By Nicholas Waitathu
Kenya Tea Development Authority (KTDA) has been named the winner of the Financial Times and International Finance Corporation (IFC) Sustainable Finance Awards 2013 held in London.
In the category, “Achievement in Inclusive Business”, the tea farmers’ agency was jointly feted with Universitaria Minuto de Dios, a private university in Colombia that has expanded access to higher education among the poor by charging affordable fees, while managing to remain commercially viable.
Judges voted KTDA the best company in the category out of 57 non-financial organisations from 62 countries that entered the competition. They noted that KTDA was applying innovative and commercially viable solutions to solve sustainability challenges in Kenya’s small-holder tea sub-sector.
Significantly, they observed that KTDA was replicating its unique business model in Rwanda, where the company is managing two tea factories.
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KTDA CEO Lerionka Tiampati dedicated the award to the 560,000 small-holder tea farmers at the heart of the agency’s operations.