Challenge: Egypt imports approximately 90% of its food stuffs and one of the most consumed food products by Egyptians is fava beans.  Canada is a major exporter of food stuffs with established lines leading into the Egyptian market but Canada stands behind other nations who were early to penetrate the market and are geographically closer.  Canada is well positioned to compete with Australia and China (two other major suppliers of fava beans to Egypt), however, Egypt is also highly corrupt and negotiating the ports is an issue for any supplier seeking to penetrate the wholesale market. My (confidential) client wanted to find a way to import fava beans from Canada and sell them to the enormous Egyptian retail market.

Solutions: After conducting a thorough market research study (that included some primary research with people on the ground in Egypt – because of the lack of reliable information), we developed a strategy that provided a 360 solution from Canadian fava bean farms to access Egyptian retail sales.  We bypassed the wholesale monopolies and helped to strategize and design a business model that would account for all of the (corrupt) logistics complications and market penetration issues. We did this by designing a Canadian brand for distribution in Egypt.

Results: Due to political unrest in the country, at the time (‘Egyptian Spring’, etc.) our client decided not to pursue our plan, but they are positive that the project is viable once the political climate subsides.

Skills Needed: International farm-to-retail logistics planning and products sourcing, food stuffs sales and distribution model, retail eatery design (including branding and signage), international business relations.
Location(s): Montreal, Quebec, Canada and Alexandria, Egypt.
Budget Range: 10K
Date / Duration: 2014
Team: Morgan Rauscher.
Partners: Confidential