Making Business Work for The Poor
Posted by andreasw on May 19, 2010 at 12:52 am
DIFID, The UK Government aid organization launched a new program to promote entrepreneurs.
The Business Innovation Facility, which will initially be rolled out across Nigeria, India, Bangladesh, Zambia, and Malawi, will help companies to develop or adapt commercial business models that benefit the poor.
This is definitely a step in the right direction. Large companies are encouraged to work with smaller ones to establish their distribution network. An example they cite is Coca Cola.
The press release states that, “they were finding it hard to access certain markets in Africa due to poor and narrow roads. In order to get around this problem the Manual Distribution Centres decided to provide bicycles and pushcarts for local deliverers to be able to sell the beverage to retailers in these areas.
To date, more than 2,600 small distribution businesses have been formed as a result, creating direct employment for more than 12,000 people, and generating more than $500 million in revenues throughout East Africa.”
DFID is known to be one of the better aid organizations with regards to enterprise solutions to poverty. Check out their website to learn more about their programs. A particularly interesting piece on their website is the Private Sector Development Strategy Paper (pdf)