Business Development Associate Job at the East Africa Trade and Investment Hub

Call for Applications: Business Development Associate

Background: The East Africa Trade and Investment Hub (the Hub) is the U.S. Government’s flagship project under the presidential Trade Africa initiative, launched in 2013 to boost trade and investment with and within Africa.

The East Africa Trade and Investment Hub partners with East African and U.S. businesses to attract investment needed to drive economic growth and transform the East African private sector into vibrant global trading partners.

Improving the region’s trade competitiveness, encouraging the diversification of exports beyond natural resources, and promoting broader, more-inclusive economic growth will lead to more food secure and resilient East African communities.

The project pursues these goals through four integrated components:

  • Policy environment for EAC integration, trade and investment improved and implemented.
  • Competitiveness of selected regional agricultural value chains increased.
  • Exports and trade promotion, particularly with the U.S. under AGOA, increased.
  • Investment and technology transfer between Eastern and Sub‐Saharan Africa and global markets,

Project Goals:

  • Improve the policy environment for East African Community integration, trade, and investment
  • Increase the competitiveness of select regional agricultural value chains and bolster regional trade in staple foods
  • Promote intra-regional and export trade, particularly under the African Growth Opportunity Act
  • Facilitate investment and promote the use of available global technology

Expected Accomplishments:

  • Double the value of intra-regional trade in the East African Community
  • Increase non-oil exports to the U.S. under the African Growth and Opportunity Act by 40%
  • Foster 10,000 new jobs through firms assisted by the Trade and Investment Hub and its partners
  • Facilitate $100 million of new investments in targeted sectors in the EAC
  • Increase the EAC’s intra-regional trade in staple foods by 40%

Objectives: The Hub’s strategy is geared towards promoting intra-regional and export trade, particularly under AGOA by facilitating a 40 percent increase in exports of value-added products under AGOA and creating 18,500 new full-time equivalent (FTE) jobs.

Target sectors include; apparel, home décor and fashion accessories, footwear, floriculture, specialty foods, coffee and processed agricultural products. The Hub’s activities serve as a tangible stimulus to undertake the trade and investment reforms needed for growth, drawing in the key players needed for systemic change.

Problem: Globalization offers East African businesses opportunities to participate in the regional and international markets while internationalization presents opportunity for growth and development beyond the local market.

Limited access to global markets however denies these businesses significant opportunities confining them to saturated local markets whereas internationalization is necessary for their survival and expansion.

Barriers that limit internationalization include limited information on foreign markets and opportunities that exist, limited resources to finance exports, inefficient transactions among others.

Use of technology especially ICT offers enterprises a wide range of possibilities for improving competitiveness and market access that include; providing mechanisms for accessing new market opportunities, facilitating product innovations, accelerating market transactions and intensifying the use of information, knowledge and communication in processes.

ICT is therefore key to enable to enable business network within the region and internationally and in turn enhance their growth.

Solution: FROMTU is an online B2B network and trade platform under development with the vision to support companies strengthen their businesses by providing them access to communities of clients, suppliers and investors in the East African region and all over the world.

The platform will provide useful and simple information about procedures and regulations for regional and international commerce and explore other ways to ensure access to competitive supporting services including finance, transport, logistics and payments.

Fromtu is currently under development and financed by Maersk with the intent to broaden the partnership base with companies, governments and international organizations that have the power and motivation to realize this vision. Fromtu is being piloted in Kenya and will eventually be rolled out across the East African region.

The platform will initially target businesses in the tea, coffee, fruits and nuts value chains. The Hub is partnering with Maersk to test and promote the platform as a service to support East African companies to trade regionally and internationally.

The Hub is therefore looking for a Business Development Associate who will support the initial business development efforts of the Fromtu platform. The individual will access targeted user groups and sell the benefits of FROMTU, building a collaborative relationship with the user from the start.

In addition, he/she will manage channels within the Hub, finding synergies in other areas and building relationships with partnership organizations with the goal of opening new channels to users.

Tasks:

The selected individual will be expected to perform the below tasks;

  • Map selected value chains, the key actors, their roles and pain points within these value chains. Identify key actors within these value chains, and work with FROMTU business development staff to acquire them as users.
  • Build customer profiles to support the mapping of selected value chains, the key actors, their roles, pain points and adoption rate of the platform.
  • Build and maintain segmented database of current and potential users.
  • Map synergies within other areas of the Hub. Identify internal partners and maintain relationships.
  • Identify external trade organizations, government agencies, or other associations that can benefit from the Fromtu platform. Collaborate with FROMTU business developers to plan a strategy and engage these organizations.
  • Support the online/offline live support of FROMTU users including building success stories and early detection of teething problems. Be the initial contact point for the service.

Qualifications:

  • Strongly preferred Master’s degree or equivalent in business administration, marketing, international business, management or related area or equivalent;
  • At least 5 years’ experience in business development and partnership management
  • Experience in directing, coordinating and/or providing leadership under minimum supervision
  • Highly networked individual in the East Africa agribusiness sector.
  • Demonstrated understanding of the international trade environment in East Africa
  • Ability to use the latest ICT technology and computer software programs.
  • Methodical research skills with analytical capabilities in collecting, distilling and interpreting data.
  • An innovative and pragmatic problem solver with demonstrable skills for prioritization and organization of tasks.
  • Demonstrated leadership skills, ability to work in a team and sell new ideas and innovations.
  • Excellent English report writing and communication skills.

Reporting: The Business Development Associate will be seconded to FROMTU, and as such he/she will report on day to day technical matters to the FROMTU Business Development Manager.

However the Hub’s Sector Analyst will provide administrative oversight.

Supervisory Responsibilities: None

Base of Operation: Nairobi with occasional travel in East Africa

How to Apply:

Interested applicants should CLICK HERE to apply online  by February 27, 2017, 5.00pm East Africa Local time.

Only candidates who send their information by the deadline will be eligible.

Visit http://www.eatradehub.org/opportunities to view the scope of work and learn more about the Hub.

DAI is an equal opportunity employer.