Saskia Bruysten was only 27, when she reached a turning point in her life. She started to wonder whether she wanted to continue her life in the same way. She was a successful businesswoman, and asked herself:
- Is the economic system, which I confidently act in, fair?
- Can’t I do something more important with my knowledge than simply increasing the sales of cosmetic companies?
In 2008 she heard the Nobel Prize winner Muhammad Yunus talk about his concept of ‘social business’ in London. She was so excited that she started her own agency with him, to gain even more publicity for his ideas.
Three years later she still was not happy with herself. Therefore, she suggested that Yunus should create a new concept to develop even more social businesses. This was the start of YSB – Yunus Social Business.
SMALL ENTREPRENEURS INSTEAD OF LARGE CORPORATIONS
Instead of large international corporations, she now consults small entrepreneurs, which, for example, produce chlorine for decontamination of drinking water in Haiti. YSB also brought the Ugandan stove builder Awamu on track. 20 000 low smoke stoves have already been sold.
The start-up of a small company in Africa is not handled any differently to a large one in Germany. What counts is the quality of the concept, not the needs of the founder. The selection process is accordingly strict.
I admire Saskia Bruysten for leaving big business, to realise her talents in a social business concept. I hope there will be many more young women like her, who want to change the world, by supporting small entrepreneurs, and not large companies, with their knowledge.