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Underutilized human talent represents one of the largest inefficiencies in our worldwide economy. This means that the first step to alleviating poverty is to help people tap into skills they already have. FindProz.com is a web-based microenterprise that manages the world's talent, enabling the underemployed to turn their talents into profitable teaching businesses. We partner with nonprofits, academic institutions, and trade organizations to help students, immigrants, homemakers, and the unemployed to become tutors, language instructors, music teachers, and athletic trainers.
We take a technological approach to poverty alleviation. We support our entrepreneurs by listing them in an interactive directory that is integrated into brick-and-mortar stores, enabling customers to purchase private lessons related to the products in the store. We advertise university tutors through textbook stores, ethnic artisans through art and hobby retailers, and athletic instructors through sporting goods stores.
In today's economic turmoil, we believe in an approach to urban redevelopment that strengthens small businesses by uniting them with local entrepreneurs. We call it "Cottage Industry 2.0." Our business model was incubated in Boomstartup, a Techstars Network accelerator, and we recently received top honors and a $50,000 prize in the Seattle Social Innovation Fast Pitch competition. We are a member of Hub Seattle, a collaborative social venture workspace located in Seattle's Historic Pioneer Square.