We signed confidentiality agreements, so I cannot go into detail about our conclusions and recommendations unfortunately. I can however talk more broadly about the issues we decided to focus on and what our overall recommendations entailed.
Essential oil production entails a fairly involved value chain with many different inputs – many more than we had originally identified or asked about. It was the input and cost tracking that we decided to focus on as an immediate deliverable. By helping Ikirezi to track its inputs throughout the value chain, it can identify where costs are above the budgeted amount, and also build historical data to make strategic predictions in the future.
We also identified human capital as something that the company really lacked access to. This is really more of a systemic issue in Rwanda as the country is still developing; literacy rates have grown impressively, but they still are sub par. Our recommendations encouraged Ikirezi to really motivate, encourage and train the employees and outside community members to learn the art of making essential oils and really take pride in it.
Ikirezi really has the opportunity to build upon the essential oils production industry in Rwanda that it basically established. As Rwanda grows, Ikirezi can grow too. The entities can grow with each other. By starting now, Ikirezi has first-mover advantage in a small, yet fast-growing economy. The potential to really develop a culture and enthusiasm for this sector is exciting and immense.
All in all, we are very proud of our work with Ikirezi Natural Products. We are excited about the company’s prospects and growth and we are very-much looking forward to keeping in contact with Dr. Hitimana, Samuel and the Ikirezi team in the future. The work is inspiring and brave. I could go on, but it would get mushy. I’m saving that for our individual “Reflection Paper” due next week!