While we can all agree that we need to be collecting more information about business impacts, what do our current evaluations tell us? There are a few studies that are widely believed to provide a rigorous analysis of business impacts. Specific evaluations include the Unilever South Africa Economic Footprint and the…Continue
Added by Elise Wach on May 15, 2012 at 18:30 — No Comments
“The poor don’t want shampoo they want jobs.”
Arguably this statement might be worth discussing in many contexts, however as an argument against business approaches that target the base of the pyramid (BoP) it doesn’t really do the trick for me.
Taking the show of hands at the end of yesterday’s debate -advertised as a fight between “responsible capitalism” and “business as usual”- as an indicator, I wasn’t alone with my…Continue
Added by Carolin Schramm on May 4, 2012 at 17:00 — No Comments
Graffiti outside a school in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India
A young girl is working with her Aunt in a Cotton Gin, sorting out mountains of cotton to feed into giant machines, which separate the seed from the cotton. She can’t be more than 13 years old. We are in one of…Continue
This was the central question addressed during a recent BIF workshop held on 1st March in Blantyre, Malawi. The workshop, targeted at local agribusinesses, was delivered by members of PwC UK’s Sustainability and Climate Change team.
The event was well attended with representatives from Exagris, Universal Industries, GTC, Illovo, Eastern Produce, Nali, and Malawi Mangoes .Non business representatives included NASFAM, Concern Universal, VSO, EU Global Climate Change…Continue
The Business Innovation Facility is piloting a new approach to supporting inclusive business. A ‘pilot’ is only useful if it generates lessons. So, after one and a half years of operation in five countries, we are starting to share some preliminary lessons about this approach.
Lessons about how companies implement inclusive business are elsewhere on the Hub. These lessons are about how business and development programmes can facilitate inclusive business by working…Continue
What is the relevance of this to Mary and her new born baby Mathilde who I met on in Zambia in September? Mary is just 15. She lives with her parents, her brothers, her sisters in a poor family. Like the other 500 million girls in the developing world, economic empowerment for Mary means access to finance, the labour market and economic decisions in the home. Like most girls Mary carries the burden of unpaid care work - child care, food preparation, fetching of water and…Continue
Added by Marie Staunton on December 19, 2011 at 14:59 — No Comments
With the17th Conference of the Parties in Durban already underway, climate change is at the top of the international agenda this month. While government delegations from across the globe will be doing the hard negotiating and brokering of agreements, representatives from the private sector will also be present and actively shaping new strategies for climate mitigation, adaptation and sustainable growth.
Given the growing number of projects in climate-compatible development…Continue
Added by Practitioner Hub on December 1, 2011 at 8:07 — No Comments
What better way to round off 2011 than by focusing on the heart of inclusive business – the business models? The supply relationships, distribution networks, products, revenue streams, and margins that somehow make it work: creating value for the company, but delivering social impact too.
These are explored in IFC’s latest report: Accelerating…Continue
Added by Editor's Choice on November 30, 2011 at 16:44 — No Comments
The following article talks about reviewing of the MDGs in 2015 - in a more inclusive manner than before. I want to draw everyone's attention to some people who are missing. Business men and women.
In the past decade a lot of the donors have come to the realization - that without linking development to sustainable businesses - the impact are not sustainable in the long run. I am not aware of any consultation with businesses for giving input to the revision of MDGs - but if anyone here…Continue
Added by Parveen Sultana Huda on November 22, 2011 at 16:51 — No Comments
I recently listened to an ODI event “Can markets ever defeat poverty? How sustainable business can engage the rural poor?” which struck me as very relevant to the work of BIF. A video or audio recording of the event can be accessed through the online website (…Continue
Added by Amy Boardman on November 8, 2011 at 9:36 — No Comments
In an article for The Guardian, a prominent Indian social entrepreneur and investor argues that the real social enterprises are those that choose to struggle at the margins to make more impact with few resources but with the resolve to make a difference. In this article, he concludes that social enterprises need a nurturing ecosystem, access to intellectual capital that…Continue
In a recent blog post, Business Fights Poverty founder Zahid Torres-Rahman addresses the question 'is business the new aid?' This is a provocative and topical question as governments and NGOs are increasingly engaging with the private sector in efforts to combat poverty and foster development.
Added by Practitioner Hub on October 13, 2011 at 17:30 — No Comments
The business model is what matters to make inclusive business work, according to the International Finance Corporation (IFC). 20% of the solution is technical, and 80% rests with business model innovation.
This perspective was explained by Toshi Masuoka, Director of their Inclusive Business Model Group, in Washington last week. Inclusive business (IB) models tend to be ‘high touch’ – requiring relatively intensive engagement, which increases the opportunity cost. So…Continue
Added by Practitioner Hub on September 26, 2011 at 17:30 — No Comments
Microcredit has long been thought of as the best answer we have to the problem of global poverty. Through small loans and access to finance services, microcredit promised to spur entrepreneurship and give people the means to lift themselves out of poverty. Since the foundation of the Grameen Bank in Bangladesh in 1976, the sector has boomed with governments and international development institutions investing millions in programmes and schemes all over the world.
Added by Emma Doherty on September 23, 2011 at 17:00 — No Comments
Added by Practitioner Hub on September 8, 2011 at 15:00 — No Comments
A snapshot of the Facility’s project portfolio one year after start-up has given us the first real sense of the impacts that could be delivered - albeit a very preliminary picture.
BIF support to inclusive business projects is expected to help companies deliver both commercial and developmental returns. More business, more…Continue
Added by Caroline Ashley, Editor on August 10, 2011 at 13:30 — No Comments
My colleague, Jonathan Said, and I were travelling between Lilongwe and Blantyre last week by National Coach, to save fuel and avoid queues at the pumps here in Malawi. The pleasant drive through the dry winter (well, winter by Malawi standards) countryside gave us a chance to debate alternative strategies to assist Malawi’s private sector growth.
I’ve been involved in projects which look at real, practical problems of shipping product from A to B, quality control on products…
Added by Andrew Parker on July 20, 2011 at 11:49 — No Comments
Village youth on Facebook, undersea cables linking Africa to the virtual globe, mobile innovation, democracy in the ether, Google in Swahili, Amharic and Zulu, predictions of a $25 internet-enabled phone, business opportunities for the giants, such as Nokia, and for the micro-operators, such as hawkers shifting from selling pirated DVDs to entertainment bundles on memory cards. All these and more are coved in this month's Editor's Choice - "…Continue
Having only touched down in Bangladesh 2 days previous, with no time to shake off the jet lag, we were off on a 3 day trip to the north of the country, boarded with India. Blaring horns, swerving cars, bustling towns, picturesque country side, people everywhere, hourly tea breaks, eating meals by hand, new smells.......it was quite an induction into Bangladeshi life.
On our first day a sales lady agreed to tell us her story. She is the sole provider in her household as her…Continue
Shaping and sharpening the development impact of business is an exciting field. Sometimes understanding that impact is more painstaking than exciting. But painstaking detail can insightful, and guide us to the next challenge and change.
The recent collaborative report from Oxfam, Coca-Cola and SAB Miller is just one example: insightful rather than exciting, but undoubtedly useful, and not only for these organisations. ‘…Continue
Added by Caroline Ashley, Editor on May 9, 2011 at 14:30 — No Comments