Entrepreneurs for Resilience Award

Deadline: 8 November  2020
Open to: formally established enterprises that serve at least 20 000 people and have the potential to reach at least 200 000 people in the coming three years
Benefits: the total prize money of USD 700 000


The Swiss Re Foundation Entrepreneurs for Resilience Award recognises entrepreneurial initiatives that take innovative approaches to building resilient societies and realising the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. While resilience is the core theme of this annual programme, its specific focus changes from year to year. The 2021 Resilience Award focuses on innovative solutions that increase financial access to healthcare in low-income communities. More specifically, the organizers are looking for innovative, market-based solutions that increase the household resources available for healthcare and/or reduce health shocks that lead to poverty or economic vulnerability following a disease or an accident.


Enterprises that meet the following criteria are encouraged to apply:

  • Level of maturity

Applicants are formally established, serve at least 20 000 people and have the potential to reach at least 200 000 people in the coming three years. They are also on a clear path to full or partial financial sustainability while still requiring grants (or other support) to improve their business model, to reach low-income households and/or to attain full financial sustainability.

  • Innovation focus

Applicants display high levels of innovation in their product, service and/or delivery and likely use technology to deliver value to underserved populations at scale.

  • Mission and purpose

Applicants have a strong social purpose while using commercial mechanisms to achieve sustainability and scale. The strongest contenders are able to demonstrate high levels of social impact and ideally to measure it in a reliable manner.

  • Target group

Applicants focus on serving people living in poor to very poor communities, who should represent at least 30% of those served. They also have a deep understanding of their end users’ specific circumstances (eg barriers to using financial instruments to better manage their own healthcare).

  • Geography

Applicants may operate in any geography, rural and/or urban. At least one of the three finalists will come from the Americas.

  • Legal

Within the legal framework of the country in which they are registered, applicants should be allowed to receive grant funding from a Swiss non-governmental organisation (ie the Swiss Re Foundation).


  • A total grant of USD 700 000 for three finalists. This amount is divided among the winner (which receives up to USD 350 000) and the two runners-up and paid in several instalments over one to three years
  • Non-financial support such as coaching and technical advice from Swiss Re employees and experts, tailored to the needs of the ventures
  • The Employee Award. Swiss Re employees around the world are invited to vote for their favorite Resilience Award finalist. The finalist with the most votes receives a special prize


To apply for the 2021 Entrepreneurs for Resilience Award, complete the questionnaire. For more information, please visit the official website.