Please describe how your project has been successful and how that success is measured
1) We have successfully obtained US$ 44,000 in grant funding which has enabled us to carry out a detailed feasibility of the idea and build a pilot scale manufacturing facility to test the market.
2) We currently has 15 employees, all of whom we pay 1.3 times the national wage. We have 9 women and 6 men on board. The management can now also fully depend on the business for upkeep. Management is paid 2.5 times the national wage from no pay at all a year ago.
3) We have contracted 10 other collection yards who have guaranteed to supply us with 20 tonnes of plastic per month to assure post manufacture.
4) So far we have sold 7,000 posts and generated revenues of US$ 35,000 despite numerous manufacturing challenges. We intend to grow our revenue by 100% in this financial year.
5) Currently we acquire 5 – 10 new customers every month. This is adequate for the capacity we have of 1500 posts/mth.
6) We have gained 2 reliable sales partners and hope to gain 3 more within 6 months. These partners have improved our turnaround times to 5 days as opposed to 20 days when we started.
7) In October 2010, we received an order for 300,000 posts worth US$ 2.5 million from a construction firm called Nikam Builders which wanted to fence a number of ranches in Naivasha over the next year. This was the best indication of the probable size of the market and encouraged us to forge ahead with the project.
8) We have withdrawn 300 tonnes of waste from the environment over the past year and saved about 500 trees. We want to increase this to 1,800 tonnes per year.
How will your project evolve over the next three years?
Currently we are seeking US$ 315,000 in financing to acquire high capacity technology capable of producing 400 posts/day. We are confident that we will secure this financing through loan and/or equity financing by the end of 2011 and install the new equipment by the first quarter of 2012.
We intend to expand sales and marketing efforts countrywide. We are confident that we can sell 85% of all that we produce in Kenya with the remaining 15% catering for the regional markets in Uganda, Rwanda and Southern Sudan.
We will also introduce other applications for our posts to take advantage of markets in bollards and roofing trusses.
We will thus create even more jobs opportunities in collection, transport, retailing and installation of posts.