YESxBOP Library


Understand the BOP

At the root of the YESxBOP program is the BOP economic theory. This theory opens up a whole new window of opportunity for young entrepreneurs like you. The BOP theory argues that placing social problems within the purview of a market-based economic system will allow for the creation of scalable and sustainable solutions to the issues faced by the bottom of the pyramid. By viewing the so-called “bottom of the economic pyramid”—commonly defined as those living on annual incomes of $3,000 USD or less in local purchasing power—as a integral part of the economic system, young entrepreneurs can gain access to a market of consumers, producers, and business partners nearly 4 billion strong, with a combined worth of about $5 trillion! The shocking thing is, this population is routinely under-served or ignored by traditional businesses.

Think back on most of the discourse you hear in society: low-income communities are often couched in a narrative of victimization or helplessness (“This is a group that we need to help or provide charity for”). The BOP theory changes the nature of the dialogue by viewing members of the BOP valuable and important contributors in the formal economic system. No longer relegated to an inefficient, informal economy, members of the BOP can participate in the formal economic system as producers, consumers, and business partners, creating value for society and improving their own quality of life. By developing innovative products that fulfill the unmet needs of this community or by implementing unique, new business models that incorporate the BOP as producers and partners, we can not only improve the quality of lives of the BOP but make a profit as well! Using free enterprise to target the difficulties faced by this market produces genuine win-win results!

Click on the links to the right to learn more about the BOP customer base, BOP economic theory, and how you can use this information to make a difference in the world around you while succeeding in business.