Sale Through Partners

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Overview

This model involves the sale of products through other organizations or enterprises with networks among target customers. Often adopted when the enterprise wants to distribute on a larger scale than it can handle itself but product is too high-touch for a retail model.

Pros

This model benefits enterprises that operate in regions about which they lack substantial on-the-ground knowledge. Some of these enterprises are headquartered out of country and so do not have the ability to gather this type of knowledge. These enterprises can partner with organizations that have strong existing distribution network and/or financing capabilities. This model allows an enterprise to sell products at a global level.

Cons

This model is complex and involves a lot of communication and coordination. It inherently brings in more supply chain links and adds to costs. In some cases, the partner organizations may have different or even conflicting priorities. Finally, depending on partner’s capacity, the partner may need to be financed by enterprise.

 

Case Studies

re:char has developed an inexpensive biochar kiln which produces charcoal for cooking or fertilizer from plant waste.

re:char’s Texas based American founders realized that the primary market for their products was poor farmers in areas with depleted soils and little cooking fuel. Therefore they launched operations in rural Kenya. The enterprise needed on-the-ground knowledge and a network through which to demonstrate and sell products. To do so they partnered with ACON, a Kenyan rural development non-profit, which sells kilns and teaches farmers how to use them in their existing coverage area. Eventually re:char will scale to sell through more organizations.

Enterprises