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Institutions from Brazil, Ecuador and Paraguay win the IDB's Inter-American Awards for Financial and Entrepreneurial Innovation

Winners will be honored on November 4th during the Foromic conference in Guayaquil, Ecuador

Banco do Nordeste of Brazil, Tigo from Paraguay, and FOODSANU from Ecuador have won this year's Inter-American Awards for Financial andEntrepreneurial Innovation for their excellence in supporting financial inclusion, digital finance, and microenterprise in Latin America and theCaribbean. These awards are given by the Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), a member of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) Group.

The winners will be honored on November 4, during the opening ceremony of the 2014 Foromic conference, the region's leading event on issues related tomicrofinance and enterprise. This year, Foromic will take place in Guayaquil, Ecuador from November 4-6 under the theme: “Inclusive Finance: Business Models that Work for All.”

The President of Ecuador, Rafael Correa Delgado and the President of the IDB, Luis Alberto Moreno, are expected to attend the event’s inauguration.

2014 Award for Financial Inclusion

The 2014 Award for Financial Inclusion recognizes an outstanding financial institution offering retail services: its performance, transparency, quality, usage of its financial services, and its effectiveness in reaching poor and low-income populations in Latin Americaand the Caribbean.

Banco do Nordeste in Brazil won the 2014 Financial Inclusion Award for its performance in providing financial services to poor and low-income populations. Its microcredit program CrediAmigo, designed in 1997 in partnership with Action International, is currently one of the largest microcredit programs in Latin America. CrediAmigo is Banco do Nordeste's contribution to Brazil's National Microcredit Program, a program driven by the federal government to boost employment and income among microentrepreneurs. CrediAmigo currently performs over 5000 operations per day and has a database-sharing alliance with the government social program Bolsa Familia.

2014 Award for Digital Finance

The 2014 Award for Digital Finance recognizes an outstanding initiative from a financial intermediary, agent network, or a technology and communications company, including mobile phone operators, that uses information and communication technologies to expand financial inclusionin the region.

Tigo Paraguay, the largest cellular operator in Paraguay, won the Award for Digital Finance for its performance, financial transparency, and the quality and usage of its financial services. Its product Tigo Money (Mobile Cash Paraguay, S.A.) has distinguished itself in the field of digital finance for bringing financial services (including person to person, “P2P” money transfers, payment operations and microcredit) to residents of unbanked areas in a quick and accessible way, taking advantage of the coverage of its agent point networks and an agreement with Banco Familiar. Tigo Money's success is due to a deepmarket understanding, a motivated agent network, its focus on rural and low-income populations, its development of compelling marketing strategies, and its close collaboration with a bank partner. Currently TIGO Money has more than 500,000 clients with over 3,000 pointsof sale throughout Paraguay.

Award for Excellence and Sustainability of the Ecuadorian Microenterprise:

Awarded by the Ministry of Industry and Productivity of Ecuador, this award recognizes and will strengthen the knowledge, experience, organizational capacity, and innovative and successful initiatives of a microenterprise in Ecuador.

This year's award will recognize Ecuadorian entrepreneur Ximena Coba, creator of the food processor FOODSANU. FOODSANU produces fruit pulp without chemical additives through the implementation of a Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) management system.

Foromic and the Inter-American Awards for Financial and Entrepreneurial Innovation are organized by the Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF), a member of the IDB Group. The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) supports economic growth and poverty reduction in Latin America. The Award for Excellence and Sustainability of the Ecuadorian Microenterprise was developed and selected by the Ministry of Industries and Productivity, Foromic's counterpart in Ecuador.

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