ATLANTA (Sept 12, 2018) — The global poverty-fighting organization CARE announced Mark Muckerheide, a retail industry veteran, will head CARE Social Ventures, a new division that will focus on growing social enterprise ventures that alleviate poverty worldwide.
Muckerheide brings two decades of retail experience from Target Corp. Most recently, he was director of corporate social responsibility and sustainability where he was responsible for a $100 million philanthropic portfolio and for co-leading the retailer’s corporate-wide effort to create a more business-aligned sustainability strategy.
Outside of Target, Muckerheide founded and managed several profitable businesses in the real estate, investment, construction and management consulting sectors including Global Poverty Advisors, a consulting firm that works with social businesses, impact investors and international development non-profits to help them leverage business toward the goal of ending global poverty.
“We are thrilled to have Mark join the CARE family to help us reach our next level of growth in social enterprises,” said Heather Higginbottom, chief operating officer of CARE.
CARE Social Ventures will work closely with CARE Enterprise Inc., which accelerates and invests in for-benefit, financially-viable ventures that alleviate poverty by creating dignified employment and access to markets. The term for-benefit describes those business ventures that aim to earn a profit while delivering on a social mission. The term is relatively new, but CARE has long employed the concept through market-based approaches in its poverty-fighting work.
In fact, CARE has more than 20 social enterprises already impacting over 750,000 people representing the world’s largest owned and operated pipeline of global enterprises. In Bangladesh, for example, CARE Enterprises is investing in Living Blue, a for-benefit business that creates employment for 240 artisans and supplemental income for 2,700 farmers across five districts in the Rangpur region. Living Blue harnesses the talents of local women weavers and the motivation of indigo farmers to produce high-quality textiles for worldwide export. In Zambia, CARE has invested in Live Well, a network of health entrepreneurs providing poor communities access to essential health and hygiene products.
“Our role will be to identify, incubate and graduate social enterprises for CARE,” explained Muckerheide adding that CARE Social Ventures will act as a bridge between CARE programs and projects that come out of its first-of-its-kind Scale X Design accelerator and its CARE Enterprise arm.
“Philanthropy and aid can’t end global poverty alone,” he said. “The UN estimates over $1 trillion a year is needed to end global poverty by 2030. Global aid and philanthropy account for under $250 billion annually. Meanwhile, small and mid-sized enterprises contribute almost $40 trillion a year to the global economy. We must harness the power of small and mid-sized social entrepreneurs if we are to end global poverty.”
Muckerheide earned his bachelor’s degree in marketing and his master’s of business administration from the University of Minnesota. He will be based in Minneapolis.
Founded in 1945 with the creation of the CARE Package®, CARE is a leading humanitarian organization fighting global poverty. CARE places special focus on working alongside women and girls because, equipped with the proper resources, they have the power to lift whole families and entire communities out of poverty. That’s why women and girls are at the heart of CARE’s community-based efforts to improve education and health, create economic opportunity, respond to emergencies and confront hunger. Last year CARE worked in 95 countries and reached more than 65 million people around the world. To learn more, visit www.care.org.