Beach Walk 158 – You too can seed a business! allows you to be micro-lender and help other entrepreneurs.

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About Today’s Show

I learned about over at Jon Rawlinson’s blog, The RAD Blog.

Kiva was started by former employees of Tivo, PayPal and Google. It connects you with budding business owners in developing countries via microloans. These are very small loans, under $1000 typically, but based on very small amounts from lenders. Now, you can find a tailor in Cambodia and lend $25 towards his business. And also find a farmer in Honduras, and loan her $25. Since several lenders actually make up the bulk of an individual loan, the risk is spread wide. Not that it needs to be. Microloans have an average 96% repayment rate, and so far, Kiva is batting 100%.

Each loan is managed by a local business partner, who screens applicants and collects a small amount of interest to administer the loans. As a lender, 100% of your loan goes directly to the recipient. The “interest” you receive is in helping another person grow a sustainable enterprise. PayPal processes all the payments, both your initial loan and your repayment, all without any fees. You are repaid as the business owner pays back the loan, typically over a 12 month period.

Kiva’s site shows you a picture and bio of each recipient, and also logs each repayment. You can rate projects as especially worthy and help them get funded even faster.

This is a perfect project in my book and I hope you will consider participating.

Hawaiian words
Hāʻawi no ka manawa: loan, to give for a short time

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