Businesses sprout out of Africa, by Pia Sarkar

Wednesday, June 8, 2005

Venture capital seeds startups, changes lives
As Silicon Valley venture capitalist Bob King sees it, $100 to build a new business and potentially change the lives of 30 people in East Africa is a solid investment.

For that reason, King has been contributing to the Village Enterprise Fund, a nonprofit organization based in San Carlos that provides one-time startup grants of $100 to small-business owners in Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. Each new business is estimated to benefit as many as 30 people.

Founded in 1987, Village Enterprise Fund has helped create 9,000 businesses in developing countries around the globe. In East Africa, where its focus has remained since 1997, it has provided the seed money for about 7,000 businesses, including vegetable stands, bicycle repair shops and goat farms.

King, who returned from East Africa with his wife last month after touring 25 businesses aided by Village Enterprise Fund, said he is pleased to see how far his investments have gone.
Story found here.

Source: San Francisco Chronicle