Applications are acceptable in English or French and will be reviewed as soon as they are received. Please submit to firstname.lastname@example.org not later than the 31 st of August 2014 at 17.00 WCAT.
Background (see Annex 1 for detail):
Niger is one of the poorest countries in the world, and successive food crises have eroded household assets, savings and livelihoods across the country. The Filingué Department of the Tillaberi region is among those affected by recent shortfalls. The majority of the Filingué Department consists of agro-pastoralists who depend on both cereal farming and livestock for their livelihoods. Mercy Corps (MC) has been working in Filingué for about 7 years undertaking humanitarian activities to address various challenges and especially the frequent foods insecurity using both short and long term strategic interventions. Preliminary evidence and local experience indicate that there is a strong relationship between economic security and food security.
In Filingué, the livestock sub sector plays an important and pivotal role, both socially and economically. From an economic point of view, the livestock sub sector is the dominant industry and is interconnected with the local, national, and regional economies through various interconnected functions. The livestock sub sector and industry is alleviating poverty in the local context through creating wealth, increasing employment opportunities and supporting other alternative livelihood options outside livestock. Indicators confirm that the livestock sub sector has the potential to contribute more than it’s currently doing were it not for a number of challenges and constraints that the government, and other agencies and donors seek to address.
Mercy Corps (MC) is interested in undertaking a detailed value chain and market systems analysis of the key value chains in the Filingué livestock sub sector in order to generate information for use in planning for strategic intervention in the sector. This is expected to stimulate its potential in driving the social economic fabric of the department. MC is interested in developing, designing and advocating for key strategic interventions in the livestock sub sector now and over the next five (5) years or so.
Consultant objectives and activities:
Undertake a detailed Market Mapping and value chain analysis of the Filingué livestock sub sector by identifying:
The key primary chain actors along the key livestock value chain (mainly cattle): (from the producers and inputs supply to the end consumers) identify who they are, possible numbers, their key functions, key operational challenges. Included in the analysis of the primary actors indicate the changes in prices along the identified value chains together with the margins and other economic aspects like market share of the key product and its sub products transactions along the value chain. It is also expected for the consultation to evaluate the social aspects, such as participation and governance along the chain as well as to identify the chain captain(s).
The key supporters/support services (secondary actors) of the chain and their role and services. Identify the challenges experienced in offering/accessing their services. Identify any gaps currently existing in service provision and why those services are absent or sub-optimally delivered; who can possibly provide such services (mainly animal feeds access and animal health services). This should also carefully include the business development services (BDS), financial services and other supporting functions.
Examine the regulatory and policy framework as well as informal norms /rules that affect both the Filingué livestock sub sector, and secondary markets, outlining the key provisions, level of implementation and the challenges involved in their implementations. The consultation should recommend strategies that will strengthen advocacy activities and maximize engagement with policymaking processes, both locally and at national level.
Analyze the over-all business environment under which the livestock sub sector is operating in Filingué and link this to the national level. Provide a SWOT analysis of the livestock marketing structures in Filingué Department and link to cross-border value chains.
Undertake desktop research and advice on persons or institutions that provide basic statistics and description on the potential of the Filingué livestock sub sector: annual production trends, volumes of trade from Filingué, end market quality requirements (exports, regional and national markets), possible market trends in livestock and its byproducts, major trends affecting the livestock industry and its byproducts, the production costs and the economic analysis of the livestock sub sector, pricing and packaging.
Undertake a comprehensive competitive (comparative) analysis of the identified key value chains in Filingué versus other competitive production areas in the livestock sub sector in Niger. Identify key Unique selling points (USP) of the Filingué livestock sub sector and a range of key value chain products. Identify how the local economy can take advantage of the USP to compete with other regions in Niger.
Undertake a comprehensive analysis of the cheese processing business/market model and advise on the feasibility of replication of the model in other production areas of Filingué. Specify possible product ranges, possible sites for future development, the costing of future developments and possible target market outlets.
Based on the detailed analysis of the above, the study will provide:
A detailed analysis of the overall market for the various sub sector products within the overall livestock sub sectors and explore potential opportunities that can potentially be exploited: locations, quantities, quality and other product requirements. Of particular interest to Mercy Corps is how to improve the functioning of interconnected markets such as input supply, livestock health and business services.
Advice on coordination and information sharing mechanisms in the livestock sub sector and propose possible effective coordination models that improve the collaboration, information sharing and learning between actors that improve the effectiveness and opportunities along the value chain.’
Data that can be used to make decisions on future investment opportunities especially in regard to value add opportunities in the livestock sub sector.
Delineate and examine the different market channels of Filingué’s livestock value chain and their products, outlining opportunities for exploitation, additional investments, challenges and possible interventions.
Segment the market and recommend (based on evidence) the best sub sector and or supporting markets to focus on especially for women and youth.
An analysis of the supporting functions needed to strengthen the market system for poor producers. Identify existing service gaps and indicate who or what might fill them.
An analysis of the competitors and recommendations on the benefits of branding Filingué dairy products (i.e. cheese) and on packaging options.
Based on the observed market conditions and opportunities, outline key future strategic interventions and development proposals to trigger and stimulate the development of the livestock sub sector in the next ten years. The proposed strategic interventions will be critically examined for their suitability and sustainability and should also be aligned to other national strategies including I3N  .
Make recommendation(s) for interventions and functional business models for Filingué livestock value products range.
An inception report (maximum five pages) outlining the approach/method and work timetable submitted for review and approval by MC three (3) days after signing the contract, before commencing work.
Data collection tools submitted within two days of approval of inception report.
Value Chain Analysis draft report submitted within five days of completion of fieldwork.
Internal presentation and discussion of key findings with MC.
External presentation and discussion of key findings to validate market and value chain analysis and proposed solutions for selected stakeholders in workshop format.
Final report (English, 50 pages maximum not including annexes) submitted within five days of stakeholders’ workshop incorporates MC/stakeholders inputs.
Translated summary and recommendations in French (maximum 10 pages) that are straight forward and clear to users of the findings.
Timeframe / Schedule:
Expected 20 total consultant days with work starting end of August, 2014 with the final report produced by end of September 2014.
The Value Chains Analysis process takes approximately 15 days and includes interactions, interviews, and report writing.
The Consultant will report to: Madara Program Manager, and will interact withMC Niger management team, Madara project staff, field teams, beneficiaries, and key stakeholders
Consultant/ team qualifications:
The consultant / team must be multidisciplinary (the key consultant must have a livestock industry background) as the analysis is an opportunity to set the overall direction of the Madara program. At the minimum, the consultant(s) must possess the following:
A Master’s degree in business-related disciplines, development studies or economics.
A minimum five (5) years demonstrated experience in agribusiness research and/or work requiring a good understanding of market and value chain development.
A good understanding of the Sahelian, arid, and desert context with practical working experience in such environments.
Successful experience with local and national institutions, government departments, and business service providers.
Conversant with current business models and practice in the regions’ livestock sub-sector.
Practical application of cross cutting themes like gender mainstreaming, and gender competence, M&E, Advocacy.
Good spoken and written communication skills in English and French.
Proven experience of using participatory tools and methodology.
Excellent analytical and report writing skills.
Past Experiences Working on Livestock Sub sector market and value chain development will be an added advantage.
Firms or Consultant(s) who meet the requirements should submit an expression of interest (maximum 10 pages) which includes the following:
A statement describing capacity and past work that demonstrates suitability and availability for the entire assignment.
A brief statement of the proposed study method including a detailed work plan.
A detailed financial proposal, including daily cost per major activity.
Updated curriculum vita that clearly spell out qualifications and experience for the key consultant(s). These can be annexed, and are not part of page limit.
Contacts of 3 organizations that have recently (preferably the last 3 years) contracted the firm/consultant(s) to carry out relevant research/ survey or related work in livestock sub sector.
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