Project Everest

Customer Segment

[Problem, Customer Segment and Channels]: Energy Infrastructure Amisen April 2019

Madeleine Laws
Madeleine Laws | 10 months ago | in ROA **TRAINING**

 Lean Phase: Problem



In April 2019, the Energy Team engaged with members of the Keisala, Jumtha and Vengara villages in the Republic of Amisen. Through these engagements, the Energy Team was able to generate insights regarding existing energy solutions, and the level of accessibility and affordability of such solutions. It was invaluable for our team throughout our engagements to ascertain the emotions that community members feel when dealing with the problem, and the flow on effects from this.



There is a lack of access to reliable and safe energy infrastructure for a significant proportion of Amisenians. This lack of access to power sources that are reliable and safe for usage renders basic needs of lighting and electricity unfulfilled for a large majority of the Amisenian population. This situation is further amplified in rural Amisen, directly impacting upon the the Greater Holcomb region in which we will be conducting our research.


Rural Amisen, inclusive of Greater Holcomb Region, exhibits some of the lowest rates of access to electricity in the world. Only 80% of the population are connected to electricity. Of those 80% that are connected to electricity, a further 80% are connected to the Government supplied Grid. This renders only 16% of the population having access to the government supplied grid.


This lack of access to a reliable electricity source translates to additional issues for Amisenian people, impacting upon their Quality of Life. A lack of access to consistent and reliable energy has resulted in work being limited to 12 hours of daylight, impacting upon productivity and income generation for Amisenians. Further, a lack of sufficient lighting can render students unable to study outside of daylight hours, limiting the quality of education they are receiving.


Alternative Solutions:

Despite 16% of the population of the Republic of Amisen being connected to the government supplied grid, access remains inconsistent. The Electricity Supply of Amisen (EOSA) presents difficulty in matching the energy demands of the population, with people stating that they experience blackouts and intermittent supply. Amisenians in Vengara are paying $30 per week for connection the government supplied grid. Amisenians in Jumtha pay $10 per week for connection to the EOSA government grid, which is considered out of reach and unaffordable due to low affluence of our customer segment. For example, Hermann a Factory Worker from Jumtha stated in a survey that he only has $15 a week of disposable income. If he chose to connect to the grid, it would demand 67% of his disposable income, therefore power is unaffordable and out of reach for those of low affluence. This pushes Amisenians to seek out alternative sources of power.


The Solar Pico Technology was introduced into the Republic of Amisen over the course of two years, yet only 8% of the population have access to the product. There has been positive reception towards the introduction of pico solar technology; yet members of the population still exhibit issues regarding education about pico solar, supply chain access to Rural Amisenian areas, and maintenance of pico products. It was determined that people have knowledge of pico, with the village of Jumtha having had exposure to a solar product before through an NGO. However, the core issue driven from this exposure was that the solar product was given.


Given solar panel for free, but lack of understanding around maintenance or usage of the panels was provided. Further, Sangria’s Imports and Exports sells solar panels for $500.


Community members in Jumtha have identified that Candles, Paraffin Lamps and Kerosene are used as alternative sources of power to the EOSA grid. In Jumtha, villagers identified that they pay $8 per week for candles, $2 on paraffin and $10 a week for Kerosene. In Vengara, villagers identified that they pay $20 a week for candles. They present issues with managing the ongoing costs of these alternatives. Locals at Jumtha Village identified that they use Sangria’s Imports and Exports to charge their phones. Sangria charges $10 for a single phone charge, which lasts 3 days.



Lean Phase: Customer Segment


Customer Segment 1: Low Socioeconomic Status (SES) people (in Jumtha and Vengara)

  • Improves lighting
  • Save money on lighting

This customer segment is one that we are looking at as due to their low SES they are not able to afford living in an area that has reliable electricity. This links back to the above stating that our UVP is to improve lighting. With this reliable lighting the locals will be able to save money on their lighting methods which is huge in this customer segment.


Customer Segment 2: Parents of School Children

  • Lighting allows children to study
  • Improving potential future of child

Candles don’t provide enough light for children studying in both primary school and secondary school. Through providing a more reliable energy solution to the parents of these school aged children we are giving them the potential to do better at school and improving their life in the future.


Customer Segment 3: Labourers

  • Better lighting for working
  • Phones always charged

Only being able to work during daylight hours severely restricts the times of the day that the labourer can work. Having access to an electricity source will enable the labourer to work after dark and this will help them find more work and help improve their financial situation.


Lean Phase: Solution


The solution we will provide is a communal solar recharge station. It will alleviate the pain points that were identified in our research related to unreliable lighting sources, energy affordability and mobile recharging.The communal solar recharge system will comprise of charging stations for batteries of rechargeable lamps and torches.These rechargeable lamps and torches will be sold separately.


Energy affordability will be achieved through a subscription based model, that will allow customers to access the solution that costs less than what they pay per week for other alternatives. Customers in Amisen are paying between $10 and $30 per week for government supplied grid electricity, which has been identified through our research as unreliable and inconsistent, rendering it out of reach for a significant proportion of our customer segment.


The pain point of Mobile Recharging that our customer segment sought a solution for will be targeted by our product. Customers identified that Sangria’s Imports and Exports within Holcomb was the primary method of mobile recharging utilised by our customer segment. However, it costs $10 for a single phone charge which lasts 3 days. Our mobile recharging ports at the Communal Solar Station, will alleviate this pain point by enhancing productivity whilst decreasing mobile recharge costs.

Our solution is reliable, and easy to use. From our research, reliability of alternative energy solutions was a major pain point. Customers expressed frustration regarding the safety of Candles, and the usability of existing solar products. Whilst pico solar products have existed in Amisen for the past couple of years, our research identified that locals found them difficult to use and lacked understanding of how to best utilise them as a product. Our solution seeks to target the issue of reliability, by providing a centralised solar recharge station that does not require individuals to maintain.


Lean Phase: Channels


The energy team in Amisen is using various channels to distribute a solution to energy reliability in Jumtha and Vengara. The main distribution channel which has been utilised is business to customer interactions, including face-to-face meetings with Village Chiefs and blast texts sent to all relevant mobile numbers.


Village Chiefs:

Village Chiefs are a viable channel to reach our customer segment of low affluence members of Jumtha and Vengara villages. Whilst also functioning as a customer segment within themselves for our product, Village Chiefs operate as an invaluable channel as they facilitate creation of a level of trust between us and our customer segment. Distribution through Village Chiefs enhances the legitimacy of the Energy team within the local community. Through conducting our Village Chief Channel experiment, we were able to ascertain that Village Chiefs can provide us access to qualified leads that were more likely to close on the sale. The texts in this experiment to the Village Chief provided us with (x) EOIs, giving us a conversion rate of (x). Further, Village Chiefs provide us a direct outreach into the local community, facilitating the opportunity to access a large, qualified portion of our customer segment.


Mobile Phones - SMS Blasting:

In September 2016 a study concluded that over 96% of Amisenians own their own phone, furthering that of the total surveyed, 99% were reachable through some sort of phone. The energy team is aiming to utilise these text blasts to collect EOI’s and establish communications with both future and existing customers. Blast texts will be an efficient and effective way of ensuring we have strong communications with our customers. Through this connection, we are able to maintain relationships as well as continue relevant contact with consumers when we are out of country.


Face-to-face Interviews:

In Amisen, building strong relationships between local communities and Project Everest is an extremely effective way to try reaching the full potential of a project. With this build up of relationships and understandings, trust is also built and as a result, makes face-to-face interviews a suitable channel. This channel will increase the network and scalability of our product through referral and recommendations. These referrals are only possible due to the strong relationship which was initially built through these interviews.


Other channels which could be explored include; surveys, phone calls and posters.


Lean Phase: Key Metrics

The metrics we collect should indicate the progress and current positioning of our project within the local communities we are engaging with (Jumtha and Vengara). These metrics should determine ways to use our channels to reach more customers and increase revenue. These metrics will also indicate the long term sustainability of of our business model.


The metrics we will be collecting are:

  • Annual no. of early adopters (est. 390 p.a)
  • Annual Revenue (est. $1,000,000 in 3 years)
  • Lifetime customer value (est. $984 in 2 years)
  • % of customers who have opted out of project


Lean Phase: Cost and Revenue


Cost structure: 

The cost structure segment of the lean phase identifies all costs associated with the product. These costs come over a range of differing times and conditions.

The costs can be separated into two types of cost fixed costs and variable costs.


 Fixed costs

  • Price of Solar Panel - $2000
  • Price of Battery Packs - $8 per battery pack
  • Warehouse Rent $400 per month

Startup Costs

  • Registration and Licence - $1000
  • Legals  - $1500
  • Accounting - $1500
  • Technology MVP - $7000
  • Launch marketing - $1000


Variable costs

  • Costs of employment - Hermann On Call costs - $200 per month
  • Ongoing R&D - R&D costs back in Australia - $2000 per month
  • Marketing - $2000 per month


Revenue streams:

Outline: The Energy Team has a revenue stream through our subscription based access to our ‘Communal Solar Panel System’, and upfront costs from customers purchasing the rechargeable battery pack and light bulbs.

Background: The Energy Team is currently seeking additional systems of obtaining revenue to enhance efficiency and scalability of our product.


Upfront Sales:

Revenue will be sourced from the upfront sales of the rechargeable torch and battery pack. This will cost the customer $10 upfront. This represents a cost effective solution for the customer, and is representative of a viable pricing point for this customer segment.


Subscription Plan:

The subscription based plan for access to our ‘Communal Solar Panel System’ costs the customer $40 per month. Customers have the option to pay either monthly at $40 a month or weekly at $10 a month. Customers will receive a reminder text message the day that their payment is due. This payment entitles access to our ‘Communal Solar Panel System’. The price of the system is set at this point to cover maintenance costs of the unit, and other ongoing costs including costs of employment for Herman, rent and pricing to import battery packs and solar panels.


Individual Investment:

The Energy Team has each invested $10,000, generating $50,000 worth of initial revenue. The revenue acquired from our personal investment is set to cover start up costs, including acquisition of initial products and services.

edited on 28th April 2019, 06:04 by Madeleine Laws

Fiona Aaron 10 months ago

Status labels added: Customer Segment, Problem, Channels

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