The EBRD's Small Business Support has helped a local fruit juice producer build and implement a new business plan.
In the harsh winters of Mongolia, when the temperature frequently drops below -40°C, ensuring your proper intake of vitamins is even more vital to keep up your strength.
Providing Mongolians with their ‘five a day’ has become the mission of Tserendorj Ochirkhuyag, CEO and owner of fruit juice manufacturer Vitsamo.
Tserendorj took over the company, the biggest national juice producer, in 2008 and right from the start he faced strong competition from international competitors such as Pepsi and Coke. To withstand the pressure, he turned to the EBRD’s Small Business Support (SBS) team, which provided Vitsamo with strategic guidance and also paired the firm up with industry expert John Schrurs. The work of SBS is supported by donor funds from the EU, Japan and other donors in Mongolia, while this particular project benefited from grants by the Walloon Technical Cooperation Fund.
The continuous advice helped Vitsamo to establish a clear strategic plan and to shift its business vision from “selling everything that can be produced” to “producing what can be sold”. The owner also realised that he could sell far more juice by developing a factory extension and improved the company’s product range and marketing. In addition, Vitsamo introduced a new organic brand to boost the availability of high-quality juices.
A guide to success
Two years of hard work has paid off. Vitsamo now produces over 30 per cent more fruit juice than in previous years. Profits more than doubled between 2010 and 2012. This success is not only good for the producer but also for the local community, as the company has been able to hire more staff and now has 140 employees.
Furthermore, the SBS project prepared the ground for further cooperation between the EBRD and Vitsamo. The Bank provided a US$ 3 million loan to help the company extend its existing warehouse and install modern equipment.