By Edward Nawotka

Jan. 7 (Bloomberg) -- In 1976, Bangladeshi banker Muhammad Yunus took $27 from his own pocket and loaned it to a group of bamboo-stool makers to help them buy materials. Thirty years later he received the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize for his role in founding the Grameen Bank and spearheading the use of ``microcredit'' to help the needy.

Today, $27 covers the cost of Yunus's new book, ``Creating a World Without Poverty: Social Business and the Future of Capitalism'' (PublicAffairs, $26). It's a kind of manifesto, arguing that a business model similar to that which built Grameen Bank can develop self-sustaining ``social businesses.''

Such enterprises will provide safe drinking water, housing and affordable medicine for the poor, Yunus says. He recounts the creation of Grameen Danone, a joint venture started in 2005 between Grameen Bank and the French food company Danone that provides nutrient-enriched yogurt to the needy.

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photo: Muhammad Yunus, author of "Creating a World Without Poverty," poses in this undated photo released. Source: PublicAffairs Books via Bloomberg News