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Thursday, March 26, 2009

Financial Power To The People

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Session Description

Web 2.0 entrepreneurs are shifting power dynamics from institutions (governments and NGOs) to end-users (donors and aid recipients) by creating new online marketplaces. These three social entrepreneurs are having a positive impact on development goals but each follows a different business model: online microlending for Kiva, online giving for GlobalGiving, and online investing for MyC4. Join them in the conversation.


When | Where

14:00 - 15:30 Thursday, March 26

Session leaders

  • Mads Kjaer Speaker
    CEO and Co-Founder, MYC4 A/S
    Mads Kjaer, Co-Founder and CEO of MYC4 started MYC4 in 2005 together with Tim Vang. MYC4 is a web 2.0 marketplace and a tool for people to end poverty through business. Prior to this, Mads has been working in Kjaer Group A/S since 1984 for the last 20 years as CEO and from August 2006 as the Chairman. Mads has 25 years market experience from emerging countries and lived in Zimbabwe, Uganda, South Africa and he is the Honorary Consul for Ethiopia in Denmark. Since its launch in October 2007, MYC4 has funded +4,500 African micro and small business with over 7.5million Euro in seven African countries with capital from +14,000 investors from +80 countries globally. The target in 2009 is +20,000 African micro- and small business loans for +35 million Euro in 10 African countries by 50,000 investors globally. See more on
  • Mari Kuraishi Speaker
    President, GlobalGiving
    Mari Kuraishi co-founded GlobalGiving in 2000. She is the President of GlobalGiving, an online marketplace that connects people to the causes they care most about. Donors select the locally run projects they want to fund, helping to make lasting change throughout the world. She joined the World Bank in 1991 where she managed and created some of the Bank’s most innovative projects, including the first ever Innovation and Development Marketplaces. The Development Marketplace has been recognized as a leading example of public sector innovation in an article in the Harvard Business Review. She has undergraduate and graduate degrees from Harvard, including completion of the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School.
  • Premal Shah Speaker
    Co-Founder & President, Kiva
    Premal helps lead —a crowdfunding website that connects people through lending to alleviate poverty. Since 2005, over $1B in philanthropic loans has been crowdfunded to millions of underserved entrepreneurs in 90 countries — with a 96% repayment rate. The site has been named as one of Oprah's Favorite Things and a Top 50 Website by TIME Magazine. Premal's inspiration came while volunteering in India while on leave from PayPal, where he had been an early employee. Premal began his career as a management consultant and graduated from Stanford University. He’s passionate about making it easier for anyone to discover their own power to make real impact. He serves on the Board of & — a crowdfunding for developing world health care site. For his work as a social entrepreneur, Premal was named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum and selected to FORTUNE magazine’s “Top 40 under 40″ list.
  • Tom Watson Speaker
    Managing Partner, CauseWired Communications
    Tom Watson is the author of CauseWired: Plugging In, Getting Involved, Changing the World (Wiley, 2008), the story of the rise of online social activism, and managing partner of CauseWired Communications LLC. Mr. Watson is the co-founder and publisher of, a global resource for the philanthropy sector. and is the founder/editor of, an online journal of popular culture. A lifelong journalist and serial entrepreneur, Mr. Watson has been writing about technology, media, philanthropy and social ventures for more than 15 years.