Tag Archive: US

  1. What Small and Growing Businesses Need to Scale Up: The Case for Effective Technical Assistance.

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    Small and growing businesses (SGBs) are one of the most promising avenues for sustainable development and positive change across the globe. Every $1 USD invested in SGBs generates $13 USD in the local economy – and SGBs have the potential to reach 4.5 billion new customers across 92 countries.[1] Yet SGBs continue to face difficult barriers to sustaining growth given the contexts in which they operate, hindering their ability to scale to new markets. Despite the growing ecosystem of external support, it is clear that more needs to be done to help SGBs scale.

    This report seeks to understand how SGBs can be better supported to scale. Our hope is twofold: that it will introduce some practical recommendations to test, and will initiate a wider dialogue for how SGBs can scale.

    Through a literature review and in-depth interviews with over 50 SGBs, funders and other organizations that support SGBs, we offer insights on some of the barriers that exist. We also offer recommendations that will hopefully inspire practitioners – SGBs, funders, technical assistance providers, and other intermediaries – to apply the report’s insights in a practical and meaningful manner.

    We invite you to read the report and contribute to this interesting and vital conversation.

    [1] ANDE (2016): “State of the Small and Growing Business Sector, 2016 Impact Report”.
  2. Lava Mae

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    It started with one woman, homeless in San Francisco, lamenting that she would never be clean. Lava Mae founder, Doniece Sandoval, heard her cries. Those words, a desire to help those experiencing homelessness, and a crazy obsession with the mobile food truck movement set in motion what would eventually become Lava Mae.

    Lava Mae believes that access to showers and toilets shouldn’t be a luxury, and seeks to serve those who lack access to what should be basic human rights – showers and sanitation. Since June 2014 the team has delivered over 14,000 showers, welcoming them according to Lava Mae’s mantra of ‘radical hospitality.’

    In light of the huge need and demand for their work, Lava Mae started thinking about how they could scale their impact. They recognised the potential to positively affect more people experiencing homelessness in other geographies by replicating their model.

    At the time of engaging Spring Impact, Lava Mae had countless opportunities both in the US and around the globe, and multiple ideas for scaling up its impact. We have since helped Lava Mae to redefine their strategic direction, concentrate their expansion efforts on two scale-up strategies and are continuing to help the Lava Mae team implement them in a sustainable way.

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