Monday, August 20, 2007

Reuter Project Market Light launched in India

Reuters Digital Vision project called Market Light is an initiative to reach the rural community in India. The service provides information on crop prices, weather updates and other agri-related news via SMS. If effective in India, Reuters will extend this service to African countries. Mr Mehra, Managing Director claimed that Market Light has enabled the farmers to negotiate better prices - Mans

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Good Times for Entrepreneurs says Guy Kawasaki

Yesterday I went to the talk: "By the Numbers: How I built a Web 2.0, User-Generated Content,Citizen Journalism, Long-Tail, Social Media Site for $12,107.09" by Guy Kawasaki, whose latest venture is the website ( While it was as expected, great marketing and entertainment in typical "Guy Style", I got what I went for- breakdown of costs to launch his website (website = business) which is: 5k legal, 4k software, 1K domains, 0.4k for logo and that's about it. Run rate is what it costs to host the website - on yahoo it would be about 30/month. This means good times for entrepreneurs! (no need to beg VCs to prove your concept - versus old days when it would take a million).
And here's my point - this is now affordable for social entrepreneurs who often pay for stuff themselves (like me) and must prove themselves far longer than a standard for profit business. I have been thinking I can get going for free - design my own logo, etc and so now I know it can be done. Now if I could only get the kind of marketing clout the name "Guy Kawasaki" brings! Help?

Friday, August 10, 2007

Business School with a difference

The Maan Deshi Udyogini Business School for rural women, founded by economist and farmer Chetna Gala Sinha last December, is gradually becoming a symbol of empowerment for women at the bottom of the economic pyramid. Situated in the dry region enveloping Mhaswad and Vaduj villages, 270 miles (430 kilometers) from Mumbai, the school is targeted at school dropouts and women without formal education. Today the school offers 19 skill-development courses, including computer training, bag making, English-language training, and financial literacy instruction.
And the cost is not the thousands of dollars that a standard B-School charges- but the equivalent of $2.50 for the entire course.
- from netika

Saturday, August 4, 2007

How About Accidental Entrepreneur ?

I have decided that the term "social entrepreneur" really does have a lot of baggage. One particularly vitriolic comment on our earlier post says "Distribution of poverty and collateral misery" is the goal of a socialist - further confusing the issue of social versus socialist. Hence I am now proposing - how about accidental entrepreneur? Accidental because the person would really rather do social good (remove poverty not distribute it like peanut butter) but must engage in business in order to be self sustaining.