Identifying potential needs of clients.

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Identifying the needs and where you as a service provider can fulfill that need.

Looking at my own situation, this is how far I’ve come.

I’ve known for a long time that I am going to start my own logistics company when I’m good and ready. The first question that I needed to ask myself was “Where is there a need that I can satisfy as a logistics company?”

I currently live in South Africa and one thing that is clear is the scale of mining in our country as well as in other parts of the continent. The opportunities that are presenting themselves are endless!

So doing some research on the sector I’ve discovered that currently there are at least 465 mining companies operating in Africa, the most being in SA itself and Tanzania. Minerals ranging from gold to diamonds to just about anything you can think of.

So the next step would be to look closer at the mining process. Seeing where the mining company have needs for transportation. This can vary from the transport of mining equipment to perishable goods or even the movement of mineral excavations.

My second question was “In what other sectors are there needs that are parallel to the ones of mining?” (With mining being so volatile in Africa, it would be stupid to put all your eggs in one basket) I came across a major opportunity called the China Africa Project. The arrangement works as follows: Chinese companies get the backing from their banks to come to Africa. Here they build roads, hospitals, schools etc. in return for primary goods such as minerals, timber and agricultural productions as payment. Right there is a great opportunity for companies looking to do business overseas but who don’t have the means to do so.

If one was to start providing logistical services to a Chinese company in Africa and hold the relationship, chances are good that ones reputation would increase amongst their inner networking circles and with that the chance to do more business with more companies.

The next step will be to address the risks attached to doing business in Africa. More on that later.

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