December 10, 2021, Kathmandu. Purnaa Enterprises, a U.S. socially conscious and environmentally sustainable manufacturing company operating in Nepal was one of six companies in the world awarded the 2021 Secretary of State’s Award for Corporate Excellence (ACE) last night. Purnaa employs and empowers traditionally marginalized people, paying employees a living wage and offering healthcare, literacy services, childcare, and academic support.
The ACE Award is given to U.S. companies that represent corporate responsibility, transparency, and the promotion of human rights. ACE winners demonstrate a strong commitment to advancing key global priorities and improving the communities in which they operate.
During a live-streamed virtual event, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said: “Study after study tells us that when we bring more people into the economy – when we create more opportunities for people to access good jobs, education and training, start-up capital, [and] the formal banking system – the economy grows for everyone. And it’s the right thing to do.”
In accepting the award, Corban Bryant, Director of Purnaa, thanked his staff: “You all should be very proud today. You demonstrate the best of Nepal with your commitment to your communities and your dedication to eradicating discrimination of all kinds. I want to thank each one of you, past and present, for your outstanding contributions which are making fresh-starts and fulfilled lives possible for survivors here in Nepal.”
U.S. Ambassador to Nepal Randy Berry said: “Our decision to nominate Purnaa for an ACE Award was guided by our strong belief that the story of Purnaa needed to be told, especially in the context of Nepal.” Ambassador Berry said “Purnaa gives women and members of marginalized communities opportunities for independent and healthy lives that might not otherwise be available.”
Along with Purnaa, Mastercard India won the ACE award for supporting and revamping India’s first-ever Rural Women’s Chamber of Commerce; Zipline for its work deploying delivery drones with a quarter million COVID-19 vaccine doses to remote areas of Ghana; 3M Singapore for ramping up production of N95 respirators to combat COVID-19; Australis Aquaculture for climate-smart ocean farming in Vietnam; and Patagonia in Argentina for promoting nature-based climate solutions.