We cannot ignore what is happening in the world, in society, and in our communities because we are all part of the same fabric. Businesses, corporations, and investments are not made in large bubbles shielded from our people and communities. COVID 19 is a testament to this, which has seen all businesses impacted because people and communities are impacted. Business cannot ignore its relationship to people.
We have seen in the last few months, demonstrations in all major cities of the US because of the killing of one African-American, George Floyd by a policeman. George Floyd represents the inequities in US life and the reaction represents the pent-up anger and frustration of injustice built over many years. Demonstrations were also held recently in London, Toronto, Berlin, Amsterdam and elsewhere… something is touching a raw nerve.
Our view is that the main reason for these problems is financial inequality in society. People are frustrated that a rising tide is not lifting all boats. If the stock market has been rising for the previous 10 years, why has it not increased the wealth of a larger section of Americans? The reason is quite simple to understand: the wealthiest 10% in the US control 84% of the US securities. Only 19% of families that earn less than $35K have securities in the market, whilst 88% of families with incomes greater than $100K, are in the market according to a recent paper by NYU economist Edward N. Wolff. https://www.nber.org/papers/w24085
A report was recently published in Harvard Business Review, which states that only 16% of all US start-ups in Silicon Valley, which go on to become unicorns, are working on social issues such as financial inclusivity or improvement in health.
So how do we balance this inequality?
We created SAHOJA to help solve this issue and create a new corporate structure which is financially inclusive. SAHOJA means stronger together and we can be stronger together when we all benefit from the success of a corporation that is integrated with the fabric of society.