Startup Lessons for Non-Profits

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Aug. 2 (Bloomberg) -- Vittana CEO Robin Wolaner discusses startup lessons for non-profits with Cory Johnson on Bloomberg Television's "Bloomberg West." (Source: Bloomberg)

Tell me about this.

It is a start up and educational in one.

I wanted to do something that could change the world.

I was like, i want to do something that leaves a lasting legacy.

What can do that better than educating students?

So it was founded by a bunch of people from amazon.

Small loans to small businesses.

These are loans to students.

And it was found to be effective at raising poverty and helping people out.

That is right.

This focuses on education.

When he think about it, when our students get a loan to complete tertiary education, it can be college or a technical school, that is a direct investment.

Who are the lenders?

You can go on the website.

Pick a student.

Pick they need.

That is the crowd funding part of it.

Lots of people do that through our website.

How does it work?

Those are places that are not as -- that is right.

We partner with micro-financing institutions in countries like the philippines and jordan.

We are in 13 countries right now.

There are differences in all of those countries.

We work with partners on the ground in those countries to help the students.

Can you tell me their stories?

I have personally loaned to a bunch of them.

My favorite story was a young woman in ghana.

$117 -- that was not the cost of my school.

There is no capital for the students.

They lack capital.

These are students who have proved themselves in these tough environments.

They are in college and technical schools.

They just need a little help to get to the finish line.

Is the financing more available for men in these places?

Or is it focused more on women?

We are evenly divided with our students.

Men do not intend to pay back loans as well.

No offense.

None taken.

But in our world, it is evenly divided.

Is their interest?


Our micro-finance partners have expenses on the ground.

These are not high interest rates.

In what ways is it start up- esque?

I think that is why i was happy to join.

There was a ping-pong table to the brick wall and everyone sitting around in one room.

I think the reason why people like google giving have given money to vittana is that they recognize it is scrappy.

They identified where the loans would be repaid.

They chose markets where they thought the higher education would give the student the best chance for a job.

Once a lender lends that money out, once the loan gets paid back -- it helps us leverage with the student loans.

There's nothing better when you get the e-mail that says the student paid off the loan.

They are finishing college.

Cool stuff.

Thank you.

This text has been automatically generated. It may not be 100% accurate.


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