SOUTH AFRICA – South Africa based fintech platform Nomanini in partnership with Nestlé ESAR, is seeking to bring affordable working capital to Africa’s informal retail markets through launch of StockNow.
The new supply chain finance solution is aimed to connects FMCGs and financial service providers to Africa’s informal retailers at scale, enabling them to stock up their shelves.
FMCGs scaling into emerging markets encounter challenges as without affordable working capital, many informal retailers go through periods when they cannot pay suppliers to restock their inventory due to a lack of cash flow at the time of delivery.
As a result, stock is unexpectedly returned to the depot, leading to high operational costs.
The easy-to-use app, will enable the micro and small retailers purchase goods using stock advances, ensuring business continuity and support for last-mile consumers.
By having access to responsible working capital, informal retailers can stock their shelves in a predictable manner.
This will enable FMCGs to increase operational efficiency by unlocking trade data and gaining visibility into the sales and preferences of informal retailers.
StockNow will also enable retailers to build a stronger financial track record and trade with more confidence and volume over time.
Meanwhile, automating settlements and incentivising e-payments within the value chain also leads to improved efficiencies.
The technology is now live and being rolled out to thousands of informal retailers in Tanzania, with plans underway to scale the solution across the continent from Mozambique to Uganda, The Democratic Republic of Congo to Egypt.
Ten million informal retailers in Africa are reached by global FMCG value chains but lack access to responsible and affordable finance solutions to keep their shelves stocked to attract customers and grow their businesses.
“COVID really highlighted how important these retailers are to their communities,” explains Nomanini’s CEO, Vahid Monadjem. “And unfortunately, their lack of access to responsible business finance solutions means that they are particularly vulnerable during and after times of crisis.
“In response to challenges we saw retailers face during the pandemic and related lockdowns, we established the opportunity to accelerate the development of our digital working capital solutions to provide tools to help retailers keep their shelves stocked with essential goods,” he continued.
To utlize the technology, retailers will need to download the StockNow app, which is available on android devices and feature phones.
For Nomanini, the launch of StockNow marks a big shift from enterprise B2B technology solutions to a move into embedded stock advances in the FMCG value chain.
Introduction of StockNow, follows the launch of Trader Assist, a digital finance solution that enables retailers to sufficiently stock up their shops by gaining access to responsible working capital from Standard Bank and obtaining quality products from Nestle.