Microfinance · Poverty Reading List · Social Business

Creating a World Without Poverty book review

Creating a World Without Poverty: How Social Businesses Can Transform Our Lives by Muhammad Yunus Muhammad Yunus, 2006 Nobel Peace Prize recipient, has recently released his second book, Creating a World Without Poverty. The centerpiece of this book is Yunus proposal for a new kind of institution called a “social business” which is a for-profit… Continue reading Creating a World Without Poverty book review

Social Business

Getting reading glasses to the poor

Scojo Vision is a social enterprise. They sell hip reading glasses at first-world prices in developed countries and more basic versions at very low cost through a micro-franchise type network in developing countries. Scojo Foundation was recently recognized as a Fast Company 2006 Social Capitalist finalist (good overview of what they do and how they… Continue reading Getting reading glasses to the poor

Microfinance · Social Business

Why Equity Matters to Microfinance

In a previous post on for-profit microfinance, I summarized some of the benefits that I see for the poor in the trend for microfinance institutions (MFIs) to become for-profit entities rather than the traditional non-profit entity model. One of the key aspects of a for-profit entity is the ability to sell ownership shares to investors… Continue reading Why Equity Matters to Microfinance

Microfranchise · Social Business

MicroFranchising — Another Income Generating Tool?

One interesting (at least to me) emerging idea for defeating poverty is to make it easier for a poor person to start a very small (micro) business. Does microfinance have a limited market? Some of the critics of microfinance have argued that most humans (including the poor) don’t have what it takes to be an… Continue reading MicroFranchising — Another Income Generating Tool?

Microfranchise · Social Business

For-profit microfinance

There is a major positive change starting to ripple through the microfinance industry … the trend towards running microfinance institutions (MFIs) as for-profit businesses rather than non-profit charities. Today, The Wall Street Journal ran a front page article on this trend highlighting a for-profit Indian MFI, SKS, which I have visited in Hyderabad last October.… Continue reading For-profit microfinance

Social Business

Productivity tools designed for the poor

KickStart, a non-profit based out of Kenya and San Francisco, is taking an innovative approach to fighting poverty by inventing tools optimized for delivering productivity for the world’s poor. I met KickStart’s CEO and Co-Founder, Martin Fisher, a few months back at an education event sponsored by Seattle Social Venture Partners. Martin has spent most… Continue reading Productivity tools designed for the poor