The US Embassy in Singapore has
honored East Bali Cashews (“EBC”) for its outstanding societal impact following
EBC’s win of the 2015 US Secretary of State’s Award for Corporate Excellence
(“ACE”). EBC received that award during a ceremony at the US Department of
State in Washington DC earlier this year.
“It is easy to find value in good
cashews, but it takes real vision and concern for others to do what East Bali
Cashews has done to uplift an entire community,” said Blair P. Hall, Jr.,
Deputy Chief of Mission at the US Embassy in Singapore. “Secretary Kerry chose
to honor EBC and its founder, Aaron Fishman, because his business has been
transformative. EBC now employs over 350 people in Bali, including previously
unemployed women, while building a preschool for employees' children and
increasing incomes of local farmers by 20 percent along the way.”
Since 1999, the Secretary of
State awards the ACE each year to recognize companies that are leaders in
responsible business conduct worldwide and make important contributions to the
growth and sustainable development of the local economies in which they
“Aaron embodies the best of
American social entrepreneurialism and the can-do attitude of US entrepreneurs,
who look at a problem and see solutions, not impediments, and who look at a
business relationship as an investment for the long-term, not a transaction for
the short term,” Mr. Hall continued. “Aaron did not do it alone. Pro-bono
assistance from US investment firm KKR in partnership with Impact Investment
Exchange (IIX) gave him the business tools he needed and provided another
showcase for something Americans and American businesses do so well – Corporate
Social Responsibility, in which the United States is a global leader.”
During the honor ceremony located
at the residence of the Deputy Chief of Mission, Founder and CEO of EBC Aaron
Fishman discussed the business and its community empowerment philosophy.
“It has been a true honor to
receive the Secretary of State’s award,” said EBC Founder and CEO Aaron
Fishman. “The ACE underscores our efforts to enhance the lives of people in the
village of Desa Ban, Karangasem, East Bali, by creating new jobs, offering
social services and equipping people to rise out of poverty.”
EBC uses sustainable,
eco-friendly business practices to process unshelled cashews, package and sell
them to the domestic and international markets. The company is based in Desa
Ban, creating employment opportunities where per capita income is US$2 per day.
During its initial stages, global
investment firm KKR offered its expertise by helping develop EBC’s financial
model and business plan.
“East Bali Cashews creates social
value in a local Indonesian community as part of its business model,” said
Kabir Mathur, Director at KKR Southeast Asia and a member of KKR’s capacity
building impact investment team. “KKR is extremely proud of the work East Bali
Cashews has done and for being part of its journey.”
“Without KKR’s support and
guidance, we would never have raised the capital at the pace we have done so.
They completely accelerated our growth,” added Mr. Fishman.
In presenting the award, the
State Department noted how EBC has improved the quality of local agricultural
production, modernized its methods and expanded services to address the health
and education needs of the children of company employees.
Company Readies Launch of East
Bali Center for Community Development
As EBC has become more embedded
within the Ban community, they have come to understand not only the depth of
need in the region, but how to successfully implement social programming to
catalyze sustainable change.
In order to leverage EBC’s
community relationships and expand their social impact, EBC is launching a
venture philanthropy initiative, the East Bali Center for Community Development
The EBCCD is raising
contributions to fund programs that will generate community empowerment through
farmer education. Providing farmers with the knowledge on best practices for
crops can best raise the living standards in Desa Ban.
The EBCCD will also contain a
lodge which will be a service-learning provider, offering social, environmental
and cross-cultural learning adventures aimed at international school groups.
“EBC has been visionary in
building a profitable business that simultaneously generates a powerful social
impact. EBC’s creating a new model of social entrepreneurship based on venture
philanthropy to find new ways to impact the lives of its community is an
exciting development,” said Steven R. Okun, Director of Public Affairs at KKR
Asia Pacific, who serves as an advisor to the EBCCD.
About East Bali Cashews
We're nuts about cashews. Our
top-quality local, fresh and natural cashews are gluten-free and vegan with
zero cholesterol. When you eat them, you are enjoying more than a healthy
superfood. You are helping improve the social, economic and agricultural conditions
of our home, Desa Ban, Indonesia, a village in the mountains of East Bali, a
region suffering from staggering poverty, lack of education and unforgiving
We are a young, energetic company
who are revolutionizing the cashew trade by doing things differently. We built
our factory in a central location with one purpose: to provide you with the
freshest, most ethically sourced cashews possible while lifting up our
community. We buy directly from local small-holder farmers and process the
cashews in the village where they are grown before shipping them off for you to
enjoy. We educate and empower farmers and their families, produce our own
energy using cashew shell biomass, and we're launching new initiatives all the
time to find new ways to grow together. We now employ 350 people in the region,
85% of whom are women who had few to no opportunities before we opened our
Sustainability in all its forms
and community empowerment is fundamental to our philosophy. Our commitment to a
triple bottom line means that people and planet come first, and profit sustains
and supports each. Together with our Ban family, we've worked hard to make it
so that when you choose East Bali Cashews, you are receiving the highest
quality, freshest cashews, made with natural ingredients and pure love. No
Preservatives. No artificial ingredients. No BS. Just what we think are the
best cashews in the world.
For additional information,
please visit East Bali Cashews’ website at www.eastbalicashews.com.
East Bali Cashews
Jonas Preisler (English)
Tria Dinanti (Indonesian)