KOKO exists to imagine and build technology that improves life in fast-growing emerging market cities. A modern, clean and affordable cooking solution - KOKO Fuel - is what we are this year launching across greater Nairobi, underpinned by a Network of 700 KOKO Agents. These Agents are our last-mile retail partners, with a "KOKO Point" installed inside their shop - machines that combine a clean fuel ATM, an e-commerce kiosk and an in-store digital media platform. But what exactly makes a KOKO Agent, and how do we support them?
KOKO Agents are established, trusted and successful local shopkeepers. Their bricks-and-mortar convenience stores are at the heart of urban retail in African and other emerging markets, providing households with the everyday goods they need, within a short walk of home, and often offering trust-based credit arrangements.
Whilst ever larger and more exclusive shopping malls spring up across the world’s fastest growing cities, they typically serve wealthier, car-owning customers or are weekend tourism destinations. For the mass-market, however, these malls are not close enough to home, and prices may be prohibitively high. When it comes to actual FMCG sales volumes, the neighbourhood-based mini-markets and convenience stores win the lion's share of transactions.
These are the types of local, community shopkeepers with whom KOKO partners. KOKO Agents are generally Tier 3 Modern Trade retailers, typically in the top quartile of entrepreneurs in their neighbourhoods; just as they are the lifeblood of urban commerce, so too they are the backbone of our Agent Network. Our Agent shops are the sort to be supplied directly by large distributors on behalf of multinational brands; they generate strong revenues and profits, sell a wide range of branded consumable goods, and often employ security guards.
Retailing cooking fuel tends to be new to them, though some Agents might already sell LPG cylinders in locked containers outside their store. Becoming part of the KOKO community therefore offers i) attractive new revenue streams (through stove and fuel sales); ii) differentiation from intense local competition by being the local retailer of a popular consumer product; and iii) significant cross-selling opportunities built upon the increased footfall that regular fuel top-ups bring.
KOKO’s systems handle the majority of back-end work, such as digital marketing, order management, procurement, logistics, and customer support. Our cloud systems also automate Agents' payments to suppliers, lenders, and tax authorities, removing a major administrative headache and ensuring no supply interruptions.
In reality, the KOKO Point becomes a low-hassle, low-maintenance annuity for Agents. KOKO Agents receive all relevant training, and require no additional staff. Their team simply focuses on marketing KOKO Fuel to customers and acting as the customer collection point for all orders made via the KOKO Point fuel ATM.
The ‘special sauce’ for our Agents is that they will also become exclusive retailers of a wider range of compelling new goods and services as we roll out various features of our platform, and work with them to build new solutions that address the challenges they face. As we add more physical products and digital services to our commerce platform, our Agents will continue to grow their businesses simply by leveraging their proximity to - and relationships with - local consumers, rather than having to expand their premises or hold more stock.
We’re proud to partner with a brilliant Network of retail partners in Nairobi, and look forward to growing our offering with their input and collaboration.
We thank you. Our team will get back to you as soon as possible. We have also sent you an acknowledgement on
Thank you for your interest in licensing our products in . We will contact you shortly at to make arrangements