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[Project Summary]: Solar Malawi July 2019

The July Solar Team’s main focus of the month was to move away from our traditional sales and distribution channels which were both resource intensive and non-scalable, and develop more automated distribution channels that could operate all year around. Three new distribution channels were set-up and tested over the month, which utilised local community members and leaders to act as sales agents who earned income through a commission scheme. The three agent types were Chief Agents, Teacher Agents and Airtel Agents. All agents were trained on how to process payments digitally through a Google Form in order to digitise the process of collecting customer information and sale documents.

Currently the Solar project has three Chief Agents operating in Chemusa, DC Lundu and Kampala. In the month of July, Chief Chemusa made 9 sales, Chief DC Lundu made 1 sale and Chief Kampala has not yet made a sale. This channel shows a lot of potential as it provides villages with a consistent way to get the product, as well as lowering default rates due to the chief being the guarantor.

In July, the Solar team conducted a training day with teachers at Blantyre Baptist Academy Primary School, with the aim of gaining teachers as agents to distribute at the school as well as within their home villages. There were 15 attendees and 6 of them have become agents with PEV. The solar team left the school headmaster - Mr Potani with 10 products and within a week he had made 8 sales, however has had difficulties processing the paperwork digitally.  Due to their standing in the community, teachers are less of a risk for PEV. They are respected and influential figures in Malawian communities, and they have regular access to our customer segment, families with children.

The Solar project has one Airtel Agent, Francis, who operates in Nancholi. In July he made 2 sales. Utilising Airtel Agents shows potential due to the ability of Airtel Agents to transfer payments using mobile money as well as a pre-disposition to mobile technology to more effectively process payments digitally.

The Solar project has also now hired a General Manager who will oversee business operations during months when PEV teams are not in-country. This is an exciting step towards increasing the viability and success of the business as revenue can be generated all year around as well as providing a better service to our customers.

edited on 28th July 2019, 15:07 by Oscar Ogai

Grace Blackford 5 months ago

Status label added: Project Summary

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