Congratulations to the
2012 GSVC Finalists
NEWS: CONGRATULATIONS to the 2012 GSVC Round 2 Finalists: Exygen, FasoProt, Greennovation Technologies, InBelly, Mapability, and Spill!
NEWS: CONGRATULATIONS to the 2012 GSVC Winners! First Place: Spill. Second Place: Greennovation. Third Place: Exygen. Social Impact Assessment Award: FasoProt. People's Choice Quick Pitch Award: Watsi.
2Vidas is a pharmacy-based membership program for low- to middle-income pregnant women to slow the growing diabetes epidemic in Mexico. Pregnancy presents a unique opportunity to make a lasting health impact on at least two lives: a finite period where women have increased motivation to take better care of themselves for the health of their babies. 2Vidas provides its members access to health monitoring tools at a partner pharmacy chain, education and reinforcement through positive SMS-messaging, and motivation through peer-led community sessions. 2Vidas is a short-term intervention with a long-term impact. 2Vidas has been publicized in the Wall Street Journal and the NY Times, and was the winner of the global IBM/Novartis NCD Challenge. The team of UC Berkeley MBA and MPH students bring expertise in diabetes, the Mexico healthcare market, social franchising, and pharmacy-based healthcare product launches.
BM Team comes from Tongji University, which is one of the best engineering universities in China. The BM Company is a private enterprise specializing on its self-owned coal desulphurization technology by combined microbe organisms agent. Our core product called BM agent will be used before the coal burning process, and the tests in southwest China indicate that the sulfur remove efficiency for the high sulfur powdered coal can reach a range of 30~40 percent. The integrated services including research, manufacture, sales, and technical support would be provided to the clients which would make us more competitive. As there is a gap in the market that we can occupy quickly, our enterprise objective is not only to seek great commercial profits but also to gain significant environmental interests in the cleantech sector.
COINCYCLE, Social Enterprise Network (SEN), South Korea
CoinCycle is a social venture that provides efficient foreign coin exchange service for international travelers. Foreign coins are often left unused when travelers return home from abroad, which causes waste of valuable natural and economic resources. To resolve this social problem, CoinCycle is dedicated to advancing a foreign coin exchange system in order to restore the value of “forgotten coins” from abroad. With the wealth generated from the service, CoinCycle serves “forgotten people” from abroad, i.e., international refugees. Specifically, CoinCycle aims to help 3,000 refugees from North Korea, enhancing their living conditions in South Korea and helping them find their potential “left unused” through education and job search support.
Over 70% of urban Kenyan households rely on charcoal fuel for cooking with adverse effects on the country’s forest cover and the health of its users. Similarly, alternative kerosene and Liquefied Petroleum Gas fuels are plagued by shortages and oppressive pricing with no sustainable solutions foreseeable. We are harnessing renewable biogas energy to deliver low and middle income urban households from these adversities while transmitting continual social and environmental value through our fuel’s renewability, affordability and efficiency. Exygen’s business model comprises simple technical processes that maximize the usability of raw biogas by converting it to high quality Liquefied Biogas (LBG), branded SafiGas, ready for distribution and sale to our vast market through commercial gas cylinders. Each step in our business model delivers unique value to the stakeholders involved, culminating in a venture model that will thrive in Kenya and beyond borders; revolutionizing the social and environmental landscape.
Malnutrition is a major health problem in Africa and especially in Burkina Faso where it causes 50% of under-five mortality and where 46% of the population lives below the poverty line. However, promoting local products and common food practices such as shea caterpillars, a highly nutritional larva present in various regions, could improve the situation. FasoProt is a company that aims to promote these caterpillars through the development of an agribusiness model that could raise revenues for more than 2,000 rural women collecting caterpillars. FasoProt would distribute caterpillar powder for children and pregnant women (around 15,000 per year), and dried caterpillars for local people fond of that hyper-protein meal. The founders, Kahitouo HIEN and Christophe MANDI, are Burkinabe engineers, specialized in environment and nutrition. FasoProt aims at becoming a major stakeholder in poverty and malnutrition reduction, with a sustainable and replicable project in West and Central Africa.
Founded by four aspiring social-entrepreneurs from the University of Dhaka, Greennovation Technologies is aimed at solving the acute housing crisis for the bottom of pyramid people in Bangladesh, a country of 140 million people. Studies show that ~52% of the people in the country either do not have access to basic housing or live in houses built of temporary and unsecured inferior housing materials like tree-leaves and thatch. Ever prevailing poverty and geographical externalities are two main impetuses behind this inhuman scenario. And to fight this, we are introducing an affordable and sustainable housing material named Jutin®, produced from a composition of jute (hessian cloth) and resin using a patent-protected innovative technology. The venture creates value for its customers, employees, and the community as a whole. Additionally it has substantial benefits for the environment and economic development of the country.
INBELLY Stockholm School of Entrepreneurship, Sweden
Website: http://www.sveikasvaikas.lt & http://www.inbelly.co.uk
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InBelly makes the consumers voice strong. InBelly creates a crowd sourced community that exposes harmful additives in food products and, via market regulation, forces food producers to take harmful ingredients away. Users upload photos of a product and its ingredient list to the inBelly webpage or mobile app and the system automatically shows the health effects. In our test market, Lithuania, we launched our service (www.sveikasvaikas.lt) and have now reached one-third of the population. We were in parliament and, under public pressure, they banned harmful food additives in schools and kindergartens. Demand for additive free food products has doubled within a year. Food producers have been contacting us directly for cooperation. Our certification provides quality assurance on food products. Through this certification, consumers will know that the food item is made of healthy, and high quality ingredients.
Lulaway, which means the “easy way” in Zulu, is a recruitment optimization solution for low-income jobs in South Africa. Lulaway provides job candidates the services of job discovery, application, and screening in low-income areas through permanent and mobile internet cafés and kiosks which are either owned or affiliated with Lulaway. Lulaway also provides corporate recruitment services via its internet platform linking its registered job seekers and facilitating candidate discovery, communication, and process management. Launched in late 2011 with three branches near Johannesburg, Lulaway’s database has grown to over 2,500 active job seekers with over 400 successful placements to date with application rates averaging 100 per day. Growth thus far has been through three channels: satellite operations, strategic alliances, and private-public-partnerships. Lulaway’s vision is to become the market leader in recruiting within its target market in 5 years.
Mapability is a crowd-sourced social venture creating overlays to online maps plus metrics that provide accessibility and livability data for cities. Mapability maps helps end users find the most accessible paths for wheelchair access, mothers with strollers, elderly, kid-safe areas, baby-care facilities, and much more. The crowd-sourced data-acquisition comes from the members of multiple active volunteer communities and other individuals who contribute by uploading geo-localized photos and accessibility parameters using a simple UI app. Online maps are free for citizens. Economic sustainability is reached by selling dedicated services that allow municipalities, urban planners, and real estate professionals to improve, create, or find the most “livable” areas based on proximity data, statistics, and user feedback.
Marine Gifts, founded in 2011, is the first and only Vietnamese social enterprise that aims to improve lives of poor women living in and around marine protected areas by giving them employment opportunities and living skills training. Women are equipped with essential skills to be able to make handicrafts from marine by-products (such as dead shells, seeds of mangrove plants, and so on) and to provide community-based eco/cultural tourism services. With capital gains, Marine Gifts is taking a lead role in raising awareness through activities on marine conservation and community development works. Thanks to excellent tourism development potential and also availability of resources and markets for handicraft-making in coastal areas of Vietnam and Southeast Asia, Marine Gifts plans to expand our business to benefit disadvantaged people in vulnerable ecological areas in other countries that actively contribute to balance governments’ purposes of natural resource conservation and local people’s development needs.
Micro Oasis (MO) offers new affordable integrated agricultural services and holistic dry land irrigation solutions for farmers by applying Pitcher Fertigation System. It is a combination of irrigation and fertilization method applied in dry land by inserting specially made clay-pitchers into the land. MO aims to improve dry land farmers’ quality of life by developing their farming and management skills as well as boosting their dry land productivity. MO uses a sociocultural approach to engage with farmers and local communities to grow and sustain the market demand. As a result, it will ensure sustainable financial return on investment.
Every five seconds one person in the world goes blind. This huge group of people have been technologically neglected and socially marginalized in this information era. Because of their visual impairment, it is extremely difficult for them to acquire information in the form of printed text. Snewfly is a hi-tech company that offers innovative solutions to help the visually impaired smooth and expand their reading experience. Our first generation product, SmartEye Reader, is a portable reading device that is designed to translate printed text directly into human voice for the purpose of daily browsing as well as educational nourishing. In a unique fashion, SmartEye Reader will provide blind users with affordable and easy access to paper media. By 2017, with the joint efforts from government and partners, we expect to release a series of regionally-customized SmartEye Readers to reach out to the majority of the blind population in China as well as in other countries.
Spill is an online community that saves lives by offering anonymous peer support to students in need by connecting them with other students who have experienced similar issues—we bring empathy online. At spillnow.com users can vent anonymously about whatever is troubling them and receive anonymous peer support within 48 hours. Spillers receive up to five messages of support that include feedback, empathy, and relevant resources. Mental health professionals screen all spills within 5 minutes of receipt. If a spill indicates that the spiller may be a threat to themselves or others, immediate action is taken, according to the Spill Crisis Protocol depending on the level of crisis. To date, Spill has intervened on 19 potential suicides, an undeniable social benefit of the company. Spill has plans to expand to other markets such as the military, high schools, and other like-minded online communities.
Station Energy Services is a social business that develops energy-access solutions for Sub-Saharan rural populations. Among these is the Station Energy©, a concept inspired by petrol stations and African grocery shops. Thanks to its solar panels, Station Energy is a multi-service store in village centers providing access to diversified energetic services. Station Energy alleviates poverty by expanding freedom of choice and action of the populations on a lasting basis. The issue at stake is as enormous as the potential market: in Africa, 500 million people lack access to sustainable energy, and thus spend billions on expensive sources. With over 500 stations expected to be operational by 2017, Station Energy Services will create a distribution network of Station Energy franchises selling low-impact goods and services to one million Africans in rural areas. Station Energy has been designed as a turn-key solution for all investors looking for a profitable impact-investment opportunity.
People are dying of treatable illnesses because they cannot afford basic medical care. Watsi is the first global peer-to-peer crowdfunding platform that connects donors with people in need of low-cost medical care and enables them to fund high-impact treatments.