Friday, June 27, 2008

The Economist article on profiting from the poor

The Economist has an article talking about Mexico's CompartamosBanco. This Microfinance Bank charges high interest rate (annualised 75%+) and has listed its shares with a market capitalisation of over USD one billion.

Compartamos apparently ran a not-for-profit like operation and grew very little. Then it rediscovered itself as a for-profit aggressive company, raised money and is growing fast now. Several Microfinance industry veterans including Mohammad Yunus are of the opinion that Microfinance must be a social business with no-profit, no-dividend, reinvestment model. Compartamos is of the opinion that generating profits out of this sector will bring in more investment and thereby more individuals can benefit from this process.

The Economist approves this viewpoint. It is also praising Compartamos for its financial literacy course that has benefited around 60,000 people.

No comments: