Premal Shah

Premal Shah is an American entrepreneur who co-founded Kiva, a non-profit crowdfunding organization that has raised over $1 billion dollars for low-income entrepreneurs in eighty countries.[1][2]

Premal Shah
ResidenceSan Francisco, California
EducationStanford University
OccupationCo-Founder/President of Kiva
Board member Foundation,, VolunteerMatch

Early life

Shah was born in Ahmedabad, India, and raised in Minnesota, graduating from Irondale High School. He attended Stanford University, where he pursued his interest in economic development, with a specific focus on microfinance. At the London School of Economics he received a research grant to study the microfinance work of the Self-Employed Women's Association.[3]


Having begun his career as a management consultant, Shah was an early employee of and principal product manager at PayPal.[4] Building off his college interest in microfinance, Shah took a sabbatical from PayPal in 2004 to prototype a concept of person-to-person microlending in India.[5][6]

Upon his return to Silicon Valley in 2005, Shah joined Matt Flannery and Jessica Jackley in launching Kiva and scaling it into a global organization.[7] Kiva has since raised over one billion dollars in loans from over a million lenders in support of over two million entrepreneurs from eighty countries. Seventy-five percent of loans are disbursed to women, with a repayment rate of ninety-six percent.[2]

In addition to serving as president of Kiva, Shah sits on the boards of other non-profit of organizations, including Foundation, Watsi, and VolunteerMatch.[8][9] He is considered to be a part of the PayPal Mafia, a group of PayPal alumni who have gone on to found or co-found other successful companies, including YouTube, LinkedIn, Tesla Motors, and Yelp.[10]

Awards and honors

Personal life

Premal lives in San Francisco, California, with his wife and two children. He speaks widely about the potential for technology, business and humanity to address some of society's toughest challenges.[18][19]


  1. "Leadership | Kiva". Kiva. Retrieved 2019-03-20.
  2. "Impact | Kiva". Kiva. Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  3. UChi Pol (2014-04-21), IOP- Premal Shah: Can Social Entrepreneurship End Global Poverty?, retrieved 2018-07-26
  4. "LinkedIn Profile".
  5. "p2p microfinance concept that I was working on before joining Kiva". Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  6. Talks at Google (2012-06-20), Premal Shah: "Kiva's New Frontiers" | Talks at Google, retrieved 2018-07-26
  7. Kiva (2017-06-06). "$1 billion in change: How Kiva went from nonprofit startup to global force for good". Medium. Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  8. "PayPal Mafia & Kiva President Premal Shah Joins Crowdfunding Platform Watsi's Board | Crowdfund Insider". Crowdfund Insider. 2015-01-23. Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  9. "premal shah | Engaging Volunteers". Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  10. "The PayPal Mafia". Fortune. Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  12. "Obama White House Champions of Change Archive".
  13. "Premal Shah, co-founder of Kiva, enables the poor". San Francisco Chronicle. 2018-01-18. Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  14. "World Economic Forum Announces New Batch Of Young Global Leaders (Mark Zuckerberg, Chad Hurley, Kevin Rose And More)". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  15. "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2010-05-04. Retrieved 2010-05-02.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  16. "Skoll | Kiva". Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  17. Boorstin, Julia (2012-10-24). "Goldman's Blankfein on Power of Entrepreneurs". CNBC. Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  18. "Premal Shah, President of Kiva - 2010 Social Enterprise Conference". Vimeo. Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  19. "The Power of Giving 2015". National Museum of American History. Retrieved 2018-07-26.
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