Four billion people in developing countries currently lack access to a wide range of markets. Companies usually consider the low purchasing power of poor people and the difficulty to reach them as prohibitive for business. However, examples of innovative enterprises around the world show that businesses can make profits in markets at the bottom of the economic pyramid while pursuing social objectives. This course equips future managers and entrepreneurs with frameworks to assess and analyze the market potential in developing countries, and offers tools to solve market and non-market issues when dealing with low-income customers. Innovations in products, processes and business models are a central topic of discussion. The class also covers the redesign of costing and pricing strategies, supply chain and distribution management, investment and financing, and strategic partnerships with nonprofit or public entities. Learning is based on practical experiences taught through a series of case studies drawn from countries around the world, and students engage in a business planning competition.
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