NY Times writes a detailed article about Compartamos, the successful microfinance bank in Mexico: Carlos Danel and Carlos Labarthe turned a nonprofit that lent money to Mexico’s poor into one of the country’s most profitable banks. But not all of their colleagues in the world of microlending — so named for the tiny loans it… Continue reading Untitled

Weekend Links

Muhammad Yunus on tech, profit and the poor– The Bangladeshi Nobel laureate wins yet another award – this time for contributions to technology. He talks to Fortune about where tech might take the poor. Intel Unveils Second-Generation Intel-Powered Classmate PC — ‘Netbook’ for Worldwide Education Markets

Instead of one laptop per child, why not many virtual desktops per public computer?

Here’s a competitor to the OLPC program but approaching the problem with different technology: Some people suggest perhaps the solution isn’t to put hardware into the hands of every person, but rather to maximize the number of people who have access to a PC. That’s the idea behind Paris startup Jooce (the name is a… Continue reading Instead of one laptop per child, why not many virtual desktops per public computer?

NYT Magazine: Giving It Away

The New York Times is calling this “The Money Issue”. Here’s some of the articles from the magazine: About Natalie Portman and her role with FINCA. Link What Makes People Give? Fund raisers talk about marketing gimmicks to make people give more. Link How Many Billionaires Does It Take to Fix a School System? Five… Continue reading NYT Magazine: Giving It Away

Goldman Sachs Funds Womens Education, OLPC Looks For CEO

Two interesting articles from Business Week: “On Mar. 5, investment bank Goldman Sachs announced it would change the equation by pumping $100 million into educational projects for these women over the next five years.” Link “After weathering an acrimonious split from Intel and harsh criticism from critics, One Laptop Per Child is reorganizing—and looking for… Continue reading Goldman Sachs Funds Womens Education, OLPC Looks For CEO

Link Roundup- Bill Gates, Carbon Offsets

On Thursday, the Microsoft Chairman will post a question related to “how technology can be better utilized for charitable causes” to LinkedIn’s entire 19 million members. Link Carbon offset providers jockey for credibility. Link “I know that capitalism works, that American entrepreneurialism works, and we can damn well expect that private capital — not government… Continue reading Link Roundup- Bill Gates, Carbon Offsets

Social Entrepreneurs In The News

Today, the once-struggling venture has morphed into a primarily for-profit enterprise. And the striking transformation of In2Books is emblematic of a larger trend: charities are changing their spots and making use of some of capitalism’s virtues. The process is being pushed forward by a new breed of social entrepreneurs who are administering increasing doses of… Continue reading Social Entrepreneurs In The News

Google, Soros, Omidyar tie up to fund SMEs

“Long ignored by commercial capital Markets, small and medium businesses are an attractive investment opportunity as well as an engine for economic growth,” Neal DeLaurentis, vice-president of Soros Economic Development Fund, was cited as saying. Link

It’s still unclear how much a company profits from doing good, but a new study of international executives shows it certainly doesn’t hurt business

From Business Week: It is one of the biggest questions in corporate governance: Is there really any financial payoff for promoting enlightened social, environmental, and ethical practices? Or are companies that get the most attention for doing good merely those that can afford to do so? Link

IBM Develops Software For Microfinance Institutions

Here now, an exciting development. IBM has developed a “microfinance processing hub,” i.e., a shared infrastructure and software platform that provides groups of MFIs with a centralized core banking system, data center, operations management, and transaction processing. “When we started to work on the Microfinance initiative of IBM, we found that gaining access to appropriate… Continue reading IBM Develops Software For Microfinance Institutions