Samasource

Samasource

Samasource

SERVICE

Samasource provides hands-on services to digital companies to enrich and label their large datasets.  Being data-driven is key for a digital business to succeed today.

Samasource offers 4 services:
Cleaning, verification and enrichment of companies’ data sets.
Builing training data for natural language or computer vision algorithms.
Creating or moderating content, and optimizing images
Personalized online customer support 

BUSINESS MODEL

Samasource is a non-profitthe entirety of revenues generated are reinvested to scale the impact. 

Samasource uses a proprietary technology platform, the SamaHub, that breaks down large-scale digital projects from clients into smaller tasks for workers in developing countries or refugees to contribute. This is called microwork.  These workers are trained in basic computer skills for a few weeks at delivery centers with which Samasource partners, and paid a local living wage for their labor.

Samasource and in-country partners collaborate on the recruiting process, which targets women, youth and refugees without formal work experience who are earning below a local living wage.

Samasource is a pioneer in the field of impact sourcing, the practice of hiring people from the bottom of the pyramid to complete digital work.

IMPACT

Place: Kenya, Uganda, India, and Haiti.

Scale:  9,081 people from 2008 to 2016 have been employed by Samasource, which use their earnings to support an average of 3 dependants.  

Depth

  • By moving from $2 to $8 a day, Samasource workers vastly increase their spending on safer housing, nutritious food, education, and healthcare.
  • They gain valuable work experience that helps them build a pathway out of poverty. 84% of workers continue to work or pursue education after they leave Samasource. 

ORIGINS

Fresh out of Harvard in 2005, Leila Janah landed a job as a management consultant. One of her first assignments took her to Mumbai, where she traveled by auto-rickshaw to a sleek outsourcing center staffed by well-educated Indians from middle-class families. The ride took her past one of Asia’s largest slums, Dharavi, where cholera outbreaks are commonplace and children die of preventable diseases. Outsourcing might have been providing millions of jobs, but it wasn’t helping the country’s poorest. She began to think, “Couldn’t the people from the slums do some of this work?”

Janah, 32, turned that idea into Samasource —Sama is Sanskrit for “equal”—as an outsourcing company that hires people in Africa and Asia to perform digital tasks for companies like Google and LinkedIn.

In 2013, she launched a job-training program for low-income workers in the US. It helps people plug in to on-demand services like Lyft, TaskRabbit, and Instacart. Dubbed Samaschool, the effort is now rolling out across the US and, thanks to an online curriculum, globally.
(Wired)

WHAT’S NEXT?

  • Samasource expanded in Europe (sales office in the Netherlands and Paris). 
  • Leila Janah started a second social enterprise – for profit this time – LXMI, selling luxury organic skincare products. She also released a book, “Give Work“, in September 2017 about how to  incentivize everyone from entrepreneurs to big companies to give dignified, steady, fair-wage work to low-income people.

GET INVOLVED !

Give work too!

Interested to know more about Leila’s solution to end poverty? Read her book, where she shares poignant stories of people who have benefited from Samasource’s work, where and why it hasn’t worked. 

Work for Samasource

Team up with some of the most talented people in Silicon Valley–and around the world (Kenya, France, Netherlands…)—to solve global poverty.

Maya Apa

Maya Apa

Maya Apa

SOLUTION

Maya Apa is a virtual platform that anyone anonymously can access any time, providing counselling and answers to queries on daily life issues including health, psychosocial and legal matters.
Once a question is asked, it is redirected to the profile of relevant experts and the answer appears within a maximum of three hours.

BUSINESS MODEL

A premium service titled ‘Maya Apa Plus’ has been launched under partnership with mobile operator Robi. Users will have their queries answered in ten minutes through this service.  Users can subscribe for BEST 60 (60 eurocents) a month for unlimited questions. For SMS-based questions, they only charge BDT 10  once a user gets a resolution to their initial query, which is still cheaper than a consultation.

Maya Apa gathers  heaps of anonymous data and can tell what kind of problems are prevalent in which area, what age group is more prone to mental problems and all these issues. Which means looking at Maya data, you can understand health and legal status of many localities. This data has the potential to be monetized in the future.

Experts are paid based on answers. Through technologies like natural language processing, Maya Apa can route questions to the right expert. They have a training module and a separate website for the experts. Before onboarding any expert, they take them through test and training. Once they pass the test and finish their training and get vetted, they then approve them and they get access to the dashboard.

IMPACT

Place: Bangladesh 

Scale:  150,000 queries were submitted and answered. Over 10,000 users access it daily (2017).

Depth

  • 75% of  queries are health related, 20% are psychosocial and rest 5% are legal questions. In Bangladesh, doctor to patient ratio is 4000:1 and psychiatrist to patient ratio is 1: 1 million, there is a huge need for both of these services.

ORIGINS

Maya Apa was founded in 2011 by Ivy Russell. “When I started Maya, I had little idea of what we wanted to do. I was juggling a full-time job and writing articles and publishing them to my site, maya.com.bd, which was more like a blog at the time. It was very difficult to navigate through the whole thing.

The question I originally asked when I started Maya was: where do women go when they need to ask questions about the intimate parts of their body? Although that was a basic question and the starting point for us but I really started diving deep when I left my job in 2014. That’s when I started reading about and understanding major trends and ideas and changes in the tech landscape across the world. And we decided to move from a mere website and pivoted to mobile and messaging from a web based content site. And we also turned Maya into a predominantly Bangla platform. It was at this point we were fortunate to receive a grant from BRAC to support our transformation from content portal to a mobile-first, Bangla-first wellbeing service”.

WHAT’S NEXT?

  • During the early days of Maya, I was the only person doing everything with the help of a couple of doctors who helped out voluntarily and I am super grateful to them. It took us almost 48 hours to answer any question in an appropriate manner. Then it became 24 hours and then 12 hours and for the last couple of years it came down to 3 hours and now premium users are getting it in 10 minutes. We just launched our premium service, Maya Apa Plus, in partnership with Robi, the selling point is ‘get your answer in 10 minutes’.
  • Over the past couple of years, we have tried many different things. We failed in some and some of those things have stuck with us and are helping us to grow.
  • In February 2017, BRAC has decided to increase its investment to scale the service.  In addition, Brac’s urban development programme will implement a pilot project where the Maya Apa app will be used to give services to 50,000 women working in garments factories.
  • We have kicked off our monetization side with doing the deal with Robi .After our collaboration with Robi, 600 more questions got added per day. On a good day, we receive around 1000 messages and on a bad day, we receive around 500 messages. That’s just the beginning. We plan to get into more partnerships in the coming days. We are in an exclusive partnership with Robi for one year. We plan to package differently for other partners.”
  • We also plan to move on to other markets. We have done research in India, perhaps we will start with Calcutta and the Middle East is also our target but nothing is finalized yet. Since we have BRAC as a partner, we may launch in countries where BRAC has operations and where there is a need for our service“.
  • We are also in talk with a couple of private companies who want to avail our service for their employees. Our B2B service is about to start.The company launched LenddoScore, a proprietary credit rating system without any traditional banking inputs in October 2013.”

GET INVOLVED !

Work for them

Maya Apa is located in Bengladesh. They are looking for medical and psychology specialists, as well as other profiles to grow the enterprise.

Google

Google

Google

SERVICE

Free access to information, traning, tools and events, for everyone

“Organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful”. 

BUSINESS MODEL

The vast majority of Google’s revenue (over 90%) comes from advertising via its search engine and its ads program.  The rest comes from some innovative products and services (Chromecast, Google Home, Pixel 2, Google for business…). 

Google.org represents the philanthropic arm of Google and, unlike most philanthropic companies, it is a for-profit to free itself from various constraints placed on nonprofit groups. Google.org’s strategy involves not only funding the use of technology, data, and user-centered design, but also giving the best of Google – including their people time and their products – to address local challenges. They mainly work in three fields: closing the education gap, economic opportunities and inclusion. 

 In October 2017, Google has committed to award $1 billion in grants over the next 5 years and enable 1 million employee to volunteer hours, while continuing to develop products and programs that create opportunity for everyone. Over the next two years, Google is giving $50 million in grants to nonprofits focused on improving education in developing countries using tech-based learning tools (2016).

IMPACT

Place: Global

Scale:  around 2 billion people use Google online servicesGoogle’s education products (Classroom, Chromebooks…) benefit more than 70 million people in 180 countries. Over 10 million women across India have improved their livelihood through the Saathi program, a digital literacy program. Khan Academy, which offers free education and was initially funded by Google, now has 59 million users

Depth

  • Help people grow their skills, career and business
  • Reduce the educational gap and inequalities in economic opportunities (women, migrants, people who can’t afford an internet connection). 

ORIGINS

Google began in January 1996 as a research project led by Larry Page and Sergey Brin, two PhD students at Standford University in California. The company was incorporated in 1998. At that time, it was based in the garage of a friend of them. Google’s IPO took place in 2004. The co-founders told potential investors they planned to set aside 1% of the company’s stock (at the time of the IPO), and an equal percentage of profits, to fund Google.org, a philanthropy arm they have launched in 2005. “We hope someday this institution may eclipse Google itself in terms of overall world impact by ambitiously applying innovation and significant resources to the largest of the world’s problems,” Google cofounder Larry Page wrote of Dot-org in a 2004 letter to investors. Although Google intended to reinvent philanthropy and by doing so, address major problems like climate change,  global poverty and the spread of pandemic diseases, Google.org had a difficult start. “They were looking for something like a new algorithm — but there isn’t any algorithm that’s going to eradicate diseases” said one employee of Google.org in 2008. Adding to that major management issues, Google.org ground to a halt, and then pivoted its strategy. Google.org now keeps a focus on what they are doing best : organize information and make it universally accessible. t

WHAT’S NEXT?

  • In 2010, Google donated $2 million to Khan Academy. At the time, it was a single person with a big idea: provide a free, world class education to anyone, anywhere. With the help of Google, Khan Academy now has over 59 million registered users.
  • In 2014, the corporation stated on its website that it donates $100 million in grants, 200,000 hours in volunteering, and $1 billion in products each year.
  • In 2015, Google partnered with Tata Trusts to launch “Internet Saathi“, a digital literacy program for women. In rural India, only 1 ou to f 10 internet users is a woman.  By learning how to access and use the internet, they in turn impart training to their community and neighbouring villages.  

  • Google.org is supporting many nonprofit organizations closing the educational gap. One of them is Learning Equality, a nonprofit organization building educational software for communities with low internet connectivity.
  • Google recently launched Google for Jobs, designed to help better connect people to jobs, and Google Grow, free material to build digital skills and careers.

GET INVOLVED !

Work for Google

Google.org is probably one of the most sought-after after teams to join at Google. But if you have skills that they are looking for, you might be lucky !

Lenddo

Lenddo

Lenddo

 

SOLUTION

Lenddo can predict an individul’s credit risk orwillingness to pay based on non-traditional data derived from an applicant’s social data, psychometric data and online behavior.  Its algorithm will examine more than 12,000 data points for a typical loan applicant, to provide a score between 1 and 1,000. 

Lenddo’s concept is rooted in notion that when lending, a person’s character is as important as cash flow, income, or assets.

The solution reduces the high cost of credit assessment and verification for lenders and help millions of applicants with little to no credit history gain access to credit. 

 

 

BUSINESS MODEL

In order to prove the concept and train its complex algorithms, Lenddo started lending on its own by setting up a lending entity in the Philippines and in Columbia.

 Once the technology was calibrated by the lending experiments, the company evolved its business model to offer its risk assessment platform to lenders in the form of an easy to integrate API.  

The company has more than 20 clients in 15 countries, such as LendingKart which offers small business loans or the P2P micro-lending platform i-Lend in India but also cloud banking platforms such as Cloud Lending in the US or Mambu in Europe.

Lenddo charges a fee for consulting and credit risk analysis, and also charges for verification and credit scoring which starts from 1-2$ per user and can go down to 50 cents on high volumes.

To scale the business faster, the company raised a combined 14 million dollars in Series A in 2012 and 2013, and it closed an undisclosed Series B in October 2015, from various VCs, including Skype founder.

IMPACT

Place: 15 countries

Scale:  5 million applicants ; the approval rate has increased by 50%. 

Depth

  • Gained access to loans to improve their life (education, health, relocation, start a business…). 

ORIGINS

Lenddo was started in 2011 as an online lender in Philippines by serial entrepreneur Jeffrey Stewart and management consultant Richard Eldridge.  Its main focus initially was to improve lives of the emerging middle class in developing countries by providing micro loans for specific purposes.  Lenddo has been growing at more than a percent a day in its first year and had impacted millions of people in the Philippines by mid-2012.

Jeff Stewart’s entrepreneurial career began in 1995 with his launch of Square Eart, another tech company with clients such as Citibank or AIG. Consistently profitable, Square Earth grew at a rate of over 100% per year, merged with Proxicom in 1998 and successfully complated an IPO in 1999. He has succesfully deployed other tech startups in different industries, from a document production service to big data analytics for institutional investors to a recruitment technology.

WHAT’S NEXT?

  • The company extended its lending operations to Colombia and Mexico in the next 2 years.
  • The company launched LenddoScore, a proprietary credit rating system without any traditional banking inputs in October 2013.
  • In January 2015, after having proven that the company can underwrite loans successfully without using traditional data, the company started offering its algorithm to third parties for lending and verification purposes such as banks, p2p lenders, telecom companies and other financial institutions.. 
  • In 2017, Lenddo merge with the Psychometric credit scoring company Entrepreneurial Finance Lab  ELC, adding the user’s personality traits to the score system. 

GET INVOLVED !

Work for them

As a growing company, Lenddo is constantly looking for new talents.  Help them build revolutionary new technology that empowers everyday people. Headquarters are in Singapore, but they look for talents around the world.