In February 2007, Jonah Nobleza started Marina Gana Vida ("MGV") in the Davao coastal area in the Philippines, which historically had been the home of many subsistence fishermen living in poverty. MGV sold hatchery-bred fry fish seed stocks, fresh fish and packaged fish products produced in its own processing plant. The main social objective of MGV was to help the poor living in the area through job or business opportunities so that some day they could lift their households out of poverty.
Since 2009, MGV had been gradually meeting its social, environmental and economic goals. It provided direct and indirect employment to many poor households. Nobleza faced conflicting goals as he tried to scale up MGV's production. Should he replace the women workers with machines that could produce more jars of processed fish products per day? Without a sizable business, he would have trouble proving his successful business model to those who would be willing to provide the much-needed funds to MGV. What could he do to balance his philanthropic and business goals in a social enterprise such as MGV?