Emerging Markets, Emerging Models – BoP Mine

23 April, 2009 at 14:32 2 comments

Nextbillion.net feed today mentions a must-read report on BOP entrepreneurship by Monitor.com titled “Emerging Markets, Emerging Models” which could probably be the most important new study in the last couple of years. Unlike some recent, fairly derivative reports, this one is based on some intensive original research covering 270 enterprises and a careful analysis of 9 business models lending support to my solid suspicion that is best allayed as a rather disturbing image…

Some quotes from the report landing page are as follows –

“… first-of-its-kind report analyzing the actual behaviors, economics, and business models of successful ‘market-based solutions’ – financially sustainable enterprises that address challenges of global poverty. Compiled in an effort to use fact-based research to move beyond stereotypes, anecdotes, and common assumptions about the potential of market-based solutions, the findings highlight actual data from global working models …”
“… provides strong evidence that engaging the poor as customers and suppliers presents an exciting and significant opportunity to establish new paradigms to bring genuine social change in economically sustainable ways … year-long analysis with the starting point being the belief that the ‘next microfinance’ is out there, and that other market-based approaches may help address pressing issues of poverty and development …”
“… 35 field investigations, more than 600 in-person interviews with low-income customers and small suppliers, and over 270 social enterprises – primarily in India which offers an advanced laboratory and proved to be an especially fertile source on model effectiveness … and supplemented with research covering 19 countries across the world …”
“… based on a multi-year research project funded by eleven sponsors interested in new approaches to economic development and social change. We are grateful to ICICI Bank, IDFC Private Equity, IFC, Omidyar Network, Orient Global, the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, PATH, the Rockefeller Foundation, Sir Dorabji Tata Trust, Swiss Agency for Development and Co-operation, and TPI …”

This reminds me of an old joke. A postman rings the bell outside the gate when a dog starts barking viciously. The owner says it is OK for barking dogs seldom bite to which the postman replies “I know that. You know that. But does the dog know that?”. That idiom and this report is most relevant to the dogs and poor people but they are the ones who cannot make sense of it.
The sales pitch and irony of sponsorship apart, my eyes lit up when I became aware of this. What a wonderful birthday gift. I have not read the report yet but to paraquote, it could break the stereotypes and change my attitude regarding the work that is being done by the many interested parties at the BoP. Nah… who am I kidding? I cannot change. I wish to but no one can. The brain is a bitch. So all I can see from this yapping is that it could be prove to be a fertile source for BoP related cartoons. Beware all ye BoP fans who dare to stumble upon ‘ere. Tread with caution at your own risk. You have been warned. Resistance is futile.

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Entry filed under: BoP, CWorks, Deesha, India, Life-Theories, News-Media, Poverty, WebXP.

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