#349: 'WaterCredit' Turns World's Poor Into Paying Customers
Read the full Forbes article and watch the interview here: http://onforb.es/1Oq7wel. Subscribe to this podcast on iTunes by clicking here: http://bit.ly/ymotwitunes or on Stitcher by clicking here: http://bit.ly/ymotwstitcher. Water.org is leading a revolution in the provision of clean drinking water in the developing world, turning the recipients of charity into regular water customers through microloans funded by impact investments. [Keep reading or scroll down to find the video player for the live interview.] Gary White, CEO of Water.org, explains the problem, noting, “The poor are not a problem to be solved, they are the solution. I see constant innovation in the financial sector—new models, new products. Water.org is applying that kind of thinking to the philanthropic sector—creating new opportunities for private and philanthropic capital to make systemic change. Access to water and sanitation has been the focus of charity. But there’s a market-based solution. We realized that if we could provide the poor with access to small loans at reasonable rates, we could get them into the water system. And not as charity, but as customers.” White explains further, “Changes in the water supply & sanitation (WSS) market at the Base of the Economic Pyramid (BOP) have unleashed significant new demand for WSS services. There have been significant gains in reducing poverty over the last two decades, and the trend will continue with support from the international community to eradicate extreme poverty by 2030. These socioeconomic changes are driving an increased willingness and ability to pay for improved water access and water quality as well as improved sanitation.” “We created WaterCredit to unleash the power of the poor. By enabling the poor to finance toilets and taps in their own homes, we’re spreading capital costs across a broader swath of stakeholders,” he adds. Read the full Forbes article and watch the interview here: http://onforb.es/1Oq7wel. Please consider whether a friend or colleague might benefit from this piece and, if so, share it.