Scaling the supply chain for a social enterprise
For a West African social enterprise supplying subsistence farmers with key agricultural inputs, we developed a fully scalable supply chain model to enable a tenfold increase in reach.
The new SC model, designed to support an ambitious growth strategy, was the result of a collaborative and iterative process, supported by onsite workshops and local data gathering to reflect field realities. Board approval led to immediate fundraising and implementation planning for the new supply chain.
The CEO and Board had set an ambitious target to deliver vital agricultural inputs to 1m subsistence farmers within 5 years, a tenfold increase on existing volumes. These growth targets were not achievable with the existing supply chain.
Our client sought external support to review the current supply chain and design the future model, reflecting field realities in two different West African countries.
We needed to work pragmatically, balancing rigorous data and diagnostic requirements with realities for a very stretched local client team in the midst of political and economic upheaval and looming delivery for the planting season.
With a combination of remote 1:1 interviews and a series of in-country workshops, the team completed an ‘as-is diagnostic’; built a detailed supply chain model, including processes, assets, people, volumes and systems, and diagnosed and quantified pain points and capability and systems gaps.
We then worked closely with country managers and their teams to develop the optimal ‘to-be’ model, the changes in SC building blocks and organisation required to deliver it, and the supporting investment case and roadmap.
The impact was immediate. A roadmap for a new Hub and Spoke model, approved by the Board, enabled urgent fund-raising for two new primary warehouses. Country Manager and team buy-in to the new design led to the prioritisation of a pilot programme. Recommendations for a revised procurement model, which had highlighted significant cost savings, were implemented within weeks of the project ending.
The goal to feed 1 million subsistence farmers and their families is in sight.