Blaise is an entrepreneur. He uses Congolese agriculture and Congolese processing, to get low-cost malaria treatment to hundreds of thousands of people.
Blaise lives in Bukavu, the capital city of South Kivu, and a border town in the heart of Congo’s conflict region. Blaise uncovers opportunity where others see only despair.
Before Blaise came along, his resource-rich home was needlessly importing food and medicine, specifically a pricy, quinine-based malaria pill. Quinine, a medicinal compound capable of basic malaria treatment, exists naturally in the bark of Congo’s Quina trees.
So Blaise posed a question – if Quinine grows all over Congo, why are we importing it?
This young Congolese entrepreneur devised a solution. It began with a co-op of farmers. Quina trees were growing freely in their fields, but they were simply taking up space. Blaise commissioned them to extract the bark. He identified a supply chain. From the farm to the points of distribution, Blaise built the foundations for a local, self-sustaining business.
But there was one problem. Transportation. He needed $14,000 to begin transport of the raw materials to the processing plant. In a place where systems for credit and loans are nearly non-existent, he needed a business loan.
So FW gave him the $14,000. He built the transportation system. And then his business got the malaria treatment to 330,000 people. His business is now profitable.
This is just the beginning. Blaise’s business is growing. He is a whistleblower.