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Founded in 1987 by chocolatier Josef Zotter, Zotter is an Austrian company with a product range of over 400 varieties of chocolate, such as ‘Brazil Nut Nougat with Jungle Pepper’ and ‘Passion Fruit and Caramel with Thyme’. With a focus on innovation and sustainability, they work with 100% organic ingredients of fair-trade quality and physical traceability. Ennovent is currently exploring the sourcing of organic, fair trade ingredients from the Himalayas, across India, Nepal and Bhutan, for Zotter chocolates. The aim of the project is to create new chocolate, which makes additional income for farmers in the Himalayan region. Zotter Chocolates The Zotter...

An article by Jaya Srinivasan, Manager - Clients at Ennovent   I completed six months working in mental health this September. As someone with no previous educational or professional background in mental health, I have learnt a great deal in the process. I have met several inspiring people with diverse opinions, ranging from what would be considered the conservative to the radical. My opinions have been challenged, and my understanding of the “normal” turned on its head. I continue to grapple with the definitions of mental illness and what it means to have mental well-being. For many of us, mental health is an...

A variety of informal and formal businesses exist in many urban areas of Nepal, providing a variety of services along the Fecal Sludge Management (FSM) service chain. However, such businesses and their practices are not regulated or monitored. Often, they operate unsustainably, do not have scalable business models, and are unable to reach low-income communities because of their revenue models. In this context, Ennovent assisted Oxfam in Nepal to conduct a feasibility study to understand the current scenario with respect to FSM and assess business opportunities within the FSM service chain. The study provided crucial insights into the demand, consumers and their...

India is fast becoming an increasingly urbanized country. Currently estimated at 377 million, the country’s urban population is projected to rise to nearly 600 million by 2030. Such a dramatic rise implies a near proportional increase in pressure on the country’s resources, particularly its water and sanitation infrastructure. As is the case with many such social stresses, the burden for this pressure will be disproportionately borne by the poorer and more vulnerable sections of the population. The government, in recognition of the need for urgent redressal, launched the Swachh Bharat Mission-Urban in October 2014. The scheme objectives include the elimination of...

The North East of India, comprising eight adjoining states, has the presence of abundant natural resources in the form of fertile lands, vast forest cover and rich mineral deposits. However, the region’s vast potential has been underutilized for business, primarily in the agriculture and tourism sectors.  Also, the area faces multiple challenges like lack of infrastructure, poor connectivity, unemployment, ethnic conflict and insurgencies. There is a strategic advantage to these states in North East India. The region shares the border with Bhutan, Bangladesh, China and Myanmar which could be a potential trade and business opportunity. The Government’s 'Look East, Act East'...

What has been the journey like for you? After completing my post-graduation in 2007, I started my career in a general hospital where I worked for 3 months but soon realised that this was not what I wanted to do. So, started working with an NGO and a year and over 10,000 patients later, I decided to move on to working in the government sector. It was this experience that crystallised into the single principle on which we based the operations of ERC. I realised that the base-level of the pyramid needs to be treated like a market and with dignity. For...

Ennovent’s Impact Investment Holding (IIH) made a follow-on investment in ERC Eye Care to help scale-up its operations and improve impact in North-East India. Speaking about the investment, Vipul Kumar, Country Director - Ennovent India said, “Ennovent has demonstrated its commitment to serve the North-East India with its follow-on investment in ERC and the on-going North-East Accelerator Program aimed to develop the region’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. ERC has come a long way in revolutionizing healthcare in the North-East and we are looking at a long-term association with them to continue to create a positive impact in the region. According to the WHO Report (2015), almost 40% of...

Based on our team’s baseline study of WASH pain-points in Faridabad, Mysuru and Udaipur and by working with key city government officials, we have identified and prioritized the following urban WASH innovations that the IHUWASH Accelerator would focus on: Water Related Innovations  Safe Drinking Water It is estimated that around 66%, 37% and 30% of households in the cities of NCR, Karnataka and Rajasthan respectively drink untreated or unpurified water. We are in search of innovations that make safe drinking water readily available at less than INR 1 per litre for these underserved urban households in Faridabad, Mysuru and Udaipur. Last-mile Water Distribution It is estimated that around 38%,...

Cities in India today are plagued by multiple water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) challenges. Drinking water supply and sanitation facilities continue to be inadequate. India tops the global list of countries with the largest urban population without access to sanitation. The rapid pace of urbanization growing at an annual rate of 2.1 percent further compounds this problem, and sustainability of water and sanitation services is expected to be affected even more severely in the future. Common problems across urban locations, such as the lack of space for the development of sanitation facilities, low sewerage network coverage, inadequate number of functional toilets...

The framework provided by the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) prioritises the sustainability challenges faced by the developing world. At Ennovent, we align our innovation projects with the SDGs to focus on sectors with a need for immediate intervention in India, Nepal and Bhutan. To build these projects, we first analyse the needs and challenges faced in these sectors, identify business innovations to address the gaps and work with the innovators to test and launch their business projects. Water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), the focus of SDG 6, has been at the core of many of Ennovent’s innovation projects over the past few...