Tuesday, 22 May 2007


What a genius idea. Microlending via the internet: "Kiva.org allows individuals to make $25 loans to low-income entrepreneurs in the developing world (microfinance). By doing so, individuals like you provide affordable working capital for the poor (money to buy a sewing machine, livestock, etc.), empowering them to earn their way out of poverty."

You have to visit their site to see how powerful it is. You can read stories and decide who to lend $25 to. kiva link

Nearly all loans get repaid. You are basically foregoing a bit of interest to help people build businesses with dignity.

The New York Times did a nice video piece on them. NYT link

YouTube apparently donate 40m page impressions a month of free advertising to them.

This definitely strikes me as a contender for the best idea on the internet since... actually maybe ever.

Declaration of interest: I have a mutual contact who is trying to hook me up with them ie I'm so interested in them I'd like to help them somehow. Maybe just writing about it, I cant see any way of actually improving the thing or marketing it better than it markets itself. :J


fran said...

Stunning idea. Could replace the 'goat' this Christmas.

John Grant said...

that's a new take on 'this really gets my goat' ;)

ps if that's the right Fran, I am just rewriting the first page of the book talking about this in relation to your point about how close sustainability, web innovation (& new marketing) are in values, community, being future-facing etc.

fran said...

yes, it's me - football widow as K on is way to Athens - looking forward to reading next draft, happy my comments of use.

John Grant said...

I'm betting he's on one of those 'it's really important to my client as sponsor' boys own adventure trips?

I hope he is offsetting (and not just the carbon, he should have to do chores for several months, unless he has actually got kids in tow!±)

actually i am just jealous


Helen said...

This idea has brightened up my morning. Brilliant. Thanks for pointing it out!

john dodds said...

I agree - if you have a great idea - you just need to make sure you and others talk about it. That said, in the past, when i've mentioned this to peopel I've never been able to remember the name so there may be some way you can improve its traction.