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  • Net Profit, by Jennifer Vilaga

    What does it take to make a better bed net? It’s no small matter: Bed nets are a critical defense against malaria, which each year kills 1 million people and makes another 300 million ill in developing regions. The solution, it turns out, is no small matter either. Olyset bed nets, featuring a dramatically better pesticide mechanism and an expected lifetime five times that of existing nets, are now coming off the knitting machines at A to Z, a textile company ...

    Fast Company (Issue 92)
  • The U.N. Will not Bridge the Digital Divide, by Arik Hesseldahl

    A new report from the World Bank says half the world’s population--that would be about 3.2 billion people if you go by U.S. Census Department world population figures--now has access to a telephone of some kind, either through a fixed line or a wireless network. That’s a fair improvement over the 2.5 billion who had access to a phone in 2003, according to the International Telecommunications Union (ITU). Interestingly, more than three-quarters of those people use wireless phones. Private...

  • Olam and TechnoServe Form Partnership to Develop a Sustainable Cashew Industry in Africa

    Olam International Limited and TechnoServe jointly announced today that they have formed a unique partnership to support the development of sustainable and value-added agro-processing initiatives across Africa, starting with cashew processing, which has the potential to create significant economic and social impact in these producing countries. Full press release available here ....

  • Why ’Low-Cost’ Phones May Not Ring in Africa, by Ken Nwogbo

    GSM Association, the operator-led trade association representing the global mobile industry has launched the Ultra-Low Cost initiative to address high cost of handsets identified as the single biggest barrier to mobile communications affordability in emerging markets. Questions are however being raised about the quality and intentions behind the special phones for Africans. Full article ...

    Daily Champion (Lagos)
  • ANZ Bk Cambodia JV Seeks Profits In The Ruins, by Phelim Kyne

    But Kith said ANZ Royal has targeted a market of around 100,000 urban residents with money ’under the bed (and) under the pillow’ to support a banking network that will start with three Phnom Penh branches this year and grow to 30 outlets nationwide by 2010. ANZ Royal will power that expansion by offering Cambodian consumers a previously unavailable array of retail banking services, including the country’s first ATMs linked to international networks and consumer mort...

    Dow Jones Newswire
  • Can Euro Firms Do Well by Doing Good?

    Developing African nations are a huge, untapped market. Better supplies of electricity, gas and water, more streets, etc, mean more growth. In many countries, these areas are currently being privatized. And on top of that, there is financing available for companies that want to take part. Full article available here ....

    Deutsche Welle
  • Mobile companies urged to invest in poor countries

    If you look at the statistics today, we have 51 million mobile phone users in Africa, but there are a billion people who live there, and at least half of them have disposable income,’ he said. ’We’re not a basket case, we’re not holding out a begging bowl, we’re saying there’s a commercial opportunity - it’s a huge untapped market.’ Mr Naidoo was speaking after nine mobile operators announced on Monday that they had commissioned a new range of low...

    Business Times
  • Farmers, Phones and Markets: Mobile Technology In Rural Development, by Howard Rheingold

    Markets aren’t only for the rich. Certain kinds of information, however, convey advantages to those have the right data at the right time. Until recently, only the relatively wealthy had swift access to relevant market information. The cost of technologies that connect people with economically useful price data has declined steadily, however, from the tycoons of the early 20th century with their home ticker-tape machines to the day-traders of recent decades with the...

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