendations of the Evaluation Committees:

  • Stage 1: Funding not exceeding Rs. 50,00,000 or $100,000 (approx.)
  • Stage 2: Funding not exceeding Rs. 3,75,00,000 or $750,000 (approx.)

The award could be in the form of a grant or a debt or equity or a combination thereof. The MA support may also support a range of innovation incubation and accelerator services.

Click here to apply

‘India Social Entrepreneur of the Year’ Finalists Announced
The Schwab Foundation for Social Entrepreneurship and The Jubilant Bhartia Foundation yesterday announced the finalists of the India Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award 2012.
Read more…

Power to Empower – Skills Enterprise Plan Competition
The objective of this competition is to find and promote grassroots entrepreneurs across India that have mastered innovative and sustainable solutions in skill building for India.

Selection Criteria: Please read the detailed selection criteria here.
Rewards:The winners for the business plan category will receive the following rewards:

  • National visibility: Promotion through websites, social media and blog stories
  • Network opportunities: Introductions to investors, high-profile event passes
  •  Non-financial support: Access to renowned experts, training courses

One national and five regional (East, West, North South & Central) winners for the Idea Category will receive national visibility through websites, social media and blog stories.

Categories:The different categories and sub-categories are:

  •  Idea: Students and entrepreneurs with an idea in skills space
  •  Business Plan: Students and entrepreneurs with a for-profit plan in skills space
Artha Platform Feasibility Study: Information Sharing across Heterogenous Impact Investors
Platform addresses a financial market failure known as the missing
middle, where fixed due diligence cost constrains formal lending or
investment in small enterprises with low capital requirements. Through
information sharing, Artha aims to reduce net due diligence cost by
enhancing investors’ success in deal sourcing.
Read more…


Welcome to the 12th Artha Newsletter!
Artha Team is currently pushing on the closure of the first three transactions to be properly diligenced on the platform, with goals of seeing at least three disbursements planned by the end of the year.   Exciting news features the creation of the formal entity – Artha Networks Inc. – that will be the driver of the expansion of the core technology developed for the purposes of our impact investing community working in India.  In future, we hope to see versions of the unique Artha functionality developed for family offices, venture philanthropies and socially motivated investors working in different geographical and sectoral contexts.  Meanwhile, development of v1.2 of Artha is progressing well, and we hope to see a re-vamp and new deployment of the current system by January 1, 2013.  Please contact info@arthaplatform.com for more information.
Co-founder of Dasra Deval Sanghavi interviewed in Philanthropy Management magazine
The 2011 Philanthropy Management magazine interviews Deval Sanghavi about Dasra’s methodology. Read more..
‘Rethinking the Bottom of the Pyramid’, by the Daily Star
The Daily Star of India reported on the outcome of its workshop, co-organised alongside two other organisations, the NGO Swisscontact and MART, the India-based consulting firm focused on emerging markets. Read more…
Financial Times features social enterprise in India
The feature of the week in the Financial Times, of 29th October 2012 is on social enterprise in India. The article
provides a broad overview of the socio-economic challenges facing India
and pays particular attention to the area of housing.  It further
explains how Indian business schools are rising to meet these challenges
through new programmes and partnerships
  Read more..

Tablets in India Take to Frugal Engineering
Wharton at the University of Pennsylvania recently published a blog post on the state of the computer tablet market in India. The
article takes a look back at recent developments in this space
and forward at potential market demand, with 40% year on year growth
projected for the next five years.
  Read more…

Hub Ventures is Recruiting World-Changing Startups for Spring 2013!
Hub Ventures, a startup accelerator that works with for-profit companies solving big social and environmental challenges, is now taking applications for their upcoming Spring 2013 cohort. 
Read more…

VentureNursery (VN) is India’s first angel-backed start-up accelerator. Established in March 2012 by two like-minded Angel Investors Shravan Shroff (Founder and former MD, Fame Cinemas) and Ravi Kiran (former CEO-South East & South Asia, Starcom MediaVest Group and Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Friends of Ambition), the accelerator runs its physical premises out of Mumbai, India.Based on their belief that the angel ecosystem must focus primarily on maximising the success potential of start-ups, VentureNursery undertakes an intensive and immersive coaching and mentoring role in the chosen start-ups and helps each with end-to-end infrastructural and learning support.Read more…

The Center for Health Market Innovations (CHMI) promotes policies and practices that improve privately delivered health care for the poor in low- and middle- income countries. Operated through a global network of partners since 2010, CHMI is managed by the Results for Development Institute.  If the Center for Health Market Innovations is successful in the long-term, an enabling environment for higher performing health marketplaces with better health outcomes, improved financial protection, and greater consumer satisfaction will begin to emerge in a number of developing countries.
Read more… 
Spring health
Spring health brings safe drinking water through an economical chlorination based technology to villages that have a population of 500 households in a 2 km radius around it. They partner with kirana shops piggybacking on their location and their staff typically the owner and family members thereby keeping their capital and operation costs as low as possible.
Customers can collect the water at the kiosk itself or have delivered it to their homes for an additional cost.
Please see the Artha pipeline for more information…
MeraDoctor is a health care service in India offering unlimited advice from doctors by phone, plus discounts on medical expenses. Their mission is to make high quality, reliable health care accessible to millions of Indians. They work with leaders in healthcare, telecommunications and development finance to develop simple new healthcare delivery models that can profitably serve the mass market. They combine simple customer-oriented design with the power of mobile phones and networks to achieve our goals.
Please see the Artha pipeline for more information…
Promethean Power Systems
Power Systems designs and manufactures rural refrigeration systems for
commercial cold-storage applications in off-grid and partially
electrified areas of developing countries. The technology enables food
suppliers to reliably store and preserve perishable food items—such as
milk, fruits and vegetables—without the need for expensive
diesel-powered generators.
Please see the Artha pipeline for more information…
Kinara Capital
Kinara Capital is a social business based in Bangalore, India that provides loans in the range of Rs.1 Lakh ($2,000) to Rs. 10 Lakhs ($20,000) to micro and small enterprises filling the gap between microfinance and commercial capital with the goal of generating new jobs, improving incomes and creating sustainable businesses. 
Please see the Artha pipeline for more information..
Waste Ventures India
Waste Ventures India Pvt Ltd is an international social enterprise aimed at creating sustainable solid waste management systems in tier two and tier three cities across India. Waste Ventures has pioneered a unique model in India incorporating door-to-door collection, environmental waste processing as well as carbon credits. The model was developed in collaboration with waste management organisations from across the world and has been tested throughout several states. They involve all stakeholders in the system – existing waste organisations, municipalities as well as private investors – to create a new paradigm of financially viable and environmentally sustainable waste management.
Please see the Artha pipeline for more information…
Indian social ventures attract 11 investments worth $45 million in the period July – September 2012
investors undertook 11 deals totalling USD $45 million in India between
July and September 2012. The study, undertaken by the research firm
Venture Intelligence is reported on more fully in The Business Standard.
Read more..
Livelihoods Challenge for Transgender Women
Across cities in South Asia, transgender women, many of whom identify themselves as hijras, are marginalised and suffer some of the worst discrimination in the region. This was not always the case as hijras have a long history and used to be treated with respect. Today, oppression takes many forms, from general marginalisation in society, to lack of access to housing and public services, to a lack of legal identity, human rights, health facilities and livelihoods opportunities. Read more…