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    Date submitted
  • 25-Aug-2017

Taafe Dan Ni

Abstract

Burkina Faso, a landlocked country in West Africa, is the first cotton producer in the region and the second in the continent after Tanzania. About 70% of the population work in the agricultural sector. In this country, thousands of women weave high quality fabrics called "Faso Dan Fani". Like them, their peers weave quality fabrics across the continent. However, the ignorance of the beauty and quality of African handmade fabrics internationally makes it difficult for these women weavers to earn a decent living from their secular know-how. That’s the reason why “Taafe Dan Ni” business concept has been proposed.

Taafe Dan Ni, standing for "handmade fabric" in Bambara, one of the most spoken languages in West Africa, is a platform of e-commerce bringing Burkina Faso handmade fabrics named “Faso Dan Fani” made by African women to premium customers worldwide. Taafe Dan Ni also provides a mobile application for Android and iOS smartphones to facilitate transactions.

Taafe Dan Ni platform showcases a high variety of handmade Faso Dan Fani fabrics for men, women, and children as well as accessories outfits, jewelries, hanbags, shoes and interior decorations.

There is a huge opportunity for Taafe Dan Ni in Africa as by 2025 e-commerce will weigh US$75 billion for 600 million active consumers and smartphone connections will have more than tripled, rising from 226 million in 2015 to 720 million in 2020.

There is a strong political support by the Burkinabe President Rock Marc Christian Kabore who is a Champion for Faso Dan Fani in Africa and worldwide. The government in Burkina Faso has revived a pride of being dressed-up in Faso Dan Fani and exponentially increased the demand for the fabric within the country and the diaspora. Moreover, various exhibitions of Faso Dan Fani during textile fairs are held in Africa, Europe, and America.

Whereas fabrics produced in China are killing the market, our competitive strategy will be to target customers savvy for handmade quality and naturally dyed fabrics, and promote creativity in color and design.

Our basic revenue stream will be based on slightly increasing the sales price of suppliers’ products to international standards of which women will perceive 30% in addition to their revenues. We will also make money through leveraging reductions from strategic partnerships in dispatching logistics and advertising premiums from other companies on the platform.

The Marketing and sales strategy will tap into social media including Facebook which is a powerful communication tool in Burkina Faso and Africa in general. In addition, the Business lead, Djelika, President of the Burkinabe Association of US Exchange Programs Alumni is a member of a strong network of millions alumni worldwide that will constitute a potential market.

Furthermore, during the first year, an intense advertisement of the platform will be done on TV and radio channels, as well as twitter and Instagram.

We have already invested US$ 4,500 in marketing and public relations and we need US$ US$ 185, 000 to acquire and set up the e-commerce platform, make integrations with partner platforms and payment systems.

This is a profitable business which will provide over 3 years US$ 523, 000 as benefit, US$ 198, 000 to Burkina Faso government for taxes, and US$2.5 million as revenues to suppliers of the platform of which US$ 632, 000 to women weavers. Without this business, women would spend 30 years before reaching this turnover of US$ 632,000 for 3 years.

Women weavers will definitely be reaping higher revenues immediately upon the launch of the Taafe Dan Ni digital commerce platform. This will positively impact the living conditions of these women for a truly shared prosperity.

Video

Original YouTube URL: Open

Introduction Video

Photos

Additional Questions

Who is your customer?

Our potential customers are as follows:  Working middle classes in Africa and the Diaspora  Women, men, and children in the world including Africa, Europe, and America  Retail clothing stores  African, European, and American fashion designers  Retail shoe stores  Interior decorators and designers in the world  Worldwide interior decorating companies Other customers are also: (i) worldwide car seats designers and companies, (ii) worldwide computer bags companies, and (iii) smartphones pouch producing companies.

What problem does this idea/product solve or what market need does it serve?

This idea solves the problem of the ignorance of the beauty and quality of African handmade fabrics especially Faso Dan Fani internationally and the issue of African women weavers’ poor conditions despite their secular know-how. The proposed platform aims to serve the following market needs:  Develop the sale of Faso Dan Fani on international markets  Help the brave women producing these fabrics earn a better living that can sustain their ambitions  Tap into and serve in better ways the African diaspora living abroad and in need of African fashion products for different purposes  Take advantage of the growing mobile money penetration in Africa to develop the digital marketing industry in Burkina Faso, Francophone West Africa region and Africa in general.

What attributes will make this idea/product successful? Why do you believe that those features will create success?

We believe the success of Taafe Dan Ni project seats on different factors as follows:  African fabric: We have chosen to focus on the African fabric which is a high consumption fashion driven product. These fabrics are patronized not only by Africans, but also by tourists, and expats;  Youth in Africa: The youth of the African population and their appetite for fashion is a good opportunity for the success of this product;  Potential of e-commerce and smartphones in Africa: There is a huge opportunity for Taafe Dan Ni in Africa as by 2025, e-commerce will weigh US$75 billion for 600 million active consumers and smartphone connections will have more than tripled, rising from 226 million in 2015 to 720 million in 2020. Therefore, the continued mobile penetration, the increased adoption of smartphones, the revolution in the mobile money sector will constitute leverage points for the success of Taafe Dan Ni;  Burkina Faso history. We will first target the African market. Burkina's history of promoting locally produced cotton fabric under Sankara is legendary! Indeed, Sankara was Burkina Faso President from August 1983 until his assassination on October 15th, 1987. Perhaps more than any other African President in living memory, Thomas Sankara, in four years, transformed Burkina Faso from a poor country, dependent on aid, to an economically independent and socially progressive nation. Focusing on the promotion of local consumption of local production, he achieved food self-sufficiency for the country within three years. Burkina Faso’s economy was (and to a large degree, still is) dominated by cotton. As part of his bid to promote local industry, Sankara required civil servants to wear traditional tunics made locally from local cotton. We will tie that into the marketing strategy. Many Africans know Sankara and what he did and we are convinced that if the marketing makes it clear that this is locally produced then African buyers (and savvy Western ones too) would feel proud to be buying the fabric.  Support of Burkina Faso President and government: There is a strong political support by the Burkinabe President Rock Marc Christian Kabore who is a Champion for Faso Dan Fani in Africa and worldwide. The government in Burkina Faso has revived a pride of being dressed-up in Faso Dan Fani. This has increased the demand for the fabric within the country and the diaspora.  Handmade quality of Faso Dan Fani. We will be targeting customers savvy for handmade quality and naturally dyed fabrics, and promote creativity in color and design. Indeed, in America and Europe, people live in a machine society of uniformity where deviation/originality is not the norm while African fashion demands the use of imagination in designing outfits. Taafe Dan Ni will definitely be a success in America and Europe.  US exchange programs alumni network: Djelika, the lead of this project is the President of the Burkinabe Association of US Exchange Programs Alumni and a member of a strong network of millions alumni worldwide that will constitute a potential market

Explain how you (your team) will execute to make this idea/product successful? What gives you (your team) an advantage over others already in the market or new to this market?

Our team will execute to make this idea successful through the following: - Team members will be constantly reminded to identify key investors with whom the business concept will be shared; - They will also collect valuable information from investment opportunities, incubator forums, and on any other fundraising opportunities (news, TV, newspapers, business magazines etc.); - The team will make sure that the project is pitched at major funding forums; - Team members will meet regularly to refine the business concept and share updates about the business sector in Burkina Faso and other African countries (hand woven fabric); - The team will set up a technology watch unit to make sure that the platform and application specifications are incorporating state of the art and scalable technologies to support the business growth; - Team members own time will be sufficiently invested to support the development work throughout the project; - The team will seek collaboration with other entrepreneurs and mentoring from pioneers in the e-commerce sector to avoid pitfalls. Our team has an advantage over others already in the market or new to this market as follows:  The experience, dynamism, determination, proactivity, and the positive mindset of the project lead Djelika Pare;  Djelika Pare, the project lead, is the President of the Burkina Faso Association of the US exchange programs alumni and a member of a network of millions alumni worldwide;  We have a team with deep knowledge of local economic dynamism, strong interest in high impact social entrepreneurship, and capable to leverage international experiences for sustainable local development;  It is a multidisciplinary team with a variety of hard competences (finance, management, marketing, IT, etc.) which are necessary to support the growth of the business;  There are also plans to build strategic partnerships to support different activities and development plans;  Strong relationships with the Ministry of Digital Economy and the Ministry of Women: Xpertis Consulting has worked on other projects with these ministries and they showed their commitment to support the project with related information and technical support if selected;  Strong relationships with women weavers associations: A team of Xpertis Consulting already met and discussed with women weavers associations in Burkina Faso. Therefore, our team knows the market, how these women work and what challenges they face;  The firm has secured a partnership with “Burkina Infos”, a national TV channel, to support the broadcast of a video of the Taafe Dan Ni project. The video will be broadcasted 4 times each month during the entire first year of the project if selected and this will be used as part of the marketing strategy.