Rik Stamhuis is the co-founder and managing director of Jiro-Ve. Jiro-Ve is a social enterprise that, through a network of franchisees, rents out rechargeable solar lights to the people in Madagascar, with the aim of eradicating expensive and dangerous candles and kerosene lights. To date 7,500 people have benefitted from this service and 20 new jobs were created.
It was after having worked in East Africa for two years that Stamhuis realized that despite the fact that a lot of great solar products had been developed for the bottom of the pyramid, many remained inaccessible to this group due to limited purchasing power, insufficient training or products not being available at the right time. It was for these reasons that he co-founded Jiro-Ve with an inclusive business model aiming to eliminate all those barriers.
The efforts of Jiro-Ve have been internationally recognized by Bid network, EY, SOCAP and Global Social Benefit Institute. But most importantly Jiro-Ve has created a positive impact on people’s lives providing evidence of what can be achieved but also serving as a humble reminder of what is yet to be done.