Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Export Competitiveness Manager
Kandy, Sri Lanka
ACDI/VOCA is seeking a Small and Medium Enterprise (SME) Export Competitiveness Manager for an upcoming economic modernization activity funded by USAID. The program will improve economic competitiveness through an improved business enabling environment, increased small and medium business export competitiveness, and upgraded workforce capacity.
The SME Export Competitiveness Manager will lead and support SME market and export development efforts to increase buyer linkages. They will develop SME responsiveness to market requirements and trends, reorient product, sales, and capacity, expand and strengthen SME networks, supply chains, relationships, and horizontal and vertical cooperation, and improve SME marketing through business service provision. The program is anticipated to start in 2024 and this position will be based in Kandy, Sri Lanka.
- Conduct market-driven research, such as End Market Analysis, in select sectors to identify constraints and facilitate access to export-led opportunities for SMEs;
- Facilitate the development of innovative business models to stimulate access to inputs and services needed for SMEs to contribute to export-oriented markets;
- Identify opportunities for upgrading processing and value addition for development of new products;
- Facilitate networking and relationships between SMEs, anchor firms, and export companies through trade shows, business exchange programs, and other platforms;
- Design a strategy for, and working through, local business service providers to upgrade SME capacity in strategic areas such as marketing services, financial and operating efficiency improvements, and opportunities for adopting ICT tools;
- Identify and link SMEs to innovative technologies to increase productivity, reduce PH losses, and access export markets through remote sensing, drones, and satellite imagery to analyze soil conditions, monitor crop health, and optimize irrigation;
- Oversee efforts to expand market access and intelligence, working with business service providers (BSPs) and SME associations to assist SMEs in better understanding and responding to market opportunities;
- Facilitate investment matchmaking between SMEs and capital providers to upgrade practices and reach export markets;
- Expand the availability of business data and market intelligence for each sector by applying market intelligence services and other information platforms;
- Expand sector cooperation and synergies to facilitate sector cooperation to increase exports, with a focus on women-owned SMEs;
- Work through local standards certifiers and providers to help SMEs comply with or obtain certifications, including Global GAP, ISO 14000, HACCP, and EU standards and ecolabels;
- Facilitate public-private dialogue and evidence-based advocacy between sector associations, groups, government, and SME support institutions to address trade regulations, procedures, and service constraints.
- Bachelor’s degree in business, economics, or related field is required; master’s degree is desired;
- Minimum 8 years of work experience in international development or relevant SME support field;
- Knowledge of and experience with USAID and/or other international donor programs’ rules and regulations is required;
- Experience working in Sri Lanka preferred;
- Fluency in English required.
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