The Lavin Agency Speakers Bureau

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Jessica Jackley: Bringing a Successful Microloan Model to America

In a new video, Jessica Jackley talks about the role of microfinance to catalyze investments in U.S. entrepreneurship during a time of economic stagnation. Speaking with The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, the KIVA co-founder and CEO of a new veture called ProFounder shares her extensive, and much publicized, experiences in bringing microloans to the masses. She also spoke of “the potential [an entrepreneur has]…to change things for the better.”

Jessica Jackley got her start in microfinance through KIVA's efforts to provide microloans to entrepreneurs in developing countries—small loans that started at just $25, which was sometimes all that was needed. With KIVA, she saw the transformative power that microfinance has to provide a “new perspective of what's possible for someone's life,” so she wondered: if microfinance works so well in developing countries, why can't it work in developed ones?

Enter ProFounder, her new crowdfunding platform that uses microfinance principles to help American entrepreneurs get their businesses off the ground. With Profounder, new entrepreneurs are provided a cost-effective way to secure investments from friends, family, or any interested party, easily and quickly. Jackley’s organization even helps entrepreneurs draft complex legal agreements. Small businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy, and by providing entrepreneurs with a quick and relatively easy way to get their own businesses started, Jackley hopes to unlock massive economic potential. Never resting on her laurels, Jessica Jackley is helping to revolutionize the way we do business. She is “changing the way people think about what's possible.”