Our client, a Multinational Industrials Business, embarked on a market entry strategy into the agriculture sector with the dedicated aim of transforming farming in Africa. Their growth strategy included the creation of subsidiaries where market penetration had been identified as critical to the success and this included countries in both Francophone and Lusophone Africa. Each new subsidiary was to be led by a local national with existing networks in the region.
The expansion strategy required subsidiaries in Kenya, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Benin, DRC, Angola and Zambia to be launched in a matter of months to establish the company buildings, hire a local team, oversee importation and market penetration of the products. Each role required a business leader with industry specific technical knowledge, as well as strong leadership and established networks in their respective market.
We were tasked with finding a local national for each Country Manager position and who had demonstrable commercial success specifically in the agricultural sector and combined with existing local public and private networks. There was a strong preference for candidates with previous experience of working in a multinational organisation as well as proven success in driving a start-up business at some point in their career.
Our In House Research Team mapped candidates across each individual country, neighbouring countries and internationally to identify African nationals who matched the required candidate profile. Critically our Research Team and Executive Search Consultants included French and Portuguese speakers who ensured the evidential and behavioural assessments could be carried out in candidates’ native language.
Our team identified between 72 and 140 potential candidates for each country, with the number varying for each location and we short listed a minimum of four local candidates. Following the client interview stages, offers were made to one candidate from each of the Country Manager short lists, with acceptances achieved within four to seven weeks of the short list presentation.
Key Elements of the Process:
- Finding an African national from Kenya, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Benin, DRC, Angola and Zambia with the required general management experience, despite many of our client’s multinational competitors in each country having an expatriate in the post.
- Critical to success was the assessment of each candidate’s commercial acumen and ability to grow a business from scratch. This was achieved by the two stage evidential and behavioural assessment process.
- Having Consultants with fluent Portuguese and French language skills was critical to being able to effectively assess candidates in their native language
- The efficiency of the Client Interview process was key to maintaining momentum and led to offers within three months of being mandates on each Search.
For more information on how we can assist you with a Search for a local African leader in Lusophone or Francophone Africa, please contact Sarah Fitzgerald, Managing Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Copies of our Corporate Brochure in Portuguese and French can be found on our Resources Page.