2018 has been an exciting year for the ConnectGroup - the digital division of MegaVision Media. Whilst we continue to channel big efforts into maturing our existing ConnectRETAIL and ConnectFMCG platforms, a new focus for us this past year has been building an appropriate solution in the informal market and distribution space.
Where we differ from existing technologies is that we focus on building a solution from the brands perspective. Our main objective remains in offering real-time visibility - within the informal and wholesale space - to the brands. "Nobody has the transparency they need in this informal retail and wholesale space", says Jane Sarah Rosen, partner of the Connect Group. "When it comes to rep incentives, promotions, stock on shelf and speed to market, brands are flying blind, spraying (money) and praying (that it all works out)."
Through our multi-principal mobile ordering and spaza centric platform, we have launched into 20 nationwide distribution businesses together with our largest FMCG client. Our objective is to roll out an agnostic platform into more of the sector by 2019. "Whilst our core focus has always been to help brands get direct visibility through their distribution and merchandising partners, we do also realise there is a big gap in building a platform that allows for the actual distribution companies to operate more efficiently", adds Warren Canning, founding partner of Connect Group.
More tech savvy distribution businesses means more sophisticated partners for the FCMG brands. The informal retail sector in South Africa makes up for the majority of the retail landscape. While formal retail chains make up roughly 8000 stores, the remaining +- 120 000 outlets (from spazas to tuckshops) is a seriously significant link in the brands supply chain. From orders, warehousing, distribution and promotions, all brands rely on the operational efficiencies of their distribution partners and we are excited to play a role in streamlining this dynamic space within Africa.