SAP Technology Brings SGBs to Scale
Only a small percentage of emerging market SGBs know SAP, and yet worldwide more than 80 percent of SAP’s customers are small businesses. Those same businesses often need technological tools and business mentorship in order to reach the next level of scale. Powered by the Corporate Social Responsibility’s mission to accelerate the impact of social enterprises, SAP developed strategic programs such as the Emerging Entrepreneur Initiative and the SAP Social Entrepreneur Fellowship. These are multifaceted efforts to provide pro-bono technological tools, mentorship, networking opportunities, and capital to high-potential entrepreneurs that are past the start-up stage in providing a product or service that fulfills a social need. Launched in Brazil in 2013, and in India and Kenya in 2014, the programs have provided more than 200 mentorship hours to more than 50 SGBs and has identified more than 20 SGBs to receive SAPs BusinessOne enterprise software.
In Brazil, the SAP beneficiary Solidarium has taken advantage of the explosion in its ability to fulfill customer orders. Solidarium is an online marketplace for artisanal goods produced mostly by women living below the poverty line. Solidarium helps the artisans identify products in high demand and develop designs that mass market customers want. Solidarium then sells the products to major retailers like Walmart in Brazil and Lojas Renner (formerly JC Penney). Solidarium is also building an eCommerce platform with Walmart. This company is just one of a cohort using SAP technology to expand the scale of opportunity for small-scale entrepreneurs around the world.