1. Groups of potential microfranchisees are identified and recruited.
2. New microfranchisees attend a series of business development trainings
3. Microfranchisees receive sample products and catalogs. Click here for a list of product photos and descriptions.
4. Microfranchisees educate neighbors and other community members about solar energy and take orders for small solar items as well as rooftop home solar systems. Each microfranchisee has an exclusive sales territory, guaranteeing that each seller will have a base of potential customers.
5. Microfranchisees transmit orders each month via mobile phone
6. TecAp staff fill the orders and ship the products to the microfranchisees
7. Microfranchisees deliver the products and collect the payments
8. TecAp staff provide ongoing training and technical assistance to microfranchisees
And the cycle begins again!
Women-owned convenience stores carry TecAp products
In addition to recruiting groups of women, IDEAS also identifies women in key geographic areas who already have convenience stores in their homes and will be training them to become official points of sale for TecAp products. In some of the most remote regions where the products will be most needed, it is less possible to organize an entire group of women but still a very rich market for these products, so training women microentrepreneur storeowners to distribute TecAp products will be a viable alternative if organizing an entire group of women is not possible.
Funders support the recruitment and training of new microfranchisees as well as the growth of the microfranchise, which will increase the incomes of many women and rural coffee-growing families, putting needed solar-powered products in the hands of those who need them most. This program also is a very valuable test of and testament to the possibilities of the microfranchising business model in Latin America.