Interesting Unreasonable article
I agree 100% with the notion that successful business practices can lead to substantial poverty reduction worldwide. I also think this has been the missing link and why we still face so many problems after countless years of philanthropy.
I do need to correct one assertion of the post though.
I am the scientific and technical advisor to the Social Business movement and a personal friend of its founder Prof. +Muhammad Yunus
Prof. Yunus does not condemn profit making businesses. He does not assert that businesses that serves the poor cannot make a profit. The quote from Prof. Yunus in the post is taken out of context. What Prof. Yunus is actually saying (backed up by the same article cited) is that he thinks it’s wrong for businesses to grow rich by preying on and taking advantage of the poor.
It is true that Prof. Yunus defines “Social Business” as a business that does not pay dividend or give a return on investment and all profits go back into the social or environmental good the business was created to achieve. But this type of business is to be seen as one of the many entrepreneurial solutions available to choose from across the entire spectrum of available business options. Prof Yunus is not saying that his definition of social business is the only option. The only thing that he does condemn is businesses that take advantage of the plight of the poor. Any business that serves the poor should have somewhere in their calculation the long-term benefit of their impoverished customers – they should not be viewed as a resource to be exploited. This is good business…