Bottom of Pyramid Moves to 2.0 Version

Monday, June 20, 2011

BANGALORE: The fortune at the bottom of the pyramid (BOP), a dominant idea in business, will now move into a 2.0 framework. The concept in its original shape dealt with how large corporations can develop products for low-income and below the poverty line (BPL) customers for profit. Around 400 million people in India live below $1.25 per day.

BOP 2.0 goes a step further in calling for co-creation of products with communities they target and calls for sustainable and innovative technologies in meeting those needs.

Prof Stuart Hart, a pioneer of this concept, and co-author of ’Bottom of Pyramid’, India could be a driver of many innovations in this area. It’s because of India’s sizeable population, presence of global corporations and the engineering bandwidth. Culturally, India has a democratic and free society that makes it amenable for disruptive ideas. “Capitalism was created with the idea of mass marketing of consumer goods and mass customization. It’s about creating new needs in existing markets, whereas BOP 2.0 is about creating entirely new markets that don’t exist today from real needs,” he told STOI here on Saturday.

The sequel to the BOP strategy focuses on co-creating businesses by incubating tomorrow’s more sustainable way of living at the base of the pyramid from the point of view of biofuel, water treatment, truly sustainable construction and healthcare.” The only way you’ll get to work is come up with a better alternative,” says Hart.

The BOP concept was first conceived by the late management guru CK Prahalad and Hart in 1998. Hart is setting up a Center for Sustainable Enterprise in collaboration with the Dayanand Sagar Institutions (DSI) which will be functional from early next year.

Source: The Times of India (link opens in a new window)