The award was presented to Banco Central de Nicaragua for a new series of polymer and paper banknotes launched in 2015.

The five new polymer notes have greater durability, especially in the lower denominations, than previous notes. The highest denomination, the 500 cordobas, is printed on paper.

The banknotes have been redesigned and upgraded with leading-edge security features, greater harmony in the designs (which feature architecture on the front and cultural traditions on the reverse – each denomination relating to a specific region of the country), more contrasting colours and more use of optical effects.

The polymer notes are printed on Innovia’s Guardian® substrate (including, for the first time, the 50 and 100 cordobas) while the 200 cordobas is the first circulating banknote in Nicaragua to feature Latitude® – a substrate-integrated diffractive optically variable device using silver nanoparticles that are not restricted to patch or stripe formats – with the shape of a guardabarranco (Nicaragua’s national bird).

The 500 cordobas, printed on paper, is one of the first banknotes to feature SPARK Live. It also features Oberthur Fiduciare’s DualTrack security thread, with the sacuanjoche (Nicaragua’s national flower) connecting the two non-adjacent tracks. The flower features in the watermark as well.

According to the central bank, the new series has achieved its objectives of improved aesthetics, increased durability, enhanced differentiation and recognition between the notes and greater resistance to counterfeiting. Moreover, the public reaction has been positive and less vault space is required for storage.