As noted in Part 2 of this series, the Seoul based Nthing, brings innovative manufacturing and agri-tech together which can grow vegetables in the harshest environments. The contracting consumer base in ROK presents a significant market stress point to which entrepreneurs can develop solutions, starting with Concept Generation. As documented in the first two articles of the ENTREPRENEURS OPPORTUNITIES: GO EAST series, leaders in Korean society reached the conclusion that mutually beneficial collaborations in South Asia, Southeast Asia, and across the African continent will create markets in which Korean Manufacturing Tech will address respective market stress points for the collaboration partners.
The previous articles in this series identified the Market Stress Point that several countries across the African continent need to confront. Large swaths of arable land are being lost due to desertification. The root cause of climate change is not being addressed in an urgent manner. The very premise itself is challenged by industries and varied advocacy groups. As such many African nations, as well as South Asian nations, will need to find the tech solution that will provide the food supplies to feed the young populations that reside in the effected countries.
Macro needs of such magnitudes will require entrepreneurial innovation and dedication. Although these needs might seem far away to some, MGSN followers are global solution providers. In this MGSN exclusive series, we propose that entrepreneurs from France and the US look to address these stress points. The purpose of the proposal is to underscore an often overlooked means of developing a cost-effective Startup, Strategic Transactional Buildout. The utilization of Strategic Alliances, Partnerships, and Teaming Agreements often can lead to effective and cost effective build-out of products and services lines. These commercial relationships are formed in much the same manner as series funding.
As the Concept Generation stage’s research begin to identify long term market needs and a solid solution with the Startup, the Seoul based Nthing, the analysis shifts over to the ability of the prospective entrepreneurs to create a Startup that can add value to the Nthing offering.
As with early round funding, especially at pre seed and seed stage, extensive research is the basis for an effective business plan and pitch deck. Before the Paris based entrepreneur and the New York City based entrepreneur can determine how they can develop a Startup to meet the needs of the targeted Startup, they will need to understand the target’s business offering and market needs.
At this juncture the research will become intense in order to develop a solid Business Plan and Pitch Deck. At this point the two entrepreneurs will want to invest in a Research & Collaboration Agreement. One of most challenging issue facing startups and a contributing factor in startup failure is the failure to build structures around the ideas and task generated from Concept Generation through the Startup stage. Transactional lawyers are skilled at building the legal infrastructure.
“Lawyers and Paris and New York are expensive. The best way to navigate this need is the research and interview Legal Process Outsourcing (LPO) firms. Law firms and large corporate and governmental agencies utilize LPO Firm to expedite the legal support needed for drafting and reviewing documents in the most cost-effective manner. There are many experienced LPO firms in India, the Philippines, and South Africa. The ability to leverage the international deadline and conserve R&D cost is a key to building a structural base for the Startup.”
It is also recommended that the hypothetical entrepreneurs in Paris and New York agree on a jurisdiction and controlling law (both procedure and substantive) in which will govern the emerging legal relationships of the parties to the Startup. The entrepreneurs will have to choose a licensed lawyer in the chosen jurisdiction to review the first transactional document, the Research & Collaboration Agreement.
In the hypothetical and instructive test case proffered in this 3-part series, the young entrepreneurs chose an LPO based in Pune, India, and Quebec City, Canada as the neutral jurisdiction to govern the initial pre-seed stage of the startup. The two entrepreneurs found a young startup law firm in Ste Foy, Quebec and commenced the dialog between the Pune based LPO and the reviewing lawyer in Canada. This selection of the LPO and the lawyer allowed the entrepreneurs to receive the proper legal advice and receive the drafted Research & Collaboration Agreement in an efficient and cost-effective manner. The entrepreneurs are also developing a legal base to the startup that will allow a solid legal and compliance platform to develop. The goal is to develop the collaboration between the LPO and the startup Canadian law firm as potential strategic partners of a Startup that may develop from the Pre-Seed development stage.
After completing the parameters of the Research& Collaboration Agreement, the entrepreneurs now focus on researching the offering of Nthing. Once again working smart is the key to preserving Pre-Seed Funds. Prior to commencing Primary Market Intelligence (PMI), the goal should be to gain as much Secondary Market Intelligence (SMI) on the tech offering as possible. The first port of call is the target’s website. Identify the representation as to how the target’s market offering (products and service lines) solve an identifiable Market Stress point. An examination of Nthing‘s website identifies the scope of its tech. The most compelling offering of the Nthing of the ability to grow Asterales based plants on harsh climate conditions with less water and zero harmful pesticides.
The next step in R&D is examine the Secondary Market Intelligence to identify points of confirmation or denigration of the target’s claims. Independent trade organization and trade Journals are good sources for independent corroboration. They are also good sources to launch a Due Diligence Investigation to obtain Primary Market Intelligence.
Once the R&D establishes the market needs and solutions, the final issues that the Due Diligence Investigation must address is what value do the entrepreneurs bring to the Nthing to Kenya opportunity specifically and other African countries that are confronting the loss of arable land.
The final focus of the R&D project is to examine the target’s market needs and what products and service lines can the entrepreneurs develop that will bring value to the proposed opportunity.
A simple review of Crunchbase will provide a base of SMI from which a Beta Startup can be developed. Nthing is operating in post series B funding. Nthing‘ Founders have presented the tech offering skillfully to build the startup to series B.
However, Series B leaves very little time to celebrate. The investors will be looking for slate product/service line development and sales. Whether a Startup is growing organically or through funding and M&A, the shorter the sales platform the better.
The premise for this article is that the Paris bases entrepreneur and the New York based entrepreneur do not have market networks in key African markets. Ordinary business entrepreneurs might be tempted to sigh and walkway from a good product that can be deployed in markets that need food production.
However, MGSN followers are not ordinary. Strategic Partnerships took the Parisian and New Yorker this far. An examination of the SMI and PMI provides a solid basis for the Startup model that can provide organic sales and solve market needs of a tech company operating in the Series B space. The Startup model should build out a multidisciplinary Digital Marketing Firm with a Sales Engineers platform. Tech in general is facing growth and revenue challenges. The timing to bring a Digital Marketing and Sales Engineering startup to the market is now. The entrepreneurs can operate on the executed R&D project agreement to Research for the right strategic partnership with a Sales Engineer. There are good resources that can aid in the development of good transactional partners, Sales Engineer.
The Digital Marketing Group will also be subject to significant resources.
The best result from a strategic transaction vantage point is to secure a strategic partnership with a firm that offers both Digital Marketing and Sales Engineer services.
Once the Strategic Partnerships are closed. The R&D shifts to Business Development in key African markets. The Paris based entrepreneur will find some key network development opportunities.
We would like to thank MGSN for publishing the 3-part series, ENTREPRENEURS OPPORTUNITIES: GO EAST. We hope our readers and followers found the opportunities with Korea Tech and its challenges illuminating and inviting.