Corporate Social Responsibility Boosts Value Creation at the Base of the Pyramid
André , Thomas
- Publisher: HAL CCSD
[ SHS.ECO ] Humanities and Social Sciences/Economies and finances | Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) | Multinational Enterprises,Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR),Base of the Pyramid (BoP),business case | [ SHS.GESTION ] Humanities and Social Sciences/Business administration | Base of the Pyramid (BoP) | Multinational Enterprises | business case
Multinational enterprises (MNEs) have embraced the possibility to find growth or strategic opportunities by targeting the Base of the Pyramid (BoP) segment, while contributing to alleviate poverty. Taking stock of the notorious early BoP initiatives shows that the bet made upon this responsible commitment is not yet won. Indeed, some were relegated to philanthropic programmes or simply dismantled, highlighting a tension to combine both societal and financial sustainability. The paper questions why and how MNEs reposition the value creation of their current BoP initiatives in regards of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) strategy. We provide an empirical analysis of present BoP initiatives, based on an embedded multiple-case study of seven MNEs' initiatives and seventeen of their field projects. The paper highlights three levels of CSR engagement at the firm level, which will translate into different strategies, organisations and types of value creation for BoP initiatives. We deliver novel insights for the study of the "business cases" of BoP strategies, which aim at gaining legitimacy, incubating strategic change and reaching profitable growth.