Remaining true to the objective of making technology more accessible, Sasalog has designed a compact, all-inclusive PoS system (the terminal and its software) and business-to-business co-operation platform.
This comes after market research conducted in Nairobi, showed that 2/3 of the over 930 small and micro-retailers polled in Nairobi would be interested in a more user-accessible PoS system.
The PoS terminal has internet access that allows businesses to connect with their supply chain forming a business-to-business co-operation platform that includes, a patent-pending anti-counterfeit system, manufacturer customer loyalty programme and simplified stock re-orders. The device is also able to perform prepaid mobile airtime refills using NFC or QR-Code based and print prepaid mobile airtime PIN receipts. All this combined provides a business model that is truly disruptive, as in Clay Christensen disruption, in that we can serve micro-retailers in Africa at a price they can afford.
Our team of gifted engineers and has embarked on designing the hardware and software required to make PoS and accounting software to be used by these traders.
Like in most developing countries and indeed in many developed countries as well, Kenya has many micro-retailers. There are over 160, 000 of them in the country of whom a very small percentage own any Point-of-Sale terminals.
This means that their inventory management and accounting is never automated and denies them any of the benefits borne by access to technology. We can confidently say that with PoS terminals that have Internet access via mobile networks in the micro-retailers’ outlets, a lot of innovative and beneficial solutions can be developed for them.
One of the biggest challenges is the fact that most of these micro-retailers can neither afford PoS terminals at their current prices, this problem is easily solved by generating revenue from other sources that are relevant for the market. For instance, about 70% of pre-paid mobile airtime in Kenya is loaded by use of Scratch Cards which bare lower margins for the retailers than PIN Receipts would. Given that Mobile operators pay a commission to their airtime distributors for airtime sales, this gives a potential revenue source. Furthermore, there are further opportunities in collection of payments and in the fact that in there is an ongoing rollout of prepaid electricity by the Kenya Power, which is Kenya’s main electricity distribution and supply company.
All these would provide additional revenue to retailers. There are even greater opportunities for hardware companies in Africa as the countries switch from analogue to digital TV transmission over the next few years.