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Social entrepreneurs build businesses that solve social problems.

An example of a social enterprise founded by social entrepreneurs is Warby Parker.

What is the social problem?

The social problem Warby Parky solves is:

  • Almost one billion people worldwide lack access to glasses, which means that 15% of the world’s population cannot effectively learn or work.

Where is the market opportunity?

The opportunity for Warby Parker to enter the market:

  • The eyewear industry is dominated by a single company that has been able to keep prices artificially high while reaping huge profits from consumers who have no other options.

How does Warby Parker solve the social problem?

Their solution to the social problem is:

  • By circumventing traditional channels, designing glasses in-house, and engaging with customers directly, they provide higher-quality, better-looking prescription eyewear at a fraction of the going price.
    • For every pair of glasses sold, a pair is distributed to someone in need at no cost to them.

Have you read the blog post about the awesome girl who uses value chain innovation to replace styrofoam? It is another powerful example of how you might think about solving a social problem by harnessing the power of business.
Do you know any people who are building businesses that solve social problems?