Be! invests in young entrepreneurs (50% of investments will be in women) in these communities to solve the problems they face, and the success of their enterprises will prove invaluable for government agencies, investors and indeed, millions of young entrepreneurs across India. Microfinance in India invests up to ,000. Be! Fund begins here and goes as high as ,000 according to the business' needs, providing mentoring and business support to first-time entrepreneurs.
Through this commitment, the concept of investing in young people from low-income groups to combat social problems will be communicated through Be!Fund's success stories across India. This visibility and the proven business case of Be! investments for social change will have a snowball effect, inspiring and compelling government and foundations to commit new sources of venture funding to young people. The hope is to unleash an investment ten times greater than the original million Be!Fund thus institutionalizing Be! to become standard practice for banks.
Be! Fund will find the young entrepreneurs and their enterprises for social change through the mass-media initiative that will drive young people to the fund. The pilot investments will in some cases be made through bank loans to the entrepreneurs, and therefore institutionalized, proving that social enterprises led by young people from low-income groups are viable investments for changing our world.
Be! will reach 100 million young people over the next five years through national media networks and school systems. The mass media initiative will ask, at the end of each movie, book and radio episode, 'Do you have a Be! idea? Submit your enterprise solution to the Be! Fund.' 50% of Be! stories will directly target women and girls from low-income groups and invest in young entrepreneurs who submit their business ideas for social change as a result of the Be! media initiative. Be! Fund will invest in 75 young people (ages 18-35) from low-income groups in India to be able pioneer their enterprises for social change. From water to waste management, health to renewable energy, these pilot investments led by entrepreneurs have the potential to be model enterprise solutions to poverty that can be taken to scale across India. 50% of investments will be in women.
Extensive research on entrepreneurship in India will be made available online through a web portal, including data from interviews with 700 children (50% girls) from low-income groups, lower castes and nine states in India. The portal will play a dual role of also centralizing all information for first-time entrepreneurs in India, including investment opportunities, bank loans, local mentors, and organizations. This will be made easily accessible in ten regional languages.
September 2008 - March 2009
- Will actively fundraise for grant/investment required for the Be! Fund.
- Will seek institutional investors and one-on-one matching by individual entrepreneurs; an event will be held with TIE on October 2nd, 2008.
- Will also be actively fundraising for the remaining media budget required. Be! media production begins early 2009 (to be completed by September 2009)
April 2009 - Fall 2011
- Completion of Be! media production.
- Media rolls out across India from October 2009 onwards asking young people ages 18-35 to submit their business ideas for social change to the Be! Fund.
- Be! Fund makes first investments in entrepreneurs January 2010.
- Makes investments through partnerships with banks to disburse and match loans/investments to young people. Be! Fund creates partnerships for monitoring and mentoring investments, provides skill development support and financial problem solving.
Year 1: 20 investments; Year 2: 35 investments; Year 3: 20 investments.
Be! Fund will provide capital to pioneering models in Be!'s 14 identified development sectors.
50% of investments will be urban. 50% will be in young women, and all investments will be made in young people (ages 18-35) from low-income groups and lower castes. Each sector will have a committee to short-list and select business models with potential, direct social impact and led by young entrepreneurs, based on the short-list, the fund manager partners will travel to visit and conduct interviews.
Be! Fund addresses issues of poverty by investing in young entrepreneurs from low-income groups in India to solve problems by piloting enterprises in 14 development sectors - water, health, renewable energy, waste management, communication, education, low-income housing, urban planning, rural enterprise, and sanitation. The absence of services in India's slums and villages contribute to issues of poverty.