Scaling the Solution: How do you intend to scale your activities over the next two years (e.g., reach new markets, diversify solutions, etc.)? What will make this possible?
We have the people, we have the ideas, we have some of the machinery, and we have a tested, proven solution. Now, we need additional capital to setup a processing unit house on the land granted to us by the government. This house will be used to house our employees and produce at least 1,000 packs of snacks per day. We aim to partner with two large domestic corporations to distribute the snacks to all shops and airplanes throughout Bhutan. In tandem, we will expand our membership to other farming areas. Though production and distribution will be centralized, management will be localized through the election of village cooperative leaders. Eventually, we envision entering into more food products, sales outlets, stores, and even restaurants.
Financial Sustainability: What is your business model to ensure financial sustainability?
Sustainability is built into the very structure of the Happy Green Cooperative. As a member of the cooperative, farmers will invest their own work, time, and commitment to manage the cooperative's activities and maintain accountability to one another. An annual reserve fund will be kept to ensure the running of capital during bad times. Any farmer wishing to avoid a loan or credit can also apply to the financial board of the cooperative.
Experience: Please provide examples of any previous entrepreneurial initiatives you have pioneered.
2 years ago, I setup the Druk Organic Growers Cooperative that managed the first organic sales outlet in the capital. The outlet generated ~$280/week for 30 farmers - a margin of profit of 80%. We brokered a deal to sell a weekly package of these vegetables to a local, five-star hotel.
3 years ago, I operated an organic restaurant on a trial basis for 11 months. The restaurant did some catering jobs for the government, but eventually folded.