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29 Sep 2020, Edition - 1904, Tuesday

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Coimbatore

Bottom-up social entrepreneurship is the way forward

Covai Post Network

Do you have a rock solid idea and want to use it to make a difference in people’s lives?

Then you have a business in hand, says Ramesh Jude Thomas, president and chief knowledge officer of Equitor Consulting, a management consultancy that provides transaction and transformation support. It enables dramatic changes in the value of capital, through a thorough understanding and assessment of the true assets of any organization.

The new-age entrepreneur finds his idea in a social issue, works out a solution and converts it into a multi-billion dollar business, says Jude Thomas.

Social change is the nature this class of entrepreneurship, and it is inevitable, says Jude Thomas, who generated the brand valuation concept which is used as a strategic business tool to Indian industry.

“When you can make a difference and get a fair return on it, then why not,” he said during a talk at the GRD School of Commerce and International Business.

Doing good brings no money is a thing of the past, he said.

They now complement each other, hardly contradict.

Some of the big dreams, said Jude Thomas, that translated into making a difference are Bengaluru-based Akshaya Patra, a mid-day meal scheme that has touched its one billionth meal.

A shining example is Airbnb (airbed and breakfast), an online marketplace that enables people to list, find, then rent vacation homes for a processing fee. They accommodated guests in their spare rooms on air mattresses and provided then homemade breakfast.

Social entrepreneurship in India was born out of an attitudinal shift from scarcity to abundance, he said.

“The scarcity mentality was embedded in the previous generations as against today’s abundance outlook,” Jude Thomas explained.

This mindset has boded well for the present generation as they are “taking money for granted” and didn’t treat it as an impetus to business.

The new-age entrepreneurship is rooted to a social structure and has started taking the business world by storm with a bottom up approach.

Some of the most successful business ideas are found at the bottom of the pyramid – which belongs to the disadvantaged in the society.

Chic shampoo sachet is an idea gathered from the bottom of the pyramid and helped the daily wage earner to not just keep a clean head but also “to pay as he earns”.

A man at the bottom of the pyramid could enjoy the product as he could afford it in small quantities, with the returns not anything less for the business.

Who will fund these ideas?

Private equities, says Jude Thomas.

“Today, capital is chasing new ideas.”

The scenario is a far cry from going to banks with a begging bowl and parcels of documents that serve as security against the loan you may get, he said.

“If you have a business idea you believe in, structure it and pitch it to a potential investor.”

And why would a high net worth individual be interested in a bizarre start-up idea and relatively small change he could make from your business?

“They are excited about the breezy change the ‘bizarre’ venture is bringing to their boring multi-billion dollar business.”

Young entrepreneurs have a new environment to play in order to make a difference, and money in the bargain, and who anyway wants to be burdened with bosses, bonus and salaries.

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