Francisco Noguera

Introducing Social Entrepreneurs from GSBI 2008: Meet Alfonso Gamboa, from Saravia Blue Crab Coopera

In case you are not familiar with the video series we have been displaying over the past couple of weeks with entrepreneurs from Santa Clara University’s GSBI, make sure to catch up by meeting David, Tendai, Zipporah, Neelam and Christopher.

Today’s turn is for Alfonso Gamboa, an entrepreneur that is revolutionizing the practice of blue crab fishing in his native Philippines. Alfonso’s?leadership and efforts have earned him recognitions?in venues like the World Bank Development Marketplace and the Business in Development Challenge.

Nothing better to explain Alfonso’s vision than the following excerpt from a recent Wall Street Journal article. By the way, these were his opening words during the final business plan presentation at GSBI.

“Teach a man to fish,” Mr. Warren says that is “not good enough.” He explains, “If all you do is teach a guy to fish, you create a village of fishermen and everybody does the same thing. They all catch the same fish. They all sit on the side of the road. They all sell the same fish. The same fish rots. They go home and they never get above subsistence level.”

As if channeling Adam Smith, Mr. Warren continues, “You have to develop a complex economy, where one says I’ll make the hooks, I’ll catch the fish, I’ll can the fish, I’ll skin the fish, I’ll fry the fish, I’ll do the fish accounting, I’ll build the boats. I’ll franchise the fish markets. The answer to poverty is business development, not charity. . . . Trade, not aid.”