Project Everest

Key Activities

[Key Activities]: Fuel Fiji - Supply Chain - July 2019

AIM

The current, immediate future and long term supply chains activities and the relevant metric for the Buka Stoves in Fiji are as follows:

 

CURRENT SUPPLY CHAIN

  1. SOURCING MATERIALS: LRL (the manufacturer) provides used refrigerant tanks, up to a limit of around 100 per month, as well as stainless steel for the interior of the stove, galvanized steel for the exterior of the stove and grating

 

  1. TRANSPORTATION: Materials stay at LRL.

 

  1. MANUFACTURING: LRL manufactures Buka 4.0 in their workshops, providing all consumables like rivets. PEV pays them in cash.

    1. Metric: the manufacturer can produce 100 stoves in 1 month.

 

  1. BRANDING AND USER GUIDE ADDITION: LRL spray paints the stoves black and brands them in white using heat and corrosion resistant paint from Multiline Distributors Ltd provided by PEV. PEV prints off the User Manual and provides it to LRL, who attach it to the stove. 

    1.  Metric: How much paint is used 

    2. Metric: Post purchase survey: did they use the user guide/was it helpful

 

  1. DISTRIBUTION: For customers that express interest in the stove, PEV sell them stoves during the months we are present in Fiji. This  is usually done during village meetings or market demonstrations. 

    1. Metric: How many stoves are sold 

    2. Metric: How many different villages have stoves 

 

  1. PRODUCT USE: The customer has their stove and are utilising it's benefits. This is measured by face to face interactions and phone calls using surveys. Proper use of the stove is also evident through how the stove visually looks (i.e. is it broken)

    1. Metric: They are able to use it in multiple locations 

    2. Metric: Reduction of smoke/smoke inhalation 

    3. Metric: Less reported incidents of red/irritated eyes 

IMMEDIATE FUTURE SUPPLY CHAIN

  1. SOURCING MATERIALS: LRL provides used refrigerant tanks, up to a limit of around 100 per month, as well as stainless steel for the interior of the stove, galvanized steel for the exterior of the stove and grating.

 

  1. TRANSPORTATION: Materials stay at LRL.

 

  1. MANUFACTURING: LRL manufactures Buka 4.0 and 5.0 in their workshops, providing all consumables like rivets. PEV pay them in cash.

 

  1. SALES: Sales agents that are sourced from past customers and those new customers that express a strong interest in the stove. After training they collect the details of other interest and forward the numbers on to PEV. Headman are also used to influence those in their villages, if any are interested they collect details and inform PEV.

    1. Metric:How many leads an agent acquires 

    2. Metric Number of leads that are successful sales 

    3. Metric: Time taken for leads to turn into sales 

    4. Metric: Demographics of leads that turn into sales

    5. Metric: Most successful sales agents 

 

  1. BRANDING AND USER GUIDE ADDITION: LRL spray paints the stoves black and brands them in white using heat and corrosion resistant paint from Multiline Distributors Ltd provided by PEV. PEV prints off the User Manual and provides it to LRL, who attach it to the stoves. Flyers that are given out in public areas and posters that are put in shops will help gain interest in the stove, PEV will print this for distribution around Sigatoka. The Facebook page is updated regularly and has new content to keep customer interest peaked. The user guide was implemented in February of 2019 

<https://docs.google.com/document/d/1OAvrt0qE7H8WzF1Jx4Q9uU6HwK2TA4lXFcGJBNGWzKA/edit>

 

  1. DISTRIBUTION: For customers that express interest in the product through sales agents and Headman, they will be directed to go to the Municipal Markets where Natasha (PEV cook/fuel member) will give them their stove and collect payment. For retailers, RB Patel pick the stoves up from LRL and distribute them between their stores.

    1. Metrics: How many leads an agent acquires 

 

LONG TERM SUPPLY CHAIN

  1. SOURCING MATERIALS: Materials required for the 4.0 will be sourced in Fiji by LRL. The 5.0 will be re-assessed to see if importing from a country that manufactures steel would be better.

 

  1. TRANSPORTATION: Stoves are collected and transported from LRL.

 

  1. MANUFACTURING: LRL manufactures Buka 5.0 in their workshops, providing all consumables like rivets. PEV pay them in cash. Assess if LRL can keep up with demand if sales increase.

 

  1. SALES: Sales agents and headman that are employed by PEV will grow so that their is a network across the greater Sigatoka area and beyond. The addition of SA’s and headmen will become a more streamlined process in which they come on board without PEV needed to be involved in all steps.

 

  1. BRANDING AND USER GUIDE ADDITION: LRL spray paints the stoves black and brands them in white using heat and corrosion resistant paint from Multiline Distributors Ltd provided by PEV. PEV prints off the User Manual and provides it to LRL, who attach it to the stoves. PEV implement time and resources into social media and online pages for advertisements to target a larger quantity of people. 

 

  1. DISTRIBUTION: PEV enlist a few trusted sales agents that can distribute stoves to: villages in their district; and or those that visit their stall/shop. Also a network of local carriers transport stoves to various hardware stores or villages that have informed sales agents of their intent to buy.

 

NEXT MOVES: 

 

Current state of business 

  • How can we remove the middleman and import materials from a country that manufactures steel, whilst adhering to ethical standards?

  • What are the costs associated with importing material?

  • At what scale is it beneficial to buy a minimum order of 500+kg of steel from overseas?

  • What legalities need to be sorted before we can import our own material?

  • How much does manufacturing increase as demand increases? 

  • How much will sales increase by?

Need to be validated as the business expands 

  • How many expressions of interest do sales agents get per month?

  • Is the product being used correctly and in accordance with the proposed user guide?

  • How can we transport the materials from the port to our manufacturer?

  • How can we reliably transport manufactured stoves to our distributor?

  • How should we invoice and collect payment from our multiple distributors during the time periods out of country?

  • How will this vary between a village chief, sales agent, and a store with multiple locations around Fiji?

edited on 18th July 2019, 04:07 by Jake Hawkins

Cris Birzer Jul 30, 2018

One of the original reasons we suggested clay was the local availability and sustainability of it (plus thermal properties). I still think it addresses most/all of your supply chain issues, potentially reduces cost, and opens an avenue of different products to be developed.

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Nic Makram Jul 30, 2018

Hi Cris, appreciate the comment and always love getting your input! I would have to disagree with you on this one though. While clay is readily available locally as well as being sustainable and having adequate thermal properties, I don't believe it is suitable for the target market.

One of the key value propositions of the Rocket Stove in Fiji is it's portability. From my understandings of the clay prototype developed over summer, it was significantly heavier than the metal prototypes, thus limiting it's portability and convenience.

Adding to this, clay is arguably a lot more difficult to manufacture, especially at large scale, into the shapes that are required for a rocket stove. It would possibly require specialists to craft the stoves, a slow and un-scalable process. I believe the prospect of manufacturing the 5.0 from raw materials, while not particularly cheap, is a lot simpler, as well as the fact that the machines used (laser cutters etc.) will maintain consistency across products, as opposed to the inconsistencies that would likely be seen in clay stove production. In any product, consistency is key.

Finally, setting up a clay stove supply chain in Fiji is one thing, but this would not be easily translated to any other countries in the commercialisation process. The intention of the 5.0 design was to allow for flatpacking, thus meaning, in the long term, the raw materials can be sourced from one area and shipped to any country for manufacture. A clay stove would mean raw materials need to be sourced in each country, and so essentially a new supply chain would be needed for each country. Fiji has an incredibly small market size, with a population of less than 1 million, and so spending time setting up a supply chain for clay stoves is, in my eyes, not as valuable as sticking with the current model and improving on this until we reach a long term stage in which importation of raw materials is possible and we can scale up.

Of course, I have next to zero knowledge when it comes to clay stoves, so would be interested to see your response to the above points and get some insights into clay stoves!

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Andrew Vild Aug 9, 2018

Status label added: Key Activities

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