Business Botswana announced last week that it is developing a market intelligence information system (MIIS) which it says will assist businesses in terms of availing information on national, regional and international markets.
The establishment of MIIS by BB will be a welcomed development particularly that pundits had previously cited a lack of tools that inform evidence based decision making by businesses. The lack of market intelligence had been identified as a probable cause to the current status quo of the pursuance of entrepreneurship by default as opposed to intent. This point was elucidated by The Business Place, a business information and referral walk-in centre that closed down two years ago. The Business Place had observed the paucity of basic knowledge particularly in the area of starting a business. The lack of such information was in that case outlined as a likely cause for the fickle impact of entrepreneurship on the economy. BB expects the tool to provide information on trends, opportunities and requirements in line with private sector development. “Moreover, it will provide connectivity and linkages with retailers and wholesalers for priority sector such as beef, tourism, crafts and jewellery with the view to facilitate accessibility to prices and price structures of different markets to guide decision makers,” noted BB.
“MIIS aims to provide an efficient and effective online trade intelligence service reinforcing the value added offered by BB which can support efforts for diversification,” BB stated. This tool according to BB is a product of the Private Sector Development Program (PSDP) which is a program that was adopted in 2013 in partnership with the European Union with the primary objective of supporting small and medium enterprises to gain a significant standing in the economy in terms of impact. BB had previously worked on PSDP specifically on areas of implementation and monitoring before taking on full charge of the program last year. When assuming full responsibility for the program BB outlined in a previous interview that it will continue to improve capabilities and capacities of SMMEs so as to aid their growth and sustainability. The development of MIIS could in that regard be seen as part of that bigger objective.
The MIIS tool according to BB will be developed by a local company, E-tourism/ Simply Botswana and will in addition conduct workshops in various strategic areas in Botswana.