Abigail Keene-Babcock

Latin American Forum for Inclusive Business: Al Hammond Goes to Chile, and The Next Four Billion Deb

Neg InclThis week, AVINA, FUNDES, and MASISA are hosting a regional 3-day workshop for Inclusive Businesses and a special Business Forum in Santiago, Chile. WRI’s Al Hammond is participating as a panelist at the Forum today and sent the following comments in from Santiago:

Inclusive Business Approaches in Latin AmericaBy Al Hammond

Nearly 250 people gathered in Santiago today to explore BOP business opportunities in Chile and Latin America. The reception to my presentation and those of other speakers were very positive, and the questions penetrating.

How can we make a social transformation through business? Whom do we need to partner with? Which sectors have particular opportunity? What are the business models that can scale?

One speaker pointed out that transforming social conditions by transforming markets is not a new phenomenon. Henry Ford did it many years ago in the United States, both by manufacturing inexpensive cars and by paying his workers wages high enough that they could buy them–helping to create a middle class. The challenge for Latin America, the region of the world with the greatest economic inequality, is to replicate that transformation by finding new business approaches that make markets accessible and beneficial to the 70 percent of the Latin population that remains locked in the BOP.

To help in that transformation, WRI is launching today the executive summary of the Spanish edition of The Next 4 Billion: Market Size and Business Strategy for the Base of the Pyramid. The full report will follow shortly.