Every year, 60 million of our most talented students in developing countries graduate high school, top of their class, but without a viable way to pay for higher education. Today, they waste their talents as subsistence farmers, street vendors and servers in the tourism industry. What if, instead of limiting these young students’ futures because of their family financial reality, we provide investors with the opportunity to back these future leaders in engineering, science, medicine, and business?
While youth unemployment in many developing countries exceeds 30%, employers report that the number 1 factor limiting the growth of their companies isn't a lack of capital, but lack of skilled workers. Large firms often fly in expats, but small and medium sized firms can’t afford that. This skill shortage limits the growth of these firms and puts a drag on development of their economies. It is clear that a lot of value would be created if the most talented local high school graduates got high quality degrees, so they can fulfill their own country’s labor market demand.
Graduate wage levels reflect this value creation: the increase in income from a quality degree often exceeds 5X. Despite these returns, 60 million of the most talented students graduate from high school every year without a viable way to pay for higher education. Women are disproportionately affected. Students and their families can't get a loan and scholarships are rare. This discrepancy provides a huge opportunity for value creation and investment. Such a partnership would benefit both student and investor, socially and financially.
Brighter Investment has developed a scalable, tech driven business model that makes these investments possible. In 2015 Brighter Investment supported the first high potential students in Ghana followed by a new and larger cohort every year since. The deal is: Brighter Investment pays for their higher education, and after graduating students repay their investors a percentage of their income, typically 25% for 6 years.
Out of 221 supported students, the first 49 have graduated. On average, their degrees increase graduates income 5X and they are 6X less likely to be unemployed. Graduates pay more taxes, grow the economy, and are more likely to educate their children. Brighter graduates are outperforming their peers and outperforming BI’s projections: students’ repayments, and thus investor distributions, are 6.4% higher than projected.
The future is bright, be part of it!
“Completion of my degree seemed a hopeless dream. I am very privileged to be a part of the big picture of investing into talented students…”
— Charles Okai Addai, Brighter Student
Capital raised figures include amounts raised both on and off platform.