• Awarded: 2005
  • Issue Areas: Economic Opportunity · Environmental Sustainability · Livelihoods · Responsible Supply Chains · Smallholder Productivity · Sustainable Markets · Water Management
  • Region: Central and Southern Asia · Eastern and Southern Africa
  • Web:
  • About the Organization

    International Development Enterprises (IDE)-India is an Indian not-for-profit enterprise committed to providing long-term solutions to poverty, hunger, and malnutrition. They stimulate a sustainable and free market by creating demand for affordable technologies and ensuring a sustainable supply chain.

    IDEI is currently working in 15 states in India. Over the years, IDEI has reached out to over 1.25 million smallholder farm families, impacting more than six million people.

    Making small-plot agriculture more remunerative and thereby reducing poverty, hunger, and deprivation remains IDEI’s guiding philosophy. IDEI’s technology is designed to be one-fifth the cost of its competitors, is scaled down to fit one-tenth hectare plots, and is able to generate sales at unsubsidized market prices.

    IDEI’s technologies are low cost, offer a high return on investment for farmers, are simple and inexpensive to maintain, and are manually powered. They include treadle pumps, and drip and sprinkler irrigation systems. On average, they help farmers earn an additional US$500 in net income per year.

    India's dry season brings hardship to farm families. Hunger, migration, and interruption of children's education perpetuate a cycle of poverty

    IDE-I makes available irrigation products that even the poorest farmers can afford, to produce food crops during the dry season.

    Amitabha Sadangi and IDE-I were recognized with the Ashden Award for these life-changing innovations.

    IDE-I pumps and drip systems are used by more than 1.25 million households, benefiting 6 million people.

    Ambition for Change

    Poor subsistence farmers achieve food security, improved health and education, increased income and a stable and productive natural resource base.

    Path to Scale

    Spin off successful products; focus on research and continuing innovation

    Develop partnerships to make irrigation kits available to 5 million families, spinning off successful products as independent enterprises while IDE-I focuses on innovation, alliances, and impact monitoring..

    Business Model

    IDE-I is a classic example of effective marketing to the bottom of the pyramid, producing products very inexpensively to be affordable to even the poorest clients (who can afford more sophisticated products as their incomes increase) and engaging in research and policy work to understand and address the barriers that keep small farmers poor.

    Amitabha Sadangi overcame a background of extreme poverty through education, and determined to create a business that would focus on more than the bottom line. International Development Enterprises-India, which he founded in 2001, makes and sells irrigation products that even the poorest farmers can afford, enabling them to grow food for their families and to sell during the dry season. Poor farmers had been ignored as a market segment on the assumption that they had no money to spend. IDE-I has shown that with the right products—appropriately sized, priced and marketed—the marketplace is an efficient mechanism to distribute income-generating technologies IDE-I invests in both market and outcomes research, seeking to understand the environment in which its clients operate. Thus, it engages in research, networks, skills development and policy work to address the challenges of small producers, including access to markets and finance, information, regulatory issues, market organization, competitiveness, marketplace infrastructure and business skills. At the time of the Award, 2 million people had earned $600 million through use of IDE-I products.

    Impact & Accomplishments

    • IDE-I treadle pumps and drip systems are used by more than 1.25 million households, benefiting 6 million people. Each household earns an average of $500 additional income in a year , for a cumulative total of $1.3 billion over 15 years.
    • These households also have experienced improvements in education and nutrition.
    • Use of manually operated treadle pumps is reducing carbon emissions by more than 2.5 million tons.
    • IDE-I enterprises have generated 1.6 million days of employment in the supply chain (manufacturers, dealers, village-based installers and mechanics.).

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