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Thursday, July 31, 2008 — No Region Specified

Bank on Them

Source: Frontline

Ideas have the power to change history. When new ideas emerge, they challenge established ways of thinking and acting, and suggest alternative approaches to resolve problems confronting the world. Yet ideas can turn out to be birds without wings. Without visionary and committed individuals who can actualise them, new ideas will hardly make any difference to the lives of people. They will remain as wishful thinking and disappear without trace. Many social entrepreneurs across the w...
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Thursday, July 31, 2008 — No Region Specified

What Gets Measured Gets Done - WBCSD Launches Measuring Impact Framework

Source: World Business Council for Sustainable Development

Business knows that what gets measured gets done. In this spirit, the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) launches the Measuring Impact Framework to help companies measure and assess the impact of their business activities on economic and broader development goals wherever they operate. The Framework includes 3 compone...
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Wednesday, July 30, 2008 — No Region Specified

MBAs lift non-profit sector

Source: Financial TImes

When discussing the social sector, Bill Drayton, founder and chief executive of Ashoka, a non-profit organisation that promotes social entrepreneurs, remembers the sector 25 years ago. Salaries were pathetic, smart people would avoid it, it was disorganised, he says. That's all gone. We've been catching up and once you go from non-competitive to competitive, organisations have to join in the party or they'll be eaten alive. As many no...
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Monday, July 28, 2008 — No Region Specified

Asiapro: A thriving self-help enterprise

Source: PhilStar

Self-help or self-reliance continues to be the basic philosophy underlying the country's social reform and poverty alleviation efforts. Self-sustaining businesses and livelihood ventures are encouraged, which led to the development of groups with self-help programs that require little (to no) assistance from the government. Asiapro Multi-purpose Cooperative is a notable sample. Asiapro empowers what was previously an unorganized sector in RP: informal/ non-regular workers. Base...
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Monday, July 28, 2008 — No Region Specified

Woman's nonprofit brings power, hope to Africans

Source: Daily Press

When someone switches on a light in Banco, Mali, it's most likely connected to a photovoltaic solar power system in the village. But its original source can be traced to an unassuming house in James City County . That's where Mary Graham, who grew up in Northern ...
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Monday, July 28, 2008 — No Region Specified

Business with the poor

Source: LiveMint: Wall Street Journal

In the race to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, it is critical to examine all tools at our disposal to alleviate poverty. The greatest untapped resource is the enormous potential, in the form of investment and innovation, of the private sector. And the success of any private enterprise with the poor depends on a dialogue and often collaboration with governments. United Nations Development Programme's new report Creating Value for All: Strategies for Doing Business wi...
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Monday, July 28, 2008 — No Region Specified

Rwanda: The Starving Bottom Billion

Source: AllAfria.com

This week Trade Ministers assemble in Geneva to try and make progress at the World Trade Organisation on the Doha Development trade round. The global economy needs the boost that further trade liberalisation has always delivered. However, it's true of generals, leaders, and bureaucrats, that we fight the next war, or address the next problem based on the evidence of our last battle when things have moved on. My experience of the 1970's prepared me for the needs o...
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Friday, July 25, 2008 — No Region Specified

Rural graduates turn a new leaf

Source: The Hindu

Salma Sultana's rural and orthodox background hardly came in her way of becoming a processor in a BPO. Hailing from Muthukuru mandal of Nellore district, K. Sudheer, her peer, shouldered the job responsibilities with a great flourish. It's a metamorphosis for the likes of Salma and Sudheer from BOP (bottom of the pyramid) to BPO (business process outsourcing), when HDFC Bank picked them up for the challenging assignments, thanks to the customised training imparted by the Empl...
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Friday, July 25, 2008 — No Region Specified

Exports of Eco-friendly Shopping Bags Give Livelihood Opportunities to Disabled in Indonesia

Source: PR-GB.com News Origin

Export Service Centre Connects Small-Scale Producers in Indonesia with Import Buyers in Europe to Create Sustainable Jobs and Advance Skills Development Hong Kong, July 22, 2008 -- People in Europe who buy the eco-friendly shopping bags made of recycled materials are doing more than just helping the environment -- they are also giving meaningful employment and self-sufficiency to 37 physically disabled people in Indonesia. This is made possible through the work of the non-profit Ex...
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Friday, July 25, 2008 — No Region Specified

Development Aid - Help or Hindrance?

Source: Kansas City infoZine News

Celebrities have made foreign aid cool. With their themed wristbands, tireless campaigning and regular trips to Africa, people such as Bono are among the world's most prominent activists. ?Washington, D.C. - Scripps Howard Foundation Wire - infoZine - The face of development aid has changed since Congress passed the Foreign Assistance Act in 1961. More and more famous people are signing up to make poverty history and save Africa from war, corruption and HIV/AIDS, and t...
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Thursday, July 24, 2008 — No Region Specified

Japan, ADB help ethnic minorities

Source: Vov News

Japan and the Asian Development Bank are helping poor and ethnic minorities in Vietnam develop skills and run small business operations. The Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction granted an additional US$1.3 million to a project to be managed by the bank that will pilot a new approach to skills-training for some 4,000 people in Tra Vinh and Soc Trang, the two poorest provinces in the Mekong Delta. The region has 13 provinces with a population of 19 million or 22 percent of t...
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Thursday, July 24, 2008 — No Region Specified

Fundraisers wolfing down new challenge

Source: Forres Gazzette

FORRES people who are hungry for an exciting charity challenge and don't want to venture too far from home can sign up for the very first WildHearts Wolf Charity Trek, which will include part of the Dava Way. The event, which is taking place on the weekend of August 9-10, traversing parts of Moray and the Highlands, aims to raise cash for WildHearts a Nairn-based charity dedicated to helping people living in poverty around the world to help themselves.
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Thursday, July 24, 2008 — Europe & Eurasia

Travel-Blogue Day 6: Muhammad Yunus? Next Big Thing

Source: Business Week Blog

The way Noble Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus sees it, the micro-credit revolution is running its course in his home country of Bangladesh. Between his Grameen Bank and other NGOs, which together make Bangladesh the most heavily micro-credit-enabled place on earth, he estimates that about 80% of the poor families that might want to participate are being served already. His goal is for Grameen to help finish the job by 2012. What's next? Health care. This is the biggest ...
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Wednesday, July 23, 2008 — No Region Specified

Innovations target S Africa?s unbanked

Source: Financial Times

In the higgledy-piggledy streets of Bethelsdorp, a sprawling South African township once designated for people of mixed race, what at first glance appears to be a colourful new youth movement is gathering strength. Adherents sport blue T-shirts and baseball caps and lug brimming satchels. They roam the streets, knocking on the doors of the township's shacks and simple bungalow homes. In the anarchic days of the apartheid era such youths might have been comrades rall...
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Tuesday, July 22, 2008 — No Region Specified

Social Entrepreneurs Develop Cleaner Alternative to African Wood-Burning Stoves

Source: Knowledge@W.P. Carey

On his first trip to Ghana in September 2006, Mark Henderson traveled through countryside that was lush, but obscured with haze. The haze was the first thing Henderson saw when his plane landed in Accra, the most populous city in this West African country on the Gulf of Guinea. I could see the smoke permeating everything, Henderson said. Villagers told me this smoke is suffocating and toxic. Some of the haze was carried in by the Harmattan -- a d...
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Tuesday, July 22, 2008 — No Region Specified

MIT's Guru of Low-Tech Engineering Fixes the World on $2 a Day

Source: Popular Mechanics

The Peruvian village of Compone lies 11,000 ft. above sea level in El Valle Sagrado de los Incas, the Sacred Valley of the Incas. Flat but ringed by mountains, the tallest capped year-round in snow and ice, the valley is graced with a mild climate and mineral-rich soil that for centuries has produced what the Incas called sara-corn. The farmers of Compone feed corn to their livestock, grind it into meal, boil it for breakfast, lunch and dinner and stockpile it as ins...
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Tuesday, July 22, 2008 — No Region Specified

Kenya: New Fisheries Policy Out Soon

Source: AllAfrica.com

A policy document detailing the operations of the new Fisheries ministry will be out in September this year, minister Dr Paul Otuoma said Sunday. Dr Otuoma said that the document would spell out the functions of various departments in the ministry. He said the new policy is being formulated to ensure efficient and effective running of the new ministry and to ensure that the fishing industry is beneficial to fishermen. As at now we cannot say much as a mi...
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Tuesday, July 22, 2008 — No Region Specified

Nigeria: "The Future Belongs to Youths in Enterprise" - Olasunkami

Source: AllAfrica.com

The future of Nigeria belongs to today's youths who are actively running their own small businesses. The minister of youth development, Senator Akinlabi Olasunkunmi, made this statement in Abuja at the closing ceremony of the corpers' entrepreneurship development programme [CEDP] organised by Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) in collaboration with the directorate of National Youth Service Corps [NYSC]. The minister who was repres...
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Monday, July 21, 2008 — No Region Specified

Boom time for the global bourgeoisie

Source: Financial Times

In the midst of the current widespread gloom and doom in the west, it is important not to lose sight of the true structural themes shaping our era. Linked to the current mood, commentators often depict an embattled and shrinking middle class, with sharply rising financial inequality. However, globally, this is simply not true. One of the most startlingly positive phenomena for many generations continues to unfold around the world. We are in the middle of an explosion of the world&...
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Monday, July 21, 2008 — No Region Specified

Is the future green for China?

Source:

China recently overtook the United States as the world's biggest carbon polluter, but in a nation known for its dirty technology , a surprising business trend is emerging: green entrepreneurs. As China booms, the country has relie...
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Monday, July 21, 2008 — No Region Specified

Trade, Not Aid, For Africa

Source: National Post

The man regarded by many as the world's leading expert on global poverty is Oxford academic Paul Collier. He dedicates his recent book, winner of the Lionel Gelber Prize, to Daniel, apparently his young son. Collier says it's Daniel's world that could face massive global upheaval if a solution isn't found to relieve the ever deepening poverty of almost 50 African states whose populations taken together number a billion people. World poverty is declining, and some countries (Ch...
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Thursday, July 17, 2008 — No Region Specified

Entrepreneurship beyond 2010

Source: Money Web

Entrepreneurs in South Africa have been encouraged to look for business opportunities for 2010 and beyond. Malose Kekana, chief executive officer of Umsobomvu Youth Fund (UYF) said entrepreneurs need to be educated and informed about businesses they venture into. Kekana was speaking at the 5 th Annual Entrepreneurship Development Conference (EDC) and Business Development Exhibition held at the Cape Town International Convention Centre last week. This year's...
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Thursday, July 17, 2008 — No Region Specified

Tracking Down the Trail of Foreign Aid

Source: Vancouver Sun

The current foreign aid fad is to channel most money through recipient governments rather than the NGOs that actually deliver most services in most poor countries. This wins the donors (Canada among them) high praise from the heads of those lucky governments who get the cheques. They like this policy a lot. But the people the money's supposed to help? No so much. In an ideal world, it would be hard to argue against providing aid money through governments....
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Wednesday, July 16, 2008 — No Region Specified

The Next Billion

Source: India Today

Till a few years ago, N. Padmavathy and her six friends were daily-wage workers in an export unit in Chennai, with a monthly income of not more than Rs 2,000. At times, when she had to pay her children's school fees or take her children to the doctor, she had to borrow at hefty rates from the local money lender. As a daily-wage worker, she could never predict her income, till she discovered the power of microcredit. A Rs 15,000 loan each, taken by Padmavathy and he...
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Wednesday, July 16, 2008 — No Region Specified

Role of academic entrepreneurship

Source: The Edge Daily

The development of science and technology (S&T) in Malaysia has been policy-driven and strategically triggered by the government. This is not an anomaly in any developing economy; however, based on findings of the National Survey of Research and Development conducted by the Malaysian Science and Technology Information Centre, Malaysia seems slow in the S&T development process compared to its East Asian counterparts such as Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, China and India. Per...
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Wednesday, July 16, 2008 — No Region Specified

An Increasingly Affluent Middle India Is Harder to Ignore

Source: Knowledge@Wharton

C.K. Prahalad, professor of strategy at the University of Michigan's Stephen M. Ross School of Business, is looking for the fortune at the bottom of the pyramid. In his book by that name, he says that huge markets exist among the poor in countries such as India, and that multinationals should tailor their plans and products to these consumers. At the other end of the spectrum, luxury goods manufacturers are pouring into India. The International Herald Tribune will hold its annual...
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Wednesday, July 16, 2008 — No Region Specified

The New Global Middle Class: Potentially Profitable -- but Also Unpredictable

Source: Knowledge@Wharton

A new global middle class is rising up from poverty in emerging economies around the world, providing competition for labor and resources, but also enormous promise for multinationals that tailor products and services to the burgeoning ranks of first-time consumers, according to Wharton faculty and analysts. Coca-Cola's newly appointed chief executive Muhtar Kent sees this market as critical to his company's future and describes the scale of the opportunity as equivalent to...
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Tuesday, July 15, 2008 — No Region Specified

Tourism's New Wave

Source: Interpress News Service

David Aabo is en route from Peru to New York City after having spent much of the last few years in the South American country investigating opportunities for development that might help local entrepreneurs build a sustainable regional economy. Like many dedicated surfers, Aabo views the world through the prism of a surfboard stoked on visions of exotic destinations and epic waves. So single-minded, this breed has sometimes derisively been dubbed surf colonialists -- follow...
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Tuesday, July 15, 2008 — No Region Specified

School for social entrepreneurs

Source: The Hindu

Sustainability of projects is important for social service sector organisations to work efficiently. And, with the management of the sector becoming more complex each day, the Centre for Social Initiative and Management (CSIM), started in 2001, has been providing training for would-be ?social entrepreneurs'. The philosophy is simple enough as the co-ordinator of CSIM at Chennai, Latha Suresh, explains: There are many NGOs doing good work in many areas. But they do not man...
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Tuesday, July 15, 2008 — Asia Pacific

In a "wise" move Timorese women venture into business after decades of conflict

Source: UNDP

When Timor-Leste descended into a political crisis in April/May 2006, just five years after the restoration of independence from Indonesia, Mrs. Joaquina Da Silva, a 33 year-old mother of four was among the first group of women displaced from the capital, Dili. She then fled to the safe havens of Baucau which is her ancestral homeland. 'When our house was destroyed in Dili, I came here with my displaced family and just nothing else,' she says, her voice chocking with emotion....
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Monday, July 14, 2008 — No Region Specified

Warning: Habits May Be Good for You

Source: New York TImes

A FEW years ago, a self-described militant liberal named Val Curtis decided that it was time to save millions of children from death and disease. So Dr. Curtis, an anthropologist then living in the African nation of Burkina Faso, contacted some of the largest multinational corporations and asked them, in effect, to teach her how to manipulate consumer habits worldwide. Dr. Curtis, now the director of the Hygiene Center at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medi...
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Friday, July 11, 2008 — No Region Specified

Promises, promises

Source: Economist

DEVELOPMENT aid can be as fickle as fashion. Remember those white Make Poverty History wristbands, which briefly made compassion chic in the run-up to the Gleneagles summit in 2005? Memories of the pledge made by G8 leaders there to double annual aid to Africa by 2010 also seem to have faded with time. According to the OECD, on current spending trends annual aid will fall $14 billion short of the $50 billion African target-not a statistic to savour as today's G8 leaders tucked into their ...
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Thursday, July 10, 2008 — No Region Specified

Reaching out to the missing middle

Source: Daily Star

Deshantori, a heart-wrenching documentary which follows a group of young Bangladeshis through a harrowing journey in search of employment opportunities outside the country, has sparked soul searching questions for Bangladeshis wherever it has been shown. For me, the most poignant moment of the documentary was when one of the survivors of the journey sadly relates that nobody would lend him money to start a business, but they lent him money to pay for a dangerous and illegal passage overseas. Why...
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Thursday, July 10, 2008 — No Region Specified

CII focus on skill development

Source: The Hindu

Prof. Prahalad is certain about the potential for India to be the home for at least 30 of the Fortune 100 firms; to increase the country's share in global trade; become a source of global innovations with new businesses, technologies and business models; and become the world's benchmark on how to cope with diversity. Advocating entrepreneurial transformation, the document insists that folding the future in rather than extrapolating the past is fundamental. Taking small a...
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Wednesday, July 9, 2008 — No Region Specified

Mexican microfinance institution Compartamos breaks silence on IPO

Source: Financial Express

Breaking their silence since their April 2007 IPO, Carlos Danel and Carlos Labarthe, co-founders of Compartamos, the leading Mexican microfinance bank, publish an excerpt of their newly released ?Letter to Our Peers? in the latest issue of the magazine Microfinance Insights. The authors, who have been criticized by members of the microfinance community since their IPO brought in extraordinary returns, acknowledge in the letter that social and economic goals can reinforce each other, but state th...
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Wednesday, July 9, 2008 — No Region Specified

Karoo fish farm set to freeze poverty

Source: The Herald Online

IN A massive swing from agriculture to aquaculture, the dusty Karoo will become the centre of a commercial fish-breeding initiative that is set to haul about 250 women out of unemployment and poverty. The Camdeboo Satellite Aquaculture Project in Graaff- Reinet is the brainchild of a local company called Camdeboo Bream, and it is aimed at boosting the local economy and creating employment. The Graaff-Reinet firm?s objective is to become a leader in the breeding and suppl...
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Tuesday, July 8, 2008 — No Region Specified

Yoghurt maker's recipe for funding social businesses

Source: Financial Times

When it launched a nutrient-rich yoghurt for poor consumers in Bangladesh, Groupe Danone (NYSE:DA) , the French food company, hit an unexpected obstacle. It had trained a large sales and distribution team of women, but only a handful were still working after a week. The problem, Danone found after talking to a local charity, was that people there did not like women conducting door-to-door sales. With its partner Grameen, the microfinance institution, Danone decided to talk ...
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Tuesday, July 8, 2008 — Latin America

Mexican microfinance institution Compartamos breaks silence since IPO

Source: Financial Express

Breaking their silence since their April 2007 IPO, Carlos Danel and Carlos Labarthe, co-founders of Compartamos, the leading Mexican microfinance bank, publish an excerpt of their newly released Letter to Our Peers in the latest issue of the magazine Microfinance Insights. The authors, who have been criticized by members of the microfinance community since their IPO brought in extraordinary returns, acknowledge in the letter that social and economic goals can reinforce each other,...
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Monday, July 7, 2008 — No Region Specified

Widow entrepreneurs of Gujarat working to earn a decent living

Source: Livemint.com

Around 2,000 women meeting on the city's outskirts had something in common: poverty, business plans, widowhood. And an unfounded fear of earning big. When Hina Shah, director of the International Centre for Entrepreneurship and Career Development, or ICECD, asked how many wanted to earn more than Rs25,000 a month, none raised a hand. My first priority is to make a decent living, says Ameenaben. We are poor people. How can we hope to make so much money? Tha...
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Thursday, July 3, 2008 — No Region Specified

Inclusive business model could serve the poor

Source: Economic Times

Doing business with the poor need not be about philanthropy. Nor does it necessarily mean wafer thin margins. When the bottom of the pyramid is represented by 4 billion people with combined income of about $5 trillion, can companies choose to completely ignore them? Individually, they may be living on less than $8 a day, but as a group their income is equivalent to the gross national income of Japan, the world?s second largest economy. Importantly, the poor are willing to pay for good...
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Wednesday, July 2, 2008 — No Region Specified

Rockefeller 2.0: Gates relaunches philanthropy

Source: MSNBC

There's a story about Bill Gates that his wife, Melinda, likes to tell. Shortly before the couple established their philanthropic foundation in 1997, Bill carried around in his briefcase for a month an emotional letter from an American family asking him to help a sick child who needed a kidney. Bill agonized over it, Melinda recalled at a digital industry conference last month in California. Do you spend $20,000 on a single transplant or buy vaccines for many children in...
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Wednesday, July 2, 2008 — No Region Specified

Defying Convention

Source: Channelworld India

If one believes in the story of a relentless, meteoric rise, Bangalore-based Affordable Business Solutions or ABS as it is well-known, is just the right case in point. The quintessential trail blazer, true to its name, has achieved steady success in just a matter of four years since its inception, and strictly on its own terms. Co-founders, Srikant Rao and Ravindra Kini, recount their story, which abounds in interesting facets of the company's continued tryst with the SME.
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Tuesday, July 1, 2008 — No Region Specified

Auditioning for Entrepreneur TV series moves to Aba

Source: Guardian Newspaper

AUDITIONING of participants for the Entrepreneur TV Series sponsored by ECOBANK and Vitamalt has moved to Aba, Abia State. The Aba auditioning is coming barely two days after the Kano show, which had participants from most of the northern states scuttling for place in the TV reality series. Producer of the TV series, Inspire Media Production Company says the Aba auditioning is meant to take care of interested participants from the South East and South South part of the country. Ex...
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Tuesday, July 1, 2008 — No Region Specified

Wholesome Investing

Source: Venture Capital Journal

The idea that you can do good for society and the environment-and still make a healthy profit-is starting to catch on Even with a single bottom line-the raw pursuit of profit-first-time venture funds struggle to post positive returns. Add in a mandate to combine social good with financial gain, and odds of success would seem daunting enough to keep even the most risk-tolerant emerging manager from attempting a double bottom line approach. Not so. This year, ...
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