This article is a little like the new Dreamworks or Pixar 3d movies – let me explain.
These two powerhouses have come up with the greatest solution – they make these movies for adults to take their kids to but clever and funny enough for the parent to enjoy and with enough bangs and zooms for the kids to enjoy. Its a win-win really!
So For those of you looking for a laugh just check the pictures. For those of you wanting to read something (i hope) educational read the text.
There has always been and even more so recently discussion about the fortune that lies ‘at the bottom of the pyramid’ meaning the amount of money that can be made in the mass lower LSM markets as long as the products are correct. For eg A few years ago a large multinational released a eco friendly washing powder for India because the bulk of rural Indians washed their clothes in rivers – this was a massive success and became one of their largest products globally!
So the question is – if there are SO MANY people to target at this end of the market and SO MUCH money to be made by targeting them – why oh why is this so seldom a success?
The answer is fairly simple – as with the example of when GE went into the UK with washing machines they had the biggest and the best from the USA but after six months almost had to shutdown their UK operations entirely and couldnt work out why – what they had failed to realise is they had top loading machines while in the UK (as in SA) the bulk of machines are front loaders. This means all kitchens and powders etc are designed for front loaders and you are selling top loaders – you may as well be selling left hand drive cars to South Africans.
The point of the example is that so many big multinationals regardless of country are generally run and operated by first world people – they make products that THEY THINK third world people need yet because they have absolutely NO IDEA what the third world needs these products fail 99% of the time and fail horribly!
To be fair to them though it is not easy finding a solution to third world problem that is most importantly affordable to the masses.
But when you look at how brilliantly these people solve their own problems with the absolute bare minimum can you imagine what they could do if they were given access to resource and funding – maybe the answer lies not in the multinationals creating the solutions themselves but rather they create an environment where the target market can solve their own problems?
Heres what i mean;
Some may view this as amazingly stupid but if you get a job and you cant afford the right equipment – this seems like a pretty creative solution (its damn funny though too!)
Batteries are massively expensive but an old car battery from a derelict vehicle can do the trip for months?
This is my best by far – when you have electricity but now hot water – this is how you get to wash with hot water when you want – so simple such perfect creativity!
Now if you have half a scrap bakkie and some cows you now have transport?
To be fair though with the best creative minds in Africa (no matter how poor or uneducated) like the rest of the world there are a few we would rather evolution managed to get rid of!