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Sunday, March 25, 2012
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Fortune Magazine's List

Yunus among 12 greatest entrepreneurs

Nobel Laureate Prof Muhammad Yunus has been named by Fortune magazine as one of the 12 Greatest Entrepreneurs of Our Time.

This list published in the magazine's latest issue places Prof Yunus among the band of highly exclusive individuals, all of whom are known throughout the world for their innovation, vision and ability to get things done.

"His desire to do something to help the local citizens led to a simple but powerful gesture: Yunus loaned $27 to destitute basket weavers in a village next to his university's campus," the magazine says.

"He could not believe the excitement the small amount of money caused. For people living on pennies a day, just a few dollars could transform their lives -- and in many cases it did. The gift was used to support and expand these very small businesses, and that helped many overcome their poverty.

"Much to Yunus' surprise, the basket weavers actually paid off the loans -- and on time too. He then moved from one village to the next, finding all sorts of entrepreneurial projects to fund," Fortune says.

While the bank could not eradicate poverty, it lifted many lives, the magazine adds.

"No less critical, Yunus' idea inspired countless numbers of young people to devote themselves to social causes all over the world."

The Fortune places the 12 individuals in the following order:

1) Steve Jobs of Apple, 2) Bill Gates of Microsoft, 3) Fred Smith of FedEx, 4) Jeff Bezos of Amazon, 5) Larry Page and Sergey Brin of Google, 6) Howard Schultz of Starbucks, 7) Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, 8) John Mackey of Whole Foods, 9) Herb Kelleher of SouthWest Airlines, 10) Narayana Murthy of Infosys, 11) Sam Walton of Wal-mart Stores, 12) Muhammad Yunus of Grameen Bank.

Ten of these entrepreneurs are American and one is an Indian.

The list was prepared considering economic and social impact, world changing vision of the entrepreneurs, ability of the entrepreneurs to inspire and motivate their employees, their record of innovation and their actual results, Yunus Centre said in a statement yesterday.

The companies that they have created have benefited hundreds and thousands of people and other businesses, while creating employment for millions of people, according to the statement.

Prof Yunus was chosen by Wharton School of Business for PBS documentary, as one of the 25 Most Influential Business Persons of the Past 25 Years.

In 2006, Time magazine listed him under 60 Years of Asian Heroes as one of the top 12 business leaders.

In 2008, in an open online poll, Yunus was voted the second topmost intellectual person in the world on the list of Top 100 Public Intellectuals by Prospect Magazine of the UK and Foreign Policy of the United States.

He was also voted second in Prospect Magazine's 2008 global poll of the world's Top 100 Intellectuals.

The news has enthralled leading economists and businessmen.

Former caretaker government adviser Hossain Zillur Rahman said his inclusion in the top 12 is a recognition of his philosophy and social responsibility.

"We are very proud of his achievement in two senses; first, he has been recognised as a Bangalee and secondly, he is a great role model for us," he told The Daily Star.

Besides, the honour would uphold the image of the country, maintained Zillur. "We have many problems and weaknesses. It is an example of how creative thinking can take an individual to a new height amid many problems."

Syed Nasim Manzur, a leading entrepreneur, said, "Of course, it is a great inspiration for us. It is a great thing that Fortune magazine has honoured a Bangladeshi and a social entrepreneur."

He said the Banker to the Poor has shown that business can have a conscience. "Business does not mean that it should ignore society's welfare to be successful. Dr Yunus is an example for this."

"It will inspire us to do business with a social conscience and become successful," said Manzur, managing director of Apex Adelchi Footwear Ltd, one of the top footwear brands of the country.

Annisul Huq, a former president of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry, said Prof Yunus had really established some good institutions. "There is no doubt about his entrepreneurial credibility."

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Hello Madam PM of Bangladesh. Do you still have doubt about Professor Yunus' capability?

: Robin

Now, will the PM reverse her decision to again instal this man of extraordinary caliber to CEO of Grameen Bank. We should learn how to respect the visionary of our time in the whole world who happens to be a Bangalee. Our country will be greatly benefited if our PM takes his valuable & farsighted advice if she is sincere enough to do welfare of the common people. We are afraid that this time he may be harassed again & have to leave the country for such extraordinary recognition.

: makhan


  • Zafar Benzadid
    Sunday, March 25, 2012 03:25 AM GMT+06:00 (203 weeks ago)

    Dr Muhammad Yunus is a man of letters. His mental powers are great. He is supported very enthusiastically for his great innovation on poverty by the people. He did bring ample honors for our country having Nobel Prize. He is as well as our country become famous throughout the whole world. We do salute him. But the PM as good as told him he dealt with bribery. What a shame!

  • Masud
    Sunday, March 25, 2012 06:04 AM GMT+06:00 (203 weeks ago)

    When will that day come when we will stop electing nearest living relatives of our dead national heroes? Why do we expect high minded words and actions from people who were not elected on the basis of merit?

  • suahmed
    Sunday, March 25, 2012 07:46 AM GMT+06:00 (203 weeks ago)

    It is a learning for those who don't know how to to show respect to a person of dignity recognized by the whole world.

  • Fida Likhon
    Sunday, March 25, 2012 08:11 AM GMT+06:00 (203 weeks ago)

    Professor Yunus is pride of Bangladesh. We all Bangladeshi are proud of Professor Yunus. He is an international man.

  • Ferdous Jalil
    Sunday, March 25, 2012 08:14 AM GMT+06:00 (203 weeks ago)

    Dr Yunus is a legend. He has shown ways how market friction can be put aside to help the poor. The amount of jealousy that we have had to see over the last two years was not because he wanted to be a politician but because for the first time a Bangladeshi became more popular (in every possible way) than anyone else.

  • Md.Shahidul Islam
    Sunday, March 25, 2012 10:03 AM GMT+06:00 (203 weeks ago)

    Efficient & Asset of Bangladesh. We should honor Dr Younus.

  • Anonymous
    Sunday, March 25, 2012 12:28 AM GMT+06:00 (203 weeks ago)

    Government's treatment of Dr. Yunus is the cause of the economic decline because no foreign aid is coming to the country now.

  • faqrul usa
    Sunday, March 25, 2012 01:37 AM GMT+06:00 (203 weeks ago)

    I know him personally,love him and respect him like many in Bangladesh.

    But I see him through a different vision aids. I am afaraid, we are almost like worshiping him for the purpose he will never be able to achieve. It is not economics or business, it is politics

  • A Bangalee
    Sunday, March 25, 2012 01:58 AM GMT+06:00 (203 weeks ago)

    Madam Prime Minister, are you reading or listening? Now do you see what damage has been done to the country?

  • rch
    Sunday, March 25, 2012 02:26 AM GMT+06:00 (203 weeks ago)

    I hope he does not get into problem for this.

  • Shoma
    Sunday, March 25, 2012 02:51 AM GMT+06:00 (203 weeks ago)

    What he is doing for BD recently?

  • Anonym
    Sunday, March 25, 2012 03:06 AM GMT+06:00 (203 weeks ago)

    Tell it to Sheikh Hasina whose personal jealousy led to his dismissal from Grameen Bank and for which Bangladesh is suffering economically.





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