Ethan Arpi

Enterprises on the Move

fileIf I?m not scouring obscure newspapers for BOP related stories, staring aimlessly off into space, clipping my toe nails, or thinking about integrating a word like phallogocentrism into a blog about microfinance, then chances are I?m adding new activities to Nextbillion’s activity database.? If you have not checked it out already, I would suggest that you click here and learn about some off the most innovative enterprises tapping into BOP markets around the world.? But if you?re like me and find it difficult to click on a link, then you can just continue reading this post, which describes some of the latest BOP enterprises doing work in Africa. ?

Solardome SA
Solardome SA is part of the solar revolution sweeping over Africa.? On its website, Solardome describes itself as an independent solar hot water system manufacturer that also specializes in solar energy systems. Its products include solar powered cookers, fridges, lights, water pumps, and batteries. Although the company is located in South Africa, many of its products are exported to surrounding countries, including Mozambique.Mwanza Rural Housing Programme (MRHP)
The Mwanza Rural Housing Programme trains Tanzania villagers in the art of enterprise development so that they can produce and sell ?high-quality bricks from local clay fired with agricultural residues.?? The bricks are then used to construct homes, over 100,000 so far, which are much more comfortable and durable than other ones in the area.? MRHP was a 2006 Finalist in the Ashden Awards.? On its website the Ashden Awards explains that, ?MRHP has also developed more efficient cooking stoves which are made and sold by local entrepreneurs. It runs a programme of tree planting and reforestation in all its project villages and has recently started to supply photovoltaic (PV) solar home systems for lighting.?

The African Organic Farming Foundation (AOFF)
The African Organic Farming Foundation is a non-profit organization ?that offers natural solutions for economic growth and prosperity.?? According to its website, ?AOFF’s mission is to reduce poverty among Southern Africa’s rural communities through the introduction of organic farming, better nutrition, agro-enterprise development and management of natural resources.?? How does it propose to do this?? ?AOFF’s Marketing and Agro-Business Development (MAED) Program is a market-led, trade capacity building partnership that facilitates the inclusion of the resource-poor in organic production and trade by linking small farmers with markets to improve nutrition, food security, incomes and community decision making. Increased income will enhance the well-being of farm families and give them new incentives to improve their management of the soil and other natural resources.?

These three organizations are just the tip of the iceberg.? Visit the activity database and see for your self.