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Team: Nico Clemminck '08 and Sachin Kadakia '07
Areas: micro-franchising, international development, health - success factors assessment
Supervisor: World Resources Initiative
Scojo Vision Entrepreneurs conducting a screening in a rural village in Andhra Pradesh
World Resources Institute (WRI), launched in 1982, is an environmental think tank that goes beyond research to find practical ways to protect the earth and improve people's lives. WRI partnered with Columbia Business School’s International Development Club (IDC) to engage MBA students to identify innovative private sector approaches to business development that are replicable, scalable and sustainable in emerging markets. IDC and WRI selected Nico Clemminck ’08 and Sachin Kadakia ’07 to travel to India to identify the key elements that make Scojo Foundation (Scojo), a successful micro-franchisor for reading glasses.
Scojo has developed an innovative, market-based solution to address presbyopia, or blurry up-close vision, which currently affects 700 million people worldwide and can be solved with readily available reading glasses. Since 2002, Scojo has launched operations in India, Bangladesh, Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador and Ghana. Scojo India, headquartered in Hyderabad, is the largest and fastest growing operation today, due primarily to strategic investments, strong networks and rapid replication of the business model by local staff.
Social Enterprise Summer Fellows
“My experience working with communities in India and Africa, as well as on developing public-private partnerships with government and non-profit agencies, convinced me of the need for innovative approaches to international development”
“I see entrepreneurs as the key leverage point in development, so interning at Ashoka made perfect sense.”
Committee to Encourage Corporate Philanthropy
“This internship matched my interest in harnessing the power and resources in the for profit sector to effect social change.”