It aims to empower the retailers to adopt and implement best business practices and skills that would ultimately lead to a massive growth of their operations.
The initiative focuses on the small retail outlets that have the widest consumer reach within ABL’s distribution network and are a crucial element of its value chain.
The outlets have played a critical role in helping tens of thousands of families escape poverty.
In a statement, the Corporate and Legal Affairs Director of ABL, Ms. Adjoba Kyiamah, said: “By combining our scale, resources and energy with the needs of our communities, we have the drive and the tools to help make it happen.
“We focus our efforts on building a growing world in our value chain where everyone has the opportunity to improve their livelihood.”
She noted that some small retailers often lacked the basic skills and knowledge to manage and grow their businesses effectively, leaving them at greater risk from economic or legislative shocks.
“Conversations with retailers had consistently thrown up requests for us to help in this area, and the successful implementation of just such a scheme by our sister companies in Latin America provided the catalyst to make it happen,” she said.
Ms Kyiamah said the programme would help small shopkeepers to improve the sustainability of their businesses, the quality of life for their families, and also contribute to improving the development of their communities.
To date ABL has trained over 371 carefully selected retailers across the country in towns such as Sekondi, Enchi, Asankragwa, Sefwi Wiaso (Western Region), Berekum and Dormaa Ahenkro (Brong-Ahafo Region).
The training, being coordinated by Sales Development Manager, Mr. Franklin Addae and Corporate Affairs Manager, Mr. Cyrus de Graft-Johnson, is also targeting retailers in the Upper West, Upper East and Northern regions in towns such as Tamale, Navrongo, Sandema, Paga, Tumu and others.
The training modules include the Managing Personal Finances, which focuses on a retailer’s management of their own finances, including business finances and financial statements.
They were also provided with basic business skills, which focused on equipping retailers with general business management skills and practices, and running my beer business, which is designed to enable retailers to successfully manage a beer outlet, as well as providing an insight into the company’s processes and operating systems.
Other issues dealt with are: Responsible Retailing and Environmental Awareness, which advocate self-regulation as a responsible retailer, as well as building awareness of regulatory and environmental issues.
Feedback from the participating retailers had been highly positive with most expressing the hope that the training would allow them not only to grow their outlets and profits, but also to ensure long-term sustainability of their businesses, it said.
Vincentia Mensah of Vinicom Gardens at Asankragwa in the Western Region said: “I am very glad I accepted the invitation to be part of this very useful activity. I have learnt a lot, if nothing at all, how to draw a budget and keep an income statement.”
At Dormaa Ahenkro in the Brong Ahafo Region, Mr. Justice Oppong of Aseda Spot stated: “This is a good initiative. I hope it covers the whole country. I have now resolved not to sell to underage persons and pregnant women, among others.”