20 October 2006

Big win for a little bank

This is the kind of levels down to which FOSS people should be doing business.

Muhammad Yunus, founder of the Grameen Bank of Bangladesh, makes tiny loans (“some as small as $20”) for people to escape their financial bondage & stock up to go into business for themselves.

He’s been awarded a Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts.

Could you imagine a standard bank floating a separate loan for $20?

That’d be as crazy as giving away your software, no?

I think that there’s a connection there, between smallish software investments & smallish banking investments.

Like many software companies (& workers), the Grameen Bank is a for-profit enterprise, having a 99% repayment rate & having loaned 5.72 billion dollars in micro-loans since 1983.

At first glance, the enterprise could be mistaken for being a bit chicken-feed, but figures like these tend to give it a bit of hard reality. Why not set up a low-overhead high-turnover software business to aim at similar levels?

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