Buyer-seller partnerships to boost Senegal’s mango exports

10 July 2012
ITC News
ITC’s buyer-seller development partnerships aim at increasing exports of mangos from Senegal to Europe.

NTF II's Senegal team is stepping up efforts to build stronger relationships between Senegalese mango producers and European importers. The aim of this effort is to establish so-called development partnerships that move beyond opportunistic transactions. Instead the project seeks to develop a more strategic, sustainable and relationship-based approach where both parties collaborate to shape the future of their businesses.

The initiative took its first tentative steps with the participation of a delegation of Senegalese exporters at Fruitlogistica, a trade event that took place earlier this year in Berlin, Germany.

At the fair, ITC helped establish initial contacts between Senegalese exporters and potential importers who expressed interest in this type of partnership. The team assessed and selected importers based on their strategic and operational match with the project's approach and its beneficiaries.

Matchmaking process

The evaluation considered corporate and business strategies, with a particular emphasis on importers’ approach to responsible business, sustainable trade and impact on the communities where they operate. It also looked at product and brand portfolios, as well as market presence and client base. The previous experiences of importers were also assessed when partnering with suppliers. As a result of this, two importers of conventional mangoes were invited to participate in the initiative.

The partnership was launched on June 22, when the first shipment left Dakar. Following the first trials, the participants are now considering a move into organic mangoes, with a weekly rate of one to two containers over the 2012 season. As part of this, the importer will provide tools for exporters to improve practices at specific stages in the value chain, such as conditioning and logistics. At the end of the season, the exporter, the importer and ITC, will meet to measure the results of the campaign and work on a joint action plan for 2013.

Strengthening competitiveness

For the participants, the initiative is regarded as central to their efforts to strengthen the sustainable competitiveness of Senegalese mango exporters. For them it is important to have a focus on a win-win situation where capabilities and resources benefit exporters and importers.

ITC’s ‘development partnerships’ are a means to increase value and share profits more fairly, and they are based on combining the capabilities of both buyer and seller. From a market perspective the partnerships will allow exporters to better respond to buyers’ expectations and requirements. From a competitiveness perspective, they will help to increase the efficiency of operations, which again will lead to higher margins for producers and exporters.

Learn more about NTF II Senegal. 

Learn more about Fruitlogistica.