Like most of you, the partners in Superfactory have been lucky. We’ve had manufacturing careers that have allowed us to live comfortably. Because of that we’ve always felt a desire to give back to the community, and the Superfactory knowledge base and resources is just one manifestation of that desire. We have also invested in smaller manufacturing businesses, funded projects at local schools and universities, and served on the boards and management teams of non-profit business organizations.
Over the past couple years regular readers have seen a few posts on another one of our passions: the power of micro lending. Small loans to nascent entrepreneurs trying to create business to make a better life for their families and communities. The power of loans as small as $100 is truly amazing.
Now I’m pleased to announce that we are participating directly by working with Kiva. Kiva leverages the power of the internet to channel funds to local lenders, who then provide micro loans to the entrepreneurs. The system is remarkable in the amount of contact and information provided, as well as the vetting of the local lenders. The entrepreneurs are charged interest, however this is used to support the local lender. The capital is repaid directly to you and most Kiva account holders then reinvest those funds. If the entrepreneur defaults, which is rare thanks to the oversight and support provided by the local lenders, the capital is not repaid. There is definitely some risk.
Superfactory has funded an account at Kiva, which is providing micro loans to entrepreneurs trying to start new businesses. For obvious reasons our focus is manufacturing-related, however we are pretty loose with that criteria and will direct funds to individuals who are trying to create a business or service that will also help their communities.
You can view our current investment portfolio here. You can also make a donation into our account; 100% of the funds will go into the account and it will be reinvested and not withdrawn. To visit Superfactory to learn more about our Kiva activities, click here. Or consider starting your own Kiva account.