We study subsistence entrepreneurship, defined as entrepreneurial actions undertaken by individuals living in poverty. Subsistence entrepreneurs are important elements of the global economy. By virtue of being poor themselves and co-locating in the same community as their customers living in poverty, subsistence entrepreneurs create value for their customers more effectively than outside entities. We suggest that this marketing exchange (micro-level phenomenon) leads to the building of a community-level exchange system that is unique and inimitable (meso-level phenomenon). Viewing through the theoretical lens of social capital, we develop insights gleaned from qualitative interviews with subsistence entrepreneurs. Community marketing systems that arise out of micro-level interactions between subsistence entrepreneurs and their customers form the glue holding the so-called informal economy together in subsistence economies.