Value Chain and Innovation at the Base of the Pyramid

Siim Esko, Mindaugas Zeromskis, Juliana Hsuan

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Purpose – This paper aims to investigate the factors a multinational corporation should adapt when doing business at the bottom of the pyramid (BoP) markets.
Design/methodology/approach – Based on a systematic literature review on BoP, value chain and innovation, an integrative framework is introduced for analysing business readiness in BoP: organisation, value chain and strategy. Four diverse cases were analysed: GE’s reverse innovation project, GrameenPhone, Essilor, and P&G’s PuR.
Findings – BoP project should be a top-down supported separate entity with its own strategic processes and financial measurements. Working in the value chain requires diverse thinking in terms of interactivity, partners, setup, and governance. Involving customers and consumers in the innovation process is crucial. The venture also needs to make its offerings accessible, affordable, acceptable, available, and valuable to the customers. A step-by-step scale-up must be followed.
Originality/value – The BoP framework can be used as a practical roadmap for companies to analyse the readiness of the business venture and strategy development
Original languageEnglish
JournalSouth Asian Journal of Global Business Research
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)230-250
Number of pages21
Publication statusPublished - 2013


  • Base of the pyramid
  • Value chain
  • Innovation
  • Strategy
  • Organisation
  • Integrative framework

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