“Upwardly Mobile”: Madura Dials into Rural Tamil Nadu to Build Market Linkages for Its Members

By Team YS|17th Feb 2011
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Madura Mobile Micro Markets (m4) to be launched through Madura Carnival

Upwardly Mobile

Madura Carnival, an “upwardly mobile” initiative of Madura Microfinance in its fifteenth year of operations, is set to provide mobile connectivity to its members in the nook and cranny of Tamil Nadu to expand their business peripheries literally beyond boundaries.From February 20th, under the banner of m4 (Madura Mobile Micro Markets), the Micro-Markets division of Madura is dialling into 3000 villages across Tamil Nadu with the aim of providing connectivity and mobile-based market linkages to its members. The initiative of Madura will run till April 25th. In the intervening three months, road shows (at the village level), events (with a group of villages), and carnivals (fun-filled events at the cluster level) are planned with the aim of reaching 1 million people.

“We have partnered with a mobile operator and mobile phone manufacturer for Madura Carnival,” says Sunder Thiyagarajan, Head of Madura Micro-Markets. “Each member will be provided with a good mobile handset that can be purchased with an interest free loan along with a prepaid calling plan. Calls will be priced at nominal rates so that the mobile is affordable.” Education on how to use the mobile and benefits of business opportunities through mobile will be explained to all members so that they connect to the initiative to take their businesses beyond their villages.

If the call connects, the mobile’s powerful reach will help many villagers (members of Madura) turn entrepreneurs with wider market access well beyond their village.

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