What if you could harness the power of the free market to solve the problems of poverty, hunger, and inequality? To some, it sounds impossible. But Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus is doing exactly that. As founder of Grameen Bank, Yunus pioneered microcredit, the innovative banking program that provides poor people - mainly women - with small loans they use to launch businesses and lift their families out of poverty. In the past thirty years, microcredit has spread to every continent and benefited over 100 million families.
Now, Yunus - in partnership with some of the world's most visionary business leaders - has launched the world's first purposely designed social businesses. From collaborating with Danone to produce affordable, nutritious yogurt for malnourished children in Bangladesh to building eyecare hospitals that will save thousands of poor people from blindness, he offers a glimpse of the amazing future with a planet transformed by thousands of social businesses. Yunus puts forward a pioneering model for nothing less than a new, more humane form of capitalism.
Muhammad Yunus was born in Chittagong, a seaport in Bangladesh. The third of fourteen children, he was educated at Dhaka University and was awarded a Fulbright scholarship to study economics at Vanderbilt University. He then served as chairman of the economics department at Chittagong University before devoting his life to providing financial and social services to the poorest of the poor. He is the founder and managing director of Grameen Bank and the author of the bestselling Banker to the Poor. Yunus and Grameen Bank are winners of the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize.
Recorded Tuesday, January 22, 2008 at Fairmont Hotel.