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Strength and structure for wholesale and retail markets
Growth and Employment in States 4, Nigeria

people

in Nigeria have increased their incomes as a result of GEMS4’s activities, against a target of 500,023

jobs

More than 12,700 full time equivalent jobs have been  created, against a target of 10,003

sustainable improvements

introduced to the market, strengthening business products, processes and methods
Growth and Employment in States 4 (GEMS4) is a £16.8m, five-and-a-half-year, UK Department for International Development (DFID)-funded programme aimed at improving the livelihoods of the poor and women in Nigeria’s wholesale and retail sector (WRS). The programme was implemented in rural and urban areas in four target states: Kano, Kaduna, Lagos and the Federal Capital Territory (Abuja).

As programme manager, Coffey has worked with traders, farmers, business representatives and legislators to improve rural-urban linkages in specific markets. These interventions have drawn on local knowledge, proven practices and key innovations to help increase incomes, create jobs and strengthen the ability of smaller farmers and traders to develop sustainable businesses that enhance their local economies.
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Results and Innovations
Economically effective waste management

GEMS4 encouraged better urban waste management by introducing new business models for recycled waste aggregation and community waste collection. Working across various states, GEMS4 has raised awareness of the opportunities available in the sector, both to job seekers and firms; and facilitated linkages between aggregators and off-takers. As a result, more than 1,000 sustainable jobs have been created in less than a year. Further expansion is expected in other states with new financing mechanisms now available, and the larger concession-based model is being explored.


Coordination support for rice farmers

GEMS4 has worked with private sector agricultural support service providers, Green Sahel Agro Services and Babban Gona, to introduce agribusiness support services for rice farmers in Kano and Jigawa states. The support service model has improved farmers’ coordination and their access to inputs, postharvest services and premium markets. By September 2017, 21,251 rice farmers increased their incomes through sales of rice paddy to commercial mills and thousands more had registered with the agro-support service providers. 


Better handling practices for better incomes

GEMS4 worked with the Fresh Fruit and Vegetables Dealers Association of Nigeria (FFVDAN) and the Agriculture Development Projects (ADP) of Kano, Kaduna and Lagos states to train master trainers on Good Handling Practices (GHP) for perishable produce. As a result of this activity, more than 50,000 people have subsequently increased their incomes.


Buyers groups for improved negotiating power

GEMS4 improved the supply chains and market conditions for micro-retailers by introducing wholesale buyers groups and buyers clubs, which brought micro-retailers together and improved their negotiation power for wholesale products. This allowed the micro-retailers to secure supplies at cheaper prices and achieve a greater profit. Cumulatively, 106,069 retailers benefited from increased incomes.

“In the two years I have embraced Good Handling Practices in my business, there has been a lot of positive difference in my life because my profit margins have increased.” 
- Theresa Etsekhune, a tomato retailer in Sabon Gari, Zaria, Kaduna State, who took Good Handling Practices (GHP) training with GEMS4.
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Highlights and Achievements

DFID awarded GEMS4 an A+ in the overall Project Completion Report recognising the transformative work Coffey carried out on the programme.

GEMS4 has been nominated for a 2018 British Expertise International Award, as Outstanding International Development Project (non-infrastructure). The awards recognise outstanding international achievements by companies in the UK professional services sector.