This Social Enterprise Runs A Global Crowd-funding Platform; Eyes $3-5 Million In Series B Funding

Monday, March 10, 2014

Do you have a little extra cash that you want to spend for a good cause? Have you always wanted to help a cause but didn’t know where to put your money? Or do you own a company that focuses on corporate social responsibility and wants to make sustainable investments? One way of doing it is to donate the money, but there’s a small snag. The money you spend is gone for good – it can’t be used multiple times to help more people. But how about helping people as many times as you want, using the same capital you have spent in the beginning? And getting the entire amount back in monthly repayments? Call it sustainable giving or crowd lending, this kind of financial model enables you to do all these and one start-up is leveraging it to enhance life at the bottom of the pyramid.

Welcome to Milaap Social Ventures, a social enterprise operating from Bangalore and Singapore, which has developed an online crowd-funding platform to help the unbanked and the underprivileged masses in India. Simply put, Milaap (it means ’connecting together’ in Hindi) offers an RBI-approved micro-lending platform that allows the organisation to receive ’loans’ from all over the world. Although individual lenders don’t get ’financial returns’ on their investments (after all, you are putting in your money for a ’good cause’), they get the principal back after the stipulated period. They can then re-deploy the money to help another person/project or cash out their principal. This helps create a continuous funding cycle, more effective and sustainable than one-time donations. Want to know more about how Milaap is connecting the haves and the have-nots in a bid to help implement life-enhancing projects? Here is a snapshot that captures the start-up’s vision and viability.

Source: Business Insider (link opens in a new window)

crowdfunding, microfinance, poverty alleviation