How to Scale Social Innovation in the Bottom of Pyramid Market: The Story of Kenya’s Innovation Eye Centre


Kenyan rural areas are generally very poor; people live within what’s known as the Bottom of Pyramid market, meaning under the poverty threshold of USD 1.90 per day (World Bank, 2015). These people face unmet needs such as food, education, and energy. Moreover, access to healthcare represents a critical issue for poor people. Africa especially has some of the worst health conditions in the world. In particular, access to eye care services in Kenya is a big challenge for poor and marginalized people. The lack of infrastructure, poor distribution channels, widespread illiteracy, and low income of poor people de facto represent obstacles to eye care delivery. Hence, people become blind even if blindness would have been curable with prevention or a simple surgery. The social and economic consequences are dramatic for the families of blind individuals and the community in general. This case shows a mix of strategies on how a Kenyan social enterprise, called Innovation Eye Centre, is facing these issues and enabling poor people to have access to healthcare. The students will put themselves in the shoes of the enterprise founders, exploring and analyzing the strategic decisions made to overcome the obstacles in the scaling social innovation in eye care services.

This case was prepared for inclusion in SAGE Business Cases primarily as a basis for classroom discussion or self-study, and is not meant to illustrate either effective or ineffective management styles. Nothing herein shall be deemed to be an endorsement of any kind. This case is for scholarly, educational, or personal use only within your university, and cannot be forwarded outside the university or used for other commercial purposes.

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