Can the Profit Motive Improve Microlending
SKS, the largest microfinance company in India, successfully went public this summer, becoming the second such business to do so.??Is the creation of a large, publicly owned and profit-making enterprise the best'or the only'way to take the benefits of microfinance to the millions of poor people who really need it'Are such businesses more or less likely to maximize public good by giving vital and affordable financial services to those currently living outside the retail banking system'
In his new book, A Fistful of Rice: My Unexpected Quest to End Poverty Through Profitability, SKS chairperson and founder Vikram Akula has written a powerful brief answering this question in the affirmative. Microfinance pioneer, Nobel Prize laureate, and founder of Grameen Bank Muhammad Yunus disagrees, as does Alex Counts, President and CEO of Grameen Foundation, and author of Small Loans, Big Dreams: How Nobel Prize Winner Muhammad Yunus and Microfinance are Changing the World.
Join Alex Counts and Vikram Akula as they debate whether public companies and a for-profit approach are the best ways to take microlending affordably to scale. The debate will be moderated by Niki Armacost, Co-Founder, Arc Finance.