Chutes, Ladders, and Safety Nets: How Microinsurance Helps African Development

A social business attaches insurance policies to products for poor people, creating a safety net for millions.

James Abuh-Prah had owned a used electronics shop in a small market in Accra for 17 years before a flood took everything.

It was late one night in October, and the torrential rains hadn’t stopped for hours. “By 5 a.m. the water was up to my chest,” he says. He had taken out a $2,400 loan from his bank, Opportunity International, to use as capital to buy used televisions, stereos, and other electronics. Now, everything was destroyed.

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