Grameen Bank Archives — LIRNEasia

Grameen’s famous Village Phone Program lifted thousands out of poverty– and helped Muhammad Yunus win the Nobel Peace Prize. The problem: It’s not working anymore. According to Grameen Telecom, the GrameenPhone affiliate that manages the program, profits per operator have been declining for years and in 2006 averaged less than $70. “The program is not dead,” says its manager, Mazharul Hannan, chief of technical services at Grameen Telecom, “but it is no longer a way out of poverty.” The reason is simple: Technology and GrameenPhone itself have made the village phone obsolete.
Dhaka, March 23 ( — Grameen Bank’s Muhammad Yunus stunned the world by unveiling a poverty alleviation initiative using mobile phone on March 26, 1997. He buys bulk minutes from Grameenphone’s GSM mobile network and resells among the microcredit borrowers in Bangladesh. The industry now recognises such business model as Mobile Virtual Network Operator or MVNO. Yunus and Grameen shared the Nobel Peace Price in 2006.
Points of discussion Gender neutrality Women have built trust via a long term relationship with GB. Hence women are chosen based on their prior relationship with GB. MKJ:  Gender patterns do emerge from the fact that GB’s best customers are women. AZ: Groups of VPOs  “monitor” each others repayments within a village since if one person doesn’t repay on time it reflects badly on the rest of the VPOs in that village Mahinda: even in the Suntel-Ceylinco-Gramin scheme most of the credit-worthy customers are women. On Subsidies Since the cost structures were not available, we cannot say if the handset discounts and airtime discounts, etc.