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Microfranchising the Developing World

Microfranchising helps create a business model for distributing glasses in poor nations.

By Jason Daley

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Jordan Kassalow's story starts with 20 chickens. While doing aid work in Mexico in the mid 1980s, the New York optometrist noticed a woman clutching a book while standing in line. When she reached Kassalow, she told him all she wanted was to read her Bible, which she hadn't been able to do for the past decade.

Kassalow gave her a simple pair of +2.50 reading glasses. The 52-year-old woman perched them on her nose, took one look at her Bible and fell to her knees, crying and clutching Jordan's legs. The next day, she brought him 20 chickens, a huge sum, as thanks.

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