Impact partner profile


Distribution equals development

Est. since


Location of HQ

18 Bartol St #1099; San Francisco CA, 94133; United States of America

Partnership date with Thankyou

September 2020

Area of focus

Last Mile Distribution


Sub-Saharan Africa and Southern Asia


D-Prize exists to seed new ventures that are scaling the distribution of evidence-based poverty interventions. They believe that simply distributing the existing, evidence-based, and rigorously studied products and services that are known to work in low resource settings can lead to alleviating the impact of poverty.

The leverage point? Local Leaders. D-Prize believes there are many talented people who could figure out how to distribute existing solutions to communities in need. But today far too few of those leaders have resources to even get started.

 The team at D-Prize work to identify high-impact health, energy, education, and other solutions that have large delivery gaps. They then give startup funding to entrepreneurs that design new organisations that are solely focused on distributing these at scale.

 A core to D-Prize’s work is inclusive support. Last year, 100% of the founders they seed are local to a low or lower-middle-income country (with 38% being women-led). All but a few had raised less than $5,000 US prior to D-Prize support.

 Since 2013, D-Prize has seeded over 250 distribution ventures at the earliest stage. Ongoingly, D-Prize launches 35-40 new distribution ventures a year, all of which seek to serve 100,000 people within their first 5 years. The top 10% of their ventures are on track to reach this figure, and their distribution network has already delivered proven interventions to more than 8.6 million people in need.

Core impact goals

Increase distribution

D-Prize aims to increase distribution of proven health, economic, education, and other interventions to the millions of people who still need access. Proven interventions are products and services that already exist and are known to meaningfully alleviate poverty.

Increase reach

D-Prize aim to catalyse dozens of new distribution organisations that scale and reach at least 100,000 underserved people, each. 

Increase support to social entrepreneurs

D-Prize look to provide support to hundreds of aspiring social entrepreneurs launching organisations that otherwise would not launch and scale. They believe that, if early support is made available, many more people could build organisations that successfully distribute proven interventions.

Type of grant funding given

478,333* AUD

*Unrestricted Grants funded from October 2020 to April 2024

  1. Seed 37 new ventures through the 2023 competition programs.
  2. Continue implementing and measuring the success of offering pilot, scale support programs to competition winners. This includes offering ongoing fundraising support, an additional follow-up grant, or a significant initial grant for these winners.
  3. Raise an additional $499k by the end of 2023 to close the budget gap.
Seed 45 new ventures through the 2022 competition programs. Out of this cohort, D-Prize maintains confidence that 4 to 6 social ventures from 2022's competition will scale to serve 100,000 beneficiaries each within 5 years.

After a development in strategic direction (trialling the benefits of additional post-competition funding to new venture organisations), D-Prize has amended their milestone to seed 37 new ventures from the 2022 competition programs. With 19 organisations (from the first competition of 2022) already offered seed funding, D-Prize is on track to fund the remaining 18 organisations (from competition 2 of 2022) in early 2023. D-Prize’s best estimate is that 4-5 will scale and serve at least 100K people each within five years.

Be on track to help 12 (or 44%) participants in D-prize's "Scale Support" program to secure follow-on capital greater than or equal to 4x their initial D-Prize award within 12 months of their support program.

As part of D-Prize's Scale Support Program, they provide fundraising training which is showing early traction. So far, 19% of organisations who have completed the 9-week training class have raised more than their initial start-up grant from D-Prize (a maximum of $20K), with the average amount raised at $54,977. D-Prize is also trialling the benefit of providing new venture organisations with additional funds after launch. This trial will be conducted over a 2-year period and is already underway.

Commit funding of $450k by the end of 2022 from new funders.

During their recent strategic direction development, D-Prize amended this milestone to $395K. At the end of 2022, D-Prize still beat their original milestone by raising $473K.

Launch 32 pilot distribution organisations - these will be selected from an entrepreneur pool across two global competitions and provided launch funding.

D-Prize launched 38 pilot distribution organisations.

Have the pilot organisations directly serve 8,000 people during an initial 3-month pilot phase.

D-Prize seeded organisations that directly served 56,102 people during their initial 3-month pilot phase. This well exceeded the FY2021 target of 8,000. It results from seeding 19% more pilots than expected and encouraging some organisations to deliver poverty interventions meant to reach large numbers of people, such as chlorine dispensers that provide clean water to entire villages.

Ensure that the interventions distributed to those people will directly result in a mix of positive health, energy, economic, and educational outcomes, such as access to safe drinking water, reliable and affordable energy access, improved crop yield, and improved primary school test scores.

The interventions distributed by D-Prize pilot organisations span across a broad range of solutions, including but not limited to solar panels, cancer screening, farm inputs, teaching curriculum and chlorine dispensers. The variety of pilot organisations chosen ensure a mix of positive health, energy, economic and educational outcomes.

See 3-4 of these pilots grow to serve 100,000 each within five years.

D-Prize projects 3 or 4 pilots from this grant cycle will scale to meaningful size, which they define as serving 100K people within five years. Collectively we expect the group to serve at least 300,000 beneficiaries in five years time.

On track
Milestone on-track for completion within specified timeframe, outside of Thankyou’s grant period.
Mostly achieved
>90%+ milestone completion.
Partially achieved
Milestone <90% completed within grant period.
Milestone delayed, not completed within grant period.