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Date: 2024-06-23 Page is: DBtxt001.php txt00002147

People ... Economists
C.K. Prahalad

C.K. Prahalad, a University of Michigan professor who wrote 'The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid.' in 2004

COMMENTARY
C.K. Prahalad made economists rethink sonme of their assumptions about the way marketys worked and the basic structure of the market around the world. I have been delighted to see how his work got some improved dialog about the economic situation, but it was also disappointing how economists merely tried to integrate what GK had to say into the conventional thinking and analysis.

For me the big opportunity was to use some of the thinking of JK to imagine a far better economic system that recognized not only that there was a fortune at the bottomg of the pyramid, but that if quality of life gain was the key purpose of economic activity, then the bottom of the pyramid is where the biggesy social value returns will be achieved.

If someone like Mitt Romney with a personal fortune of some $250 million earns an extra $100, his quality of life will not change one little bit ... but increase the income of someone at the bottom of the pyramid by $100 and the valueadd and improvement to quality of life is huge. How huge isa something that needs to get measured, and this is something TrueValueMetrics can do using its TVM standard value method. Check this out when you have the time!
Peter Burgess

His growing awareness of such limits sparked new ideas on how businesses could approach poor countries. At a dinner near Seattle in 2004, Mr. Gates met one of the leading thinkers on that front, C.K. Prahalad, a University of Michigan professor who had written 'The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid.' In that article and a subsequent book by the same title, Mr. Prahalad proposed that the world's four billion poorest people represented a huge market for companies willing to try.


Publication Date: August 5, 2004

From the Amazon book review:

The last couple of decades have seen great increases in sales, now multinational corporations are seeing markets with sluggish or no growth. One market that's been overlooked is also the fastest growing market in the world, and it's where you least expect it: at the bottom of the pyramid. Collectively, the world's 5 billion poor have vast untapped buying power. They represent enormous potential for companies who learn how to serve this market by providing the poor with what they need. This creates a win-win situation: not only do corporations tap into a vibrant market, but by treating the poor as consumers they are no longer treated with indignity; they become empowered customers. Corporations who service this market form an economic infrastructure, which creates real jobs for the poor, and finally an end to the vicious cycle of poverty. This book is a 3-part manifesto: passionate argument; detailed case studies from India, Peru, Mexico, Brazil, and Venezuela, and range from salt to soap, banking to cellphones, health to housing; and lastly, a CD with digital videos shot on location, designed to bring these innovations alive.C K Prahalad shows why we can't afford to ignore 'Bottom of the Pyramid'(BOP) markets.


The text being discussed is available at
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